Seventeen going on eighteen years of playing that nice, bourgeois, educated Black woman who never cusses or gets angry or challenges authority, along with enduring daily microaggressions and macroaggressions, along with my own sanity and my professional abilities challenged, as well as multiple health issues directly related to my work environment–that is me enduring my experience as an associate professor at UDC the HBCU that also happens to my alma mater where I also experienced microaggressions and macroaggressions.
The current administration is not special in its current trajectory–it’s consistent in what plagues many majority-Black institutions. I am a victim of what is destroying UDC, the irony being that those who can change these conditions spend more time seeking words, phrases, and nuances in my digital work to use as weapons to render me silent in order to protect their images rather than actually engage in discussion to produce real change for the better. Why? In simple terms, egotistical drives for power to dominate, control, and profit. None of these things belong in a non-profit, yet that is what is rewarded and promoted, where people like me literally starve every summer due to low pay and just about impossible bills and those who are privileged are given a red carpet. I make less than secretaries, but I spend seven days and nights working.
So if I seem a bit crude, blunt, or simply not sufficiently corporate-smooth enough for your taste, please excuse me if I seem a bit abrupt in me saying right now I don’t give a fuck because you are a big part of the problem and I refuse to literally drop dead out of consideration for bullshit sexist/classist protocols designed to disrupt or dissuade any attempts to change these oppressive conditions.
Make no mistake–this IS what class and gender warfare looks like and feels like in academia. Truth is, none of you snobs listen to kind words or well-researched speeches, essays, or books about these issues because you don’t believe it applies to you, and you don’t see any value or purpose in changing your current course. You probably would not bother reading me, if not for the urgency of our falling student numbers due to your arrogance and hostility towards poor people of color. But you aren’t looking for insight or coalition-building; you are probably looking for ways to render such critiques (I am not alone) moot and mute through masking and showboating–talking heads and public performances designed to minimize public exposure of these issues while continuing to do the same things unabated and unresolved.
I am one voice in an ocean of tears over painful memories across decades, a legacy UDC seems determined to wear as its crown of glory.
God truly help us all, for they know not what they do. Please pray for UDC.