The Charlotte Observer editorial board’s comments (March 1, 2018) concerning the 2018 CIAA basketball tournament are unfortunate for several reasons.
To justify hosting any event because it is “a superb event for Charlotte, bringing in millions in tax collections” is putting money over the safety of the “splendid fan base of alumni and students” of the CIAA and residents of Charlotte.
According to the editorial, “alarming incidents” began in 2014 when a man and a woman were shot. In 2015 a person was shot in the head and another was stabbed. In 2016, 40-50 bullets (some from an AK-47) were shot into cars and an uptown hotel.
The editorial continues: “It’s unjust to point to the violence and paint the tournament or its fans with any kind of broad strokes”, and it asks that an honest discussion be had concerning the recent violence to make the tournament safe for all. However, the editorial admits that “it’s an uncomfortable conversation to have.”
The recent violence that occurred at the CIAA Basketball Tournament is real. Any conversation concerning that fact must be direct. To make the conversation about race—from either side-is dishonest. The violence did not happen because the CIAA is a predominately black college conference, but the violence requires police presence.
To use a broad stroke is unjust to the CIAA, its players, fans, and residents of the host city.