Dear Professors of this P.W.I. (@JMU)
“Well, I can see that you’re female, and I can also see that you’re black.”
“Did you know your last name was a slave last name?”
“I loved pointing out to my racist father we too had a black person’s last name.”
“Do you know what PWI means? You should.”
“Every country has its group of ‘N’ words, you know?”
“I don’t think there are things you specifically need to improve…or things that you do wrong. You are great at what you do.” (I didn’t get a lead position after years of leading. So, when the position became available, I asked why I didn’t get it. This was my response.)
“As you can see, we have a diverse team here, so all should feel welcomed.”
“That is something that a majority of the class cannot relate to”. (I did a speech on police brutality and black lives. This was my feedback. This was intentional and I knew exactly who my audience was.)
Dear James Madison University,
The above quotes represent some of the things my professors have said to me over the years
I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t offended, felt sad and I even shed a few tears
I didn’t know how to respond to this and kept a lot of my feelings in
But I’m here today to finally voice my thoughts and for once feel comfortable in my skin
Truth be told, I never really liked my school and always felt left out
Ironically, my grades are outstanding but my color is why I stand out
Surrounded by cookie cutter, mass-produced typical suburban girls
It’s hard not to doubt myself and embrace my curves and curls.
I am the unexpected in a sea of Barbie’s on parade
Hell…Mac and Fenty cosmetics can’t conceal this caramel shade.
To the professor of quote number one: this is what I have to say
I look at myself in the mirror multiple times a DAY.
Thank you for stating the obvious, I wasn’t likely to forget
You said that as if being black and female was something to regret.
To the professor of quote number two, allow me to educate you.
My last name originates from England, please get a clue
Not every black person has ancestors who were enslaved
Not every slave took the name of their owners in praise
Stop making generalizations and stupid ass assumptions
Learn how to conduct a proper student meeting, minus all the ruction.
“dId yOu kNow yOu hAd a sLavE lAst naMe?”
To the same professor of quotes two and number three
Your attempt at degrading daddy is such a tragedy
It’s repulsive sharing names with that racist doormat
I THANK GOD my mama taught me so much better than that.
To the professor of quote four…Watch what you say
Predominantly White Institution is ALL the U.S.A.
To the esteemed professors of quotes five through eight
Your words are veiled in ignorance, designed to agitate
Thank you each for the lessons you have added to my life
Undertones and an undercurrent of reminders that I AM NOT WHITE.
Dear Professors of this P.W.I. I’ll say this in closing
You possess degrees but you’re not above coaching
Beauty has no skin tone and achievement has no color
I will prevail and excel although you’ve made it tougher
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