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Traci Blackmon visits campus

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“Until the lion tells the story the hunter will always be the hero," said the Rev. Traci Blackmon during her address to Doane faculty and students on Nov. 3.


Blackmon visited Doane University from Florissant Mo., where she serves as the Pastor of Christ The King United Church of Christ.


Among a list of accolades Blackmon was appointed to the Ferguson Commission, as well as in 2016 Blackmon was appointed to the President's Advisory Council on Faith- Based Neighborhood Partnership for the White House. Which according to their website,"works together to advise and make recommendations to the administration on how to improve partnerships to serve people in need."  


This trip marks Blackmon's first time in Nebraska, and her goal was to bring awareness to Police Brutality in Ferguson Mo. and around the country, as well as the Israeli and Palestinian conflict.


Blackmon stated her mission as, "Attempting to make connections between theology and our life experiences."


Communicating to the crowd the factual information of the events of Ferguson, and how these events colored the reaction of the nation, Blackmon connected the audience with the outrage of a subset of people angry at what they see as a corrupt system.


Blackmon also explained the roots of Black Lives Matter as "frustration about a judicial system that does not hold people accountable for the death of black men."


One of the individuals in attendance was freshman Kyle Hart.


"I thought she was moving, she was so powerful, and she changed what the effect of my thoughts and actions regarding Black Lives Matter can have,” Hart said. “I think to some extent race relations in this country will get better."  


"We need to see how these ideas of dominance perpetuate, and examine how we have gained supremacy over one another,” said Irene Prince, mentor program specialist.


Blackmon offered inspiration to Prince who is training to become a pastor.


"Tracy spoke about separating personal feelings about a complicated issue, I would love to learn how to do this in my life and make others feel at ease like she did," Prince said.


In response to a question from the crowd about how white people can assist in the Black Lives Matter campaign,  Blackmon responded, "You come to take direction. We need white people committed to white people work, and taking a stand in private conversations and affecting change in the areas where white people have the power to change".


Blackmon ended by stating, "We need to develop a society that does not blame the lion for the cause of its demise. And understand that we are not either the hunter or the hunted, the reality is we all are both."