Shannon Gibney controversy: Petition accuses MCTC of "institutional racism"

Categories: Education, Racism
MCTCGibney.jpg
The petition criticizes MCTC for reprimanding Gibney (right) and thereby shielding white students from tough discussions about racism in American society.
A petition put together by two New York City professors accuses MCTC administrators of committing "institutional racism" by formally reprimanding Shannon Gibney for alienating a group of white students with the way she approached a discussion about structural racism during her Intro to Mass Communications class this semester.

SEE ALSO: Shannon Gibney, MCTC prof, also took heat for structural racism comments in 2009

The reprimand "constitutes an instance of institutional discrimination that silences discussion of important social issues within the context of higher education, creates a culture of fear amongst the faculty, dissuading their teaching [from] subjects touching racism at MCTC in the future, and, most importantly, disserves the interests of student enrichment, student learning and student preparedness," says the petition, written by New York Law School professor Chaumtoli Huq and Kingsborough Community College prof Maureen Reprecht Fadem.

"If we parrot the discourse of white privilege by shaming and silencing minority faculty trying to educate students on dynamics of race, we are failing in our roles as educators and administrators," they continue. "Certainly such discussions are complex and often charged; but, just as certainly, academic institutions, if we are to graduate individuals who are culturally aware critical thinkers fit to become future leaders, must permit such discussions and such curricula."

Huq and Ruprecht Fadem call on MCTC administrators to "reexamine their response, both to Gibney and to the complaining students, and demonstrate principled leadership."

To read the entire petition, click to page two:


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