Forum Probes Radal Tension; Nigerian Tells African Feeling
It was a homogeneous group that sat down to discuss racial tensions, led by a slim Nigerian, a Negro sociologist, an Ohio University professor of anthropology and a southern white minister.
SOCIOLOGICALLY, racial prob¬ lems were defined as being status problems. From the point of view of anthropology, racial tension was an inevitable result of the mass move¬ ment generated by the Industrial Revolution.
THE SOUTHERN minister said the problem arose from a lack of communication between the two groups in conflict, resulting from parental attitudes and community pressure.
BUT IT WAS the Nigerian who drove the point home most clearly. He explained that Africans feel since the Little Rock situation that the white is in Africa because he is convinced of his superiority.
RUSSIAN radio broadcasts an¬ nounce to Africa that there are two democracies in America, one for the white, one for the Negro. And after observation, discussion and study, the Nigerian felt that in his report to his government, he would have to verify this!
THE DISCUSSION which fol¬ lowed the talks of the four men brought to light areas in which there could be progress. An Indian
student challenged those who be¬ longed to fraternities and sororities with discriminatory regulations to change them.
A NEGRO student from Duke University called the problem one of economics, and suggested that the American system might be at fault, and that the emphasis on money should be readjusted.
THE NIGERIAN listened to the rapid discussion, then summed up his feelings by saying, "What I hear now and what is done are dif-. ferent."
HE ASKED his listeners to fol¬ low through with what they be¬ lieved, to leave the conference prac¬ ticing the brotherhood that their Christian heritage had given them.
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