Chapel Hill, North Carolina
I’m going to deep dive the Collective Response to Anti-Blackness.
In 1968 the Black Student Movement issued 23 demands to the University. Almost 50 years have passed, but if you look at the demands you realize we are still dealing with exactly the same issues: little has changed.
Except that 1968’s student mob whiners have become 2015’s college administrators.
You include Black and Brown bodies in the institution, and mark them with the words “diversity,” “inclusion,” and “multiculturalism.”
Ta Coates awaits his royalty check.
You throw us on brochures and tout us in statistics.
Or in some cases, photoshop them into magazines. Incidentally, here’s what became of the man who was photoshopped in.
Our aspirations are untainted: free tuition via a University open to all, abolition of the police and prisons, free and collectivized housing and food, and more.
From each according to his white cisheteropatiarchy, to each according to his whining.
Critically, this is a living document that will be modified and added to, evolving over time.
Because they’ll always be able to think of new gibs. It’s a perpetual motion machine. It’s a hustle in permanence.
(1) We DEMAND that the University incorporate mandatory programming for all University constituents (students, faculty, staff, administrators, deans, chairs, etc.) that teaches the historical racial violence of this University and town as well as a historical and contemporary look at the ways in which racial capitalism, settler colonialism, and cisheteropatriarchy structure our world. This will come from an ungraded course created and facilitated by a coalition of students as part of a broader task force of workers, students and staff.
It’s good to see that they’re altruistic and considerate of other people’s oppression, black students concerned about cisheteropatriarchy. It’s also good to see that they don’t want this course to come with letter grades, though since it seems to me that they would want it, because they know they’d get easy As.
(2) We DEMAND equitable funding allocated to the Department of African, African American, and Diaspora Studies and the Department of Women and Gender Studies at UNC-Chapel Hill. They perform a critical role at our University, creating spaces to engage in discussions and work against violent structures of privilege and oppression. In the wake of the Wainstein Report, Black Studies was scapegoated and pathologized on this campus — this was not only unacceptable, but something that was not addressed by the University at large.
I looked it up, and the Wainstein Report was a postmortem on the infamous sports cheating scandal. But who can remember that anymore for all the attention we’re paying to KKK cotton ball powered campus terrorism?
(3) We DEMAND that standardized tests such as the SAT, SAT II, and ACT no longer be considered during admissions process, as high scores on these tests correlate most closely with higher household income, disproportionately benefiting wealthier, white students.
Though later on, they demand that UNC becomes open admission for pretty much everyone on Earth, so this demand seems superfluous. They complained earlier in this document about black and brown bodies being used as diversity tokens. But that’s just what the elimination of standardized testing requirements for college applicants does. It’s a scam that school admissions committees use to get an admitted Freshman class that is both diverse and has a high SAT/ACT average.
(4) We DEMAND the University publish data on the homepage of the UNC website on the graduation rates of Black, Indigenous, and Latina/o students at UNC that account for students who drop out or transfer, disaggregating data for race, gender, and class. Currently this information is well-hidden by the administration and we believe residents of North Carolina, especially students, deserve to see this data in order to hold this institution accountable to its mandate to educate the residents of North Carolina.
Shhh, don’t tell the anthropology department, because they still say that race doesn’t exit.
(6) We DEMAND that the University follow-up with all students who have decided to withdraw from the University or transfer and determine why they left and publish this data. For instance, we find that Black and Indigenous men who leave are often academically eligible, meaning the issue is more nuanced and has structural determinants that are not being considered.
Uh, they’re free adults, and UNC is not a prison? At least it isn’t yet; by the time you people are done with it, it will become a mental institution without barbed wire.
(7) We DEMAND the immediate firing of Margaret Spellings. And any future President of the UNC system must be decided collectively by students, staff, faculty, workers, and those living in North Carolina who are marginalized by the University space. Margaret Spelling was chosen behind closed doors. The secretive firing of Tom Ross was done with the purpose of instituting someone invested in the corporatization of the University system. She has shown herself to be homophobic, describing LGBTQIA+ people’s lives as “those lifestyles.” She was one of the architects of the No Child Left Behind Act as Secretary of Education under George W. Bush, and thus was responsible for pushing standardized testing that has cemented institutionally racist practices into schools across the country.
They want Spellings fired because she used a pronoun, and because she was on the same side of a piece of legislation as Ted Kennedy.
I get the sneaking feeling that a whole lot of UNC faculty want Spellings gone for some reason relating to subterranean campus politics, and they’re weaponizing the campus’s black kooks to make it happen. Sound familiar?
(11) We DEMAND that University cafeterias, gym memberships, libraries, and class registration be free to all residents of North Carolina regardless of admittance into the institution.
Why limit it to North Carolina? What’s with this “North Carolina” exclusionary bullshit?
(12) We DEMAND increased funding for historically Black colleges and universities (HBCUs). Throughout North Carolina, the majority of HBCUs have experienced decreased enrollment over the past few years as a result of precarious state and federal support.
Why? You just said you want everyone to get into UNC. If everyone can get into UNC because they have a pulse, why would they bother with HBCUs?
(13) We DEMAND that the UNC Management Company and the Board of Trustees should begin researching and carrying out an immediate divestment from: Private jails, prisons, and detention centers, Israeli Apartheid, Coal
Uh oh, you just screwed your pooch royally with that one. You’ve just lost Bill Kristol and Dianne Feinstein. That said, I suppose now would not be a good time to invest in the construction of coal-powered electricity for Israeli prisons.
(16) We DEMAND the University stop contracting with Aramark and all other corporate entities. Aramark is a corporation deeply invested in the expansion of the prison industrial complex (PIC) and hence the massively growing prison economy, which is targeted at criminalizing and caging working class Black people.
Caging black people? From this gang of cultists, that, given half a chance, will ANC necklace any black people that don’t display sufficient militancy?
(18) We DEMAND that the University evaluate all companies it is currently licensing with, and make decisions to cut contracting with corporations proven to have deeply exploitative and abusive track records toward workers. Given that, we DEMAND UNC cut its current licensing with: VF Corporation Signing the Accord on Fire and Building Safety in Bangladesh is insufficient, because VF Corporation, which makes UNC apparel, has moved their sites of production outside of Bangladesh, effectively nullifying the Accord. Nike The University signed a near $40 million 10-year contract with the corporation in 2009. Follow the lead of the University of Wisconsin, which cut ties amid labor concerns.
That’s actually a good point. Why is an American university outsourcing its internal fire and building safety measures to a company in Bangladesh? The broken clock just happens to be right at this time of day. As far as Nike, remember, they pay lots of money to lots of black afawetez, they make the Air Jordans that so many bellcurvers murder each other over.
(19) We DEMAND that the University’s Counseling and Psychiatric Services (CAPS) be directed by a taskforce of our choosing which would oversee the hiring of mental health care providers, with a strong mandate to aggressively recruit and hire mental health professionals of marginalized backgrounds, especially people of color. We DEMAND that all hiring of therapists should make the utmost priority to hire people of color with a strong structural analysis of mental health and anti-oppression. Students should be able to attend counseling sessions that do not reinforce and antagonize them based on oppression that is already forcing them into the counseling session in the first place.
Another good point; these people make such wild and contradictory and incoherent demands that they do need professional mental help.
(21) We DEMAND Gender Non-Specific housing and bathrooms across UNC’s campus.
Don’t drop the soap.
(22) We DEMAND that the University take responsibility in stopping and reversing the ongoing displacement of working class Black people out of Chapel Hill and Carrboro and demonstrate this through investment in collectively-owned housing projects.
I take this to mean that black ghettos near the UNC campus are currently experiencing white liberal gentrification. This is another good point — The left’s Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing (21st Century Negro Removal) train and the left’s making blacks the heart and soul of their coalition train are two trains on the same track going in opposite directions and directly at each other at very high rates of speed. Like I have been saying in this space, at some point pretty soon, the improbability of the left’s string bean coalition of everyone-but-regular-Americans is going to blow up in their faces, and this is one of many examples of the first big rip in the fiber. I think the DNC next summer in Philadelphia will be one for the ages, think Chicago 1968.
(23) We DEMAND that the University decriminalize sleeping on campus or being on campus after midnight for non-students. We know these policies are primarily meant to police poor, Black, and Brown bodies on supposedly “public” space.
Actually, these policies are designed to keep violent drunks, druggies, bums, thugs and violent felons away from all you precious microaggrieved snowflakes. But I forget, you want open admission.
(24) We DEMAND a task force of students and workers of our choosing be immediately instituted in order to create a timeline and action plan to address the University’s relation to policing and penal institutions.
No more cops, no more hoosegows, no more criminal law. Just utopia.
(25) We DEMAND that cameras surveilling students, workers, and white supremacist monuments on campus be deactivated and removed.
But don’t you want those cameras to make sure all those evil white supremacists don’t put nooses around statues or say something transphobic?
(27) We DEMAND an end to the list of people banned from the University campus, who we are certain are disproportionately poor and homeless people of color.
Actually, they’re probably mostly those evil white supremacists who are also transphobic.
(28) We DEMAND that UNC not privatize its police force and/or contract with other security or surveillance firms now or in the future. Still, a public police is no better, if not worse. Policing as an institution must be abolished, and must be replaced with restorative and transformative justice practices, rather than functioning as a mouth into our penal system.
“Mouth into our penal system.” My reaction?
A whole of this document is either superfluous or makes absolutely no sense considering their obvious and open demand for no law enforcement.
(34) We DEMAND that Carolina Hall, a whitewashing of Saunders Hall, be renamed Hurston Hall. A plaque on the exterior of the building should make clear that William Saunders was a chief architect of white supremacy in North Carolina as a Grand Dragon of the Ku Klux Klan.
And also one of the state’s most respected historians. Then again, history doesn’t much matter to people who think that it began on the day were born in the mid-1990s.
Ironically, Saunders Hall was already renamed Carolina Hall, but that’s not enough for this mob.
(38) We DEMAND in-state tuition and full financial aid for all residents of North Carolina, regardless of immigration status.
But in the one before this, they call for no tuition or fees for anyone. Especially not for homeless drunks.
(41) We DEMAND a University and hospital-wide minimum wage of at least $25.00/hour…
Here’s an honest question for you authors of this document or even to anyone who agrees with most or all of these demands: Who is going to enforce this minimum wage? Or, to ask it another way, if you discover that someone in the $25 min-wage era is only paying $24.99 an hour, how are you going to make them abide by the min-wage? Call the cops? Forget about that, you just eliminated the cops. Put the min-wage scofflaws in prison? No can do, because you also got rid of all prisons. Many of your demands are predicated on some authority taking some action, yet you’ve eliminated the means for them to do that. For instance, you want Silent Sam gone, but with no campus cops and no real cops in your pretend utopian world, who is going to do the removing? And, should a mob of Ku Klux Klansmen invade campus to defend Silent Sam, (remember, you don’t want anyone to be banned from campus, and as we all know, the KKK ubiquitously surrounds every major public college campus), who is going to be able to force them to disperse? Remember, no cops allowed.
(42) We DEMAND that all administrators be compensated at the same rate as workers. UNC-Chapel Hill Chancellor Carol Folt currently receives a base salary of $570,000. Her pay is symptomatic of the way universities have a bloated administrative system with numerous over-paid workers in executive positions.
Would I be wasting my keystrokes to remind you the purpose of college and university administrative bloat? IT’S TO HIRE USELESS FUCKWADS LIKE YOU!!!!!!
(43) We DEMAND that all workers at the UNC system & UNC Hospitals have the right to unionize and collectively bargain.
Collective bargaining provisions are essentially civil rights laws which require public enforcement in lieu of relevant parties not abiding by those rights. If the school and its hospital won’t abide by collective bargaining, both the process and the product, who do you expect to force them to get back in bounds? Remember, no cops.
(45) We DEMAND that the University and UNC Hospitals stop employment discrimination against formerly incarcerated people. Numerous scholars and activists have pointed out how the U.S. criminal punishment system has racism ingrained in its roots, as it has been tasked with the duty of criminalizing and caging primarily working class Black people.
Those convicted of burglary should be given jobs as dorm janitors. Make sure you leave your rooms unlocked.
(46) We DEMAND that free childcare and afterschool care is provided to all staff, students, and faculty at UNC and UNC-Hospitals. We DEMAND transportation from Chapel Hill-Carrboro City Schools to afterschool programs at UNC. We DEMAND that the University and hospital actively advocate for all staff, students, and faculty be eligible to enroll their children in Chapel Hill-Carrboro City Schools.
This is a hard one to figure without research, and I’m not in the mood to get the entire back story just to be able to have an accurate read on one point of a fifty point crackpot manifesto. But I do know that, in Tuscaloosa, Alabama, and the University of Alabama, the professors exerted political pressure to make sure that their own residential areas were zoned in terms of Tuscaloosa City Public Schools in such a way that their own kids could avoid the worst of Tuscaloosa’s ghetto black undertow. I suspect that is sort of what’s going on in Chapel Hill, that all the good liberal egalitarian professors don’t want their kids going to school with ghetto dindus, and this black extortion-mob is noticing their hypocrisy.
(47) We DEMAND that student-athletes are recognized as University employees, paid a base salary $25.00/hour with benefits, and, further, compensated in accordance with the level of revenue that they bring to the University. We recognize that men’s basketball and football, via the exploitation of Black men, are central to the athletics industrial complex (AIC) that runs the University. Hence, we DEMAND a complete dismantling of the AIC in the long term — education should not be a mode of racist, capitalist accumulation.
That’s actually a clever angle that we need to latch on to, in order to get white men to kick their addiction to black athletes.
I would write here that but for football and men’s basketball, most of the black men on those teams wouldn’t be qualified to look at UNC much less be admitted to it. Remember, though, there will be open admission for the whole world. So that won’t matter anymore.
“Student-athletes compensated in accordance with the level of revenue that they bring to the university.” Yeah, because women’s water polo is a big revenue sport.
(48) We DEMAND that sexual violence and all forms of racist, gendered violence should be seriously addressed in employment practices on this campus, particularly against women of color in the Housekeeping Department.
Except if black men commit those rapes, then it’s hear no see no speak no.
“Seriously addressed.” How? Remember, no cops, 9-1-1 doesn’t work anymore.
(49) We DEMAND that all workers receive free monthly GO Passes and free parking through employment with UNC or UNC-Hospitals. We know that workers in the Triangle and particularly in Chapel Hill are forced to live far away in order to afford housing and pay astronomical costs for transportation.
Not anymore, because of the sky high minimum wage and communal housing you just gave ’em.
(50) We DEMAND language justice for all workers at UNC. Trainings, materials, and all communication should be made available in all languages that workers prefer. We recognize that the University relies on the labor of a large number of refugee workers and Latin American immigrants, and these workers should be provided with the same access to information and communication as English-speaking workers. Additionally, verbal instructions and communication should be made available in addition to written materials for all workers, as we recognize that workers are often denied proper education, even for English-speakers born in the U.S.
Press 1 for Ebonics, press 2 for Spanish, press 3 for Urdu…
Gone are the days where we ask for what is past due to us: we are here to take what is ours.
Hopefully you’ll take everything that is rightfully yours, the Brazilian weave sewn into your scalps attached to your black bodies, all the way back to Africa.
Tear it down, or we shut you down.
Translation: If you don’t do what we want, we’ll scream and pout and whine until you give in, that is, not realizing that we’re both on the same page anyway, and this is all a pincher movement and a way for you to use our demands as a convenient excuse to do that which you really wanted to do all along but would have faced a little bit of backlash had you not had our demands to use as political wind behind your backs.