On October 30th, Courtland Milloy chose to depict Howard University students as apathetic fried-chicken lusting coons to make the case of how President Dumbya was so incompetent that he could even get a rise out of such degenerates on a routine trip in his Sunday column. Three days later, he bypassed Bush and went straight into defense mode, assailing the Howard community even more for taking issue with the way he described the student body. The next day, Milloy played damage control, speaking with our campus paper, the Hilltop, noting that he’s written hundreds of articles praising Howard (good luck finding them, though); that he loves Howard students, going as far as to call us the “Talented Tenth” (People actually still subscribe to this elitist and trite notion?). Today, Milloy arrived on campus to speak with several journalism students to umm….your guess is as good as mine.
I had the “privilege” of attending this poorly advertised engagement (shocker there) with Mr. Milloy. He comes across the same way in person as he does in his columns — yeah, I really like him now.
Milloy spent much of the time not answering the questions. Ever the condescending one, when one student asked why he chose to depict us as coons, Milloy responded, “Perhaps you’re seeing something inside of you,” taking a stab at psycho analysis. I take it he didn’t do his research again: you were speaking to students in the School of Communications, not the College of Arts and Sciences. Take your psycho babble up the hill, Milloy.
In one instance, Milloy made it seem as if the sole attempt of his column was to provoke thought, to encourage activism, and to address the larger issue at hand (whatever that is). In another, Milloy said he was writing off the top of his head; the words just flew out of him, with no intended message in mind to release.
As he did in his second column, Milloy totally sideswiped our real grievance with him and instead chose to go into unrelated topics: Our homecoming fashion show from two years ago, how our alumni contribute…or don’t contribute, and the Punch Out, a restaurant area for students.
Finally, I get my chance to ask a question — well several really. I can’t remember what I said verbatim (a first lol), but I asked him why is he acting as if he’s honestly shocked at the reaction he received from the Howard community, since he’s made a career out of depicting blacks in a stereotypical manner to get a rise out of people. Wanted to know why he took the issue of political apathy into a Howard issue when it’s a generational issue. Inquired as to how any of his demeaning commentary will motivate anyone to become more politically active. Asked him why is he not answering anyone’s questions and instead engaging the room in a never-ending debate about how to properly depict blacks. I let him know that the tone of his articles was condescending, which prompted him to say, “You can’t get a tone from my words, that must be something you see inside yourself.” I gather his middle name is Phil. Whatever the case, the good doctor didn’t answer any of my questions, but I kept pressing him to until he finally said, “I’m not answering anymore of your questions.” Try answering one first.
Alright, I’ll be honest and admit to taking a swipe. When telling him I knew he had a history of depicting blacks in the same manner as he did in the columns in question, I said, “I really wish I had those columns on me, but like you in your first column, I’m unprepared.”
Another student asked him what was the point of his articles. She said she understood his first point in the first column – to attack Bush. But she didn’t understand why he attacked Howard in the next. She wanted to know what prompted him to take such action. His response, “I don’t know.”
Another student asked him how could he generalize and does he feel any irresponsibility. His response, “I don’t know.”
I wanted to ask another question. “Not you anymore,” Milloy quickly shouted.
He threw out a bunch of random facts that had nothing to do with the issue at hand; pretended to actually be concerned about the Howard community, yet took swipes at us the entire time; and boasted about his own work. In a nutshell, he delivered his column LIVE.
What a waste.