By Jo Nordhoff Beard ‘19
In the past two weeks since I’ve written a column, a lot has happened on the Scripps campus and at the Claremont Colleges as a whole. The Scripps RAs have gone on strike, students have protested Mudd’s toxic work culture, and as a result, Mudd placed their administration’s only advocate for marginalized students and changing Mudd’s culture on paid leave. Many students have protested and shown solidarity with their peers who are brave enough to risk their employment to hopefully improve the future of their college. I think that at least for this week, the news is more important than sports and that I want to respect my peers and the effort that which they have put into stand up for social change by not writing an article that is out of touch with the current campus climate. However, the theme that I have found when thinking about both sports and campus news this week is that however hard people try and hustle, it is very difficult for the good guys to come out on top.
This week, Aaron Hernandez, the former tight end for the New England Patriots, was found not guilty for allegedly murdering two people at a bar in July 2012. Even though Hernandez is already serving a life imprisonment sentence for the murder of his sister’s ex-fiancé Odin Lloyd, the fact that he was acquitted shows the massive flaws in the American justice system that need to be changed.
Hernandez’s lawyers painted Daniel de Abreu and Safiro Furtado as gang bangers and drug dealers, and the jury was chock full of people who would be very susceptible to this narrative. Abreu’s and Furtado’s families were upset that Hernandez was acquitted, but felt better that he was already serving life imprisonment. However, Hernandez’s lawyer said that there is a chance to overturn his conviction for murdering Lloyd. Hustling is an important part of any activity that which someone does. In order for people to be successful, they have to push harder than anybody to win and be the best. This is true in sports, but it is also true in student organizing. Even when it is very difficult, I have the utmost respect for people who push through the pain, injuries and mental blocks to keep working towards their goals.
The only way athletes and student organizers become successful is to take risks and put themselves out there. This week, we as a Scripps College community have seen a lack of support from our peers following the RA strike, the CMC president and dean of faculty promise disciplinary action for people who protested at Heather Mac Donald’s Athenaeum talk, and a Mudd sit-in following Dean Q’s administrative leave. I call on all of us to support our peers as they hustle our way to success as best they can.