New Opportunity for Expression at MCDS

Pizza with a Point During Lunch


Photograph by Taisa Strouse

Diversity at MCDS is represented by flags from student nations.

On Friday, January 19th, a diverse blend of Upper School students came together in the old middle school drama room to discuss controversial current events at Pizza with a Point. Organizer Glen Turf explained that its goal was to “give students who are interested in talking and sharing the opportunity to do so.” He did not want the program to be a lecture, with the faculty leading the discussion, but rather an open forum in which students have the freedom to speak their mind.

After a halting start, Mr. Turf questioned the students about their views on the recent “shithole countries” comment that our President allegedly made and that sparked the conversation. Sophomore Camryn Davis was happy he finally had an outlet to express his opinions and see others’ views, “Hearing other students speak made me much more aware of the student community and Miami Country Day.” A majority of students in the room were completely disgusted by Trump’s alleged statements, every comment accompanied with a few nods. All thoughts were welcomed in the circle.  

On the topic of racism at Miami Country Day, opinions were categorized into three different categories: complete acceptance by peers, subtle racist undertones and blatantly ignorant comments. One student, drawing from his own experience, explained that he felt completely accepted by his peers. Some students held such an opposing view to their peer that they almost seemed to laugh. Others then counter argued that there are many students in school that constantly make blatantly ignorant comments. The third category were those who did not quite agree with either side, expressing that there were racist undertones at Country Day, but blatant comments were rare. This discussion was carried out civilly, everyone respecting each others’ views.

Mr. Turf had to cease the conversation because of time, stopping after the question of one student. He asked what he could do, as a student, to put an end to racism at MCDS. Mr. Turf explained that there would be another open forum to give the students another opportunity to continue these vital conversations. Junior Ava Hansen suggests that “the next step needs to be encouraging people with different views and opinions to come to these conversations so people can see different sides and keep an open mind.” She also offers a peer, Danielle Geathers’, advice on what one can do they disagree with someone, “she made a really good point about distancing oneself from people who have differing views.”

Ms. Fulton made the last statement. She reminded everyone in the room that they are allies, and that everyone must speak up to make the school a better, more open-minded place. This ended the forum on a good note, all students walking out with a feeling that there were certainly “other students that think like them and care like them,”  as put by Mr. Turf. There will be another open forum of Pizza with a Point today, January 26, at lunch in the old middle school drama room.

Would you like to this open forum every month? Every week? Perhaps only when major events happen? Tell us what you think. Look out for an upcoming poll on our home page.