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'Today Is Gonna Be All About Me': Graduate Violently Wrestles Microphone from Faculty, Screams Message to Stunned Crowd

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“In the future, everyone will probably be world-famous for 15 minutes.”

This quote is attributed, usually, to Andy Warhol, although the Smithsonian notes that Warhol probably never actually said it. Given the amount of art that is attributed to Warhol that he hardly seems to have worked on, that’s hardly surprising.

However, whoever uttered it, the expression wasn’t just prescient. It also served not only as a prediction, but as a warning. If you’re given a limited amount of time on the global stage, be careful how you spend it.

I’m not quite sure how familiar with Mr. Warhol a TikTok star who calls herself Kadia Iman is. That said, the recent college graduate, who is black, is currently spending her 15 minutes of fame on ripping a microphone away from a white faculty member during a graduation ceremony, accusing her of racism and then going on a viral rant.

The video initially went viral on TikTok on Iman’s account, where it’s racked up almost 3 million views as of late Thursday evening. The video also made it onto Twitter, where users were less indulgent of Iman’s actions than Iman herself was.

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In the clip, Iman can be seen physically ripping the microphone from the older faculty member in a brief altercation, yelling, “Let go! Let go!”

“You didn’t let me get my moment!” Iman screamed before saying her full name. “I don’t like how you snatched the mic out of my hand, and today is going to be all about me.”

She then threw the mic to the ground and walked away.

According to the U.K. Daily Mail, this had to do with alleged racism, because of course it did.

“Each student was given the opportunity to say their name, major, and a few small things about themselves as they traveled toward the stage, the influencer and Only Fans [sic] star admitted in a separate TikTok video,” the outlet reported.

“But as she and other black students got the chance to speak, she said she noticed the woman ‘pulling the mic down super fast for some black people.'”

And clearly, TikTok influencers and OnlyFans stars are never known to exaggerate or prevaricate about the facts in order to get likes and clicks.

“I don’t want to be that person, but that was the tea. So, I just couldn’t let her. I just couldn’t let that happen because I worked so hard to graduate, went through so much s*** to graduate, that I just felt like I needed to reclaim my moment,” Iman said in a separate video.

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“I’m not a problematic person. I don’t want to ruin no one’s day. I don’t want to violate anybody, but that’s what she did. She didn’t even let me finish speaking.”

WARNING: The following video contains graphic language that some viewers will find offensive.

@kadiaimantv Replying to @mochabankz2.0 ♬ original sound – kadiaimantv

In an Instagram post, she was equally unapologetic: “To everyone saying I should be embarrassed .. or I’ll never get a job I’m a black woman in America I am always in the right,” adding an emoji with a tongue stuck out.

“u will not gaslight me into thinking I’m The bad guy I did it for girls that look like me love you.”

Just in case you’re playing Intersectionality Bingo at home, you can mark off the “video of black woman assaulting white woman without apparent consequences,” “‘reclaiming my moment,'” “unverified claims of racism” and “gratuitous and/or incorrect use of the term ‘gaslighting'” off your card.

Should this graduate be punished?

The name of the college has not been identified in any media reports, nor has the institution released any kind of comment, despite the fact that the clip of the attack (and subsequent self-serving clip explaining why the attack was justified) has gone viral. I’m assuming it’ll stay that way, considering that for the moment Iman is not going to make any list of distinguished alumni.

That said, there were plenty of people willing to stick up for the TikTokker — and not just in the comments section, but in the media.

Take Distractify’s Pretty Honore: “What you may not know is, the video has a deeper meaning than what meets the eye. In a TikTok video that was posted before everything went down, Kadia expressed how happy she was to get a degree despite no one showing up to support her. Per her social media, Kadia’s mom died earlier in her life.

“So, let’s put ourselves in Kadia’s shoes for a second. It’s hard enough for a young, Black woman to find her voice at a predominately white institution (PWI) — especially with no support system,” she added.

OK, so now we know some of the justifications for attacking faculty members handing out degrees: 1) lack of family ties, 2) being a minority and 3) studying at a predominantly white institution, or PWI. (It’s worth noting that, on the last count, there’s no identification of the institution Iman was graduating from, and there seemed to be more than a sprinkling of non-white people in the audience — but why let a lack of facts get in the way of asserting convenient facts? Distractify doesn’t.)

At black-centric outlet 21Ninety, there was a more abstract defense given for Iman’s behavior: “micro-assaults.”

“Kadia explained that she didn’t get to finish saying her name, which she says is long before she was abruptly cut off. She shared that her name has three syllables but refused to share exactly what her name is,” the outlet noted.

“Black people have historically had to deal with not having their names pronounced correctly or sometimes shortened without permission,” the article continued.

The outlet then quoted Myles Durkee, assistant professor of psychology at the University of Michigan, who talked about harmful issues surrounding how black names are pronounced: “Micro-assaults are much more explicit, intentional forms of discrimination or disrespect. Strategically mispronouncing someone’s name is a way of othering someone.”

There’s no evidence that this was done “strategically” or represented a “micro-assault” (which, I am assuming, is to “microaggression” what “climate crisis” is to the outmoded term “climate change”). If there was any “micro-assault” here, it was forcibly taking the microphone from a faculty member in an aggressive fashion — which could have led to a macro-assault if things went awry — and insisting that “today is going to be all about me.”

Well, it certainly was. Shame you wasted your 15 minutes on that, Kadia Iman, but at least you got to say your name exactly how you wanted it said. Nice work.

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C. Douglas Golden is a writer who splits his time between the United States and Southeast Asia. Specializing in political commentary and world affairs, he's written for Conservative Tribune and The Western Journal since 2014.
C. Douglas Golden is a writer who splits his time between the United States and Southeast Asia. Specializing in political commentary and world affairs, he's written for Conservative Tribune and The Western Journal since 2014. Aside from politics, he enjoys spending time with his wife, literature (especially British comic novels and modern Japanese lit), indie rock, coffee, Formula One and football (of both American and world varieties).
Birthplace
Morristown, New Jersey
Education
Catholic University of America
Languages Spoken
English, Spanish
Topics of Expertise
American Politics, World Politics, Culture




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