Make no mistake: I know why they are getting a surge in donations: cynical virtue-signalling and mindless George Floyd Freakout tribute. However, like the historically black colleges themselves, the phenomenon of picking now to celebrate segregated education, and mostly inferior education, is self-contradictory. It also highlights the hypocrisy of the “antiracism” movement itself, and the incoherence of the “diversity” chants coming from the Left.
For these colleges are the opposite of diverse. They are, in fact, discriminatory in concept and execution, and to see them “thrive” while activists are demanding literal quotas in other institutions in order to create numerical demographic parity—at least—is a blazing example of how the George Floyd Ethics Train wreck is less a cultural awakening than it is an opportunistic and unethical power play fueled by white guilt and cowardice.
The front page article in the New York Times today is so full of head-banging-on-the-wall moments I ran out of head before I ran out of wall. Here are some…
- “It may have started with the new vice president, Kamala Harris, who has celebrated her roots at Howard University, calling it ‘a place that shaped her.'” Harris has proven that she is less than the sharpest knife in the drawer repeatedly, and that her rise to a job she is spectacularly unqualified for has nothing to do with her education or intellect at all, though her repeated gaffes and failures do.
- “Howard, in Washington, also recently announced a string of high-profile hirings, including the writers Ta-Nehisi Coates and Nikole Hannah-Jones and the actor Phylicia Rashad, who was appointed dean of the fine arts program.” Thus proving that the college is wasting the windfall by hiring PR assets rather than people who will help improve the institution. Rashad is a dean without any experience in education administration. Her biography describes her as a “scholar,” using a standard that would make every college graduate a “scholar”: she has a BA from Howard. Her first notable act as dean was to celebrate the reversal of Bill Cosby’s conviction in a statement that was ambiguous enough to allow an interpretation that she was referring to the technical flaws in his prosecution. (She wasn’t, though.) Hannah-Jones is a Pulitzer-prize winning racist and fraud, who has been quietly stuffed in a freezer by her employer, the Times, because nothing she wrote would have any credibility at all. She hasn’t had anything published in the Times in a year. Here’s a quote from anti-white propagandist Coates: He has a “desire to be around other intelligent, curious, people of African descent.”
- “And money is pouring in. The philanthropist MacKenzie Scott has given more than $500 million to more than 20 historically Black colleges in the past year. Google, TikTok and Reed Hastings, the co-chief executive of Netflix, have given $180 million more. Lawmakers on Capitol Hill delivered more than $5 billion in pandemic rescue funding, which included erasing $1.6 billion in debt for 45 institutions.” How can activists and progressives simultaneously argue for racial diversity and the elimination of racial discrimination while justifying support for racially discriminatory colleges? From the article: “Black students have been lured to other institutions with larger endowments and financial aid budgets. Even before the pandemic, enrollment at historically Black institutions had dropped to its lowest point since 2001, a rate of decline recently estimated at 1.4 percent a year, according to the National Student Clearinghouse.”
My reaction: Good! They are anachronisms; most black colleges and universities were formed during the 19th century to educate blacks freed from slavery, and continued during a period in which they could not get into all-white schools. Most of the historically black institutions have low graduation and retention rates, because they admit students who should probably be spending their time and money on training that doesn’t involve college.
Another wall-banger from the Times piece:
“’We’ve been here since 1865,’ said George T. French Jr., president of Clark Atlanta University. But it is only now, he said, that he can reel off the names of donors who have contacted him. He often asks donors, ‘Why am I just getting a call from you right now?’ Their answer, he said: ‘We were disturbed by what happened with George Floyd and other atrocities. And we want to do our part — to say we’re sorry.’”
Translation: “We think that during the freak-out over the death of a lifetime black criminal at the hands of a single brutal cop, it would be wise to get our names publicized as being on the side of the rioters.”
Who can’t think of more efficient and productive ways to help black culture and improve race relations than to give millions to mediocre to poor colleges and universities that exclude whites?
Meanwhile, in the midst of a suicidal expansion of the national debt with trillion dollar deficits, President Biden is pushing a proposal to direct $39 billion to subsidize two years of tuition at historically black four-year colleges and other minority-serving institutions.
Of course he is. THAT I understand: he’s pandering, and his administration will keep trying to get discriminatory programs through the courts so it can scream “”Jim Crow!” every time one is struck down. What I don’t understand is why blacks or whites tolerate the hypocrisy and hustle behind the continued existence of historically black colleges.