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Black History Month keynote speaker discusses lives of Black males

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Darrell Dawsey, a veteran journalist, social critic and author, spoke Thursday at Baker Center Ballroom as this year’s Black History Month keynote speaker.

Moderated by Mark Brown, a mechanical engineering major and Ohio University NAACP executive board research and development leader, the discussion focused on the impact of the black community, the importance of individual education and education of peers on racial and other systematic oppressions.

“I feel like everyone should hear this and know about the different perspectives, not just what’s always in the media,” said Jasmine Lambert, President of Ohio University’s Association for Black Journalists.

Dawsey reflected on the significance of positive role models in the lives of young black males. He specifically discussed his own personal experience without a father and how fatherly figures contribute to “early influences that help you on the path.”

He then went into the issue of police brutality, white privilege and the obligation for black generations to work twice as hard as to receive half as much. He emphasized that the issues facing black generations are an American problem, not just a race issue.

“Obviously some things have changed and some things seem worse in the media so it was interesting to hear his take on the Black Lives Matter movement and stuff like that,” said LynAnne Vucovich, a freshman studying journalism who read Dawsey’s book “Living to Tell About It.”

Dawsey further emphasized the importance of communication and discussion, especially on a college campus, saying that it was an essential part of the black community and educating peers.

“Just speak, acknowledge one another,” he said to the audience.

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