It is no secret that the current status of our country is rather unpredictable. People of all races, religions, and orientations are scared. Thankfully, Bryant University students have a certain go-getter attitude about them. We do not let hatred define us. We are not passive. We stand up for equality and for what is right. This attitude gave way to the Rally for a Reason movement on campus. Two students, Liam Rice and Elizabeth Oluokun, organized this event for students to have the opportunity to show support and celebrate Bryant’s diverse population.
For the first hour, we stood together in silence and solidarity to show that we are a united front. Participants wore all black and stood in somber silence as we reflected on ourselves and the world around us. Admittedly, at first it was uncomfortable to stand without talking to one another. But I grew accustomed to it and stood quietly, and proudly.
After the solidarity standing was over, the atmosphere changed from reflective to supportive. We pledged to stand together, shared what kind of world we want to live in, and took part in different art projects showing positivity and empathy towards each other. There were lots of hugs and tears throughout the Rotunda. I was feeling a lot of emotions at the rally. I was overjoyed to see all the support and the good that is on our campus, but I also felt sad that there was such a strong need for an event like this. Equality should be standardized for everyone, no matter the skin color, race, religion, sexual orientation, gender…the list goes on. Our differences are what make us stronger. They allow us to question things and become smarter, more well-rounded people. Our lives become richer by expanding our knowledge of what life means to so many different people.
Bryant University is full of diverse students. Our beliefs are different, our cultures are different, our backgrounds are different, to name just a few of the things that make us great. We think differently, learn differently, love differently. But we are all human. We are all deserving. We all have something beautiful to bring to this world. And for that reason, I was so proud to participate in the Rally for a Reason.
To all those reading this who have been feeling uncertain lately, as so many of us have been, let me remind you that you are not alone. There is always something you can do and ways to make a difference. I implore you to get involved and stand up for what you believe is right. Never forget that you are deserving, you are wonderful, and you are LOVED.
Live in love,