Welcome to The Daily's special issue on race. This issue aims to facilitate a diverse dialogue about race within the McGill and Montreal communities. With it, we hope to create a space for voices to overcome the media's silence on race - by discussing it through lived experience, critiquing racialized oppression, and celebrating resistance and diversity.
This, of course, is an imperfect attempt at doing so. In publishing this issue, we understand that it is by no means representative of all groups on campus: The Daily, as a historically majority-white institution, is not yet a space that can be completely representative without being tokenizing. Nor has the process of putting together this issue been a smooth one. We quickly realized after pitching this issue that our initial approach failed to acknowledge our own power dynamics as a majority-white editorial board. Upon this realization, we tried to acknowledge and understand our shortcomings, and sought help from other student organizations. Their input and dedication are what made this a far stronger publication than what we could have produced on our own.
Race is an issue that is not often openly discussed at McGill, within the larger Montreal community, or at The Daily. When it does come into conversation, people tend to discuss race in a negative way - often disregarding the lived experiences of racialized people. This is even more the case in both mainstream and alternative media - including The Daily - where racial diversity is sorely lacking. But it isn't the responsibility of racialized people and groups to bring up racial inequities - it's everyone's. Diversity in racial identity, ultimately, is something to be celebrated, even if student conversations about race tend to be more homogenous in their subjects.
This issue, while it aims to open up space for just that kind of celebration, is not without flaws. There were limitations in the ways in which we reached out to contributors, as we mainly used our normal channels of communication. Furthermore, we only reached out to student groups we were already aware of, and did so in a way that could be considered tokenizing. We also recognize that editing - one of the most decisive processes in media creation - is riddled with power dynamics, and that the editors at The Daily are largely white. Many groups were reticent to work with us on this issue, and understandably so: The Daily lacks experience, and often maturity, in both writing about race and providing a platform for it.
Despite all of these shortcomings, we hope that this dialogue will persist beyond this issue. We are enormously grateful to the groups and people who helped out with the race issue and made it possible. We welcome any feedback that you, as a reader, might have. Shoot us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org if you'd like to express private concerns, and send us a letter at email@example.com if you'd like to publish your thoughts.