Category Archives: From The Editors

Letter From the Editors: 2017 Fall Letter

Dear Readers,

Welcome back! We hope your summer was full of excitement, relaxation, and thought. A lot has happened since we last spoke: difficult and divisive events such as protests in Charlottesville, North Carolina; controversial statements made by President Trump; persisting instances of police brutality; President Eisgruber’s statement on DACA; and a series of devastating natural disasters continue to shape our political discourses. We hope that it has become apparent to you, as it has to us, how important it is to have the kinds of conversations that The Stripes aims to bring to the forefront of our campus discussions.

 

Each year, we strive to bring The Stripes closer to our imagined utopia: a place where everyone on campus can engage in conversations surrounding identity and politics, and directly interact with new and different opinions on some of the most important topics to our Princeton community and the world. This year, the stripes looks forward to continuing our mission of providing a platform for traditionally underrepresented voices within the Princeton community to reflect on personal experiences, perceptions, and minority identity. We hope that by providing a space for critical reflection on issues affecting marginalized groups, individuals are  better informed, more willing to engage in intellectual conversations surrounding these issues, and inspired to take meaningful action to change these realities.

To this end, we would like to thank last year’s staff and contributors: without you, the our efforts would be fruitless.

To the Class of 2021: welcome to campus. We encourage you to engage with us critically and thoughtfully. We would love to hear what you have to say about us, our world, and our campus.

As always, we want to know what you –yes you– want to read and talk about. If you have content ideas, would like to write for us, or have questions, concerns or comments, please shoot us an email at tstripes@princeton.edu.

It’s a new year, and The Stripes is back and better than ever.

Your Editors-In-Chief,

Lauren Richardson and Cierra Robson

Letter From The Editors: 2017 Black History Month Picks

Dear Readers,

As we kick off yet another great Black History Month, we are thrilled to officially introduce you to the The Stripes’ new website! After months of hard work from our executive board, content staff, and production team, we are very happy to present this new platform. We sincerely hope you enjoy the opportunity to engage to with our content in new and exciting ways.

In addition to launching our new interface, The Stripes has decided to kicked-off Black History Month by featuring a number of new pieces. Our pieces range from comments about the current political climate, to to the importance of love and family. We are very fortunate to have a passionate and engaging group of writers contributing to The Stripes this semester. So, check out our newest content here and when you’re done, let us know your thoughts via Facebook, Twitter, or email at tstripes@princeton.edu. We really do want to hear what you have to say so keep on commenting, sharing, and engaging with our pieces.

If you still can’t get enough of The Stripes, feel free to look back on some of our favorite Black History Month pieces:

Ferguson’s Role In Black History Month: Check out a discussion of Ferguson, and the Black Lives Matter Movement here, written right in the midst of city and campus protests worldwide.

“This is a fear I have not only for myself but also for the Princeton community and society at large. I am afraid. I am afraid that people will stop thinking about Ferguson because it is easy to do so—because, to many, it is simply no longer news worthy of coverage.”

Black Women’s Lives Matter Too: Read a piece on the oft forgotten narrative of black women in the story of social justice movements here.

“At those same protests in which activists, young and old, highlight the deaths of Black men, I always notice one lone and audacious woman holding up a sign with the names of murdered Black girls and women penned on it.”

Why Does America Need A Black History Month?: Take a look at the argument presented here for why a Black History Month is needed in America, now more than ever.

“American children, especially descendants of the Diaspora, are not given adequate instruction on, not just American History, but specifically Black History. We don’t spend too much time on slavery because it is supposedly too depressing or traumatic for young children, and when we do, the focus is mostly on the impact on the economy, not necessarily the evils of the institution itself and its lasting legacy.”

Finally, we want to extend a special thank you to everyone that has helped up during this crazy period of transition for The Stripes. We could not have come this far without the assistance and support of countless individuals. As they say, it takes a village. So, with that we welcome you to The Stripes new home. As always, we appreciate the time and attention you all give to our work. If you have any comments, questions or concerns please don’t hesitate to reach out to us at tstripes@princeton.edu.

Sincerely,

Your Editors-In-Chief,

Cierra Robson and Lauren Richardson

A RETROSPECTIVE: BLACK HISTORY MONTH PICKS

In honor of Black History Month, we’ve curated a list of some of our most popular, poignant, uplifting, and enduring pieces on the blog. These are the pieces we keep returning to – and we hope you will, too.

The Taboo Topic, Black Women’s Lives Matter, Too – by Destiny Crockett

These lone women, who hold up these signs among the throngs of people who chant the names of Black men, recognize that if they do not pen the names of Black women onto their posters, there is a possibility that we may never know those women’s names. These lone women symbolize the often lonely but poised voice of the Black woman who dares to broaden the focus of justice when the lives of Black men remain at the forefront. These lone women understand that Black women are suffocating at the hands of structural violence, sexism, and silencing, and that Black women cannot breathe, either.

 

The Things You Won’t Remember – by Lovia Gyarkye

We won’t think about the thousands of tears shed by black mothers across the nation as they cry to and curse a God that cannot replace their sons. We won’t think about the fear that grips a parent’s heart as they explain to their sons that there are people out there who will judge them just because of the color of their skin. We won’t think about the communities in which funerals and wakes have become the norm as they mourn the loss of a young community of men. We won’t think about the fatigue that plagues a nation of individuals too tired of explaining over the noise of the media, newspapers, politicians and your opinions, why their existence is important. We won’t remember these facts because it is all too easy to forget that the America we live in today is still very much under construction.

Mike Brown: What’s in a Martyr? – by Kovey Coles

As blacks, we cannot claim that all our people, all our kids, are 100% “good.” No culture can. But what we want is the acknowledgement that America’s public authorities have a problem of viewing us all in the same unwavering bad light. Yes, the details around Mike Brown’s alleged robbery, like the media that we see every day, highlight that there is undoubtedly much work to be done even from within black communities. We must work to fix this. But we must also come to terms with the pervasive issues surrounding the black community, confronting us from the outside. When we protest, let us not forget that we are seeking direct ways to address this issue, such as the implementation of higher, objective standards for positions of authority. We are not here to attempt to make our victims into saints.

Fish in the Sea – by Aisha Oxley

The first time I woke up and remembered I was black, I couldn’t breathe.

The night before, Darren Wilson wasn’t indicted for the murder of Mike Brown. I couldn’t get the image of Mike’s mother crying right after his death out of my head, how her tears looked so natural – intrinsic even. And for the first time, I got it: bodies guarded in black skin are harboring a sea.

Three Point Two Percent – by Achille Tenkiang

My eagerness to create a strong black men community here at Princeton does not at all mean I want to confine myself to one group. All I want to do is meet more students who look like me, and can relate to the struggles of being a black male at an Ivy League institution.

BLACK SKIN AND A VOICE LIKE HONEY

Like most grandmas, mine liked to tell stories. She was made for it. She was short and wide, with a billion wrinkles folded into one another, like elaborate human origami. Her skin was the color of peanut butter and she always smelled like her daily cocoa butter routine. We children used to say she was carved out of candy. But her glory was in her voice. Her voice was bull strong and sugar sweet and had the power to make every word into a jewel.

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