Systemic racism at college campuses across the country was thrown into the spotlight two weeks ago, with protests at the University of Missouri and Yale demanding action to address the institutional marginalization of people of color.
Fraternities are not guilt-free of partaking in the culture of excessive drinking and sexual misconduct, but we cannot expect to lay sanctions on them alone and consider the issue resolved. It is all too easy to lay the blame on the highly visible Greek societies that seem to dominate the social and party scene, but they are only part of the problem, not the problem itself.
Before we can even look at paying PILOTs as a yes-or-no issue, there are many questions that need to be answered. From the effectiveness of Penn’s community programming to the City’s allocation of PILOT funds, these concerns need to be addressed as part of the much-needed conversations regarding the status of public education in Philadelphia and the University’s relationship with the community.
While personally traumatic experiences are important to address and treat on college campuses, trigger warnings are neither a fair nor sufficient solution to such issues and would ultimately serve to undermine the fundamental values of academia.
Furthermore, we wholly support Delaney’s commitment to changing the internal structure of the UA, which did not seem to be shared — certainly not to the same extent — by Kim. After the recent impeachment debacle, it’s clear that something needs to be improved internally, and we believe that Delaney’s plans to empower other UA members through a more horizontal structure will be crucial to making the necessary changes.
It’s a shame that students are disenchanted with the UA. It’s also a shame that the UA does very little by way of visible action or effective communication with students.