Demand the process be done by the book
Betsy DeVos selected Candice Jackson to be the acting head of the Department of Education’s Office of Civil Rights, circumventing the Senate’s confirmation process by choosing her to be the deputy assistant secretary of the office and not yet nominating someone to head the department. Jackson is an outspoken anti-feminist who claimed that she faced racial discrimination as a white woman at Stanford.
The Office of Civil rights at the DoE has the mission of protecting students from discrimination on the grounds of race, gender, age, and ability. Looking at Jackson’s history, she’s a terrible pick to be heading up this department. While at Stanford, in addition to contending that she was discriminated against, she wrote passionately against affirmative action for students of color. In the same publication, the Stanford Review, she wrote a different article promoting conservativism over feminism. And while she has advocated for victims of sexual assault in the past, she cast aspersions against the women who bravely came out and said that they were assaulted by Donald Trump.
In her book about the women who accused Former President Bill Clinton of assault, Jackson also criticized sexual harassment laws and said that they forced men to “self-censor themselves to avoid being accused of sexual harassment,” all the while ignoring Trump’s comments about non-consensual groping of women. Someone who believes that men should not have to “self-censor” those types of comments or actions is not someone who should be anywhere near a department that looks out for the civil rights of all students.
With her anti-affirmative action history and claims that she faced anti-white discrimination, Jackson is clearly ill-equipped to ensure equal access to education. She’s just once more piece of the dangerous team that the Trump administration is putting together — a team that is hostile toward the very offices they are supposed to represent. The Office of Civil Rights needs to be headed by someone who will advocate for every student and not project a political agenda onto the department.
Katie O’Connell, Digital Communications Coordinator