By Kimi Frazier
ATLANTA, Ga. – Bernie Sanders kicked off his HBCU Tour on Tuesday, Feb. 16, 2016 at Morehouse College. With over 4,500+ in attendance this rally was packed to say the least.
The really began with the lively Morehouse band and a small step show performed by Morehouse College’s very own Omega Psi Phi (Ques). Following were inspiring speakers such as National HBCU outreach director Danny Glover, Rapper and Activist Killer Mike, Ohio Sen. Nina Turner and Actress Jasmine Guy. With their motivational speeches moving the crowd, many attendees started to notice the amount of white people surrounding them.
Darron Marble, a 19-year-old freshman at Morehouse said, “Most of the people here would have never stepped foot on a HBCU campus but now that Sanders has a tour they want to come.”
Marble believes that Sanders fails to address the funding crisis that HBCU’s are being faced with. “Why have an entire tour for HBCUS without an agenda for HBCU students,” Marble questions, “Most of us Morehouse students didn’t even attend because we know.”
Marble was not the only one who felt strongly about Sanders Rally and the company that followed. Social Media sites such as Twitter, Facebook and Instagram, have been flooded with opinions from HBCU student
18-year-old Clark Atlanta freshman, Conner Mackey, also had a few words to speak on the subject. “I think Sanders is a good candidate and I would vote for him,” said Mackey, “But he needs to be better at debate and to realize that HBCU in his free [college] plan.”
Mackey also mentions that his least favorite candidate is Marco Rubio, which has favored him towards Sanders as his candidate. Although there was a considerably large amount of attendees at this event it was not hard to point out that there were more white faces than black.
“Morehouse is a predominately black HBCU and there have never been this many white people,” said 22-year-old Kennesaw State Student, Lauren Butler. “I attend [Morehouse] basketball games every year and it never looks like this.”
Butler states that she would consider voting for Sanders based on some of her research thus far. However, she would like to know more about each candidate before she can make a thorough decision.
Despite the unconcealed comments surrounding Sanders one-sided rally, there were also many who believed the rally brought races together. Liz Graham is a 26-year-old Metro-Atlanta citizen who believes that Sanders is our future.
“He [Sanders] has some really amazing points,” said Graham, “Even though his speech is repetitive among each rally, I still think he is great and great for us.”
Graham was not the only supporter of Sanders. Aaron Thorpe, 25-year-old Midtown volunteer, said, “If I had to describe Bernie tonight in three words it would be, consistency, integrity and honesty.”
Thorpe is a volunteer for Sanders’ campaign. He believes that a movement cannot happen with just one man unless he has supporters. “Bernie is our public service,” said Thorpe, “He is really amazing for handling our major issues with economic and racial justice.”
With polls having recently shown Hilary in the lead of Bernie so far, many believe this will tour will help him win over the people. Despite Sanders’ skewed supporters while kicking off his first HBCU Tour, he is however, making headlines.