Bradley University hosts "Tunnel of Oppression"

By Denise Jackson

February 21, 2013 Updated Feb 22, 2013 at 12:32 AM CDT

PEORIA, Ill. -- Bullying, religious intolerance and homelessness are forms of oppression that can be lethal if they go unchecked.

Bradley University students hosted an event to raise awareness about social issues confronting people.

Some students were made into example of in a simulation of a checkpoint at the U.S. Mexican border and it was not pretty.

"This is the world we live in and you can hide behind the curtain or you can face it and make a difference. That's what this tunnel of oppression is all about," said Bradley graduate student Joshua Wolfinsohn.

The students got a look at what life is like for victims of bullying, racial profiling, homelessness, mental retardation and a host of other social ills inside Bradley University's "Tunnel of Oppression".

"I hope they leave with a better understanding that oppression happens on a daily basis. It's not something that's just this big old thing that people can't grasp," said organizer Norris Chase.

With sound effects, images and videos throughout the tunnel, it is hard not to grasp the magnitude of events from the holocaust to the Treyvon Martin fatal shooting in Florida.

"It impacted me a lot especially in the eating disorder and body image because I had a really close friend of mine and she went through a 3-year struggle with bulimia and she still has a lot of struggle with it," said Bradley sophomore Elena Miller.

Organizers said they hope the tour compels participants to step out of their comfort zone and into someone else's reality.

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