Nikole Hannah-Jones Snubs UNC Tenure Offer

When UNC trustees caved the other week and granted Nikole Hannah-Jones unearned tenure, everyone thought that would be the last of the controversy. Until this morning.

Well now, isn’t that just a slap in the face to UNC? I mean, she got what she wanted in spades. Tenure, a big paycheck, and the ability to force people into caving into her unreasonable demands. She should’ve been jumping up and down for joy over this and gleefully planning how to teach college students all about the failure that is the 1619 Project. 

Instead, she was quietly working behind the scenes to go elsewhere. 

Journalist Nikole Hannah-Jones on Tuesday announced she has decided to reject an offer to serve as the chair of the journalism department at the University of North Carolina, and that she will take a similar position at Howard University.

According to Jones, the whole controversy over tenure wasn’t anything of her making. Nope. This was all about discrimination against her because she is black.

Therefore, she dunks on UNC and is now headed to Howard University in Washington D.C. 

Hannah-Jones will also found a Center for Journalism and Democracy at Howard. She said it will aim to train journalism students from historically Black schools to “accurately and urgently [cover] the challenges of our democracy with a clarity, skepticism, rigor and historical dexterity that is too often missing from today’s journalism.”

I admit, it took me a good 15 minutes to quit laughing after reading that statement. Nikole Hannah-Jones, the architect of the pernicious 1619 Project that has been thoroughly debunked by GENUINE scholars is going to teach journalism?? Journalism with clarity and historical dexterity??? 

I guess historical dexterity means making shit up to fit your preferred narrative, because that is totally what her 1619 Project is. Then again, she spouts lots of false narratives, such as this regarding CRT and voter suppression.

Meanwhile, back at UNC, the faculty at the journalism school aren’t happy with this latest. But exactly WHO they are unhappy with is …illuminating. 

Our school highly regards Ms. Hannah-Jones’s work, ability, and achievements. We regret that the top echelons of leadership at UNC-Chapel Hill failed to follow established processes, did not conduct themselves professionally and transparently, and created a crisis that shamed our institution, all because of Ms. Hannah-Jones’s honest accounting of America’s racial history. It is understandable why Ms. Hannah-Jones would take her brilliance elsewhere.

Although our school and university espouse the ideals of transparency, equity, inclusivity, and fairness, the proclamation of such lofty goals without accompanying action toward dismantling systemic racism precludes substantive progress. North Carolina’s state motto is “To be rather than to seem.” And yet, Ms. Hannah-Jones would have been only the second Black woman to earn tenure in the School of Journalism and Media, a 70-year-old institution. The first earned tenure a mere three years ago. Ms. Hannah-Jones would have been the sole Black woman at the rank of full professor level in our school; at the university level, only 3.1% of tenured faculty are Black women.

“honest accounting of America’s racial history.” What a load of horseshit. As we’ve written repeatedly, Nikole Hannah-Jones 1619 Project was riddled with historical inaccuracies, and her Pulitzer participation trophy doesn’t change that salient fact. 

Secondly, let’s look at tenure. Essentially what it is, is a position granted to a professor who has been on the tenure track for several years. Tenure gives the professor have academic freedom with little to no repercussions from the university and/or board of trustees. Nikole Hannah-Jones was never on a tenure track at any university that I could find. Furthermore, in order to get tenure, the professor’s scholarship work needs to be accurate and…FACTUAL. Something her body of work is…NOT.

So, why would she want tenure? Oh, I don’t know. Perhaps so that anything she says, teaches, or does in relation to the 1619 Project or critical race theory can’t get her fired? 

The Hussman faculty at UNC says that it was racism that ultimately kept Nikole Hannah-Jones from accepting the tenured UNC job. 

No, it wasn’t racism. It is grift.

Nikole Hannah-Jones gamed the system for her benefit. While she insists that the entire controversy at UNC wasn’t of her making, as Legal Insurrection shows, she was most definitely front and center playing the media and her fans like a fiddle…err carnival barker. 

Feature Photo Credit: Original artwork by Victory Girls Darleen Click

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