Humans of Allen: Rita Taye

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Pauline Esguerra, Staff writer

“Since the rise of media portrayal of police brutality, the focus on cultural appropriation, and the misinterpretation of blacks in pop culture, we have all experienced an increase in racial tension in the past couple years. Being an African American, I felt kind of hopeless as to what I could do to help this issue since it’s so controversial. But after a while of contemplating, I wanted to bring attention to the situation no matter how local it was. So at the end of my junior year, I started planning out a club that could help bring some of the African Americans at Allen High school together. The planning process took some time, but as my senior year began, I was able to start an African Students Organization. I felt like the African population at Allen was one of the least represented. There’s always been the stereotypical conflict between light-skins and dark-skins and west Africans and east Africans and I wanted to create an environment where these boundaries didn’t have to exist. I have always felt that the African American kids at Allen didn’t have a safe haven for them to celebrate their culture and I wanted to make it into a reality. Since childhood, I was told I couldn’t be that smart since I was African or was told I wasn’t pretty because I was African or I talked ‘too white’ for an African person. I feel like countless amounts of Africans living in America have been told the same exact thing and I want to be able to spread the message that we have been mislead. We can be just as intelligent, just as important, just as inspirational as anybody else in the room, and this the message I wish for African Students Organization to bring to Allen.”