Mainstream society highlights and centers various perspectives. In most cases, voices of dominant groups tend to be incorporated into the popular narrative, a narrative that influences people’s worldview and social reality. This creates a misguided and unbalanced narrative that leaves out the voices of marginalized groups. One group that is impacted by this is native populations. However, various events are being held at EMU this month that will highlight native perspectives.
Peace Fellowship was presented with the opportunity to continue campus engagement with marginalized voices and experiences. The first opportunity for engagement will come with the visit of EMU grad Dr. John Lowe, who focuses on health equity for Native Americans in the US. Peace Fellowship is hosting a time for conversation with Dr. Lowe and the EMU community following his Suter Science seminar.
The second opportunity will come with the visit of musician and advocate Michael Jacobs. On the 26th, Michael will be sharing his music with us in Common Grounds, and we will host a casual conversation over a potluck dinner in Common Grounds to hear more from him. On Wednesday, he has graciously agreed to talk to students in classes. Club leaders see these events as a way of encouraging “conversations about justice in this country and around the world.”
We will never be able to live together in a society where certain voices are raised above all others and dominate narratives. This perpetuates inequality, trauma, and violence. As peacebuilders, it is our duty to listen to marginalized voices and do all that is in our power to elevate them for others to hear.
Gabby McMillon is an EMU student majoring in Peacebuilding and Development and a leader of EMU’s Peace Fellowship club.