Who thought something that costs 2 bucks could pull so many people together?
Last week, cotton was sprawled over the lawn of the Black Cuture Center on the campus of The University of Missouri by people who could only be described as idiots.
The entire community pulled together. Black. Whites. Internationals. Asians. Tigers. Columbians. Everyone. They pulled together at a town hall meeting organized by the Legion of Black Collegians on the campus of The University of Missouri.
To put what is being called only as "The Incident" into perspective, you have to go back decades. Before the 13th Ammendment of the U.S. Constiition was passed, Black slaves picked cotton--one of many crops they cultivated. The cotton in front of the BCC reminded everyone of those times.
I wasn't able to report during the initial reaction but felt that the meeting would be the best place to see how the entire community would react to such a racial charged event.
As I arrived, organizers had set up a special area for the media, but this time I figured I would take a spot away from the pack. The designated media area was on the side of the room with access to the audio board. I went to the back of the room where there was no one. I was glad I did.
Colan Holmes had gotten to the BCC late and really wanted to get a seat or at the very least hear what was going on. He said he thought it was important to attend because race was a very important issue to him. He didn't want to speak, he just wanted to support. But here, he stood out as a minority. For you see, Colan is white.
I got a chance to speak to him about why he came to the meeting and his thoughts on race and color-blindness. He was soft spoken but still had a lot to say.
If I had decided to follow the pack, I wouldn't have gotten his story. That was one of the big things I learned this week on the grind in B-2.
I also learned that 2 bucks to insult a race and cause a schism on the campus of Missouri isn't enough. In fact with the support at the BCC I learned that two dollars could pull an entire community together.
Chris started his career in journalism as a freelance sports photographer 15 year ago. From there he visited several media houses in The Bahamas before landing at the national broadcaster as a sports anchor and producer. Along the way he picked up several awards for sports journalism and feature reporting.
The 2007 Paul Quinn College graduate (BA Mass Comm.) interned at NBC-5 (DFW) and The Dallas Weekly and has covered everything from hurricanes to elections to outer space aliens—ask him about that one, its a great story! The 2002 CNN-International Fellow has also contributed to the CNN World Report, The Associated Press and BBC's World Service.
In his spare time he's a basketball referee & swimming starter. The Bahamas native has traveled throughout the Caribbean & U.S. covering sports including: the '96 Atlanta Olympic Games, the 2004 Baltimore Ravens rookie camp, the 2006 FIBA Americas U18 Championship for Men, early rounds of the 2006 NCAA Men's National Championship, the 2002 FIBA Americas U17 Championship for Men, 11 regional swimming championships, regional track & field championships on the junior & senior level along with local high school athletic championships.