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The recent incidents of racism on the campus of Washington’s American University have culminated into a White supremacist leader calling for the harassment of the school’s first Black student president, Taylor Dumpson. Current AU professor and former President Barack Obama staffer David Johns spoke with Roland Martin on NewsOne Now in what the university is doing to put and end the racist acts.

Earlier this month, bananas hanging from nooses and targeting the Black Greek letter organization Alpha Kappa Alpha appeared on campus grounds and sparked concern. During the program, Martin made note of the call by Neo-Nazi leader Andrew Anglin, founder of the hate website The Daily Stormer has created an online campaign targeting Dumpson for harassment by his supporters. Professor Johns replied to Martin’s inquiry on what AU is doing to handle the issue.

One, this isn’t the first time that this has happened, at American, and at a number schools across the country. And it’s a reminder that as adults and educators, we have a responsibility to ensure all of our students are safe as they go through the process of learning and developing in college, many of the first time independently, and this is a reminder that we’re failing at that,” said Johns.

Johns continued by saying that schools like AU can do more to drum up conversations about race among the student body, and more can be done to address issues as they occur. AU officials are investigating the noose incident with help from federal prosecutors who have joined the effort.

Watch Roland Martin’s discussion with American University professor David Johns in the clip above.


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