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February 13, 2022
Junior Matthew Mckie is part of the BSU as assistant officer. He along, with his colleagues, are looking to promote the club and its message of safety and acceptance.
“I want [BSU] to grow and become large, so that we can become a staple in the history of this school to ensure the efforts we make are never swept under the rug,” Mckie says.
The efforts that Mckie mentions are those concerning the treatment of non-white, especially black, students in Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. Mckie feels the Parkland and Coral Springs community are in desperate need of a BSU.
“Although the diversity within our school is beautiful, it still feels spread out, you know? Most of the time, I’ll be lucky if I can identify more than 3 or 4 other black kids in my classes,” Mckie said. “That said, I find it imperative and great that we can have a safe space together where we can come and join our minds and feel comfort in knowing that there are people who experience similar things to us and look like us, which also breeds a sense of cultural pride to a degree.”
The reason Mckie feels drawn to the BSU is because of the club’s honest nature. According to Mckie, serious issues are given their time, real problems are discussed, and a proper, productive discussion is creative. Mckie stated that club President Noldine Belizaire invited him into the club, but he stays for the sincere and effective rhetoric.
“They keep it real there. They address serious topics that are pushed to the side for the sake of preserving what good standings we have, but hiding problems doesn’t solve them,” Mckie said. “Going over things such as whoopings, how homosexuality is viewed, how the education system hides black history are crucial to our betterment, for if we don’t learn of it, who’s going to pass it on to our posterity? Who is going to carry the stories of those who labored and lost, those who fought for us to be where we are? It is our duty and it is incumbent upon us to share the stories and topics, be them triumphant or tragic.”
Mckie intends to promote the BSU and invoke change in the community. Along with his colleagues, Mckie wants to create a safer, more accepting space for people of color.
“I want to be a part of the decision making in the betterment and the elevation of this club/community,” Mckie said. “I see that we have some innovative ideas to change things within and outside of our community, and I want to play a vital role in these changes happening.”
These vital changes include addressing issues within the student, and even the staff, body. Mckie, along with fellow BSU officers, intend to bring these problems to light and rectify those they can.
“We’re addressing issues within the lives of students and even staff that need to be brought to light, and I find that quite innovative and commendable,” Mckie said.
The BSU intends to make changes to the community, making where we live and work more accepting and safe.