TERRE HAUTE, Ind. (WTHI) – This week there’s a new topic creating quite the buzz at Indiana State University. It’s called the wall of prejudice. News 10’s Kiley Thomas went there today to learn the message behind the wall.
Fat. Stupid. Baby killer. These are just a few words students and faculty at ISU wrote on the wall of prejudice this week.
“It shows the words people have been called on campus and it’s eye-opening for a lot of people,” said ISU Senior, Jordan Clark.
Most of the words we’re unable to show on TV.
“Makes you think what you should say and what you shouldn’t,” said Clark.
Jordan Clark is the President of Pi Lambda Phi Fraternity. He and his fraternity brothers had the idea for the wall to start a conversation about discrimination on campus.
“People feel uncomfortable talking about these things and they get offended by it,” said Clark. “Our goal is not to make them feel uncomfortable but we want to make them feel okay about having a conversation about this and we think this opens up a bigger door to a better world a community.”
Now students and faculty are knocking down the wall, knocking down prejudice in the community. It’s symbolic to in breaking the barriers of discrimination.
“There’s a symbolism between hitting the wall with a hammer which reminds us we can break these barriers, but it certainly needs to go beyond that,” said Associate VP for Student Success, Dr. Joshua Powers. “It needs to show education which this does in a powerful way and its application,” said Powers.
Dr. Joshua Powers urges students to have a conversation with people who are different than them. This creates an understanding of these hurtful perceptions listed on the wall and other people’s experiences.
“To write those on a wall and see them collectively in that way, that’s a very powerful symbolic way of recognizing people do have different kinds of experiences,” said Powers.
“Knocking down the wall is eliminating those hateful words you’ve been called and destroying them for good,” said Clark.
Students and faculty paid $1 to take a hammer to the wall. Most donors paid more than that to take multiple swings. All proceeds go to the fraternity’s philanthropy which is the Elimination of Prejudice Foundation.
If you or someone you know experiences prejudice, you can contact the ISU counseling center at (812) 237-3939.