Doyle Center talks how to be an ally

Hannah Chugg, General Reporter

The Doyle Center held part three of their six-part discussion series on Feb. 25, which featured an in-depth look into how to be ally.

“Being an ally takes action, being able to turn intention into positive action, even when you mess up,” Multicultural Student Affairs advisor AC Stokes said. Stokes said this is the best advice she can give to the faculty and students of the University of Wisconsin-Platteville.

In her discussion, Stokes talked about principles that allies should try and embody. These included listening to what others have to say, actively being apart of the community and not making yourself the most important person.

“Being a global citizen, you can’t live in this world and only interact with people just like [you] and we don’t want to hurt people,” Stokes said. “Lots of people are developing empathy and its important to turn that into positive action- students on campus in particular.”

Instead of just sitting around and being told how to be an ally, Stokes asked those at the discussion to agree or disagree on a spectrum that was created from one wall to the other. With each principle everyone would go to the spot on the spectrum depending on how much they agreed or disagreed with it. The group would then discuss with each other about why they did or did not agree with the principle. After this, attendees were asked to move again based on how well they felt they actually act on that principle.

After that, the discussion shifted into determining why being an ally is important. The group discussed that the issues certain groups face are never ending and that it is important to support and care about our communities.

“The conversation opportunity [is] not limited to just listening to what someone tells you,” junior civil engineer and spanish major Quin Rogers said.

The topic of identity and intersectionality was also touched on. Allies can not support people based only on  one identity, because everyone identifies themselves with multiple groups.

“Keep educating yourself on the issues to help people,” sophomore agriculture education major Jake Radtke said. “You will probably have a friend who will need you as an ally.”

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