It’s too bad right-wing provocateur Andrew Breitbart never met Derrick Bell, because it might have made him a better man.
Of all the news that surfaced after Breitbart’s sudden death, I was most stunned by the evidence that he was preparing to use Professor Bell to attack President Obama. Perhaps you’ve seen the clips of The Hug, taken by WGBH in 1991 while Obama was a student at Harvard Law School. Student Obama introduced Professor Bell to a crowd protesting the lack of faculty diversity. Then, they embraced. This happened the year after Bell had lost his tenured position owing to his taking unpaid leave in protest the school’s failure to hire a black woman as a tenured professor. He was one of three black men on the faculty, but he recognized that black women need a role model, and there were none. Harvard dragged its institutional feet, and he never returned to teach. But his legacy lived on there long after he accepted a position as Visiting Professor at New York University.
Random reflections on politics, the media, political activism, women's lives and spirituality, often inspired by travel, cultural events or what I read.
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