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Fri Apr 19, 2019, 05:38 AM

Black Columbia Student's Confrontation With Security Becomes Flashpoint Over Racism on Campus




Black Columbia Student’s Confrontation With Security Becomes Flashpoint Over Racism on Campus
A video of Alexander McNab being pinned down by security officers is adding to a broader conversation about how students of color are treated at one of the nation’s most prominent universities.


Alexander McNab, a black Columbia University senior, was walking through the gates of Barnard College on his way to the library at about 11:30 p.m. last Thursday.

He heard a voice calling out “Hello, Sir,” repeatedly, after he had entered the gates. He figured it was a school public safety officer, wanting to see his school ID.

Mr. McNab had been stopped several times around campus recently — when students wouldn’t normally be asked to show ID, he said — and he thought to himself, “not this time,” and kept walking.

Within a few minutes, Mr. McNab was being forcibly pinned down by public safety officers inside the library. And within 24 hours, a video of the encounter had gone viral, drawing accusations of racial profiling and adding to a broader conversation about how students of color are treated at one of the country’s most prominent universities.


The incident has highlighted growing tensions between students, the administration and public safety officers, and has led to several protests and listening groups over the past week. A petition stating that acts of harassment by Barnard and Columbia public safety officers against people of color are daily occurrences has been signed by dozens of student groups, 15 professors and some 2,000 individuals.

In an interview, Mr. McNab said he “intended this to be a communicative act” and he had decided to keep walking to draw attention to how students of color seemed to be asked to show their IDs more often than white students.

“What I realized,” he added, “is every time I show my ID when I’m asked, the conversation about this remains silent.”

But, he said, he did not intend for the encounter become physical: “Neither my words nor my body at any point connoted any form of threat to them.”

On Friday, the five officers and their supervisor were placed on paid administrative leave by Barnard and the school said it had hired an independent firm to investigate the encounter. Barnard, a women’s college that is part of Columbia but has its own administration and public safety department, released a statement, calling the incident “unfortunate.” Columbia University’s three undergraduate deans sent a note to students decrying racism and calling the incident “disturbing.”

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/04/18/nyregion/black-columbia-student-alexander-mcnab.html?action=click&module=News&pgtype=Homepage

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Reply Black Columbia Student's Confrontation With Security Becomes Flashpoint Over Racism on Campus (Original post)
Demovictory9 Apr 2019 OP
RandiFan1290 Apr 2019 #1

Response to Demovictory9 (Original post)

Fri Apr 19, 2019, 05:57 AM

1. Typical racist pigs. nt

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