Presidential Election Sparks Fear of Race Relations
Fatima Odebisi is a freshman majoring in marketing. On November 8, 2016, Odebisi attended the presidential election watch party hosted by Penn State’s Black Student Union, Black Caucus and the Paul Robeson Cultural Center. The watch party provided students of color with a safe space to watch the election results and reflect on the change that would soon come with a new President-elect.
During the event, the center provided students with pizza, soda and three rooms to watch the results. Students conversed about their expectations for the presidential outcome. They also expressed their fears regarding Donald Trump’s chances of winning the presidency.
Before watching the results, students were warned by the center’s staff to be mindful of their reaction while in the center. Students were asked to keep in mind their surroundings as students of color at a predominately white university. The election was very controversial and the staff feared a repeat of open hate speech from Trump supporters, similar to when many students of color took a stance for the Black Lives Matter movement.