The Daily Orange wrong to capitalize ‘Black’ in style change – The Daily Orange

Posted: February 10, 2020 at 10:44 am

Dear Editor,

The Daily Orange Editorial Board made the wrong decision, choosing last month to capitalize the word Black when referring to a culture, ethnicity or a group of people part of the African Diaspora, without giving the word white a similar treatment.

The editors justification points to the papers historyof racism and exclusivity and the desire to better reflect the communities we cover. Yet, the unevenness from a potentially published sentence like white students and Black students unite in the face of racial inequality creates an editorial and institutional structure wherein one race is given more emphasis than another. This is racist.

Personally, I think neither should be capitalized. Black and white people are not monolithic groups, nor do they share one identity or lived experience. To assume otherwise is prejudicial.

In researching the practice of capitalizing Black, I came across two prominent black nationalist groups. On the Southern Poverty Law Center website under the category of Extremist Files, black nationalist groups such as the New Black Panther Party (NBPP) and the Nation of Islam (NOI) as anti-Semitic, anti-white hate groups, and leaders of these groups are not shy in voicing their hate for others.

Louis Farrakhan, leader of the NOI, just last year stated, Pedophilia and sexual perversion institutionalized in Hollywood and the entertainment industries can be traced to Talmudic principles and Jewish influence. Not Jewish influence, Satanic influence under the name of Jew. In 2018 he tweeted, Im not an anti-Semite. Im anti-Termite.

In 2009 King Samir Shabazz, a former leader of the NBPP, said in a documentary produced by National Geographic, I hate white people. All of them. Every last iota of a cracker, I hate it. Shabazz calls his black nationalist followers to action: You want freedom? You going to have to kill some crackers! You going to have to kill some of their babies!

Both the NBPP and NOI style their web posts and manifestos in terms of Black and white.

In January 2020, motivated by a righteous desire to extinguish racism, The Daily Orange Editorial Board, intentionally or not, moved the student-run periodical closer to the likes of anti-Semites and anti-white black nationalists like Farrakhan and Shabazz.

Both black and white nationalist extremism is a threat to our society. And now, The D.O. Editorial Board is speaking the language of one of those groups.

Sincerely,

Cesar Gray

Syracuse University

Class of 2021

Political Science, Writing and Rhetoric

Published on February 9, 2020 at 7:00 pm

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The Daily Orange wrong to capitalize 'Black' in style change - The Daily Orange

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