Three student-run organizations at Georgia State are standing together against institutionalized racism and inequality. Together these groups want the university to stand behind the students, by telling students about racist propaganda found on campus.
Flyers and poster around campus, advocating for student activist groups, have been vandalized with white nationalist and neo-nazi symbols. Corin Warlick and Seyoum Bey, are members of the merged coalition between ISO (International Socialist Organization), PSA (Progressive Student Alliance) and MXGM (Malcolm X Grassroots Movement).
The McGraw Hill Education, is a company the publishes text books. According to Bey, McGraw Hill published books that made outlandish claims. “[These] books claim that black people were migrants that voluntarily came to America to help build the country,” Bey said. The coalition wants Georgia State to address these controversies by using administrative power to inform the students about racist publications and icons.
What should the university be doing to address these problems?
CW: “The university could definitely use its position to announce that ‘this is going on and it shouldn’t be,’ and that would be a huge help.”
SB: “The university hasn’t removed the stickers and we’re the one’s letting students know what’s going on. As students, we’re recognizing [the] [problem], and it’s [the] [university’s] job to ensure that this is a safe campus for everybody. When there are white supremacist stickers that say ‘white lives matter,’ or neo-nazi symbols, that’s creating a hostile school environment.”
Which student organizations have come together to combat these issues, and how do they you plan to address the problem?
SB: ISO, PSA and MXGM, though it was necessary to form a coalition, in regards to addressing the manifestation of white supremacy on campus, [and] not only white supremacy but institutionalized racism.
How is the cultural diversity at Georgia State being affected?
SB: “In the case of cultural diversity being affected, both, the [university’s] relationship with McGraw Hill [and] the stickers [found on campus]. We feel like the upper administration is continuing the problem by being complicit with the issues.”
What’s the next step for your organizations, and who have you contacted about the issue?
SB: “We had a meeting with Dr. Holloman to extend the discussion, [and] they pretty much said ‘We’ll get back to you later in regards to what we’re going to do.’ So we feel the administration is not acting swiftly, because Georgia State is always talking about diversity. Whenever cultural diversity is being effected Georgia State needs to do something about it.”
ISO, PSA and MXGM want Georgia State to address controversies regarding McGraw Hill’s publishings and racist symbolic stickers found on campus. The organization’s plan to hold protest until the university addresses the issue.