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Monday, May 18, 2015


Background:  Boston University Professor Saida Grundy has apologized for tweets with racial content. One in particular implied,  White America shouldn't be reluctant to see "white college males as a problem population."

A lot of people have taken to defending Saida. But I can't do it. She put herself, her colleagues, and a sizable chunk of the socially conscious on the spot. 

Think about it: How many individual tweets have we  cheered sans any context at all?

Probably dozens.

Think about this too: How many individual tweets have burned Kanye West alone?

Probably dozens.

So how could a student deciding to take individual tweets and repost them "out of context" be a surprise to Professor Saida Grundy? And this happened on a predominantly white campus like Boston University that is whiter than most, too? I ask you: How could this have been a surprise to an intelligent woman?  Wasn't Skip Gates arrested for suspicion of breaking into his own home just down the road?

I considered that tweet on white males on college campuses being the problem as poorly thought out. I could make up a 12 different contexts that fit that single tweet. And,  I originally assumed a word was left out, that she meant white, male, college "aged" men tend to be this nation's mass shooters.

Problem is people like me weren't the only ones making assumptions about what was meant.Problem is that the average know-nothing who doesn't believe

(1) race is real,
(2) racism is real and a daily occurrence
(3) that everybody has a race and a racial perspective
(4) and that everyone responds to the racial-other in ways they don't recognize

...made assumptions too (see link below)

Race is more nuanced and requires more space to EVEN talk on a single point. She appears to know this as she said in her apology: 
"I deprived [these subjects] of the nuance and complexity that such subjects always deserve."

However running away from using social media, as others have suggested, is not the answer.  Social Media is a powerful tool for communicating to a wide audience. People just has to use social media properly, and use the correct medium for the correct thing.

 A comedian like Chris Rock can use Twitter because his living is made on short blurbs. Each statement tends to speak for itself. Each statement appear to make the right people mad about the right thing. Each statement is self-contained. They don't need a context other than society in the United States. That is, Chris Rock hasn't been silly enough to use Twitter like instant messenger. 

You can take things out of context anywhere. But Twitter is hardest place to make the *out of context argument* and have people believe you. Twitter is constructed in such a way that the single tweet appears to be the intent.

Spilt Milk. She has a new choice before her at this time: Go bold or go home.

I hope she chooses the latter. I hope she chooses to capitalize on this mistake and uses her infamy to expand on the points she made about "pioneers" and "white male patriarchy" in particular.

Click Here to See the I-am-white-pure-racelss-and-racism-freeInterpretation of Saida's comments