New York Times journalist Nikole Hannah-Jones has never shied away from the spotlight. She first gained national recognition in 2019 for spearheading the controversial “1619 Project” for The Times.
The project originally promoted ideas that were blatantly false and in many ways disgusting. For example, the original text of the report said its goal was “to reframe the country’s history, understanding 1619 as our true founding, and placing the consequences of slavery and the contributions of black Americans at the very center of our national narrative,” Quillette reported.
“To teach children that the American Revolution was fought in part to secure slavery would be giving a fundamental misunderstanding not only of what the American Revolution was all about but what America stood for and has stood for since the Founding,” Princeton historian Sean Wilentz said, according to The Atlantic.
As the project came under intense scrutiny for its dishonesty, The Times quietly changed the wording of some portions. This appeared to be an attempt to appease critics, but in fact it justified the very criticisms raised against the project.
In spite of that, “The 1619 Project” received the Pulitzer Prize for Commentary last year.
Hannah-Jones’ alma matter, the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, decided she would be a great candidate to become the Knight Chair in Race and Investigative Journalism for the school. After all, who would not want to hire a woman whose crowning achievement is a report based in blatant lies?
UNC announced in April that Hannah-Jones would assume the chair position in July.
Joining #UNCHussman as the #KnightChair in Race and Investigative Journalism in July: #Pulitzer Prize-winning @nytmag investigative journalist; @macfound “Genius Grant;” @IBWellsSociety co-founder; @americanacad member @nhannahjones ’03 (M.A.). @knightfdn https://t.co/KqsS40mFqN pic.twitter.com/NtvIC58Gkj
— UNC Hussman School of Journalism and Media (@UNCHussman) April 26, 2021
However, controversy followed when NC Policy Watch reported in May she would not be offered tenure for the position.
Although the leftist professors at UNC approved of tenure for Hannah-Jones, the Board of Trustees decided it would be wiser to offer a five-year term as a “Professor of Practice.”
It is hard to fault the Board of Trustees for this decision, which NC Policy Watch said was based upon criticisms of “The 1619 Project.” Tenure essentially offers a career-long guarantee of employment, and the board had good reason not to trust Hannah-Jones with such an offer given her dubious past reporting.
Despite this valid concern, many on the left were infuriated at the board’s decision. In their minds, the only reason Hannah-Jones would be denied tenure was racism.
“It’s disappointing, it’s not what we wanted and I am afraid it will have a chilling effect,” UNC Hussman School of Journalism Dean Susan King said.
So that would be the end, right? A leftist figurehead once again complained to the world and got what she wanted, and now life can go on.
Nope, it gets worse.
Apparently, it wasn’t enough for Hannah-Jones to achieve the position and tenure she so desperately wanted. Instead, she decided to turn on her alma mater.
On Tuesday, Hannah-Jones announced on “CBS This Morning” that she would reject UNC’s tenure offer and take a position at Howard University instead.
“I’ve decided to decline the offer of tenure. I will not be teaching on the faculty of the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill. It was a very difficult decision. Not a decision I wanted to make,” she told co-host Gayle King.
Hannah-Jones said that she instead will be taking a position as the inaugural Knight Chair in Race and Reporting at Howard, a historically black college in Washington.
JUST IN: Award-winning journalist @nhannahjones reveals on @CBSThisMorning she has declined the University of North Carolina’s offer for tenure and will be the inaugural Knight Chair in Race and Reporting at @HowardU. pic.twitter.com/w9j0gVe0cd
— CBS This Morning (@CBSThisMorning) July 6, 2021
“I have decided that instead of fighting to prove I belong at an institution that until 1955 prohibited Black Americans from attending, I am instead going to work in the legacy of a university not built by the enslaved but for those who once were,” she said in a statement, according to The News & Observer in Raleigh, North Carolina.
“I cannot imagine working at and advancing a school named for a man who lobbied against me, who used his wealth to influence the hires and ideology of the journalism school, who ignored my 20 years of journalism experience, all of my credentials, all of my work, because he believed that a project that centered Black Americans equaled the denigration of white Americans,” Hannah-Jones said, apparently referring to UNC donor Walter Hussman.
Alternatively, maybe that man was concerned about her history of dishonest reporting and therefore did not want to offer her a lifelong job opportunity in case she became embroiled in another scandal.
There are many questionable components in Hannah-Jones’ statement. First, if she wanted to ensure equality for black Americans, wouldn’t she fight for their inclusion at a prestigious school like UNC?
Instead, she has decided to work at Howard University, where more than two-thirds of the student body is black, according to Peterson’s. That does not seem like an effective way to end segregation.
Second, as a North Carolina resident for most of my life, I can assure you that UNC is not a conservative institution. In fact, it has gained a reputation as one of the most “woke” schools in the state, if not the country.
Even so, Hannah-Jones did not hesitate to chastise her alma mater, which should be a lesson to all. No matter how many times you attempt to appease the woke mob, it will never be enough.
UNC hired a controversial journalist to show its support for progressive ideas, and then it caved even further and offered her a career-long employment guarantee.
Its reward was a scathing statement from that very woman accusing them of racism.
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