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Last login: Friday, August 20, 2010
Matthew Anderson, my father was the only African-American member of the team that brought the final incarnation of the electronic computer to the world in 1953. Katye Anderson, my mother, was Chair of San Diego Mesa College's Department for Black Studies for twenty-two years. Upon her death she was honored by Secretary Boutrous-Boutrous Ghali of the United Nations, Holland, Germany and France for her work in education. Katye piloted a team that ushered the University of California to this community years ago. A graduate of the University of Illinois with doctoral work first at Northwestern University and subsequently at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, I have volunteered countless hours at UCSD teaching aerobics, the martial arts to adults and children and broadcasting a radio interview show from the KSDT studios there for several years. I mention this because having submitted more than two hundred applications for employment to that institution alone, I have received but one interview. That interview was as one of three finalists from a field of more than two-hundred for an Assistant Chancellor post. What that said to me is that, though I was qualified to administer the entire University, I was not qualified to perform any lesser duties. And there's the rub. Economics and related hiring policy is the elephant in the room that no one addressed on air today during Ms. Cavanaugh's exposition. Further, as though to add an exclamation point, only two "public" comments were fielded on public radio in that hour, and neither of those comments were made by an African-American. This "formatting" problem actually represents a template for the greater problem at hand. While administrators and pundits waxed on about their bailiwicks of concern, those in the public at large most impacted by these revelations had no actual input. Thanks KPBS for discussing your interests given the topic and shame on you for that quality of continued insensitivity that has aided this problem in the first place. No one actually dealt with the notion that my tax dollars go to an institution where an individual can rise to the PhD level and still feel comfortable calling me a "N_____." This problem is structurally economic at its core and my having waited on the telephone for an hour with no redress is a metaphor for the inadequate addressing of this order of problem throughout the University of California system and the greater society. My father helped give UCSD its computers and my mother gave it wings. I have given it a great contribution at many levels but I was not allowed to voice these concerns because a white man from North County trumped my contribution with a knee jerk chiding of the national quality of sarcasm in comedy media broadcasts. And we wonder why Pi Kappa Alpha and the "Koala" staff feel that they can make racist comments with impunity. No one here, UCSD, media and the nonplused public at large is dealing from the top of the deck!
February 25, 2010 at 10:53 a.m.
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