On Feb. 4, 2021, a civil war erupted at Piedmont College between the voiced and the voiceless after a ruling was made on sports around campus due to COVID-19. With sports on Piedmont’s campus picking back up, a ruling was made to not allow any fans at any sporting event for the remainder of the semester. Tensions between student athletes and theater majors have been on the rise since last fall, and athletes have been pushed into the fog.
The fall semester saw a division between the two groups around campus. Conflicts arose and escalated due to controversy among politics. Voices and opinions were heard on the Piedmont app, the college’s app for students and faculty. One side became silenced and the other was allowed to speak freely with no repercussions. Student athletes saw their voices taken off the app. Theater majors could say anything and saw no backlash from the college. Within days, all student athletes were told by coaches to not post anything on the app, as it could look bad for the program.
This caused an uproar among student athletes as we felt silenced. We felt as if our freedom of speech was revoked by the college. If we said anything about politics, we were silenced. Meanwhile, theater majors could say anything they wanted because their political views aligned with the colleges. As we were silenced, theater majors took to the app and began throwing insults at student athletes, calling us “in-bred,” “retards,” and bringing up movements that had nothing to do with certain conversations. We were not allowed to fight back. I, along with the other student athletes, felt threatened, and we were mad. We wanted change and saw nothing happen.
Fast forward to Feb. 4, the ruling on sports— “D-day” at Piedmont College. The school ruled that sporting events would not be permitted to have any outside guests or students in attendance. This only caused a greater rift between the student athletes and the school. While we were not allowed to have fans for the remainder of our seasons, the theater department was permitted to have outside guests and students attend a play where it was $5 a ticket. This gives the impression that the school only cares about making money. This action shows student-athletes that we are not as important as the fine arts students. And when we voice our concerns, we become silenced and sent away into the fog that now covers Piedmont College.