By: I Fight Evil**
As I walked around campus today, I began to receive weird looks from other students. I then began to wonder why these looks arose and what was creating this sense of fear within students across campus?
I thought maybe it is my wearing of headphones and they want to know what I am listening to and why I am listening to it, “no that could not be it,” I said to myself. Then as I boarded the elevator at SEO (Science Engineering Offices), an Asian-American woman looked back at me in fear, almost as if she presumed that I might do something to her as she boarded the elevator. On top of that whole scenario to, as I boarded the elevator all eyes were on me and there was a pause of silence as I boarded. I then knew the music did not incite the somewhat fearful staring.
Later, after exiting the elevator, I proceeded to the library, but before I left I held the door for two males, neither of whom were African American, and they looked at me as if I were going to harm them. As I walked, I briefly pondered, why are males and females who are not African-American afraid of me? I am merely an African-American male, approximately 5’9” – 6’0” tall, I weigh between 130lbs – 160lbs, and I was wearing a dark jacket…. “Wait a minute,” I said to myself, “this is exactly how 90% of the crime alerts describe those who are “terrorizing” UIC campus.”
I realized that as long as I am Black at UIC and the crime alerts keep perpetuating me as a villain everyone on campus will fear being alone with me on an elevator, sitting next to me in class, standing next to me on the “L”, and most definitely if I am walking behind them blasting Lupe Fiasco.
So I wondered did I create this villain persona for myself, or did the UIC Crime Alert System make me a villain? I honestly believe as long as the UIC Crime Alerts keep making all of the villains African-American, male, between 5’8” -6’3” weighing between 130-160lbs, all Black males on campus will fall prey to being called villains because they fit the villainous profile that the UIC Crime Alerts never cease to create.
My question to the UIC Police and Crime Alert writers is how long will I be a villain? and what can I do to become the hero or at least like everyone else? UIC calls for diversity, so let us diversify the Crime Alerts or at least do something to create distinctions among criminals and a college student who happens to be a Black male.
**”I Fight Evil” is a pseudonym used by the author who is a UIC student.