They had the website monique robert uh and scott. They literally dropped this story uh on august 21st. He says hbcus identity, crisis and if you scroll this story uh, they lay out um hbcus what they call the big picture. And then they quote a a professor at howard university, where it says most black students choose hbcus, because they feel a sense of kinship with the colleges, culture and community. And then they quote him by saying that its also, why theres a sense that non black students are invaders. They then go on in this story to talk about the history of hbcus whats happening today, uh and then uh on how enrollment at hbcus is increasing with non black students in 2018, non black students were 24 of enrollment at hpcus, compared with 15 in 1976 uh, Then they use this, which i think is just stupid. They go as hbcu sought out more non black students. A handful such as west virginia state, university and bluefield state college became predominantly white leading to racial tensions, and so they quote a graduate of west virginia state university uh. This guy and talks about this tension and then uh and then goes on to say, uh. You know blah blah blah, okay, some other stuff, okay, heres, my problem with this article, how stupid it is – and i literally tweeted the two authors of this article as well as jim vanderhey, who is the uh co founder of axios.
This article is stupid because they use as the example of hpcus have an identity crisis. Two hbcus located in the state of west virginia monique, robert scott, the black population of west virginia, is 3.6, not 36, not 30.6, 3.6. Okay. They make no note in this article about the explosion of attendance at hbcus over the last decade. They make no mention that um. These two universities have been predominantly majority white over the last 20 plus years. Okay. So, to give this impression that there all these this tension, thats going on at hbcus having a identity crisis, is absolute and i literally said how is it that yall didnt quote nobody from nafio no leslie baskerville, nobody from thurgood marshall, nobody from the uncf but yall Decide to quote a graduate of a hbcu which is called a historically black college university out of west virginia, where the black population is three point: six percent. This is where im like. Maybe your problem is axios and jim vanderheim yall aint got no black uh editors. Maybe your problem is you aint, gon na know black staffers, who would have seen the story and say hi: identity, crisis uh? No! This is absolutely idiotic, monique and horrible journalism. It is right. I i i yield to scott for 300. robert. I call on him this aint congress well uh a couple points Laughter, one on the uh kind of circling that to the female drum major story. They want to give a shout out to latoya the showstopper lee, who was our drum major at clark, laney university back in 2002, when female.
I think that what were seeing in the popular press, particularly right wing press, theres, an effort to slander hbcus as weve seen more and more funding going to them more and more uh publicity. We see we saw what chris paul did in the bubble to promote. Hbcus were seeing uh more swag and media teams playing uh major universities were seeing more money going towards hbcus in general. They were trying to do everything to howard. Well, you know its clark atlantas there. So if they cant get in the clark, theres always howard heres the deal historical black colleges are doing better than ever. Financially. The the last covet relief act, relieved all of their debt through uncf and three and gear, and the in the federal guarantees right. Private billionaires and multi million and millionaires are giving more to historical black colleges because of the because of the racial equity uh plans. Out here, uh we are experiencing a boom and as a double hbcu graduate morehouse and howard. My only response to that that article is we good right, but remember one thing: we have never excluded any person of any other color, which is why were hysterical, historical black colleges, weve, never excluded anybody morehouse 10 years ago had a white valedictorian, and so that article Is rooted in ignorance and as someone who sits on the border, my alma mater as secretary, i know the facts and the statistics well, and so they could have interviewed me.
They could have interviewed you, they could interview dr david thomas or the president of h of uh of howard university, but they didnt, so they werent looking for truth. They were looking for a story to back into it. I just have a problem. You writing a story. Saying go back to it h, b c us identity crisis, as b and written by shauna, chin and maurice marissa fernandez, and i literally tagged both of them in my tweets to to jim vanderhei saying right. This is a story and i got right. I got a problem with the story, but roland the identity crisis in their minds is they view, which is why i keep saying howard howard, but the same is true of morehouse because they got my brother, robert smith, money and – and just you know, let me go Back to spelman and and some cosby money um, let me just talk about it and understand that when we dont struggle, they think we dont have an identity like us. Struggling to get an education is part of the identity, and it is not. You cant steal. My culture from me as a howard, grad uh, just because people who are of other hues come through theyve always been coming through and they get an education and they experience more blackety black blackness than theyve ever experienced while they get their wonderful education. So, just because people with millions and billions are more and more supporting what what the three of us on this panel have been blessed to experience, doesnt mean that we dont have an identity.
We have our same identity, we are just ratified and for all of us hold up, they mentioned the donations. This is the lead of the article historically black colleges. Universities are seeing a new wave of substantial donations and interest from big name talent, but the attention has also highlighted questions of cultural identity. No, let me say no, no! No! No! No! Let me say this right here, axios. You have decided to all of a sudden realize that hbcus exist exactly you have decided that not all of a sudden, big name talent lets be real. Clear lets be real clear here. I want to be real, clear, axios, nicole hannah jones, going to howard as well as um. Why is escaping me uh tonight they aint the first big name folk to go to hbcus, see all of us see. Let me just go ahead and break this down. All of a sudden white people and other non black people are going – oh my god, oh my god, nicole hannah jones and tony. He see coach theyre going to educate hbcu. Oh my god, whats going on to teach when there have been a number of big name. People see the problem is its big name, people that white people know see thats what so the real issue is not hbcus have an identity crisis. The problem is, axios has a black identity crisis because you now have discovered hbcus so because now im not done so because mckenzie has taken her divorce money from jeff bezos and has given millions to hbcus.
Yall have discovered that hbcus exists, and so all of a sudden you want to write a little cute story about. Oh, my goodness, identity crisis because yall looked up and went whoo. There are two hbcu that are predominantly white. Let me help you all out. There are actually three theres blue field: theres west virginia state university, theres, also lincoln university in missouri. Those three are predominantly white. Now, if yall want to, you can go to harrah stowe, its also in st louis, to find hbcu if yall also had any depth whatsoever. Axios shauna shauna chen marissa fernandez. What yall would have done because see ive done it because ive actually covered this for years. You would have realized that west virginia state, university and bluefield state college have gone to great pains in order to ensure their students. Dont forget their hpcu legacy. What you may have also realized is that bluefield state college created scholarships to attract black students uh who, in the area of a theology, to come to that christian university. Because of that history im sorry, how do i know that? Its probably because ive actually talked to the president of bluefield state college, who has worked in partnership with my pastor, ralph douglas west out of houston texas. The church without walls see thats what happens when yall talk to black people, who have an understanding of hbcus. So message to all mainstream white media if yall gon na all of a sudden discover hbcus do the damn research before you write, ignorant ass headlines, saying there is an identity crisis at hbcus.
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