22band_quadblog-blog480

New Allegations of Hazing in Marching 100 Prompts Second Investigation

A freshman clarinet player in the Florida A&M Marching 100 is at the center of a new investigation into possible hazing within the band’s ranks.

The Tallahassee Police Department has opened a probe into the alleged battery of 18-year-old Bria Shante Hunter.

Hunter’s parents told Atlanta’s WXIA-TV on Tuesday that the freshman clarinet player suffered a fractured thigh bone and damaged knee. They say when she returned to Georgia she couldn’t bend her legs.

Officer David Northrop confirmed they are investigating whether the injuries came from hazing. (CBS News)

Now the dominoes begin to fall. Parents concerned with unexplained injuries to their children, band members with second thoughts about the definition of loyalty and brotherhood in the death of a classmate are all primed to come forth with information on how deep 100 hazing really got.

And in turn, a new tide may be soon coming for many HBCU bands to confront similar stories and resulting consequences.

Isis-Brantley

Editorial: An Ode to Cultural Sensitivity at America’s Airports

Imani Jackson is an award winning journalist and a mass communication senior at Grambling State University. She has been editor-in-chief of The Gramblinite newspaper for two years. Follow her @faithspeaks on Twitter.

“You ain’t accustomed to going through customs. You ain’t been nowhere, huh?” Kanye West spits on “Otis” with Jay Z and Otis Redding.

While Yeezy and other entertainers possess enough celebrity to travel without the flight experiences of commoners, everyone cannot say the same.

But, everything is done with us in mind.

The airport system is filled with compassionate workers who affirm equal rights. They only want what’s best for travelers. They are trained to avoid prejudiced or impolite interactions.

Policies are passed down to make flying the most comfortable experience that it can be. Flights run on time. No one is placed on standby. Bags show up where they are supposed to be.

Let us all be reminded of airports’ splendor as many travel during the holiday season.

Transportation Security Administration workers, noted nationally for their sensitivity and respect for privacy, will undoubtedly make security checks as comfortable and humane as possible.

They approach their duties like courtship. Most people round first, second and third bases immediately upon meeting a potential mate.

Who doesn’t like to spread ‘em, be patted down by strangers and walk through body scanners repeatedly?

It is an opportunity to bond with the workers. Body scans inspire touching conversations about individuals’ life experiences.

Workers run their gloved fingertips across scalps, karate chop dreadlocks and caress Afros.  They understand that flying is oftentimes a stressful experience and seek to provide disproportionately African-descended travelers with scalp massages to ease their worries.

I have layered, back-length locks. Recently, my appearance warranted the pleasurable memory of being the only passenger in the vicinity subjected to two body scans before having my hair searched for weapons.

The seemingly befuddled worker’s patting of my head conjured images of an African drum circle.

“I have never seen this before,” she said.

Upon tweeting the experience several sistas either expressed displeasure at my experience or shared similar airport experiences.

But, we should know better. Especially as Black women with natural hair, we should be aware that our appearances are risky.

I could have a blade under my mane. I might be so determined to stab someone else that I risk stabbing myself under my hair. While traveling.

At least airport workers are not ageist.

Just ask Dallas native Isis Brantley whose luscious coils were scanned for explosives. The 50-something hairstylist’s massive raven power fro was clearly part of a cross-country scheme to smuggle weapons of mass destruction into Atlanta’s airport.

It is not like Atlanta is not noted for aesthetics or hair shows.

As these occurrences remain part of public discourse, travelers should just accept the superior judgment of airport personnel.

They will only interrogate people who deserve to be questioned. If many of the people detained and quizzed are brown and/or bear names of Arabic origin, even better.

Those people are known troublemakers. Terrorists are only born in Middle Eastern nations or believers in Islam. So it is in everyone’s best interest that workers make them feel like the “other” every time they seek to travel the skies.

But, wait. TSA representatives have feelings too. In light of controversy regarding their treatment of passengers, they toned it down a bit.

Children ages 12 and under are now permitted to keep their shoes on during security checks!

TSA issued statements about security. They want to remind travelers “to be vigilant during the holiday travel season by reporting suspicious activity.”

They encourage the public to speak out saying, “The traveling public plays an important role in security, so ‘If you see something, say something.’”

Hi. I’m saying something.