Moving Forward: A Letter From the Editor

September 29, 2017

Las Vegas just happened, and we are heartbroken and numb. What follows is the editor's note as it was written Friday, before the Sunday night massacre in Las Vegas. Already the Concert for Charlottesville seems to have happened months ago, but maybe we can hold onto the best of what it offered, and maybe we can still strive for unity, justice (gun control now!), and peace, somehow. 

--------------

So, that was some concert, am I right? Coldplay, Brittany Howard, Stevie Wonder?! I came in feeling pretty “meh” about the whole thing, but I had a lot of fun. I don’t know if it was necessarily unity that I felt, though. At some points, sure. When JT mashed up Cry Me A River with Rake It Up and Humble, I think we all felt a little closer than we had in the past. But, when the white woman next to me asked me to stop dancing because my hair kept touching her (upsidedownsmmile.jpeg), all I felt was discord.

Anyway, now that it’s over, I can imagine the events of the 11th and 12th fading into obscurity. People might say “We had a whole unity concert about it, guys. It’s been two months. It’s over now.” That may be easy for you if you don’t feel targeted by those events (which, let’s be real, if you’re ANYTHING but a Cis Straight White Christian Man, you should feel targeted), but it’s not easy for the rest of us. So I urge you to continue to think about these events. And not just these, but all of the myriads of injustices in the world.

Injustice like the fact that Puerto Rico has been absolutely devastated by the Hurricane, and it has taken y’all’s President far too long to address it properly. (You can donate to relief by sending a donation on venmo to @Hoos4PR) Or that there is an unfair gender imbalance when it comes to “Greek Life” parties, which exacerbates the risks young women face on Grounds, as intern Devin Garcia astutely notes. Injustices like instead of helping Puerto Rico, y’all’s President took the time to condemn NFL players for peacefully protesting. How about that healthy diets like vegetarianism and veganism are on the rise, but are often inaccessible to marginalized communities, as intern Laura Hinnenkamp discusses? And then, just to really drive home for you guys how much is wrong with this world: there’s also the incredibly sobering fact that at least 21 transgender women have been murdered in 2017 thus far.

There’s a lot we have to think about, huh?

I’m not saying you have to cry about it. I’m not saying you should go around bemoaning the state of the world 24/7, although I wouldn’t blame you if you did. What I am saying is the concert is over, but the struggle is not. One concert does not mean we are unified as a community. It was nice to have a night of fun but now? Now, it’s time to get to work.

But when you do need a break from the struggle (which is completely okay; self care is important!) be sure to do that. Do a face mask, read a book, enjoy these awesome music videos for women, by women curated by former intern Lily Patterson. Or let this series of paintings by Iris's art genius, Kirsten Hemrich inspire you to reimagine the world around you.

Don’t be complacent. Don’t forget. But care for yourself along the way.


Photo Credit:

Cavalier Daily

Contribute a Story!

Have an idea for Iris? Send it to us!