The Student News Site of Sacramento City College

The Express

The Student News Site of Sacramento City College

The Express

The Student News Site of Sacramento City College

The Express

Photo credit: Nick Shockey / nshockey.express@gmail.com
A letter from the editor
February 6, 2024

What do you stand for?

In 1970 students at Sacramento City College staged a non-violent protest to the Vietnam War. For two days the students occupied campus offices and buildings, forcing the administration to cancel classes. By itself, the students’ occupation did not prompt the end of American involvement in Vietnam, but their voices along with voices of other students across the country became part of a national shout that could no longer be dismissed by America’s politicians. And while we do not necessarily advocate campus occupations, we do admire the stand taken by the student body of 1970.

As we settle in for the fall semester, we cannot help but reflect on our college’s past and today’s current events. It was a long, hot, sad and angry summer news cycle. From another school-related mass shooting by a mentally ill gunman to the riots and protests following the shooting of an unarmed young black man by a white police officer—from the tales of immigrant children seeking sanctuary on our south-western borders to the images of rockets flaring in the night sky over Gaza—from the beginning of a new American military presence in Iraq to the brutal execution of two American journalists by terrorists—the stories retold in this summer’s newspapers and broadcasts are all too familiar. They are stories from history, stories that are constantly being rewritten with the same inevitable ending. They are stories about cultural misunderstandings, intolerance, greed and ignorance. They are stories about the dangers of forgetting the past and the consequences of inaction. They are stories that require an answer to how much longer it will take, for us as individuals, as nations and a world to take a stand for those who cannot stand for themselves.

As we reflect on the stories of summer, we ask when? When will voters take a stand and hold the nation’s leaders accountable for their failure to enact some reasonable form of gun control legislation? When will our nation of freedom for all take a stand and no longer be shamed by gross examples of racial prejudice and injustice? When will we the people take a stand, stop grading immigrants by their country of origin and recognize them as fellow human beings? And when will we as a global community come together to take a stand against the wars over oil and God?
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So, as we begin this academic year at City College, one of the most diverse community colleges in the state, keep in mind that the men and women around you represent people from all walks of life. Our student body includes individuals from a number of cultures, countries and ethnicities. Our faculty is composed of professors who each have unique perspectives formed from their personal and professional experiences. While here, we will learn from lectures and practical applications. But we also have the obligation to learn firsthand about our differences, and more importantly, we have the opportunity to consider the commonality of our human connection. Though we are all very different from one another, we coexist with the shared goal of earning an education and heading out into the world to make something of ourselves.

This year we challenge you to stand with us, the editors of the Express. We ask you to not just sit in class but to learn who your classmates are, what they think and where they come from. We encourage you to engage your professors and to not settle for textbook answers. We invite you to bring a brown bag lunch and join others at the Cultural Awareness Center for a panel discussion. Or explore the Learning Resource Center and check out a book banned by other libraries. Get involved, join a club, find your voice and vote. And as always, we look forward to your letters of dissenting opinion.

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