Black scholars are not ‘rare creatures’

Black scholars are not ‘rare creatures’
G. Gabrielle Starr (Image: Pomona College)

[Ed. – Then why the constant complaints about under-representation?]

In late November, the president of Purdue University, Mitch Daniels, told students that he will soon “be recruiting one of the rarest creatures in America — a leading, I mean a really leading, African-American scholar.”

“Creatures?” a student asked. “Come on.”

“It’s a figure of speech. You must have taken some literature,” Mr. Daniels said. “One of the rarest, let me say, rarest birds, rarest, rarest, rarest phenomena.”

Trending: In Trump’s campaign to save the Republic, we haven’t seen the key supporting effort yet

In just a few sentences, Mr. Daniels seemed to question the possibility of sustained black excellence. In response to the uproar that swiftly followed, he complained that he had “never felt so misunderstood” and that he had simply used a “figure of speech.” On Wednesday, he apologized and retracted the statement.

When I learned about Mr. Daniels’s words from another African-American scholar on my own campus, I felt indignant but also constrained.

Continue reading →

Comments

For your convenience, you may leave commments below using Disqus. If Disqus is not appearing for you, please disable AdBlock to leave a comment.