BELLOTTI: Racist graffiti must stop

Christopher Bellotti

To all my peers who think that racism or discrimination against the minority is not your problem because it’s not against you: It just became your problem.

But that’s the thing – it was always your problem. The attacks on campus last weekend are obviously against certain groups of people, but what is too often overlooked is the fact that, in reality, these are all vicious attacks on our beloved community. Perspectives, which are all part of the unchangeable good (as St. Augustine said), such as peace, justice, love, diversity and freedom, are issues that everyone is a part of and must deal with, not just those people catching the brunt of it.

Martin Luther King Jr. said it best: “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.” Well, these injustices are a clear assault on every single member of the Villanova community. Not a single person avoids it.

Another thing that nobody avoids is responsibility. We are all responsible. Don’t say, “I didn’t do it, so it’s not me.” We have an apathy problem on this campus. It is absolutely necessary that everyone come together and in one unified voice say, “This is not okay – it is offensive and not only is it against the law and simply wrong to do, it is a breach on our community.” Truth, Unity and Love is our motto – not Cowardice, Disarray and Hate. This is our campus; we should not let anything like this happen. We must be hyper-vigilant and completely intolerant of any such things.

I am not discouraging the discussion of things in the open forum; that is what’s important until we learn to cherish difference and remove unmerited privilege, discrimination, marginalization and oppression from our lives. And this isn’t a form of censorship – it’s about a communal understanding. We don’t have to all agree on any issue, but we must agree that respect, love and difference are all things to be put on the highest pedestal and made our greatest priority … for everyone.

Dr. Terry Nance, assistant vice president of Multicultural Affairs said it best: “We all need to come together and say, ‘This cannot happen – not in my house.’ “

My message to the Villanova community is that if you hold bigoted thoughts, there is absolutely, positively no place for you here. You have two options: change or leave.Why? You’re not a Villanovan.

And by the way, this campus is getting more diverse and it is changing – sooner rather than later – and all of you trying to resist will do so in vain.

For those of you who are the loving Villanovans that we all think of when we think about how great this place is, it’s time to embody the community that we all speak so highly of. Every breach of this toward any person is something we must all collectively own up to.


Christopher Bellotti is a sophomore accounting major from Dix Hills, N.Y. He can be reached at [email protected].