I can’t stress enough how important it is that you surround yourself with supportive people who make you feel important and special, and who enhance your life with their presence. If their presence is making you feel worse instead of better, re-evaluate why you’re letting them stay.
this goes for family too. Common DNA is never enough of a reason to tolerate toxic relationships.
There are a lot of dynamics at play when someone chooses their college at choice that I feel are being ignored here. I also think there’s a cognitive dissonance at play when you want to stand by and fight with fellow students of color but imply that these same students were naive in their choice of higher ed.
But I also disagree that when a student of color chooses a PWI they are doing so completely unaware that being in the minority would present some challenges. These students choose their final college for a number of reason - affordability, field of study, location, programs etc - if they earn acceptance to a school that they feel best meets their needs they deserve to be treated with respect like any other student. The students in the #Itooamhardvard campaign are getting the education of their choosing and also fighting against institutional oppression in academia, and making a difference that will impact future students.
Also I want to emphasize that the #Itooamharvard students - and any student of color at a PWI - aren’t arguing “we thought this racism was over and we’re surprised that this is happening to us.” They enrolled in an environment that they were aware would be a challenge (for various reasons) and are working to make a change from within.
And we can’t ignore accessibility HBCUs aren’t the most accessible institutions for every student of color going off to college. All students have the right to attend whichever school they are able to afford - and Harvard and plenty other PWI have large endowments and are able to offer need based scholarships. As I said earlier, students are entitled to make a decision for themselves as to what institution is the best choice for them. Finances are a huge factor. One that cannot be downsized.
But, to your point - I don’t think this is a situation where where one type of institution is better than the other, or that black students that enroll in PWIs are consciously choosing PWIs thinking that they have found a superior college only to later feel as though they made a mistake picking the white school over the black school.
With all this being said, I think this is an important conversation and I’m glad you were willing to reach out and explain how you think. Though, I feel like it’s important to listen to and validate the experiences of students of color at PWIs. Implying that they should have went to an HBCU if they wanted to avoid discrimination cuts out many valuable voices, experiences and stories. Just as it’s important to listen to students at HBCU when they speak of whatever institutional biases they face. All colleges serve as institutions where power structures need to be challenged, pushed against and altered. PWIs, of course, are rooted in a type of deep systemic power structure that I was only able to fully understand after spending my own 4 years in college there. But despite the protests I took part in, discussions, fights, anger - I never regretted my decision to go to school there, especially when I know that my actions and efforts made the college a more comfortable place for other students of color who are getting their education despite the challenges.
black women come in literally every shape, color, and size
and so when a person says they aren’t attracted to black women
it’s not actually about being physically attracted to black women
it’s about an aversion to blackness
and just knowing a person is black is seen as repulsive
regardless of physical attractiveness