An academic at one of our most exclusive, and hyper “liberal” schools was condescending and racist? NO! Say it ain’t so.
Many of the people who populate the academic class come from lily white backgrounds. The same can also be said for their students. And while often championing “diversity” and similar causes, I have found that many in academia seem to regard their interest in such issues as a form of noblesse oblige. You see, they are the enlightened, and the ignorant (usually non-white) masses need their help.
I grew up with black folks and Filipino folks and all sorts of people of different ethnicities in Virginia Beach which has been called the most integrated large city in the US. We played soccer together. Played basketball together. We surfed together. But when I got to college, a pretty white somewhat privileged college, I met many kids from the Northeast who clearly had never hung out with non-white people in any significant way. Black people were a novelty to them. One could sense it. But these kids were the first to explain why “multiculturalism” and PC conformity were so great. The professors often exuded this vibe too. I remember thinking that these people really DID see themselves as different from black people and other “non-white” people.
I still see this. There is usually a clear separation between “helper” (them), and the “helped” (insert the ethnicity/gender/ sexual orientation etc). This disposition is fundamentally insulting and is rooted in prejudice. At least it’s insulting to me.
I am painting with a pretty broad brush here and of course there are exceptions to this mentality. But just make sure your child isn’t playing outside while a Harvard yogamom has put HER kids down for a nap. People who are being helped need to know their place. And their place is NOT to wake up yogamom toddlers.
Here is what the woman with the child had to say about this run in.
(From Red State)
“Y’all here is another Permit Patty trying to kick me off my own property because she’s having a hard time getting her kids to take a nap at 3:30 in the afternoon on a Saturday. I’m outside enjoying the afternoon with my daughter when this woman came downstairs and asked me if I would move so her kids can nap. Mind you it’s mid day and we weren’t even being loud at all drawing with chalk. She followed me around and harassed me trying to get my information and apartment number as if she had a right to know. When I wouldn’t tell her she proceeded to ask me if I lived in the “affordable apartments” of the building for Cambridge residents or if I lived in one of the Harvard owned apartments (which is all the same building anyways). It was totally discriminating and racist of her.. or maybe it was because my daughter is biracial who knows. I have no idea who this woman is and the fact that she thinks she has some kind of authority over me is crazy! She wanted to know what apartment number I lived at so she can yell outside my window to see if I like it (real mature) as you hear her say in the video. This woman’s house is no bigger than mine even if she lives in one of the apartments that are owned by Harvard. Despite color, where I live, how much money I have she will be buried 6 feet under just like me… Why do people think they are literally better than others?”
Here is what the subject of the video had to say after the exchange.
We’ll bet you’re sorry. We are sure you’d be sorry too even if this wasn’t brought to the attention of the Harvard community.
One last note. This incident reminded me of a moment from my childhood in the 80s. A relative of mine, an extremely liberal academic Northeasterner and a product of some of the finest schools this country has came to visit my family in Virginia Beach. Now I love this relative, but I remember distinctly wincing when this relative looked over at a basketball court full of players near our home and asked in a shocked, pearl clutching tone, “Is it whites versus blacks?”
I was 10 and I knew this relative, brilliant and well meaning, was ignorant of the actual racial score. Apparently this type of ignorance persists.