13 Comments

  1. Beverly

    Marcia, you express so perfectly what I see as well. I appreciate your being a “voice crying in the wilderness” for all of us. You are not alone.

    Reply
    1. Marcia

      Thank you, Beverly. I appreciate your support and companionship in this journey.

      Reply
  2. David Bohner

    Marcia, Thanks for your succinct summary of some of the issues which have been swept under the rug, some for many years. I salute John, your family and you for standing tall, and living and sharing your faith and truths with your many friends and supporters. As time marches on I hope you will continue to reach out for help and support.

    Reply
    1. Marcia

      Thank you, David. Your affirmation and support help us a great, great deal. For old habits of mind and oppressive structures to change we need a gathering chorus of voices from many parts of our community. I appreciate your attentiveness to it all and your vocal support and encouragement.
      Peace,
      Marcia

      Reply
  3. Alicia

    Hi Marcia, thank you for your eloquent and care-ful wrestling wih your anger. We all benefit from your refusal to let things be.

    Reply
    1. Marcia

      Thank you, Alicia. It helps to have your supportive voice added to the conversation. You are right, not letting things be that need to change can be a positive, life-giving result of anger’s agitating force.
      Peace,
      Marcia

      Reply
  4. Chris

    Thank you for this blog. I was just telling my wife yesterday that there is something about “race” in this episode that makes me uncomfortable. I still can’t put my finger on it but it just does not feel right.

    Reply
  5. Janet Beatty

    Good blog, Marcia. It seems as if UNC is a microcosm of what we face throughout this country. The current mentality among the political candidates reeks of White Out and racism. My guess is that as we move forward toward November, that ugliness is going to get more and more obvious. It deeply saddens me to see how connected much of this muckraking is to “Christianity” and the “church.” Even though it isn’t MY church (Presbyterian USA) it bleeds on us all. Keep up the voice, however focused on UNC, because we all need to keep speaking (and seeking) truth. Thank you!

    Reply
    1. Marcia

      Thank you, Janet. You are so right. Sports and what happened at UNC are a window into larger, deeper human and cultural questions. It’s not “just a game”, it’s the way we are together in community, the way we treat and regard others and ourselves. And you are right, too, that the political climate unveils these same tendencies in human beings and the communities we form to avoid hard truths. It seems like we are in a time of exposure though, whether people like it or not! You keep up your voice, too! Thank you for reading and for commenting.
      Peace,
      Marcia

      Reply

  6. Your criticism of the narrow Feb. 28 panel is well taken, but was it a step forward to show up for a panel at all?

    You are certainly correct that the most essential issue is the rights of college athletes, which is largely buried under a blanket of silence and intimidation. Still, I think the education needed for basic change in college sports is slowly developing across the lines that divide stakeholders.

    As a commuting professor at UNC this semester, I have invited open discussion with students, faculty, and fellow alums. My next office hours are next Wednesday March 21 from 9-11am at 225 Graham Memorial. My email is mail@taylorbranch.com. I would welcome the chance to communicate directly.

    Reply
    1. Marcia

      Thank you, Dr. Branch, for your comment. Yes, I think having the panel was better than not having the panel–mostly because you were on it! At the same time, the pattern of exclusion that it embodied did exacerbate some hurts many of us are feeling.
      I am very thankful to hear from you and to have your comments on my blog. I have reached out to you several times these last few months. I never knew if you actually got my messages via facebook and twitter so I am glad to have another way to contact you. I will certainly do that right away. John and I would welcome a chance to talk with you more.
      Thank you again for reading and for commenting and, of course, for your courageous work on this and many other issues.
      Peace,
      Marcia

      Reply

  7. Well said!! As a northern black I was always fascinated by the capacity of blacks at UNC to forgive folks and revere them. Bill Friday was a prime example. His reputation as a friend of blacks because of what he advocated for improving HBCUs was incredible. He was responding to court cases that said if there was no law school, etc. at the black schools you had to let blacks into the white schools. His so-called championship for HBCUs was to keep blacks off Lily white Carolina’s campus, and neither he nor Bobby Knight objected to the power of revenue sports until black athletes began to dominate. In answer to Mr Branch above, who I respect mightily, no, having an all white panel was an insult, it is always an insult when white people presume to talk about issues of race without people of color at the table. It was, unfortunately, during my time at UNC, The Carolina Way and one I called them on repeatedly.

    Reply
    1. Marcia

      Dear Dr. Newsom,
      Thank you for reading and for your comment. Your words share much needed perspective on how race functions at UNC and in many institutions in this country. Bill Friday’s role on the Knight Commission is also something held up and revered in the Carolina community. The more I explored the work, however, the more deeply troubled I was by its approach and tone. The language used about revenue athletes was often that which described them as interlopers and those who were tainting the values of institutions. There are many examples of how race and privilege were not surfaced but powerfully at play in the committee’s work.
      I am very thankful for your words here and for the work you do. And for the work you did at UNC as well.
      Peace,
      Marcia

      Reply

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