WCC Chicana Studies Faculty Member Receives Racially Charged Flyer, Administration Does Little in Response

Woodland-Community-CollegeOn March 11, 2015, a flyer was placed under the Ethnic Studies office door of a Woodland Community College Faculty member. She said,  “The flyer stated, ‘March is stop blaming white people month. Take responsibility for your own actions. Hug a white person,’ with the image of a troll.”

“I was scared, offended, and understood the message as a personal attack aimed at me as a woman of color faculty, and also of the Ethnic Studies cultural programming,” she explained.

Following protocol and procedure, she reported the incident to the campus police and administration on the same date. However, “Campus police told me that there was nothing that could be done, because it was not a hate crime.”

She then reported it to the Diversity Committee and Safety Committee leaders too.

What concerned her most was, “I researched the message and it frightened me even more because I found it displayed on a White nationalist supremacist webpage. I pointed this out to the administration.”

She told the Vanguard, “I believe that the Administration and Human Resources have not responded appropriately, did not make enough efforts to ensure my safety and safety of those around me.”

StopBlamingWhitePeopleMonth

Below is the full and unredacted statement:

It is critical to report to the community issues concerning Chicana full-time instructional faculty regarding safety and campus investigation practices at Woodland Community College.

Faculty safety and campus investigation policies and procedures concern me as a faculty that serves students and community because on March 11, 2015 I experienced a second anonymous act of racial intimidation on the campus. I am the only Chicana full-time instructional faculty at this designated Hispanic Serving Institution. I have dedicated myself to the professional development, planning, assessment, and improvement of the Ethnic Studies program and also to campus cultural programming (which is part of my job description). The first incident was in 2009. I believe that the Administration and Human Resources have not responded appropriately, did not make enough efforts to ensure my safety and safety of those around me.

On March 11, 2015, a flyer was placed under my Ethnic Studies office door. The flyer stated “March is stop blaming white people month. Take responsibility for your own actions. Hug a white person,” with the image of a troll. I was scared, offended, and understood the message as a personal attack aimed at me as a woman of color faculty, and also the Ethnic Studies cultural programming. I followed procedure and reported the incident to the campus police and administration on the same date. Campus police told me that there was nothing that could be done, because it was not a hate crime. I reported it to the Diversity Committee and Safety Committee leaders too. I researched the message and it frightened me even more because I found it displayed on a White nationalist supremacist webpage. I pointed this out to the administration.

The next day I received a personal email from the President indicating that the situation was “unfortunate” and characterized it as a case of “ignorance.” In response to the President’s email I approached administration to express my concern for personal safety and to say that the response did not affirm the College’s commitment to safety, diversity, or a work space free of fear and intimidation for me and everyone on campus. I asked that a campus wide community alert be emailed immediately about the incident, campus’ diversity commitment, and to inquire if anyone had any information about the incident. I was told that administration could not do that because it needed to proceed with caution. The administration offered to have my office moved, but I do not think that there is a safer location on campus.

After a week, Human Resources Director Whitfield contacted me wanting to meet to find out the “nature” of the incident. Coincidentally, shortly thereafter, the President sent a statement to our campus indicating that some “abhorred activities” had energized student leadership and that there was a commitment to diversity. The President’s message seemed vague, even after I had requested that a message be sent to the campus about the specific incident. Many students, and even some faculty, did not understand the message because it was decontextulized. I followed up with an email to full time faculty, but I received little response. Since then I believe there has been minimal awareness of this racial intimidation.

Director Whitfield called for a first meeting to discuss the matter and “address and resolve the situation.” Given that the Union did not provide adequate support when I experienced the first bias incident in 2009, and that Director Whitfield did not provide adequate support in a prior investigation, I invited a third party to attend this meeting. The meeting mostly centered on what I felt was needed for safety and support. Director Whitfield asked me to tell him about both the 2009 and the recent incident. For safety and support I asked for regular security checks around my office area, cameras at the entrance and back of building 800, administration or district sponsor a workshop or forum on the subject of white privilege for awareness, and an amended police report to reflect fully reflect the character of the incident. I also pointed out that the police report indicated that the case was closed. He said that the college and district would consider these needs for safety and awareness.

I did not file a complaint because there was no one to file it against, even though others have been led to believe that I have done so. A month later, Director Whitfield and the President called for a second “follow up meeting” with me. I asked in an email what it was regarding, but did not receive a reply. I came to believe that it was to follow up on my requests and the topic of sabbatical that the President wanted to discuss for months. I did not bring a third party witness to this meeting. Director Whitfield did not allow me to record the meeting, which I found to be unhelpful and intimidating. He discussed how none of what I had requested was possible for one reason or another. When I asked why security officers were not making rounds by my office, I was told that they were but I was not seeing them. Whitfield also said that there was an undetermined date for cameras, for safety throughout the district. When I asked if a workshop or forum on white privilege would be sponsored by administration or the district, he said that, “the college nor the district will focus on such a specific issue, rather we will focus on global diversity.” Whitfield said that he worked with Yuba College on their diversity programming, and said “perhaps Yuba College needs something like this, but not this college because it is more progressive.” I informed him that an event on white privilege had been organized by Yuba College colleagues last year. He said that the Diversity Committee could organize something like this, but it would not be called for by administration. I said to Director Whitfield that perhaps if the charge came from the top leaders it might be more likely to happen. I said to the President, “You know, I and many others were impressed by your job talk because you had made reference to white privilege in it, and I thought that you would understand why we would need such a workshop or forum on our campus.”

At this second meeting, to my surprise Director Whitfield informed me that an unlawful complaint of discrimination had been filed on my behalf by administration, based on my “nationality.” This was the first time I had heard of this; I was troubled by it and requested a copy of the complaint. He said he would send it. Later, his assistant sent me an email “acknowledging” that a complaint had just been received. Later that day she sent me a message with a link saying that I “had requested” the link to file an unlawful complaint of discrimination. A response was sent immediately to clarify that I did not file or wish to file a complaint against anyone. Later an investigator contacted me twice to schedule an interview, when I was out sick. The focus on a purported complaint has now shifted the spotlight off of the hateful incident itself.

On March 27, Director Whitfield sent me a communication falsely stating that he had discussed with me that there were “two investigations,” and that I had already given “initial” statements:

As we discussed in the meeting(s) with you, there was a criminal investigation and an administrative investigation. You have given an initial statement and a follow-up statement in the criminal investigation. You have received a copy of the initial investigation. As we discussed, the district commenced the administrative investigation under our own nondiscrimination policies and procedures…

This is untrue and misleading that he had previously explained that there were two investigations. I was never told in writing or verbally until Whitfield’s latest message that there were investigations underway, or that I was giving statements in conjunction with investigations. I did not schedule to meet with Director Whitfield about filing any complaints, against anyone, ever.

I write to reiterate that this issue has not been addressed, and that complaint processes and procedures involving campus investigations have been mishandled, and need to be seriously reviewed. The insensitivity and mishandling of this recent incident by the Administration and Human Resources is unethical and insincere, and it caused great confusion among staff, students, and faculty; it has further negatively impacted me and the campus climate. Students were afraid and intimidated. I know this because recently I heard first hand that a staff member had been saying that an investigator was on campus because I had organized students for a rally. This is a false perception that has further injured me. Such rumors are unprofessional and further normalize the unsupportive attitudes and practices towards Ethnic Studies faculty and cultural programming. The kind of response from the administration regarding this incident has further shown the lack of safety and support for Ethnic Studies faculty, and program. This incident and the inappropriate response by administration have been distracting, made me feel unsafe on campus, increased my stress and anxiety, and ability to fully concentrate on students. I am doing my best to focus on completing this semester – serving students in class and cultural programming.

I ask be aware of incidents on our campus and safety. I request a call for promoting the general welfare of Chicana full-time instructional faculty and that existing policies and procedures regarding safety and investigations be reviewed. To my knowledge, the Diversity Committee and the Safety Committee have not even discussed this incident or responded, even though I made them aware of it the week it occurred. The College Council and Academic Senate have been notified as well. I suggest the appointment of a “bias incident response team.” Given the state and national climate on racial tensions, that is also on the mind of our students, I ask that we also call for supporting diversity programming in order to raise awareness and perhaps even prevent or learn how to renounce such incidents in the future. I hope to collaborate with others to continue serving our students and promote the goals of the Ethnic Studies Program and cultural programming at my designated Hispanic Serving Institution, without racial intimidations. I am deeply grateful for your leadership and voice. I ask that you send a letter of concern to the WCC President Michael White, before May 15 (graduation date). I thank you for your honest consideration.

About The Author

David Greenwald is the founder, editor, and executive director of the Davis Vanguard. He founded the Vanguard in 2006. David Greenwald moved to Davis in 1996 to attend Graduate School at UC Davis in Political Science. He lives in South Davis with his wife Cecilia Escamilla Greenwald and three children.

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106 Comments

  1. Biddlin

    Scariest thing is that some moron thought this was funny. I suspect Ms. Moreno is responding out of an obligation to keep the administration honest more than real fear. Still I wonder, if a similar threat were made to white instructors, what would their response nave been?

    ;>)/

  2. Barack Palin

    When I asked if a workshop or forum on white privilege would be sponsored by administration or the district, he said that, “the college nor the district will focus on such a specific issue, rather we will focus on global diversity.” 

    Good for the college officials for not caving in.

  3. Barack Palin

    In my opinion from what I’ve read here this sounds like a case of an over zealous activist looking to make a big deal out of a very small incident.

  4. hpierce

    Something smells wrong in the account Ms Moreno provides… David, you say that the account is unredacted… are the bolded portions of text bolded by Ms Moreno?  How did you come across this? Did Ms Moreno bring it to you, or did it come from another source?

    I see some possible inconsistencies… hope I’m wrong… first is that the ‘facial image’ did not pop to mind as a “troll”… had to do a google search of ‘images of trolls’ to find it.  How did Ms Moreno recognize and describe it as a “troll” the first day?  Second, she writes  “I am the only Chicana full-time instructional faculty at this designated Hispanic Serving Institution.” [emphasis mine]  That, if true, is to say the least, surprising.

    If true, her account is troubling.  I have no reason to opine that it is untrue, but there are many other parts of the quite long and detailed narrative that I am somewhat skeptical about, including, “Later an investigator contacted me twice to schedule an interview, when I was out sick.”  Just a coincidence? [Italics in my comment were inadvertant… not intended]

    David, this story screams out for more investigation.  To be clear, I do not believe Ms Moreno’s account should be dismissed, but something just seems amiss.

  5. TrueBlueDevil

    Is this just poor, distasteful, juvenile humor, or is it “hate”? Sadly, we do have a long history of many items like this being planted by various individuals, especially students seeking to garner more attention to their “cause”, so that can’t be ruled out.

    I find it interesting that the Vanguard covered this anonymous flyer, but a recent rash of violent crimes by (apparently) people of color haven’t received one drop of ink (or font). This included a semi-automatic weapon being pulled on a citizen, and a carload of young men assaulting two students and causing serious bodily injury.

    This may be a huge double standard, especially when we double down on the supposed concern on the left concerning gun violence.

    1. Davis Progressive

      since you’ve brought up the rash of violent crimes several times – why don’t you write the report and submit it to the vanguard, i am willing to bet it gets published.

      1. TrueBlueDevil

        DP, could you answer a simple question for me to make sure my perception is correct? I count possibly 5 separate violent crimes (gun, knife, assault and battery) in a 2-3 week period. This is only what gets print, there are probably others. Does that seem like a rash of violent crimes, or is this now the new norm in Davis?

        1. Barack Palin

          I think TBD’s point is that a car load of blacks stopped their car, jumped out and beat up two white guys the other night in Davis.  Is this Vanguard news?  Maybe not, but I think if it had been a car load of whites beating up two black guys the Vanguard would’ve been all over it.

        2. Davis Progressive

          i think you have to be careful.  a few years ago there was a rash of burglaries in davis – the police warned that it could be a trend or it could be a blip.  it turned out more of a blip that subsided when they they caught a key person involved.

          five is not a huge number – and if the crimes stop, then it might not even register as a blip.  so i wouldn’t draw any conclusions.

          we had a long period of time with no murders in davis.  then we have had like seven in the last four years.  is that a trend?  if you look at the individual cases, it seems like a string of random events.

        3. Davis Progressive

          and my point was that the vanguard covers what the vanguard covers but it also has an open submission policy that would allow for other things as well.

        4. TrueBlueDevil

          BP, actually at least one of the victims may be Asian, so I guess if we want to be race focused, could this be more black-on-Asian hate crime? There was a supposed wave of this in Oakland and San Francisco a few years ago (maybe still happens) and the theory was that Asians were seen as more passive and “easy targets”.

          DP, I only refer to what hit the Davis Enterprise or campus blasts. I took a quick look at a police blotter for a few days, and also saw a young woman lodge a possible rape complaint. (There may have been a rape drug involved, very sad.)

          A long-time resident and campus employee claims that Davis students are now well known by some as ‘easy targets’, and much of this may be outsiders coming in, committing crime, and leaving.

        5. Davis Progressive

          i think there’s a danger in taking a few data without doing any kind of long term analysis.  the vanguard has reported in the past on some of these trends.

        6. Davis Progressive

          agree hpierce, but i was responding to this: “Does that seem like a rash of violent crimes, or is this now the new norm in Davis?”

        7. TrueBlueDevil

          hpierce, wasn’t Davis just a few decades ago a place where the number of violent crimes over 2 weeks be at 0 or 1? We haven’t quadrupled in size.

        8. TrueBlueDevil

          DP, looks like a local writer did compile some crime stats in 2013.

          LLOYD BILLINGSLEY

          Take Back the Night from Whom?
          Political correctness and a double murder in Davis

          “From 1999 through 2011, the city recorded three murders, 33 rapes, 38 robberies, and 41 assaults.”

          Given these numbers, 5 serious crimes in a two-week period is a huge increase.

          http://www.city-journal.org/2013/cjc1031lb.html

          1. David Greenwald

            I asked Chief Black the question, he said: “I’m not sure I’d call it a trend. That really implies a longer historical term than we’ve seen — with a realistic expectation that the increased rate will maintain. Instead, the general information I am aware of would lead me to say we’ve had an up-tick — but, as far as I’m aware, only with robberies.” That wast he best he could do at the moment.

  6. hpierce

    Don’t know if you’ve googled “Stop blaming white people month”, David… All the top 10 references I found, including a website that is owned (apparently) by a ‘person of color’, but at least in the top ten “hits”, did not find even one that would fit the definition of,  “I found it displayed on a White nationalist supremacist webpage.”  Still have more than a whiff of why I am skeptical about the account provided.  My recommendation, David, is “dig, David, dig”.  Am sensing iron pyrite.

    Unless something tangible comes up, I’m fully moving off this topic.

    1. Davis Progressive

      i realize she brought up the background of the image and slogan, but it really doesn’t matter who design the website, the question comes down to what the intent of someone putting the flyer under a lecturer’s door in the chicano studies department – a joke?  intimidate?  be obnoxious?

    2. Biddlin

      How about The Council of Conservative Citizens?

      “God is the author of racism. God is the One who divided mankind into different types. … Mixing the races is rebelliousness against God.”
      — Council of Conservative Citizens website, 2001

      They are, of course, the modern White Citizens Council. They have run pictures comparing pop singer Michael Jackson to an ape and referred to blacks as “a retrograde species of humanity.” The group’s newspaper, Citizens Informer, regularly publishes articles condemning “race mixing,” decrying the evils of illegal immigration, and lamenting the decline of white, European civilization.

      That qualifies in my book.

      ;>)/

      1. Frankly

        Some people have to work hard to scrape the bottom of their empty barrel of worldview justification.  [moderator] off topic comments removed.

      2. hpierce

        You really need to “drill down” to find anything racist… Council of Conservative Citizens didn’t appear to be overtly “white supremicist”, and I am so skeptical of the account, I only “drilled down” on the top 4 sites.  Whatever.

        1. Biddlin

          Whatever happened to your curiosity?

          A few points of their long and hateful Statement of Principles tell the story for me.

           

           
          Statement of Principles
           

          Samuel Francis Ph.D., who died of a heart aneurysm in 2005, was the former editor of the Citizen’s Informer newspaper and a member of the CofCC National Board of Directors. He was also a nationally syndicated columnists and former writer for the Washington Times. Francis was also a regular contributor to American Renaissance Magazine, Chronicles Magazine, the Occidental Quarterly, Vdare.com, and others.

           

          Before his unexpected death, the Council of Conservative Citizen’s Statement of Principles was the last thing he wrote. Francis was rushed to the hospital just days after submitting his first draft to the rest of the Board.

           

          At the 2005 Spring National Board meeting, the CofCC National Directors voted unanimously to adopt the Statement of Principles completely unaltered from Francis’ original version as a tribute to all he had done for the CofCC.

           

          The American men and women who make up the Council of Conservative Citizens (CofCC) believe in, commit themselves to, and pledge to work for and support these fundamental principles of American civilization, liberty, justice, and national safety:

           

          (1) We believe the United States is a Christian country. We believe that the United States of America is a Christian country, that its people are a Christian people, and that its government and public leaders at all levels must reflect Christian beliefs and values. We therefore oppose all efforts to deny or weaken the Christian heritage of the United States, including the unconstitutional prohibitions of prayers and other religious expression in schools and other public institutions.

           

          (2) We believe the United States is a European country and that Americans are part of the European people. We believe that the United States derives from and is an integral part of European civilization and the European people and that the American people and government should remain European in their composition and character. We therefore oppose the massive immigration of non-European and non-Western peoples into the United States that threatens to transform our nation into a non-European majority in our lifetime. We believe that illegal immigration must be stopped, if necessary by military force and placing troops on our national borders; that illegal aliens must be returned to their own countries; and that legal immigration must be severely restricted or halted through appropriate changes in our laws and policies. We also oppose all efforts to mix the races of mankind, to promote non-white races over the European-American people through so-called “affirmative action” and similar measures, to destroy or denigrate the European-American heritage, including the heritage of the Southern people, and to force the integration of the races.

          6) The traditional family is the basic unit of human society. We believe in the traditional family as the basic unit of human society and morality, and we oppose all efforts by the state and other powers to weaken the structure of the American family through toleration of sexual licentiousness, homosexuality and other perversions, mixture of the races, pornography in all forms, and subversion of the authority of parents.

          (8) Cultural, national, and racial integrity. We support the cultural and national heritage of the United States and the race and civilization of which it is a part, as well as the expression and celebration of the legitimate subcultures and ethnic and regional identities of our people. We oppose all efforts to discredit, “debunk,” denigrate, ridicule, subvert, or express disrespect for that heritage. We believe public monuments and symbols should reflect the real heritage of our people, and not a politically convenient, inaccurate, insulting, or fictitious heritage.

           

          Hmmm, sounds kinda klanish to me, but my standards may be different…

          ;>)/

          …..

    3. Tia Will

      hpierce

      I am thinking that we must have chosen to click into different sites when researching this. When I Googled white pride month, in my top five was a site called White Pride World Wide. A brief perusal of their site turned up many strategies, events, and posters that I would consider racist including regular posts from self identified members of the KKK.

      I have no idea if this is the site she was referencing, however it certainly meets my definition of a white supremacist ( and therefore in  mind) racist site.

        1. Davis Progressive

          what’s interesting is the only way you can keep him from seeing his shadow is to keep him in the dark.  shining a light on the process necessarily produces a shadow.

        2. Frankly

          what’s interesting is the only way you can keep him from seeing his shadow is to keep him in the dark.  shining a light on the process necessarily produces a shadow.

          A narrow beam flashlight will not illuminate but a small piece of the world around you.

  7. TrueBlueDevil

    A quick look at the WCC directory shows a very diverse staff, and I did notice that Estelita Spears is a FT faculty for cooperative work experience, and Vicki Machado in nursing. I can see why she had to add so many modifiers as it is a very diverse campus.

    http://wcc.yccd.edu/about/directory.aspx

    She claimed to feel unsafe, yet won’t move her office. Surely an office closer to the administration or a campus security office would be safer than a generic office. She seems to have an agenda by deciding to dictate to the President of the campus how he should reply to this issue, including some kind of teaching of “white privilege”.

    There also is a reference to her taking a sabbatical, so it sounds like there may be other issues at play.

    1. Davis Progressive

      “A quick look at the WCC directory shows a very diverse staff”

      the question isn’t whether the staff is diverse, it’s whether administration is willing to support the staff

      “She claimed to feel unsafe, yet won’t move her office.  Surely an office closer to the administration or a campus security office would be safer than a generic office.”

      not necessarily.  if it’s open access, the same thing can happen.  moving the physical location of the office is unlikely to provide her safety.

      “She seems to have an agenda ”

      you’ve drawn a broad conclusion from very little information.

      “There also is a reference to her taking a sabbatical, so it sounds like there may be other issues at play.”

      again

      tell me tbd, do you have formal training in hr?

      1. TrueBlueDevil

        You seem to only want to argue for the sake of arguing. You’re arguing that an office right next to the Presidents office, or right next to campus security, would be no safer than a remote office?

        I try to look to the positive, and the fact that six years have gone by with no incidents is good news. Many of these incidents are often found to originate anyway with young students who aren’t fully mature.

        1. Davis Progressive

          “You’re arguing that an office right next to the Presidents office, or right next to campus security, would be no safer than a remote office?”

          i don’t know enough about the lay out of the campus to make the assessment, nor do you know that either of those possibilities were offered.  i think the response by the faculty member is likely due to the fact that there are multiple points of access to her while on campus and an office location is only one.

        2. Barack Palin

           i think the response by the faculty member is likely due to the fact that there are multiple points of access to her while on campus and an office location is only one.

          So a faculty member gets a note saying “‘March is stop blaming white people month. Take responsibility for your own actions. Hug a white person” which in response the administrators have offered a different office and have increased her security patrol.  What would you want, 24/7 bodyguards?  Relax, this is being way overblown.

        3. Davis Progressive

          here’s what i see.  the faculty member probably feels violated by the act in a way you probably do not empathize with.  she probably feels vulnerable and scared.  i’m not an hr professional, but the first question one should ask is whether they followed their own protocol for handling a “hate” situation and whether their protocol is up to date with best practices.  but the other part is that she feels violated and that the administration has not taken seriously her concerns.  she didn’t come out immediate, the incident is nearly two months old which suggests frustration.  you three just immediately jump on people’s cases and from what i can tell you’re all white males and probably have little capacity to put yourself in their shows.

  8. Frankly

    “I was scared, offended, and understood the message as a personal attack aimed at me as a woman of color faculty, and also of the Ethnic Studies cultural programming,” she explained.

    The coached language of the race, gender and sexual preference social justice crusader to leverage her victim status to seek power and retribution through the kangaroo court system of political correctness.

      1. Frankly

        “I was scared”

        Give me a break.  What is insulting is the acceptance of the blaring imprecision of use for this kind of language.

        “I did not feel safe.”

        “I was scared.”

        “I was threatened.”

        “I was attacked.”

        These phrases are used by the false victim to justify real victimization of others.

         

        1. TrueBlueDevil

          I sometimes ask people in cases like this, when emotions and logic runaway, to rate the ‘violation’ or occurrence on a scale of 1 to 10. That sometimes wakes them up to reality.

          Let’s compare this page under the door, to the 2 students attacked by four black suspects, which resulted in serious bodily injury. Rate the two on a scale of 1 to 10.

          I rate the serious bodily injury as an 8, 8.5, or 9.

          I rate the slip of paper under the door as a 2.

          And here the media / bloggers falls all over the “2” with questions, while ignoring the provable, violent “9”.

        2. Frankly

          TBD – that is a good way to approach it.

          But there is another angle too… it is the test of the reasonable person.  Hypersensitivity is identified as a level of sensitivity beyond what is reasonable.   If you ask a hypersensitive person to rate the materiality of an occurrence it is likely going to be a higher rating than average.

          I have had to deal with several “hostile work environment” claims from employees over my career.  In all but one of them it was employee-vs-employee.  Ironically though, the majority ended up backfiring on the accuser as the HR investigation led to the conclusion of hypersensitivity and that accuser what more the source of the hostile work environment.

          In my career I have worked to reduce and diffuse these work-culture-destructive incidents by developing conflict management skills in my employees and coworkers.  The direct bullies are generally easier to solve… either someone is blind to the impact of their behavior and they can be trained to behave differently or a case is made to remove them.  However, it is the passive-aggressive employee that creates the most problems.  He/she emotionally snaps at other people for what are average human interactions and then seeks defense for having to for having to accept responsibility for these snaps by claiming a victim status.  And because of labor laws, many do prevail protecting themselves by using victim status.  The problem for the employee is that this becomes a growing entitlement that leads the employee to eventually overshoot the line for what is defensible behavior even for someone with a victim status.

          Basically, everyone walks on eggshells around, and steers clear of, the hypersensitive person until he/she implodes.

          I wonder if this is what happened here?

  9. forreal

    When a college professor receives an anonymous flyer that says “hug a white person,” and her response is to say she feels so “unsafe” that she can no longer effectively do her job, something has gone horribly wrong.

      1. Barack Palin

        Yes, it says “hug a white person” and “take responsibility for your own actions” and “stop blaming white people month”.   Roll out the National Guard!

      2. forreal

        This is literally what the message says, in its entirety: “MARCH is national Stop Blaming White People Month! Accept responsibility for your own bad choices. Hug a white person! [facebook link that doesn’t lead to anything]”

        Please show me where in these three sentences is a credible threat of harm or violence.

        1. forreal

          Do we really need to demand college administrators sound a campus-wide alarm and implement mandatory sensitivity classes every time someone feels insulted by ideas they disagree with on a college campus? That would threaten the very foundation of free expression and the free exchange of ideas upon which academia is founded, and THAT is far more dangerous to society than this trivial flyer.

  10. Frankly

    You do know about Jennifer Beeman, right?   Maybe Melissa Moreno joins her in this fabrication of events and evidence that validates her role value.

    1. Davis Progressive

      beeman fudged sexual assault reports to increase grant money to the university.  if we were in a court of law, i believe it would be stricken due to relevancy.

        1. Frankly

          I am making the point that there was all this attention over claimed “hostility” or “abuse” or “hate” events that did not actual occur.  This is absolutely relative to this topic.  In fact, given the track record of media attention to events like these turning out to be done by the actual accuser, I would tread very lightly on reporting on them in such definitive and drastic terms.

  11. Tia Will

    Frankly

    Hypersensitivity is identified as a level of sensitivity beyond what is reasonable.”

    The problem is the same as you cited on a post on a different thread. Different people place their bar for what is “reasonable” at different levels. You cannot simple assume that your “bar” setting is what would be considered “reasonable” by the average person ( without doing a poll or study) nor can you assume how the majority would see the incident without actual information, of which you have provided none.

      1. Tia Will

        I’ll remember it next time I hear fabricated classifications like “social justice.”

        And I hope that you will call them to my attention…..but only when it is me that has used them. Like most all of us, I do not care to be criticized for concepts that I have not posted.

    1. Frankly

      “reasonable” is a legal term.  what is reasonable?  without some test of reasonableness we would legislate to extremes.

      If you and I work together and I say something that you feel is offensive and you make a claim against me for insensitivity or hostile work environment, if not “reasonableness” then what benchmark do you suggest?  Should the benchmark be that of the most sensitive?  I am guessing that is what you would prefer.  You would prefer that we “protect the most vulnerable”… one of those social justice crusader terms that is too nebulous to be actionable, but nonetheless calls the crusader to action.  And of course the “most vulnerable” are the certified victim-classes.

      But taking this approach is just another form of the same group-preference outcome that the social justice crusader rails about in the name of their rallying cry “EQUALITY!”

      But then you would not be advocating for equal treatment if you set the benchmark for the “most vulnerable”; you be advocating for preferential treatment.  And in doing so your entire facade of equality melts way like a cheap candle in the Arizona heat.

      From my perspective “reasonable” is a valid and valuable term that we should more often use to settle complaints.  Unreasonable people should not be coddled if only for the harm it does them.

      1. TrueBlueDevil

        But they need to apply their “ethnic studies” degree somehow. I believe the protest at the CoHo last year was led by an unemployed Chicano/a Studies graduate.

      2. Tia Will

        Frankly

        Well as often as not, you have decided what you suppose I believe and then do a superb job of knocking it down. Too bad it doesn’t bear any correspondence to what I do believe. But then you aren’t even curious enough to enquire about that. You are much too busy knocking down your preferred straw men.

  12. LadyNewkBahm

    the message is criticizing ethnic studies for what it views as blaming white people for all of their problems. I don’t see a threat unless it is accompanied by messages like “white power”, swastikas, nooses,  or images of white hoods  or that klan symbol etc.

    I have been in enough college courses to know ethnic studies notorious for white and america bashing. hell even many government and politics classes contain it at times depending on the professor.

     

    1. hpierce

      We have no idea what the intended message was/is.  For all we know Ms Moreno clipped the art from the internet, printed it and then claimed someone slipped it under the door of her office.  I see nothing in the account that proves or disproves her version of what ‘happened’.  It does not appear anyone can corroborate her account.  We’ll probably never know, one way or the other.

      So, theorize all you folk want.

      1. Barack Palin

        I with you on this one hpierce.  And even if someone else slipped it under her door for whatever reason the message isn’t all that evil that it warrants much discussion.

        1. hpierce

          Well, BP, if one accepts her account is true, there is a true (cowardly) jerk running around.  If I was one of her students who wanted to make a point, I’d have handed it to her in person, walked out the door and dropped the class.  In ’73, had a TA go on a rant in my sociology class she was teaching, I politely raised my hand, refuted her in no uncertain terms, picked up my backpack, walked out, and dropped the class.

      2. Tia Will

        hpierce

        Why would anyone doubt that the experience that she had was real ?
        By the standard that you are creating with that statement, why should we believe what any one says. Or are we only to believe those whose statements are in alignment with our own beliefs ?

        “I politely raised my hand, refuted her in no uncertain terms, picked up my backpack, walked out, and dropped the class.”
        Why drop the class? This assumes that she would retaliate because you held a different opinion. I once refuted an assertion made by a religious studies instructor who happened to be Catholic. I got an A in the class. Prejudgements about the actions of others are frequently wrong.

        1. hpierce

          I’m not creating any “statement” (although you seem to be accusing me of “denying” her claim).  All I said was we have nothing to go on but her account.  I’ll flip it on you… if someone calls someone guilty of a crime, should the ‘perp’ be arrested and charged based only on that one account?  Yeah, I know this isn’t a criminal matter.  I have no reason to doubt her account… I also have no reason to believe it (and have said as much).  If her account said that a janitor found the note, after hours, in her office, I might feel differently.  Please note I have not used any words that could possibly be considered as an attack on anyone (except maybe now).  Have relatives in Missouri… the “show me” state.  I have no “beliefs” in this matter, and your implication that I do is a “cheap shot”, in my opinion.  I don’t see enough info to form a belief, and have said why.

          Maybe, on this thread, you have me confused with another poster.  I’ll give you the benefit of the doubt on that.  Although you seem unwilling to extend that to me, perhaps because my “… statements are NOT in alignment with Your own beliefs…”

          Re-read your other recent post to Frankly, Tia… are you not doing the same to me that you accuse Frankly of?

        2. hpierce

          Tia, I was so bugged by your first paragraph, I didn’t read the second… I’ll elaborate and let you judge…

          The TA attacked the medical system, claiming it was devoid of respect for “people” (particularly women), because she had a sprained ankle, from playing softball.  When she was in the ER, she repeatedly asked for priority to attend to her.  When her time came, the nurse on duty asked the tech if he was “ready for the ankle”.  The TA corrected her (now, this is the TA’s account), saying “no, that’s the PERSON with the ankle”.  The nurse then asked the tech if he was ready for the woman with the ankle.  The TA got angry (her account) and demanded the nurse refer to the PERSON with the ankle.

          A few months earlier, I had a fractured ankle and spent 3 hours awaiting evaluation and treatment.  It hurt like hell.  While I was waiting, 3 “red-blanket” cases came thru the ER, and the couple I was sitting next to a couple, and a doctor came over and although I was not TRYING to overhear, I did.  He was telling the parents that their 5 – year had maybe an hour or two to live, and they should come in.  At this point my ankle wasn’t hurting so much, at least in relative terms.  I’m one of those ignorant religious types, so I started to pray for the child, the parents, the doctor, and everyone involved in the child’s care.

          Once I explained my experience, and my deep-held opinion that ER staff HAVE to be “clinical”, or go stark raving mad if they fully ‘bleed’ for everyone who comes in the door, day after day, the TA started to go on again that my experience was irrelevant, and she was “demeaned” by HER experience.  At that point, I knew there was nothing of value I could learn from her, and I wasn’t paying tuition to teach her.

          Go ahead and judge me.  I do not care.

  13. Alan Miller

    What I gleaned from her account and all the frustration she was experiencing with  non-responsive higher-ups was that her supervisors knew they were dealing with a pain-in-the-ass employee who couldn’t be fired, and they were giving her just enough to be sort-of responsive to show they were sort-of doing something, but not enough they had to do anything, which frustrated her but she didn’t get it that her hyper-sensitive, seeing-threats-in-everything attitude was the problem.  I felt sorry for her supervisors more than anything else.

    Threats don’t usually include the phrase “hugs”.

    Then again, I thought “Grout out the jews” was hilarious (I love reading grout jokes), and I busted out laughing when I read what the horrific “second act” of anti-Semitism was.  Fellow Jews who found that offensive I do believe are too tightly wound.

    Swastika painted on one’s domicile, or N—– spray painted on one’s garage door?  Yeah, that’s a threat.

    Ponder a moment how such ultra-sensitive types would fare in times/places of real violence.

    1. Frankly

      Thank you AM.

      Your last sentence hits the nail, IMO.  We don’t do anyone any good accepting their hypersensitive behavior.  Their expectations to be protected from any and every bad feeling eventually leads them to go too far.

      And when you add hypersensitivity to high attention needs… well that is a very toxic combination.

  14. tribeUSA

    I do not understand how the message under the door was perceived as a threat, or an insult. Could someone please fill in the blanks for me? The hidden subtext that at least exists in the minds of some, and is projected onto the mind of the message-writer? Looks more like a light-hearted spoof to me (I am ready to stand corrected if actual threats follow up from this note). Or perhaps she is suffering from a guilty conscience from stereotyping whites as oppressors and privileged among other things, as her daily profession? She should tell that to the next homeless white person she sees, the numerous poor white people in every town in the USA who bust their ass just as hard as many Chicanos do for near minimum wage jobs, and no affirmative action or other racial-based helping hand.

    I was scared, offended, and understood the message as a personal attack aimed at me as a woman of color faculty, and also the Ethnic Studies cultural programming.”

    Note the phrase “cultural programming”–sometimes the truth slips thru, if only accidentally. This professor seems -phobic, and should perhaps consider counseling and a profession that does not involve promoting racial division. Sad that a message of hugging a white person could provoke such fear. (ironically many racist whites of 50-60 years ago would have felt the same fear on getting such a message from a black person).

  15. Biddlin

    And so once again, the good readers of the Vanguard show their complete inability to compassionately listen to a neighbour’s narrative  without (insisting upon) applying their own prejudiced interpretations, self-serving anecdotes and intentionally obtuse evasions. Frankly, what one has come to expect.

    ;>)/

    1. Barack Palin

      And so once again some of the good readers of the Vanguard have fallen for yet another ginned up racism story where there is basically nothing there.

  16. Tia Will

    hpierce

    Go ahead and judge me.  I do not care.”

    From the length and strength of your posts, I doubt that you “do not care”.

    However, the bigger issue for me if that you seem to feel that you are being judged. I do not know you at all. How could I possibly judge “you”? All I can go by are the words that you submit on this post. One of the major goals of the Vanguard from my perspective is to have conversations, which will presumably involve sharing different points of view. I think that this would rapidly become a very boring exercise if we all saw issues the same way. My comments are not a judgement of you as a person, but rather my opinion ( or sometimes just questions) about opinions you have expressed. I believe that we are probably all far more than what we choose to express here in our posts, but that is not available for others to see, let alone judge.

     

    1. hpierce

      My point was, on this thread, I had NOT expressed ANY opinion on the merits of the claim by Ms Morales.  I basically was saying not enough facts “in evidence”.  I offered an alternative theory.  You imputed opinions to me, and, stupidly, I reacted.  I have even said that if the account is true, there is a serious (and cowardly) jerk out there. Whatever.

  17. Tia Will

    Alan and TribeUSA

    Threats don’t usually include the phrase “hugs”.

    Could someone please fill in the blanks for me? ” 

    Ok, I will try to fill in the blanks from a different perspective. A threat, to cause anxiety to an individual does not have to be specific or immediate. I will give a recent work example that actually happened to me. I had an unsatisfied patient who made a number of complaints about me and threatened “getting me fired” or “having my license taken away”. Ok, unpleasant, but no big deal since we are frequently subject to these comments when we don’t provide precisely what the patient wants ( usually narcotics). But then, I received an email from her apologizing for threatening to do something to my car and declaring that she would never hurt me or my car. Now, I had never received any threat to my car, from her, or anyone else. But now, she definitely has my attention, because just exactly what was she thinking to do to my car ? Graffiti it ? Key it ? Mess with the brakes ? She doesn’t say. So I don’t know if this was a real threat, something entirely in her head, or if I was “over reacting”. I simply had no way to know and I did not find her disclaimers reassuring. Neither did top administration or security who acted promptly by escorting me in and out of the building,doing several checks on me during the day,  having me rotate the location where I parked my car until a cease and desist order was in place and arrangements had been made for her to get all of her care at a different facility. What they did not do was to ask me what action would make me “feel safe”, they acted to ensure my safety.

    I understand that many would not feel threatened by a single note slipped under their door. However, the point here is not how any of us would feel. The point is how she felt. And from her post, it seems that she cared enough to look this up on the internet. What I found under the same logo with just a very superficial search was White Pride World Wide which features such “non racist” blogs as one citing the “scientific and true” evidence for the genetic inferiority of blacks, another featured a diatribe about how Jews are very close to establishing world hegemony and perhaps my favorite, a post about travel to an upcoming commemoration of the death of Adolf Hitler (in which the author appeared to lament the inability to put up swastikas which are apparently illegal in Germany) and a separate section listing multiple events and how to get involved.  Now I don’t know if this is the site she found, but I know that if I had come across this site under the same banner as on the note under my door, I would now be seriously wondering if this was just a nasty prank, or if there were something more involved. Just the fact that this would make me feel uneasy, even if not fearful, is not something that one should have to be dealing with at their work place and is something that their superiors should not be either taking lightly, or asking her what she would like done. In my mind it is the job of these various other departments on campus to ensure the safety of their employees and students and that processes to deal with immediate or implied threats should be in place.

     

     

    1. tribeUSA

      Yikes, it hadn’t occurred to me that physicians had to deal with such veiled threats from those who want certain prescriptions (?oxycontin and other codeines, amphetamines, etc?) In your case, I would say that this patient was ‘messing with you’; saying just enough to you that would not get her in possible legal trouble, but perhaps trying to intimidate you a bit (and I don’t blame you for asking for security; there is such a thing as desperate drug-crazed fiends!)

      My wording was a bit harsh in my post yesterday (didn’t know that ‘white privilege’ is now part of the cirriculum at universities; this got my blood boiling); who knows the circumstances, if she feels it was a threat maybe its good to go with the gut feelings and be careful, just in case there is a more clearly hostile follow-up. I enjoy using the word phobic about extreme progressive views when I can; since the extreme progressives regularly employ that suffix about those with old-fashioned conservative views (e.g. calling marriage traditionalists homophobic); in an  immediate transparent attempt to marginalize those who hold such views as paranoid, to delegitimize any opposing viewpoint as unreasonable and consign those holding such views to therapy or re-education–a nasty tactic and nasty perversion of the english language, which I like to throw back in their face for the farce that it is!

  18. Biddlin

    ” The point is how she felt.”

    Precisely and the fact that her employers did not care enough about her safety or concerns to respond appropriately. I’m glad yours did.

    ;>)/

    1. hpierce

      “…applying their own prejudiced interpretations, self-serving anecdotes…” , and then your response to another poster…

      “Precisely and the fact that her employers did not care enough about her safety or concerns to respond appropriately. I’m glad yours did.’

      Got it.

  19. Biddlin

    But the only doubt is in your mind. If a white instructor had reported a perceived threat, would you subject the report to your litmus test or take it at face value?

    ;>)/

    1. hpierce

      Litmus test… no question. And if it was a white instructor, would probably be MORE critical of the evidence. That would be so rare, I’d be more skeptical.

      I’d ask questions (not dismiss out of hand), consider what I knew of the ‘reporter’, but a single, relatively innocuous event, with no corroboration? Probably wouldn’t get real excited.

      Are you truly of the opinion that I am the only person who has read the article who isn’t CONVINCED that the narrative is true?  That’s a scary thought.  I say three times (Alan might get that)… I am not saying Ms Moreno fabricated her narrative, but her narrative has some inconsistencies, and I’m not given enough information to form a “belief”.  I pretty much have asked questions, posited an alternative explanation, except where I stupidly responded to provocations.  [As I am now]

      I guess it’s like Christian/Moslem/other “fundamentalists”… if you don’t believe what they do, you are a compassionless ‘infidel’ (my apologies to any that last term offends, but please consider the context).

       

       

  20. Tia Will

    hpierce

    “not counting my tantrum at Tia’s challenge”

    I am trained as a surgeon. My partner frequently points out to me that I phrase inquires as what he perceives as challenges or me being “argumentative”. In medical school and certainly in residency, challenging, arguing and defending your points are considered as positives. We are encouraged to voice our opinions about the appropriateness of a given course of action because choosing the wrong course can have very serious if not lethal consequences. My partner is a psychologist, a field in which a much less direct approach is frequently preferred. We sometimes have significant differences of opinions with him believing that my world view is “too black and white” and me believing that his view is so indirect and non comital as to border on disingenuous.

    I truly do not mean to offend with my posts, which I will reiterate may be intended as criticism of an idea expressed, but never at you as a person.

     

  21. Biddlin

    “What bias?”

    I am not saying Ms Moreno fabricated her narrative,”

    ” but at least in the top ten “hits”, did not find even one that would fit the definition of,  “I found it displayed on a White nationalist supremacist webpage.”  Still have more than a whiff of why I am skeptical about the account provided.  My recommendation, David, is “dig, David, dig”.  Am sensing iron pyrite.

    You really need to “drill down” to find anything racist… Council of Conservative Citizens didn’t appear to be overtly “white supremicist”, and I am so skeptical of the account, I only “drilled down” on the top 4 sites.  Whatever.

    We have no idea what the intended message was/is.  For all we know Ms Moreno clipped the art from the internet, printed it and then claimed someone slipped it under the door of her office.  I see nothing in the account that proves or disproves her version of what ‘happened’

    Pardonnez-moi.  Hard to feel compassion if it is legitimately questionable whether an event occurred.”

    Merde d’ boeuf, You’ve done nothing but impugn her veracity.

    ;>)/

     

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