The “F— UVA” Girl Speaks

Hira Azher, from her Twitter account

by James A. Bacon

Hira Azher, the young University of Virginia woman thrust into the limelight after she posted the infamous “Fuck UVA” sign on the door of her Lawn residence, has written a column in the Cavalier Daily to defend her action, lambaste UVa President Jim Ryan, and attack the university as a white supremacist institution.

Ms. Azher comes across as self-absorbed and self-pitying, wallowing in the rhetoric of grievance and victimhood. If you think that assessment is harsh, read the column for the full text to see if I am portraying her views unfairly. 

By way of background, Azher told WVIR TV that she was prompted to mount the sign on the door after suffering an injury and surgery to her ankle. She faulted the university for its lack of Americans for Disability Act accessibility on the Lawn and its response to her injury. “The solution was not to make the lawn more accessible,” she said, “the solution was to find me alternative housing for up to a month, which in itself is a problem.”

In the commentary, she writes:

<i>”As a Muslim woman of color at this University, I am constantly and painstakingly aware that this institution was not made for people like me, and everyday, the University continues to function and uphold white supremacist ideals that makes this very clear for marginalized students across the Grounds.”</i>

Pardon the interruption but Azher’s commentary already demands comment. The institution was not made for people like her? No kidding. The University of Virginia was founded in 1819 by white Christians. But it apparently escapes her notice that the university has undergone a metamorphosis since then. It seems a stretch to suggest that the institution in modern times should refashion itself into an institution “made for” people like Azher, when Muslims account for about one percent of Virginia’s population. That’s not to say that UVa shouldn’t welcome Muslim students. It should — and does. I cannot find the number of Muslim students from Virginia, but the student body includes people from Muslim-majority nations such as Bangladesh, Egypt, Indonesia, Kuwait, Malaysia, Pakistan, and Turkey. The university supports a Muslim Students Association as well as numerous associations comprised of students from Muslim-majority countries, and it has numerous Muslim faculty members.

Azher continues:

I am aware that the University and the Lawn have always been, and will continue to function as, a space for whiteness in which I will never be fully welcomed. By writing this, I am also aware of how it will continue to endanger me as a student studying and living at the University. …

It is undeniable that white supremacy and settler-colonialism are foundational to the University of Virginia. The University was founded by a white supremacist rapist and enslaver on stolen Monacan and Manahoac land and built by enslaved laborers. The University continues to enforce these ideals through its current policing and surveillance, exploitation of students and their labor, harm to the Charlottesville community and constant violence towards Black and Brown lives.

This is not the time or place to argue history. But Azher’s observation that the University “continues to enforce” the ideals of rape, enslavement, and theft of land is not a self-evident proposition. Violence? What violence? There have been a handful of encounters in recent years in which local law-enforcement arguably  have treated minority students with unnecessary roughness. (No one seems to care if white students are manhandled or arrested.) But the problem (if indeed it is a problem) emanates from local law enforcement, not the university. As for the exploitation of student labor, the University recently increased its minimum wage to $15 an hour.

But let us continue. Azher is personally aggrieved that the university showed “blatant disregard” for her “life, health and safety” as a Lawn resident. Apparently, the status of the Lawn and Rotunda as a World Heritage Site made it impossible to redesign and reconfigure her historic Lawn residence in such a way as to make it accessible to Azher with her injured ankle. Full accessibility, according to a document she points to in her column, includes “adding ramps to every set of stairs on the lawn, allowing students to access all portions of the lawn.” “Even now, as I recover from surgery,” she writes, “I am forced to live outside of my room because the University still refuses to make this campus safe and accessible.”

So, UVa is guilty not only of turning itself topsy turvy to remake itself into an institution “made for people like her,” but it has refused to reconfigure one of the world’s architectural masterpieces to accommodate her surgery. But that’s not all. Azher feels herself the victim of “violence.”

This institution’s violence is prevalent from the very first day any Black person, Indigenous person or person of color enters Grounds. The violence within this institution reveals itself when a University Police Department officer waited outside of my door in the middle of the night, endangering me and my neighbors, simply because it had been reported that someone was “offended” by my sign. The violence within this institution reveals itself when Dean Allen Groves forwarded my contact information without my consent to University Police Department Chief, Timothy Longo, a man integral in the continued lack of justice in the murder of Freddie Gray by Baltimore police officers. The violence within this institution reveals itself when a white, male alumnus felt entitled to harass me at my door using a razor blade. The violence within this institution reveals itself when administrators attempt to tone-police and quiet the voice of angry and grieving marginalized students. The violence within this institution reveals itself when the University publicly condemns its students and offers them no protection time and time again. The violence within this institution reveals itself when its president states, “As long as I am president, the University of Virginia will not walk away from Thomas Jefferson.”

In Azher’s snowflake logic, “violence” need not entail actual violence. All manner of slights and paranoid imaginings constitute violence.

For the record, as I understand it, the University police officer assigned to her door was posted to protect her profane sign and her right to free speech, not to “endanger” her. Furthermore, the “white, male alumnus” she refers to was none other than alumni activist Bert Ellis, who knocked on her door and made polite inquiries about the reasoning behind her sign. He was indeed carrying a razor blade, but the purpose (never carried out) was to excise the offending “Fuck UVa” from the sign, not to intimidate her.

While Azher criticizes white privilege and portrays herself as “marginalized,” her sense of privilege knows no bounds. Over and above expecting the University to prioritize her personal needs, she showed a breathtaking arrogance in her interaction with President Ryan. When Ryan approached her shortly after the controversy flared, she writes, “I set three strict boundaries — firstly, he could not simplify and minimize this to a conversation about free speech. Secondly, he could not publicly condemn my sign. Thirdly, he must acknowledge the truth and lived realities of the people who built and were exploited by this University currently and historically.”

She’s the one setting boundaries? Back in 1975, I would have been quivering in my boots if I’d been singled out by President Edgar Shannon. My so-called “white privilege” did not empower me to treat my elders and superiors with disrespect. While whining about her powerlessness as a marginalized person of color, Azher is privileged with a sense of moral authority in the university by virtue of her minority status that white students do not enjoy.

Azher goes on to describe the University — the same University that honored her with a privileged residence on the Lawn — as “a force of exploitation and violent oppression.” Yes, indubitably, that’s what oppressors do: They elevate those they subjugate to positions of honor.

In retrospect, Azher writes, “one of my greatest mistakes at U.Va. was my decision to live on the Lawn. Although I was given visibility through a platform, it was at the cost of my own and my community’s health, stability and safety.” She concludes: “When we say ‘Fuck U.Va.,’ do not simply fight for our right to say it, but fight unapologetically against the injustices that have fueled it.”

Perhaps the best response I’ve seen to Azher’s letter comes from Amy Hooper Neale, a 2017 graduate of UVa, who wrote to President Jim Ryan.

Hira Azher and the other students living on The lawn who followed her lead and hung similar posters must have liked the University enough four years ago to apply. They respected the school enough to accept the offer to attend. They enjoyed their first three years enough to not only return for a fourth year, but also to apply to live on The Lawn. Now, they have decided to respond to this privilege by plastering profanities on their doors. …

Where did this sudden hate for the University come from? Why Now?

Where did this hate come from? That is the question every UVa alumnus should ask. The issue is much bigger than a “Fuck UVA” sign on the lawn. The issue is the toxic culture that filled Hira Azher with such bitterness and resentment.

Update: I have deleted a passage which, though entirely defensible, will distract from much more important points I’m trying to make.

Update: I’ve changed the headline from “Hira Azher” speaks to “The ‘F— UVA’ Girl speaks. No one recognizes the name Hira Azher. But everyone who has been following this issue knows who the “F— UVA” girl is.

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88 responses to “The “F— UVA” Girl Speaks

  1. James Wyatt Whitehead V

    Hira needs to hit the books a little harder at UVA. She ought to be well versed in Jefferson’s Statute of Religious Freedom. And Jefferson had her in mind.

  2. Baconator with extra cheese

    Yes! Tear it all down…. I want the rubble formally known as UVA to be a monument to the destruction of white supremecy. The academics, administriation, and politicians support it – so now do something about the systemic racism. Smash the racist UVA and bury it. Transfer the endowment to Virginia State you self-proclaimed racists…. put your money where your mouth is.

  3. She sounds like she has a Cluster B personality disorder.

  4. geeze. opinions are like butts, eh? everyone got one?

    so a question – how does one rate a place on the “lawn”?

  5. Jim Bacon asks, Where did this hate come from? That is the question every UVa alumnus should ask. The issue is much bigger than a “Fuck UVA” sign on the lawn. The issue is the toxic culture that filled Hira Azher with such bitterness and resentment.”

    As to where did all his hate come from, you can start here:

    Higher education is destroying America’s culture, and its democratic institutions, along with the confidence, competence, common sense, emotional balance, independence and maturity of its students, along with the skill sets its students need to survive and thrive in the real world. Why in the world should parents pay to have their children’s future bankrupted by American higher education, whether by self proclaimed elite or selective universities down through many of the rest.

    If you doubt this consider the following sample of courses offered by the English Department at the University of Virginia that claims to be ranked number 6th in the nation.

    “The rot in K-12 starts in our Universities like UVA. For example:

    “Reed Fawell 3rd | December 11, 2018 at 12:39 pm | Reply

    Hold on here, Jim. You are way out of line. These kids are all victims of America’s white patriarchy – the “racist, sexist, homophobic, xenophobic, Islamophobic, white male supremacists, you name it, among us.” How can victims of all this abuse by all these other people get jobs when they “can’t shake your hand, and look you in the eye,” says the Wall Street Journal.

    No, these are the kinds of traumatized kids who require great care, nurturing, safe spaces, and elaborate protections, by our K-12 schools, and our top our colleges and universities in America, too.

    These kids need places like UVA’s Department of English who will baby sit them, refine and deepen their insecurities and fears, heighten their sense of entitlement and victimization by other people unlike them, particularly white people, or if they be white kids and seek education at UVA they alternatively must own up to and repent for their privileges, accomplishments, and strengths that they’ve acquired by systemically abusing and discriminating against other classmates, and must do in public, in front of their other classmates.

    Hence, UVA’s Department of English defines its mission to lure in and seduce these needy kids, and/or any few strong ones still left over, who come to their door and pay through the nose seeking a good education, but who instead are told false stories, fed bogus courses, and indoctrinated with ideologies founded on hate, that revert them back into helpless, spoiled and angry children.

    Thus, when writing ” About Us”, here’s how the University of Virginia Department of English describes itself on its website:

    “ABOUT US –

    The English Department teaches texts that reflect and permit study of a wide range of voices. In order to do what we do well, we must be a place in which all students—the student who feels endangered because of threats based on gender, sexuality, race, religion, immigration status, body type; the student who has felt unwelcome because of unpopular political views; the student who is feeling isolated; the student who believes in the enabling properties of literature and language, the student who fears power that has been associated with literature and language, the student who is unsure what literature and language mean in a time like ours—feel welcome. All such students, indeed all UVa students, are welcome in our department and in our classrooms.”

    It’s getting worse too by the day in our K-12 schools throughout our nation.

    James A. Bacon | December 11, 2018 at 1:23 pm | Reply

    That’s a real English Department quote? My gosh, it’s a self-parody. Somehow, I’m guessing that the commitment to welcome “the student who has felt unwelcome because of unpopular political views” may not be to students espousing all political views.

    Reed Fawell 3rd | December 12, 2018 at 11:05 am | Reply

    Yes, Jim, that is the lead in quote written by UVA English Department to describe itself and its mission.

    UVA’s English Department takes its mission very seriously. To study English at UVA, here is what undergraduates must wade through in course offerings this year (Fall 2018; Spring 2018). This is a sampling. Read it all to get the message.

    FALL

    Jim Crow America -Instructors: K. Ian Grandison and Marlon Ross

    Why has Jim Crow persisted? This course examines how the Jim Crow regime was established in New England during the early republic, how it was nationalized after the Civil War, and how it has been perpetuated into the present, despite the passage of 1960s Civil Rights legislation. What have been the changing modes of maintaining Jim Crow particularly in law (including law enforcement), education, planning, public health, and mass media (newspapers, film, radio, and social media); and what strategies have African Americans used to fight Jim Crow segregation, discrimination, disenfranchisement, and economic exclusion. Focus will be placed on Charlottesville, Richmond, and Washington, D.C. as case studies. The course culminates in a required field trip to Richmond.

    Black Queer Culture – Instructor: Timothy Griffiths

    In the now-essential critical anthology Black Queer Studies (2005), scholars … announced three primary reasons for the formalization of black queer cultural studies: the need for a usable past in African American culture for black queer people, the traditionally patriarchal and heterosexist tendencies of African American cultural studies, and a perceived inhospitality in women’s and gender studies toward research on race as it intersected with gender and sexuality. When Barry Jenkins’ film Moonlight won the Oscar for Best Picture in 2017, it was a sign to some that at least some minor progress had been made in the cultural representation of queer people of color. “Intersectionality,” though not always adequately defined, is now an acknowledged conceptual keyword of liberal and leftist culture. And in women’s and gender studies and African American studies, it is now becoming a given that critiques of race, gender, and sexuality are not hermetically sealed discourses, that the elevations and devaluations of certain identitarian markers are constellated in both deliberate and latent fashions. What are the primary critical problems faced by black queer cultural studies now and in the future? How can we continue to expand the usable past of black queer culture, opening up African American cultural production across its history to a black queer critical audience? Where have increases in black queer cultural representation succeeded and what are the discontents of cultural representation as a primary ethic of black queer liberation? How can or should we understand the relationship between the discursive histories of black feminism and black queer culture, and what conflicts have arisen in their mutual (but not always well-mapped) related growth? And finally, how do the anthologizing practices and theorizations of black queer culture elevate or exclude various iterations of black queer cultural expression, identity, or history? To answer these questions, we will engage a very broadly defined canon of black queer literature …

    American Natures – Instructor: Mary Kuhn

    This course explores an unconventional literary history of environmental thinking in America from the late eighteenth century to the present. We’ll move beyond the traditional environmental canon into (one) () one that gives us diverse perspectives on humanity’s connections to land and nature. We’ll focus on how writers have cultivated different forms and scales of environmental thought, and how they have positioned environmental thinking in relation to issues of social and environmental justice, including land dispossession, slavery, imperialism, and labor exploitation tied to resource extraction …

    Feminist Theory – Instructor: Susan Fraiman

    An introduction to US feminist criticism and theory. This course pairs novels and other works by women with critical and theoretical essays in order to contrast diverse feminist approaches. The syllabus is also informed by queer and critical race theory as well as postcolonial and cultural studies. I expect to explore such themes as mobility and migration, mother-daughter relations, the “male gaze,” incarceration/escape, female masculinity, and conflicts/commonalities among women. We will also broach such theoretical issues as how to periodize the development of feminist theory, the contributions of queer theory, the logic of canon formation, and the way gender intersects with other axes of identity (race, sexuality, disability, class, etc.) …

    Race in American Places – Instructor: Kenrick Grandison

    This interdisciplinary seminar uses the method of Critical Landscape Analysis to explore how everyday places and spaces, “landscapes,” are involved in the negotiation of power in American society. Landscapes, as we engage the idea, may encompass seemingly private spaces (within the walls of a suburban bungalow or of a government subsidized apartment) to seemingly public spaces (the vest pocket park in lower Manhattan where the Occupy Movement was launched in September 2011; the Downtown Mall, with its many privately operated outdoor cafés, that occupy the path along which East Main Street once flowed freely in Charlottesville; or even the space of invisible AM and FM radio waves that the FCC supposedly regulates in the public’s interest). We launch our exploration by considering landscapes as arenas of the Culture Wars. With this context, we unearth ways in which places are planned, designed, constructed, and mythologized in the struggle to assert and enforce social (especially racial) distinctions, difference, and hierarchy. You will be moved to understand how publicly financed freeways were planned not only to facilitate some citizens’ modern progress, but also to block others from accessing rights, protections, and opportunities to which casually we believe all “Americans” are entitled. We study landscapes not only as represented in written and non-written forms, but also through direct sensory, emotional, and intellectual experience during two mandatory field trips to places in our region. In addition to informal group exercises and individual mid-term exam, critical field trip reflection paper, and final exam, you are required to complete in small groups a final research project on a topic you choose that relates to the seminar. Past topics have ranged from the racial politics of farmers’ markets in gentrifying inner cities to the gender–and the transgender exclusion—politics of universal standards for public restroom pictograms. Students showcase such results in an informal symposium that culminates the semester. Not only will you expand the complexity and scope of your critical thinking abilities, but also you will never again experience as ordinary the spaces and places you encounter from day to day.

    SPRING-

    Conjuring Race and Gender in National Memory – Instructors: Sarah Ingle

    This course examines the various forms of literal and figurative “conjuring” that have been used throughout American history to create and control the boundaries of race and gender. What is the source of this magic that has the power to turn a person into a piece of property or a woman into a second-class citizen? How does this metamorphosis take place? Throughout the semester, we will use literature, film, music, and other artistic media to explore how American writers and other artists have used conjuring as a metaphor to help them represent the strange ways in which race and gender transform and control people’s lives, as well as the powers that enable individuals to resist those transformations …

    Post-Reconstruction – Instructor: Timothy Griffiths

    In this course we will examine American literature of the Post-Reconstruction period, an under regarded and amorphous time in American literary development occurring between roughly 1877–1914. With a special emphasis on African American and women’s literature, we will consider how writers of this period anticipated American modernism; radically altered thought on the intersectional nature of race, class, gender, and sexuality in the republic; and gave birth to literary movements that are still vital today …

    Theories of Reading – Instructor: Rita Felski

    How and why do we read? …This course is divided into two parts. The first part, on critical reading, surveys influential forms of literary theory, including structuralism, Marxism, psychoanalysis, deconstruction, feminism, postcolonialism, and queer theory. In the second half, we will explore everyday experiences of reading that are either ignored or treated with suspicion in literary theory: identification and recognition; empathy; enchantment and self-loss; horror and shock; fandom and the pleasure of collective reading …

    Contemporary Disability Theory – Instructor: Christopher Krentz

    In the last several decades, thinking about people with physical, cognitive, and sensory differences has moved from an exclusively pathological medical-based understanding to a more rights-based framework. In this course we will consider how conceptions of disability have changed and how these theories relate to the depiction of disabled people in literature … Students in the class will also be asked to attend at least one disability-related event on Grounds …

    Critical Race theory – Instructor: Marlon Ross

    What does race mean in the late 20th and early 21st century? Given the various ways in which race as a biological “fact” has been discredited, why and how does race continue to have vital significance in politics, economics, education, culture, arts, mass media, and everyday social realities? How has the notion of race shaped, and been shaped by, changing relations to other experiences of identity stemming from sexuality, class, disability, multiculturalism, nationality, and globalism? This course surveys major trends in black literary and cultural theory from the 1960s to the present, focusing on a series of critical flashpoints that have occurred over the last several decades. These flashpoints include: 1) the crisis over black authenticity during the Black Power/ Black Arts movement; 2) the schisms related to womanism (or women of color feminism), focused on Alice Walker’s novel The Color Purple and the Steven Spielberg film adaptation; 3) the debate over the social construction of race (poststructuralist theory); 4) the debate over queer racial identities, focused on two films, Cheryl Dunye’s The Watermelon Woman and Barry Jenkins’ 2016 film Moonlight; 5) racial violence and the law, focused on the Ferguson and the Black Lives Matter movement; and 6) the aesthetic movement called Afrofuturism. Other reading will include a variety of theoretical essays and chapters drawn from different disciplines, including legal theory, film and media studies, sociology, history, political theory, and hip hop studies. While concentrating on theories of race deriving from African American studies, we’ll also touch on key texts from Native American, Asian-American, and Chicanx studies. The goal of the course is to give you a solid grounding in the vocabulary, key figures, concepts, debates, and discursive styles comprising the broad sweep of theoretical race studies from the late- twentieth century to the present, and to nurture your own theorizing about race and its deep cultural impact.”

    See: https://www.baconsrebellion.com/wp/virginias-disconnected-youth

    • With 2 children at UVa, I’ll assure the world that the place is not ruining our youth. The culture is not toxic, but that also doesn’t mean there aren’t numerous liberal (mostly) or conservative (some) thought groups that I would find objectionable. The suggestion that these courses are evidence of a breeding ground for rot in American society can only be true when a lack of variety in heard viewpoints is required to maintain one’s belief system. Echo chambers are bad things. The young woman suffers from the same issue. She shoots white supremacist labels and hate at anything that twitches around her. I think the tortured connection between her medical disability and the grievances on her sign evidence this.

  6. Wow to the 2nd power!

    Can someone please abridge this for ease of understanding.

    • Baconator with extra cheese

      Sure… UVA likes to teach that white supremecy rules the world and has oppressed all others. So essentially they have reinforced the social unrest and have taught students to rail agaist it. So now they have it…. and like I said above they need to put their money where their mouth is and tear it all down.
      The young lady actually has a point…. they should rip down all their historical buildings so they can comply with every socially acceptable rule they want imposed on others. Tear up their precious Lawn so any and all can use it as a safe space. All the white professors should resign so their positions can be given to BIPOCs… and all the legacys should be abolished from attending to end the cycle of privilege. And as an ultimate act of self-flagellation turn over that endowment to BLM. This is what UVA states they believe in… now live it.

  7. I read her statement and still do not know what her complaint is. Apparently, she suffered some injury to her leg or foot and had a lot of trouble getting around the Lawn. Frankly, I could never see why “The Lawn” is considered such a treat. They are drafty, damp hovels.
    Also, you you run her through Google you will learn that she had quite a record in her high school, is an athlete, works a number of hours a week as an EMT in the Charlottesville area and heads a Pakistani student association.
    That said, I was disappointed with Jim’s take on this. I found this passage especially cringeworthy:
    “The institution was not made for people like her? No kidding. The University of Virginia was founded in 1819 when the closest Muslims were a few thousand miles away in Morocco. And for the record, Muslim potentiates had been raiding merchant vessels and enslaving Europeans until Thomas Jefferson put an end to the practice during the Barbary Wars, so, no, the institution was not made for “people like her.” In the ensuing years, if UVa evolved as an institution without adapting to the presence of Muslims, it was because, for all practical purposes, there were no Muslims in Virginia.”

    Huh? Was UVA made for people like you in mind?> White males os a WASP background? Irish and Italians need not apply? Why bring up the Barbary Pirates? What does that have to do with her? The more you go on, the more you make her point for her.
    And, once again,. I find what the old white alumn did in driving all the way to confront her at her personal residence to be really creepy. Who does this guy thing he is? If I had been her, I would have called the cops immediately. Oh, forgive me, he was “polite.” Must be a Southern gentleman.

  8. I read her statement and still do not know what her complaint is. Apparently, she suffered some injury to her leg or foot and had a lot of trouble getting around the Lawn. Frankly, I could never see why “The Lawn” is considered such a treat. They are drafty, damp hovels.
    Also, you you run her through Google you will learn that she had quite a record in her high school, is an athlete, works a number of hours a week as an EMT in the Charlottesville area and heads a Pakistani student association.
    That said, I was disappointed with Jim’s take on this. I found this passage especially cringeworthy:
    “The institution was not made for people like her? No kidding. The University of Virginia was founded in 1819 when the closest Muslims were a few thousand miles away in Morocco. And for the record, Muslim potentiates had been raiding merchant vessels and enslaving Europeans until Thomas Jefferson put an end to the practice during the Barbary Wars, so, no, the institution was not made for “people like her.” In the ensuing years, if UVa evolved as an institution without adapting to the presence of Muslims, it was because, for all practical purposes, there were no Muslims in Virginia.”

    Huh? Was UVA made for people like you in mind?> White males os a WASP background? Irish and Italians need not apply? Why bring up the Barbary Pirates? What does that have to do with her? The more you go on, the more you make her point for her.
    And, once again,. I find what the old white alumn did in driving all the way to confront her at her personal residence to be really creepy. Who does this guy thing he is? If I had been her, I would have called the cops immediately. Oh, forgive me, he was “polite.” Must be a Southern gentleman.

  9. re: ” The University of Virginia was founded in 1819 when the closest Muslims were a few thousand miles away in Morocco. And for the record, Muslim potentiates had been raiding merchant vessels and enslaving Europeans until Thomas Jefferson put an end to the practice during the Barbary Wars, so, no, the institution was not made for “people like her.”

    sometimes fetid things “leak” here in BR

    We’re demonizing folks for their ethinicity because some perceived ancestors did bad things?

    UVA is not for muslims because they did bad things?

    Everything after that in the commentary is a bit tainted, methinks.

    • This is precisely the kind of idiotic argument I should have anticipated and should have avoided by not publishing that passage. No, Larry, I am NOT demonizing Azher for her ethnicity. I am NOT saying “UVa is not for Muslims.” I did neither of those things. That is you deliberately and knowingly distorting what I said and meant.

      If you’re not deliberately distorting my words, the alternative explanation is that you are incapable of engaging in a critical reading of someone else’s text. I’d suggest a course in remedial reading.

      • Jim – I was not the only one who saw that and commented on it.

        this is an exact quote:

        ” The University of Virginia was founded in 1819 when the closest Muslims were a few thousand miles away in Morocco. And for the record, Muslim potentiates had been raiding merchant vessels and enslaving Europeans until Thomas Jefferson put an end to the practice during the Barbary Wars, so, no, the institution was not made for “people like her.”

        Maybe you were tongue-in-cheek but it came out wrong when part of the entire issue is about diversity at UVA and it’s past history with respect to people of color.

        I’m willing to apologize if you think I am wrong – I did not purposely “misintepret” it.. I read it as face value and again – not the only one.

    • Her contention is that UVa was not made for people like her. Her actual words were, ”As a Muslim woman of color at this University, I am constantly and painstakingly aware that this institution was not made for people like me, and everyday, the University continues to function and uphold white supremacist ideals that makes this very clear for marginalized students across the Grounds.”

      Bacon correctly agrees that UVa was not made for people like her. UVa is 201 years old. When it was “made” (in 1819) it was made for wealthy young white men. Presumably Azher meant to write something more like this – “UVa was not made for people like me and has not evolved into a place for people like me.” Nobody disputes that the university of 1819 was not started with an eye to welcoming Muslim women of color.

      Jim Bacon continues by pointing out that a lot of things that were “made” in 1819 are different than they are today including the practice of the slave trade by North African Muslims. While Bacon never wrote it, he could have asked whether Ms Azher supports all of the actions and beliefs of her Muslim ancestors of the early 1800s. Presumably she does not. Why then does the UVa of 1819 have any bearing on her today?

    • They wouldn’t have called them “Muslims” anyway, if Article 11 of the Treaty of Tripoli is any indication. Passed both houses unanimously and signed by Adams02, it says
      “ARTICLE 11. As the government of the United States of America is not in any sense founded on the Christian Religion,-as it has in itself no character of enmity against the laws, religion or tranquility of Musselmen,-and as the said States never have entered into any war or act of hostility against any Mehomitan nation, it is declared by the parties that no pretext arising from religious opinions shall ever produce an interruption of the harmony existing between the two countries.”

      Added benefit — Note, not in anyway a Christian nation we is.

    • “We’re demonizing folks for their ethinicity because some perceived ancestors did bad things?”

      You do it all the time.

      • and you will continued to be ignored for ad hominems.

        • It is not an ad hominem attack to factually describe your behavior.

          You routinely and regularly demand that people of European ancestry be held responsible for the behavior of their ancestors. That is a factual description of your behavior.

          • That is your OPINION dude and it’s personalized to an individual AND it’simply not true. But that does not matter, because your motive is to impugn someone PERSONALLY because you donj’t like what they say – fail in your own arguments.

            What I say aobut “ancestry” is that people today still suffer from the longer term systemic effects of things done in the past specific to slavery – i.e. government and institutional discrimination done primarily by white people towards blacks folks who were slaves – and their descendants.

            You and others who disagree, purposely misrepreent this on a routine basis because you don’t like the truth and facts so you distract.

            Now I know that your response will be more personal attacks so we’ll conclude and continue as before.

  10. Baconator with extra cheese

    Peter, is it creepy for another old white (because it was very important that you point out his whiteness I’ll point out your complexion) dude to be Googling her and then discussing her personal life on a blog? Just saying…. doxing is not cool.
    And I will say it is never OK for anyone to go knock on someone else’s door to confront them….

    • Baconator. It is on LinkedIn so it is fair game. She obviously placed it there to be seen and make contacts. It’s not like I’m checking FICO scores.

      • I agree. When you post things on social media you are advertising to the world whatever you post. I did some checking too. On Facebook she made a point of “checking in” to the Abdallah Mosque in Havana, Cuba in June.

        Once she recovers from the personal affront of not having a ramp installed into her lawn room it would actually be interesting to hear Ms Azher’s perspective on the level of “welcomeness” for Muslim people of color between UVa and Cuba.

        • Well, we know how welcome atheists are in Muslim societies…still a Sharia capital offense, as far as I know.

          • They have a very easy understanding of guests. If your are invited in, you’re a guest, and they consider it bad form to execute guests… or so it is written, but then, people do find a way, now don’t they?

          • To add to NN’s post, they also find it more shameful to say “no” than to lie.

            Hence the often used phrase of Inshallah.

    • A privilege of being an aged male, you can be a dirty old man.

      The daughter came to visit this weekend. We watched the 1st episode of Netflix’s “Emily in Paris”. I mentioned that the young lady reminds me of Audrey Hepburn when she was starting at 19 and that she’s damned cute for a 20-something. My daughter looked up the actress, Lily Collins, and said, “She’s 31, Dad. There now you don’t have to feel creepy.”

  11. Baconator, I am white and becoming elderly. I am three weeks older than Bacon

  12. “We’re demonizing folks for their ethnicity because some perceived ancestors did bad things?” That coming from Larry makes this whole fetid excercise worthwhile. Oh the irony….No “sins of the fathers” inherited guilt for anybody but us evil Europeans….

    Of course there were Muslims in the US of A in the 18th Century. Not many…but they were here. Some but not all were enslaved. Even more in the Spanish territories, probably.

    • Hint: We all had a sordid past. The key is too try hard avoiding a sordid present.

    • Actually the Koran was a best selling book in America back in Jefferson’s day.

      https://www.history.com/news/thomas-jefferson-quran-rashida-tlaib-keith-ellison

    • not only here but were pirates and other bad guys ….. and according to some, that’s reason enough to diss modern day muslims?

      I think that gal has some issues but would it be not wrong to ask if she originally came to UVA thinking it WAS for her and once there found out it was not?

      Would that be a valid complaint?

      • Nobody ‘dissed modern day Muslims for the pirates of the past any more than Azher ‘disses modern day Virginians for the sins of Virginia’s past. Both were engaged in the slave trade. Neither are now. Presumably she can accept the relics of Islamic society’s history as the past but can’t do the same for America’s history. If she wants to point fingers at the sins of societies from 201 years ago she should point more broadly.

        Focus. UVa was not made for me is a very different statement than UVa does not work for me now. 201 years is a long time. That’s how old UVa is. It wasn’t made for her. Who would argue that? I can assure you that the prevailing practices of Islam (or Catholicism for that matter) in 1819 weren’t made for her either. Her artless claim that UVa wasn’t made for people like her is illogical and irrelevant.

        Jim Bacon may have been a bit too aggressive and granular in his take-down of her comment about UVa not being made for people like her. But it was a dumb thing to write and she got called on it.

        Does she have valid complaints? Maybe. Probably. She writes in such a histrionic manner it’s hard to tell. The closest she comes to a bill of particulars is not getting a ramp for her lawn room. After that, I have no idea what specific sleights she has faced.

      • Let’s see. Mr. Haner says almost exactly the same thing I did about your obsession with applying inherited guilt to people of European ancestry, and you don’t whine about ad hominem attacks? Is the term ad hominem really that malleable for you?

        Note: This is not a criticism of Mr. Haner. I, too, do not consider what he said to be an ad hominem attack – but neither was my previous comment about your tendencies.

        • That’s your characterization and it’s personal so it’s rejected. I’ll debate you point for point on the facts and issues but will not tolerate personal attacks. your choice.

          • On the issues: I reject the concept of inherited guilt. Do you reject this concept?

          • I’m not even sure exactly what “inherited guilt” means. It sounds like a construct that some folks use to deflect from whether or not harm done to people in the past and carried through the generations is not real. I specifically mean things done to a particular race of people – by the government and institutions as opposed to individual and societal actions.

          • “I specifically mean things done to a particular race of people – by the government and institutions”

            Excellent. Please enumerate the exact things that are, right now, today, being “done to a particular race of people – by the government and institutions”.

          • If you were serious, I’d engage you but you’re not.. you’re just looking around for trouble.

      • “I think that gal has some issues but would it be not wrong to ask if she originally came to UVA thinking it WAS for her and once there found out it was not?”

        Do you think she did not know the University was founded by Thomas Jefferson? That seems to be one of her main complaints.

        • I dunno. She’s young and a different culture which makes one wonder how much she knows and understands about “white supremacy” and the whole thing but she seems to have something that UVA does not what to mess with.

          I don’t know if she is a foreign student or an immigrant or what.

          There’s a lot we don’t know about her.

          • “There’s a lot we don’t know about her.”

            Then why are you speculating. I thought you dealt in facts.

          • who says I am? See, you back to picking here… eh?

            why don’t you go fiddle with yourself for a while if you need amusement?

          • “Different culture”

            That is speculation. How do you know she is of a different culture? You said you do not know if she is foreign or an immigrant. How do you know she was not born in the U.S.? More speculation on your part.

            Why don’t you GFY?

          • PS – since the door has been opened for us to have our own personal definitions for things, I should note that GFY stands for “Get Frozen Yogurt” – or “Go Fiddle YOURself”. I have not yet decided which…

  13. sounds like she’s a rejected ISIS bride-to-be.
    she couldn’t help destroy Palmyra or the Mosul Library – so she settled on the Lawn.

    • No no, dear kls. This is what assimilation looks like in 2020. 2nd-gen South Asians are practically the tip of the spear for performative bourgeois wokeness. They’re remarkably clear-eyed about what the dominant strains of culture and social habit are in America. When the dominant strain was apple-pie patriotism, the Italians and Poles jumped. This is how modern immigrants do the same.

      Latinos IME are less susceptible to this sort of thing, mainly because neither side of the culture war actually treats them writ large like citizens, let alone human beings. My Mexican cousins in Idaho are figured to be some sort of subaltern class of lawncare providers for comfy fertilizer salesmen and Bay Area tech refugees. Here in VA they’re much the same, and when they’re taken seriously as political actors, it’s only in service of fundamentally white concerns regarding white-black race relations. In each case, they’re seen first and foremost in relation to other populations — not as a component of the American nation in themselves. Why would you assimilate if this was the case for you?

      • so much for the melting pot and immigrant opportunity?

        • i just want to sit in on her first job interview when this comes up!

        • Pretty much. When political discourse is basically “what grievances can you bring to bear against the historic demographic majority?”, there’s no real incentive to assimilate — just an incentive to rent-seek as an oppressed outgroup. That is assuming, of course, that your rent-seeking is enabled by media largesse. I think a major factor in the slow’n’steady increase of the GOP’s Latino vote share is the growing realization that the core of woke politics = white neurotics having night terrors about Jim Crow’s lingering legacy, not = building a future nation which includes them as full members.

          • are you saying that the GOP is gradually winning over people of color? 😉

          • Someone joked to me recently that the Republicans ought to go all-in on being the Male Party, just based on trends among white women and Latino men.

          • “the core of woke politics = white neurotics having night terrors about Jim Crow’s lingering legacy…

            Harsh but fair.

          • indeed:

          • Larry: that’s a great pic, but Getty has some truly beautiful gloss prints of cherry-picked LEO abuse if you’re really looking to buy.

            Here are some other fun images:

            https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/proxy/CKNhPiyLGyL7OsL20B9BaICjOHXTZBzfALh1ip0LLLanIbqrohE9xQFKxNEoQW_W6wtVIkJLaxh34V4QAAC4ZF1RROQyn52KmLOCJxA2eVjg1nfOzHDiuCYpuOXT5nMxm2b96o7b9vVqY5vPGC2RtEei-Q

            It’s difficult for anyone to dispute that race remains a meaningful factor in police abuse, to say nothing of broader economic equality. I also think — just based on the data — that we are experiencing no such epidemic of killings that could justify near-permanent protest camps in our major downtowns, to say nothing of “direct action” against ATMs and fast food establishments. The outrage in June was spawned by extremely selective (and politically motivated) reporting. Just the same, Fox clips of DC aflame tended to make people think twice about supporting BLM.

            I don’t want to say “it’s all the media,” but, I mean, it kinda is.

          • I was just ruminating on where all that white neurotic “woke” came from…. and then it sorta exploded into all kinds of reactions to systemic racism and all that and folks on the right and here in BR went ape shit over it and still are…

            so now, it’s a big swirling thing… impressive…

            😉 but that photo sort of takes us back to where things started to go high order?

  14. Kls59
    Every day I wonder why I bother with Br. Your racist, sexist and xenophobic comment drives that home.
    Thank you
    Peter Galuszka

    • sorry, but the comment is not racist, sexist, nor xenophobic. i did not mention her race, gender, or national origin. it was an inquiry [‘sounds like’] as to her motives. i didn’t state it was the reason for her action, i only postulated, given her desire and willingness to destroy a World Heritage Site…which did occur in Palmyra. though the Mosul Library was not a UNESCO site, the organization was worried about the lose of the library and its collection.

      😉

  15. So, this all started when an entitled, spoiled child couldn’t get the University of Virginia to install a ramp into her lawn dorm room to accommodate her temporarily injured ankle? I guess that UVa offered her alternate housing until her ankle healed but that was inconvenient. Azher writes, “Even now, as I recover from surgery, I am forced to live outside of my room because the University still refuses to make this campus safe and accessible.”

    Oh the humanity!

    This whole hissy-fit meltdown started over a ramp into a lawn room?

    If she’ll stop defacing historically and architecturally significant buildings with profanity I’ll start a GoFundMe drive to raise the money to buy her a ramp into her lawn room. I’ll even put the first $100 into the account myself.

    As for being a “person of color” … every one of my Sicilian-American in-laws has darker skin than she has. They’ll be tickled when I tell them that they are “people of color”.

    • so… all of this Alumni “stuff” and creepy guy stuff over some messed up muslim?

      lord.

      • More over the inability of President James Ryan or the UVa Board of Visitors maintaining control of the school. Easters weekend was a tradition when I went to UVa. High school friends from all over came to UVa to stay with me and party during Easters. The SPE fraternity initiated the weekend by burning a car on their front lawn. Just after I graduated a number of serious problems arose. The Sigma Chi fraternity rented a U-Haul, packed it with students and booze and took off for Randolf Macon. It crashed killing several people and injuring many. Although the crash had nothing to do with Easters it was all the administration needed. Easters was dramatically toned down and then canceled.

        There was no bleating about students’ constitutional right to free association by the administration. There was no hand waving about the fraternity houses not being owned by the university or being on university property. Easters was gone.

        There was a certain level of order, discipline and decorum that was maintained between the deans and the students. Easters had gotten out of hand and most students knew it. The administration would ask Charlottesville police to raid any fraternity parties occurring on what was Easters weekend. The administration had ways of getting what they wanted and the students vaguely understood that it was for the best to comply.

        The administration could hassle Ms Azher until she modified her sign to remove the profanity. They could take action and then let Azher sue them. But they don’t. They let the chaos continue even taking steps to ensure nobody removes the profane sign.

        That’s what this is about, Larry. Not some petulant child throwing a temper tantrum but an administration that won’t even try to maintain a reasonable level of decorum and a Board of Visitors that spends its time licking the boots of Virginia’s political class.

        • this would not be a gnat on a dogs butt except for the “anti-woke” alumni.

          In the middle of all this back and forth: ” University of Virginia president: ‘UVA will not walk away from Thomas Jefferson’”

          ” CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WVIR) – University of Virginia President Jim Ryan is sharing his thoughts on the future of the Thomas Jefferson statue and more in written remarks published by the university.

          Ryan says he received many notes and some of them were skeptical, but in the end, he has a clear view of the Jefferson statue: it will stay.”

          and in BR – crickets………..

          cuz that dang obsenity on that dang door on the dang lawn – cannot stand… in the minds of some…. priorities you know…..

          • It’s the profanity. Demonstrates a certain illiteracy. In the conversation with Ryan Azher couldn’t defend her statements. She’s a child throwing a profane temper tantrum and the profanity shouldn’t be allowed.

  16. Absolutely LarrytheG. You are dealing with a pack of aging Ayatollahs with some associating with THE university. They have trouble because the world is changing and rich, smart, entitled white boys matter less.

    • and it does “leak” out …. I must say some white guys get older without all this “stuff”…. sorry to use technical language… 😉

      I actually fear what would happen to BR is folks like you and a few others here left… and BR was left to it’s own devices….

      It would undoubtedly become an even bigger festering antpile!

      • Surprising you’d say that, Larry since even though I haven’t gone to the effort to calculate, I’d wager you are near the top numerical count-wise of sheer numbers of posts by posters on the blog no matter the subject…

      • LarrytheBiden – the only thing leaking is more of your IQ points as you stumble around spraining your brain with spurious arguments and off-topic comments. You might also want to stick with using words you understand. For example, what is an antpile? It’s not really a word. Anthill is a word but not antpile.

        It does have a slang meaning though.

        It refers to group sex usually involving furries. Using it in a sentence, “Peter, Larry and Nancy went to a heck of an antpile last night at Eric the Half Troll’s house.”

        Of course, now that you’ve dug yourself a hole with the antpile analogy I guess you’ll want to keep digging and find out what a “furry” might be in this context.

        https://nypost.com/2016/05/06/inside-the-life-of-a-furry/

        This blog reminds you of a festering bunch of people dressed up as animals having group sex?

        And you say Donald Trump is crazy.

        • whoa! what kind are you drinking or maybe smoking?

          😉

          • Read the urban dictionary definition of antpile. You used the term. Why is this hard to understand?

          • well no, I had my own meaning… you just had trouble with it.

          • LarrytheG –

            So now you’re questioning whether a man is on drugs because he doesn’t know your PERSONAL definition of a word?

            Amazing.

          • really. He chose his own definition clearly different from mine so I can only speculate his problems… could be worse than smoking… 😉 no?

    • God don’t say that. It took me my whole life just to become one of those.

    • Ageism, misandry, racism and multiple ad hominem attacks. All in the space of three sentences. The kind of statement that would have you vomiting your lunch of quiche and pinot noir if the same statement had been made by President Trump about women or minorities.

      Like so many liberal statements it is devoid of any actual relationship to the matter at hand – a profane sign on UVa’s campus put up by a spoiled child who had to move housing units because the lawn room where she lived didn’t have a handicap ramp she temporarily needed. Or, the feckless administration that wouldn’t take any action to remove the profanity.

      You want this matter to disappear because it actually calls attention to the liberal twit running UVa and a lot of alumni and donors are taking notice. You know the liberal twit – a rich, smart, entitled white boy.

  17. Pretty little thing.

    Damn, now I feel creepy again.

  18. You are spot on, Jim. Great analysis of the “FYOU girl.” Also, I’m very proud of my daughter, Hooper Neale’17, who wrote President Ryan and the BOV. You quoted part of her letter in your analysis. An interesting side note is that many of Hooper’s friends agree with her, but are afraid to speak out since many “woke” friends attack them as racist for disagreeing.

    Academia has drummed into the heads of many millennials of all colors that traditional American institutions and US culture are systemically racist, and all white citizens’ success is predicated on “white privilege” not personal hard work. Many millennials who disagree are viciously attacked on social media. Free speech and open discourse are not the hallmark of the Progressive Left.

    • I don’t agree with you but I also think people need to stand up for what they believe even if it costs them.

      You have to be true to thine own self or otherwise live with your own complictness.

      All those folks out in streets over George Floyd are showing courage and it can cost them. You have to make those choices but blaming others for your own lack of courage is not virtue.

      If UVA is truly wrong – then more than Alumni need to speak up – and especially the students who disagree. What kind of person continues to go to a University that they do not respect anyhow? They want the degree so much even if they disrespect the institution?

      We all make choices and most of us have regrets but we need to own them.

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