According to a recent article in The Bucknellian, students at Bucknell were upset over the lack of attendance at a recent campus event that covered issues of social justice.
An event at Bucknell University entitled “Conscience, Courage, and Community: Bucknell Responds to Injustice Today” was largely underattended, which prompted students to call for future social justice-themed events to be made mandatory by university administrators. “These seats won’t fill up … Three years and they still aren’t filled,” said Anthony Scrima, voicing his frustrations about the lack of interest in the event.
The event, which took place on Sept. 6, was facilitated by “queer feminist” Peg Cronin and Bucknell alumnus Harvey Edwards. According to The Bucknellian, “the discussion, titled “Conscience, Courage, and Community: Bucknell Responds to Injustice Today,” …was in response to the all-too-frequent acts of violence that have occurred in recent months across the globe, including the June shooting at a gay nightclub in Orlando, the shootings both by and of police officers, the attack in France on Bastille Day, and the Stanford University rape case.”
According to The Bucknellian, the event was well-organized and provided several opportunities for individual students to speak up and participate.
Following the three speakers, there was a free writing session and an open microphone for comments and reflections, during which students and faculty called attention to specific problems that occur on the University’s campus. One of the most pertinent questions regarded the large number of students who did not choose to attend the discussion. How could those in attendance reach out to the rest of the University students?
Suggestions included holding small group discussions in the classroom and a general refusal to be privy to non-inclusive, misogynistic, and hateful language.
After the event’s conclusion, some students were disheartened by the event’s turnout.
“We’ve made these conversations optional. The nightclub victims didn’t have an option, the victims of police brutality didn’t have an option. These seats won’t be filled because we make this an option,” Danielle Taylor ’17 said.
Some students pointed to close-mindedness as the root of the problem.
Interestingly, Breitbart Tech editor Milo Yiannopoulos’ event filled an auditorium at Bucknell back in February, and over 50 students had to be turned away at the door.
Tom Ciccotta is a libertarian who writes about Free Speech and Intellectual Diversity for Breitbart. You can follow him on Twitter @tciccotta or email him at firstname.lastname@example.org