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Damon Davis on Equity & Justice

September 28, 2015

During assembly on Monday, September 28, award-winning, multi-media artist Damon Davis spoke about his art as his voice in pursuit of equity and justice. Davis's photographs, "All Hands on Deck", are on exhibit in the foyer of Haertter Hall. The hands are examples of the many efforts that grew out of Ferguson in August 2014. Davis referred to the exhibit as "emergency response" artwork and said it is his proudest work.

Though Davis showed a few slides of other work he has done, including political cartoons for the Huffington Post, he spent more time urging students to take advantage of their privilege to advance equity and justice. He said, "Most people don't stand up, because they're afraid ...  It's easy to sit back and let others do the work ... You are coming into privilege others won't see and should use that privilege to benefit others than yourselves ... Don't waste that privilege ... Stay awake ... Think every day ... Make conscious decisions ... You guys are the next 'up' — don't waste it ... Don't wait for the next Ghandi to lead."

In response to a question about what students can do to use their privilege for good, Davis said, "See yourself in other people ... If you can see yourself in their shoes, you will have empathy and you will be vulnerable," which will impact your actions and decisions.