Smith College Sued For Allegedly Creating A Racially Hostile Workplace
Maybe you haven’t heard of Jodi Shaw. She is a former librarian at Smith College who landed in the spotlight in October 2020 when she posted a YouTube video claiming the work environment surrounding the college where she worked was racially hostile.
Maybe you haven’t heard of Jodi Shaw. She is a former librarian at Smith College who landed in the spotlight in October 2020 when she posted a YouTube video claiming the work environment surrounding the college where she worked was racially hostile. Since that time, Shaw has stepped away from her position at the instiutution and now has a lawsuit against Smith College claiming they promoted an anti-white racially hostile workplace.
When Shaw first made headlines with her video, she began by saying that her race should in no way be relevant. She then pointed out that Smith College “has made it clear over and over and over again that not only is it relevant, but it’s possibly one of the most important…if not, the most important, feature of me, as a human.”
Smith College is a private women’s liberal arts college located in Northampton, Massachusetts. It was charted in 1871 and opened officially in 1875. The college is considered to be “an incredibly prestigious, diverse, academically rigorous, socially liberal, and well-respected institution” and can be quite difficult to get into. They require a 3.84 GPA and be near the top of your class.
But Smith College, as are many colleges and universities across the country, is implementing a heavy dose of Critical Race Theory training that includes showing how students, administrators, faculty, and staff should deal with their “white privilege.” It was something that didn’t sit well with Shaw, so in turn, she released her video titled “Dear Smith College: I Have a Few Requests”.
Here’s the video in question…
Some of the requests Shaw made included: (1) “Stop reducing my personhood to a racial category”; (2) “Stop telling me what I must think and feel about myself because I feel like you do that a lot. I know you do that a lot… and I need you to stop…”; (3) “Stop telling me young women of color have no power or agency in this world because that’s not true”; (4) “Stop telling me that young white women have power and privilege over everyone else—equally not true”; and “Stop demanding that I admit to White Privilege and work on my so-called Implicit Bias as a condition of my continued employment.”
The video received the expected backlash including a lengthy written response from Smith College Kathleen McCartney.
Not willing to go quietly, Shaw turned to legal help to get her point across. She hired the Pivtorak Law Firm to take on Smith College and they aren’t pulling any punches. The Federal Court complaint filed by Pivtorak alleges that “Smith adopted an official policy of viewing every aspect of its operations through a racial lens; one that distorts all whites into malevolent oppressors and all people of color into hapless victims, regardless of any individual’s actual position or status. This policy permeated every decision and action taken by the school.” You can see the entire filing from David Pivtorak right here and some is available below…
There was one Smith College incident in particular that moved Shaw to rethink her position at the school. The incident happened in 2018 when a black student accused one of the custodial staff members of racism. The young student in question was eating lunch in a deserted dorm that had been closed down for the summer. Every custodian on campus was told to notify campus security if they saw any unauthorized people.
The custodian did what he was told and called security. When security arrived, he was unarmed and removed the young lady from the deserted dorm. Racism was immediately called into play insofar that the young lady even got the A.C.L.U. involved. But Smith College did a complete investigation on this matter and determined there was no standing for the young lady’s claims. The janitor and security were cleared of the discrimination claim.
No one knows how this lawsuit will shape the future at Smith College. The charges levied against the school are serious and only show where we continue to be as a nation. Hopefully, this might be the start of a better understanding of who we are as people, regardless of race or color, neither of which should define us as human beings.
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