Something else people giving him nervous looks don’t know: Jackson volunteers with Buckeye Reach, mentoring young Black men in Circleville Juvenile Correction Facility. He and a cadre of students fight to disrupt the “school-to-prison pipeline” by offering more.
Charity Martin-King, director of social change at the Office of Student Life, oversees the group. She saw Jackson’s post and invited him and others to meet with Columbus Mayor Andrew Ginther.
“The protesters are citizens as well as the police officers,” he told the mayor. “(The police) should be held to the same standards that U.S. citizens are held to.” The group urged Ginther to come see the protests himself. He did. Changes were announced, including a citywide ban on tear gas.
Systemic racism and white supremacy took centuries to build. Jackson knows it will take years to dismantle. He plans to teach life science in urban schools, providing kids a different narrative.
“You can either be on the right side of history or you won’t,” he said. “But if you’re not, then understand that this is just going to keep perpetuating itself.”
“Racism shouldn’t be something that we have to deal with on a day-to-day basis.”