UC Berkeley, the university that practically invented student protest as a form of recreation, is the site of one of the dumber recent spasms of outrage from the racial front lines.
The Black Student Union says black students have been feeling mighty unwelcome on the ultraliberal Berkeley campus, so what better way to make them all feel better than to name a building after someone who is one of them, who represents their experience?
Someone like, oh I dunno, a hardened communist criminal?
BSU representative Cori McGowens explained, “Black students on campus have a feeling of isolation, marginalization. We’re at a crisis on campus.”
Another black student, Blake Simons, told Fox News, “I came to Berkeley and I thought that it was a progressive liberal environment, but the N-word was written on the dorm wall and my white professors were openly using the N-word. So that’s part of my experience here is feeling marginalized.”
(Why people continue to think that liberal equals “inclusive,” despite all evidence to the contrary, is beyond me. Nonetheless, moving on.)
So, the honoree the group has chosen to represent blacks’ experience at the premier liberal university on the West Coast?
Meet Assata Shakur, convicted cop killer, former Black Panther, first woman on the FBI’s Most Wanted List, proud resident of communist Cuba.
Shakur was convicted of killing a New Jersey state trooper in 1979. She escaped prison and fled to Cuba. She claims her trial was rigged and has called it a legal lynching by a white jury.
Obviously your typical black Berkeley student in so many ways, Shakur is an “icon of resistance within oppressed communities (who) represents black resilience in the face of state-sanctioned violence,” according to the BSU.
So a real “hands up, don’t shoot” kind of gal.
The demand to rename Barrows Hall (named after a former chancellor) to Shakur Hall was included in a list of 10 demands the BSU wants from the university. Among the other demands are for spending money to hire more black campus officials because only the black ones “get it.”
The BSU is right that other people don’t get it; they also don’t want it.
I like to think that if my child went to an overpriced university that his teachers could serve up some better role models.
At the very least, I would expect to get back a child who could see the contradiction in attending a very high-priced university in order to obtain an equally high-priced career, and choosing as a “hero” someone who attacked the very system that made all of that possible.