Scared Silly - CBS46 News


Scared Silly

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Joyce Oscar

Former WSB TV

Joyce Oscar Joyce Oscar

Remember that bad haircut, in 7th grade or the black lipstick you wore during your Goth years?  I think many of us may look back at the summer of 2017 and wonder what in the heck were we thinking.

In reaction to the tragic events during a protest in Charlottesville, Virginia last month, executives at ESPN switched a play by play announcer named Robert Lee to another game.  Lee was assigned to call the Virginia-William and Mary game on opening weekend.

No matter that the young, Asian American announcer is not in any way related to Confederate General Robert E. Lee or slavery or the Civil War, ESPN executives worried Robert Lee’s name opened him up to potential ridicule or embarrassment.  Are you kidding me? Is everyone suddenly back in middle school, even the executives at ESPN?

Days later, another unfortunate turn of events on the campus of the University of Mississippi.  A Greek life retreat was cut short because a banana peel was found hanging in a tree.  A leader of one of the school’s historically black sororities said some students left the retreat in tears after hearing about the peel claiming they didn’t feel “welcome” or “safe” on campus.

A student stepped forward admitting he threw the banana peel in the tree because he couldn’t find a garbage can. The student offered an apology saying it was unintentional but there was no excuse for the “pain” he caused.

I realize we have a long way to go it terms of race relations but it seems to me hypersensitivity to everything we see and do doesn’t serve any positive purpose.  Some might argue it shuts down any meaningful conversation between people who look, act and think differently from each other. If simply my name frightens you, how can we have a conversation? Aren’t we the country who elected a man named Barak Hussein Obama as President of the United States a few short years after a group of men with Arab sounding names attacked the World Trade Center?

We are better than this, we are stronger than this.

I’m Joyce Oscar


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