A Smith College administrator resigned earlier this month citing the creation of a “racially hostile environment” in the wake of a widely reported accusation of discrimination against the school in 2018.
Jodi Shaw graduated from Smith College in 1993 and was “over the moon” when she found herself joining the school’s staff years later. However, after a 2018 incident of alleged racial profiling, the school began to adopt a racially radical curriculum and everything changed.
Shaw, a white woman, wrote in her resignation letter, the “curriculum is dehumanizing, prevents authentic connection, and undermines the moral agency of young people who are just beginning to find their way in the world.”
Some might recall the 2018 incident at Smith College where a black student accused the school of racial profiling after a staff member called the police on her while she was eating lunch. The incident sparked the slogan "eating while black" and the story received national media attention as it allegedly documented yet another case of systemic racism in American institutions.
Yet, the reality of the situation turned out to be far less racially incendiary. An independent investigation found no evidence of racial bias as the student chose to eat in a room closed to the public and the janitor acted in accordance with guidelines by calling campus police.
The school, however, had no patience for the exculpatory report, “Before even investigating the facts of the incident,” Shaw recalled in her resignation letter, the college immediately issued a public apology to the student, placed the employee on leave, and announced its intention to create new initiatives, committees, workshops, trainings, and policies aimed at combating "systemic racism" on campus.
These early remarks by the school could possibly be excused, if not for Jodi Shaw’s resignation some three years later, which brought to light the institution's continued “immoral” practices in the name of a radical race-based ideology.
In the letter, Shaw notes that even after all parties knew the innocence of the supposed incident, the school “ramped up its initiatives aimed at dismantling the supposed racism that pervades the campus.”
From August 2018 onward, the mother of two told of repeated instances of workplace racial discrimination spanning from the termination of a major project for fears that her informational rap was “cultural appropriation,” to the public accusation of “white fragility” for the crime of feeling uncomfortable discussing her personal racial identity while at work.
Race and race theory became a substantial factor in her daily work and her career, and when she finally filed a complaint, it was largely ignored, and worse, came with consequences. Shaw writes, “I felt like my complaint was taken less seriously because of my race…. I started to experience retaliatory behavior, like having important aspects of my job taken away without explanation.”
Shaw writes of the school’s ideology, “Under the guise of racial progress, Smith College has created a racially hostile environment in which individual acts of discrimination and hostility flourish. In this environment people’s worth as human beings, and the degree to which they deserve to be treated with dignity and respect, is determined by the color of their skin.”