Depicting a black professor as a gorilla being sodomized by his white supervisor was just the beginning. Sign my petition calling on California’s attorney general to investigate systemic racism at UCLA.
Dr. Christian Head was a respected surgeon at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA). But because he is black, Dr. Head was the target of blatant discrimination — including a public presentation that featured an image depicting Dr. Head as a gorilla being sodomized by his white supervisor.
Dr. Head fought back. After more than 100,000 people signed a petition supporting him on Change.org, his lawyers were able to secure a landmark settlement from UCLA. But Dr. Head was far from the only faculty member to experience racism at UCLA.
In fact, a shocking new study reveals that the problem is extremely widespread. As a national board member of the NAACP who lives in Los Angeles, I am abhorred that a prestigious public university like UCLA would turn a blind eye to the systematic degradation of its non-white faculty members.
That’s why I started a petition on Change.org calling on California’s attorney general, Kamala Harris, to launch an investigation into racism at UCLA to determine if civil rights laws have been violated and to recommend solutions. Click here to sign my petition.
The Los Angeles Times reports that the recent campus-wide study of racism at UCLA — led by former California Supreme Court Justice Carlos Moreno — said that UCLA regularly ignored complaints about discrimination and retaliation. One Latino professor reported being called a racial slur by a colleague in front of his students. He says he was told that reporting what happened to him would only “cause more trouble.”
Since UCLA refuses to take action to address systemic racism on campus, it’s time for Attorney General Harris to step in.
As a strong woman of color in California leadership, Attorney General Harris is uniquely positioned to take swift and decisive action to address UCLA’s pernicious culture of discrimination. I know that if thousands of people sign my petition, Attorney General Harris will respond, just as a petition created key pressure to enable Dr. Head to win his settlement from UCLA.
Ron Hasson Los Angeles, CA