Wednesday, February 24, 2016

The SFSU Afro Floor

Michael L.

I have been heavily critical of San Francisco State University ever since it dedicated a mural to that old anti-Semitic anti-Zionist, Edward Said.

I noticed a story recently from the school newspaper entitled, BSU Brings Afro Floor to SF State, by Nashanta Williams:
SFSU Mural at Malcolm X Plaza
SF State’s housing will welcome a new community-themed floor after a successful bout of lobbying and protests by the Black Student Union. The “Afro Floor” will be available to students interested in living in themed housing on campus and will house cultural artwork and resources for the students.

The situation arose after a list of demands were sent to Dr. Luoluo Hong, the vice president of enrollment management, and Mary Ann Begley, the interim dean of students, after the BSU protested and took over a “pouring rights” rally last year. The protest was successful in stopping SF State’s University Corporation from signing a pouring rights deal and opened the door for conversations about the needs of black students on campus.

“We met with them in January, about a couple of our demands: some of them were retention of black students, a multicultural center and the afro floor, and they told us that the afro floor was something that can and will be done,” said BSU President Ismail Muhammad.
This story, of course, is a departure from our regular focus on the ongoing Arab war against the Jews in the Middle East and Europe. However, it seems to fit-in nicely with the recent academic concerns over "microaggressions" and the need for "safe spaces" where young impressionable minds will not be troubled.

If you read deeper into the article it says that people of the non-African-American persuasions will be allowed to live in the dorm, Ward Hall, but it is unclear whether or not they would be allowed to live on the Afro Floor, itself.

I called around the university and got no real response to the question until dean of students, Mary Ann Begley, was kind enough to promptly reply to an email.

I wrote her this:
Dear Ms. Begley,

I am a SFSU alumnus and I came across a Feb 10, 2016, story at the Golden Gate Express entitled, BSU Brings Afro Floor to SF State.

The article states that anyone may live in the dorm despite ethnicity, but may anyone, despite ethnicity, live on the floor?

I will look forward to your timely response and you have my sincerest appreciation.

Michael Lumish
In response Ms. Begley writes:
Hi Michael.  Thanks for reaching out with your inquiry.  It’s always good to hear from an alumnus!  :)

Your assumption is correct.  All students regardless of identity/protected status, including but not limited to ethnicity, are able and encouraged to live within any of our theme communities; this would include the Afro theme community that is currently being developed.

I hope that answers your question in full.  Feel free to write me back if you have other questions.
Although I have no idea what assumption that she is referring to, because I made none, it seems as if what the dean is saying is that students of any ethnicity would be allowed to live on the Afro Floor, which is precisely as it should be.

I do wonder, though, how this will play itself out in actuality.

My suspicion is that - influenced by the alleged need for "safe spaces" - this will become a self-segregated floor within a university dormatory. The implication from Begley's email is that the Afro Floor is just one among other planned "theme communities."

I have no burning desire to give SFSU a hard time about this particular initiative, but it does leave me wondering about the social benefits. What would the university say if the SFSU Young Americans for Freedom wanted to create an Anglo Floor wherein the contributions to world society by white people would be taught and celebrated?

Somehow I do not think that it would go over so well.

{In truth, I am frankly astonished that SFSU even has a YAF chapter. I wonder if it is still in actual operation?}

And how would the SFSU community respond to a Jew Floor?

That would be a key test and I would encourage Hillel SFSU to look into the possibility.


  1. This is a seriously troubling development. Exactly what other "theme communities "are planned?

    There is a controversy in Australia right now after students were refused access to a vacant computer room at the Queensland University of Technology that had apparently been reserved for indigenous students after having been quetioed about their ethnicity.

    They were "white ". It then got worse. When they publicly complained, an action was brought against them in an antidiscrimination tribunal

    We are in the presence of something evil.

  2. It sounds like skin Disneyland. Will there be any rides?

    When I went to college it was for an education (which was what classes were for), and a degree. I wasn't looking for a theme park, and certainly would never have expected one.
    At SFSU wouldn't San Francisco be an appropriate theme?
    I'm sorry Mike, but it all just sounds completely retarded to me. These are tax dollars, right?

    1. Well, SFSU has a long history of campus radicalism and they are very committed to the idea of diversity. When people think of American student radicalism on the West Coast in the 1960s they tend to think of UCAL Berkeley, but the truth is that SFSU was considerably more intense. Students, like Danny Glover, were enraged and they managed to shut down the college for awhile. Black students, possibly including Glover, marched into the offices of the student newspaper and beat the hell out of student reporters and, possibly, the editor, around 1968 or 1969. When I was there, in the late 90s, I saw considerable hatred toward Israel and now I am so alienated from the place that I have no desire to even step foot on that campus.

      What a shame.

    2. Yes, I remember the $ signs and Stars of David mural that was "not anti-Semitic."

  3. This stuff is going on all over the place.

    This is the logical outcome of identity politics.
    How anyone can believe this is progress is extraordinary.

  4. If anyone wants to know what actual racism on university campuses looks like...

  5. Oh it will be black activists who call for an end to Brown v Board of Ed soon, that's fairly obvious.

  6. If colleges promote the notion that gender is meaningless and anyone can claim any gender or genders or mixtures of some, all, none, other of that than why not black? After all it was the southern racist dixiecrats who put forth the one drop rule. Technically speaking almost anyone can claim some 'blackness'.

  7. How you know someone got their PhD from a Cracker Jack box:

    "Oberlin Professor Claims Israel Was Behind 9/11, ISIS, Charlie Hebdo Attack"

    Thing is, there are millions of these crackpots out there and the government lets them live.


    1. "An-Najah is known for “terrorist recruitment, indoctrination and radicalization of students,”"

      Apparently so is SFSU.

      "[I]t’s not going to be exclusive to two Palestinian universities; we plan to connect with other universities in Palestine and elsewhere in the Arab world as well as in Muslim majority countries."

      How many of those universities were built during the "brutal occupation," I wonder. Were any of them built before the "Nakba?" Please, someone, show where there was a "Palestinian" university standing in what is now Israel.

    2. "Palestine" used to mean "Israel," did it not? I remember that the Jerusalem Post was once the Palestine Post.

    3. It did. And whenever anyone referred to a "Palestinian" during the British mandate they invariably were referring to a Palestinian Jew.