Sunday, June 07, 2009

I didn’t have to worry about these things at my HBCU

Hat tip to the Black Market Index for putting me on to this

It’s a shame about Chanequa Campbell. She probably thought she would receive a quality education that would change her life. But just because you go to an Ivy League school doesn’t mean that you will be accepted. Apparently Harvard has not been kind to Ms. Campbell. Campbell tried to fit into the student body. She was a member of the Black Students Association, Association of Black Harvard Women, and Harvard’s Black Community and Student Theater. Wait a minute!!! Are these groups exclusive to only black folks or can anyone join? So all the black folks at Harvard segregated themselves from the white students? Didn’t they know that white folks made up a large percentage of the university? Okay I’ll stop being facetious now. There can only be two reasons why black folks are shaky on supporting her.

1) She did it and they don’t want to be tainted by her.
2) She didn’t do it but they still don’t want to be tainted by her.

You know the really sad thing about this whole dilemma? Both reasons are sad


uglyblackjohn said...

They're trying to keep their "status".

PPR_Scribe said...

She is not accusing White men of a crime against her. She has not been tasered by police. She is not a celebrity Black faculty member. She has a "ghetto" name. She was from the hood. She does not have anything immediate to offer other Harvard Black students' self interests.

...I think that about covers the "why" behind the lack of Black Harvard interest. Probably the lack of Black blogosphere support as well.

uglyblackjohn said...

@ PRB - Do you think that because she is at Harvard - that she is now viewed by many as selling out and becoming "one of them"?

Anonymous said...

sorry, but according to everyone I've talked to among the African American community Harvard, the girl was heavily involved in drug dealing and had a history of being dishonest and rubbing a lot of people the wrong way. She is either in trouble because of the drug dealing company she kept or possibly something she did, not her race, and instead of addressing and owning up to this reality she has thrown all of her african american classmates under the bus by playing the race card. She was denied graduation privileges because she was tied to drug dealing and a murder on campus. Period. To call this racism trivializes the struggles of the other 99% of African Americans at Harvard who are not involved in criminal activities at school. African Americans at Harvard are a very vocal bunch when it comes to injustice or discrimination on campus and their silence when it comes to this issue is telling. Maybe they know something that the public doesn't?

PPR_Scribe said...

Anon, maybe they do know something about this young women that the rest of us do not. How, exactly, do they "know" she was involved in drug dealing? Why was the other young woman--who was actually this suspects girlfriend--also not denied graduation privileges? Is Harvard being consistent with how they apply the revoking of privileges for someone who has not been found guilty of (or, if I understand it correctly, even formally charged with) a crime?

At the very least, *someone* in the Black Harvard community should be encouraging the asking of these questions. I have some first-hand experience with Harvard (tho it has been many years now). I know how tenuous Black lives can be there. But I also remember how hard many Blacks there tried to distinguish themselves from Blacks in nearby Dorchester or Roxbury.

In this case I think it is at least possible that there is some of that going on--a distancing based on class.

PPR_Scribe said...

@ uglyblackjohn: I cannot answer your question. This case has the potential for being similar to the case of the young man who was the ABC prep school student who was killed in NYC. (I am blanking on his name right now.) Turns out he actually *was* involved in drug dealing--largely in an effort to "keep it real" as a Black guy in the eyes of his *White* classmates...

the uppity negro said...

i doubt I'll ever know the full story.

But, black folk like easy fights. Like Jena 6. That was an easy bandwagon fight. GREAAAAT! Stuff like this isn't so easy and simple.

As we found out with Jena 6.