Varsity Athletics Point/Counterpoint: Marginalized Groups Suffer from Amherst’s Toxic Athlete Culture, Says My Black Friend, Who Is Real

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Counterpoint: Marginalized Groups Suffer from Amherst’s Toxic Athlete Culture, Says My Black Friend, Who Is Real

Matt Chooler ’17

Let’s face it: athletics are a huge part of campus, deciding where you can sit at Val to where you can party on Saturday. Unfortunately, these athletes are overwhelmingly white, which makes entering these athlete dominated spaces uncomfortable for people of color – or at least that’s what my black friend tells me, when we hang out.

We hang out all the time, and he thinks I’m really cool.

During any given dinner at Val, the backroom might host a few hundred athletes, nearly all of whom are white, and majority male. They form an implicit “in group” which excludes the diverse communities about which Amherst claims to care; all this I hear from Marshawn Lynch (no relation), my black friend, who lets me know what they’re saying “in the streets.”

According to my super cool black friend, with whom I converse almost weekly, this social segregation extends to housing, too. “If you think I’m trippin’,” says my non-imaginary friend who just bursts at the seams with melanin, “peep the dorms where the honkies be chillin’, Jenky and The Cock.” (sic) This stands in direct contrast to dorms like Marsh, which would totally accept a black person, were one to ever apply.

If we wish to break down the social barriers on this campus we must interrogate the structures that create those barriers, the most prominent of which is athletics. If we rid this campus of athletics, perhaps people will be more socially open, and I might have two or three black friends, rather than just the one, which is totally fine.

And who knows? If the stars align, I might befriend an Asian student someday.

Varsity Athletics Point/Counterpoint: Am I Wrong Just Because I’m White?

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Point: Am I wrong, just because I’m white?

Gregory Beauregard ’18

It was a day like any other: I showed up to class, ready to learn about how racism is over. But when I came in and saw the topic of that day’s discussion, a chill went down my spine. The board read, “Privilege.” Before thirty minutes had passed, the unthinkable happened. I had been called White. I had been called Male. I had been called an Athlete. I excused myself from the room,  and chugged my whole nalgene in anger. I felt I must respond.

Between the Indicator and ACVoice, all dissing athletics, someone’s gotta take a stand for the little guy, who just so happens to be big, physically. And in the majority, racially.

AC Voice is accusing us by using buzzwords that have been used so much they’ve lost all meaning, like “toxic masculinity” or “de-facto racial segregation.” How can we be part of toxic masculinity when we shower together, which is like, super gay?

How is our housing situation not diverse? If it were not for the diversity in my dorm, I wouldn’t have learned of so many different ways of lifting. Where else could you find a lacrosse player from Connecticut live right next to a football player from Vermont who’s right next to a soccer player from New Hampshire?

Athletes and regular people just lead different sorts of lives. Some might be engaging in  critical discourses about racial or class inequalities, others attempting to make breakthroughs in quantum computing research. Who’s to say smashing into people with my gigantic, bulbous skull is not just as, if not more valuable than that stuff?

I didn’t choose to have a body built for inflicting concussions. I was born this way.

And how do you expect me to sleep at night, knowing that my mother can see my Facebook statuses get only angry reacts? Is crushing ‘stones and smashing chicks really such a crime? White people, heed my call. We don’t need to be part of the persecuted majority anymore.

Corry Colonna’s Spring Concert Review: “The Only Thing Worse Than Vincent Staples is a Sensical Housing Policy”

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Hey gang! It’s me, Corry Colonna, Czar of Residential Life Mishaps and Whoopsies!

How about that concert, huh? I gotta say, during the 4 hours I stood outside and gloomily checked tickets, I got a pretty strong taste of what you Amherst students are listening to. And just like sensical housing policies, I think you guys like this stuff way more than I do.

Call me a traditionalist, but I like my EDM music duos like I like my Freshman roommates: antagonistically different and without any friendship. So you can imagine how turned off I was by that buddy-buddy act those two TriTonal jabronis put on! Quit it with the smiling and dancing guys. We all know distrust and miscommunication are the bedrock of any successful partnership – just look at me and student body!

And I know what everyone is probably thinking – old Corry Colonna probably hates all that Rap n Roll music the kids listen to nowadays. Sorry to burst your bubble, folks, but that’s wrong: I just like good Rap. That’s right, Corry here is a bona fide Hip Hop Hippopotamus!

So believe me when I say this: unlike modern Rap Music icons such as Iggy Azalea, Little Dicky, Garrison Keeler and Martin Shkreli, Vincent Staples just really isn’t all that great. I’m no fan of anybody who trashes the brave men, women, and ratcops in blue who protect us every day. And gee whiz, why does he have call women “bitches” all the time? We should respect everybody’s gender, whether that be by refusing to let transgender students live in 75% of rooms or never letting women win Lip Sync.

One thing I did like was the diversity of volume preferences at the concert. Personally, I don’t like loud noises. So when I went to the bathroom, I asked that Vincent fella if maybe he could knock it down a few decibels. He told me to fuck off. If two people with completely opposing preferences about noise weren’t adjacent to each other, that vibrant and productive exchange would have never happened. This was truly reflective of the value of volume diversity, which I am proud to say has been a hallmark of the past year’s residential life experience.