National Merit Scholar Chanequa Campbell
“Rarely have I met someone as highly educated
and articulate,” says her lawyer.

NEW YORK POST, May 26, 2009—A brilliant scholar from Brooklyn is being eyed as the possible link between a slain pot dealer and three men who killed him in her Harvard dorm last week, sources said.

Chanequa Campbell, 21, has been banned from the campus and told she won’t be graduating with her class next month as authorities continue to investigate the murder of Justin Cosby, her lawyer said.

“I’m hurt and I’m confused,” Campbell told The Post last night. “For me not to be graduating is frustrating.

“Harvard is doing this to me because I’m black, I’m poor and I’m from Brooklyn.”

Actually, it’s not a parody. It’s a story in Tuesday’s New York Post. I called it a parody because when it got to Chanequa’s statement that Harvard had removed her from the campus and barred her from attending graduation because she’s poor and black and from Brooklyn (if Harvard is out to hurt poor black girls from Brooklyn, why did they admit her and educate her for four years?), the story passed the line from our usual normal-but-ridiculous-reality (black Harvard student named Chanequa getting involved in campus drug murder) to parody-reality.

In fact, the details are very vague, and I have no opinion as to whether Harvard is justified in excluding her from campus or not.

Here’s the rest of the article.

Investigators suspect Campbell used her swipe card to help Cosby—who lived in Cambridge but did not attend the university—gain access to the locked dorm to sell drugs on campus, the sources said.

But Campbell insisted she doesn’t know Cosby.

“I’ve never seen him before,” she said.

A second Harvard senior who has been questioned in the case, Brittany Smith, 22, will be allowed to graduate June 4 as planned.

Smith is the longtime girlfriend of accused killer Jabrai Jordan Copney, 20, a Harlem musician and son of a retired NYPD cop, who turned himself in on Thursday.

“This is incredibly hurtful to know it’s only me that has been kicked off campus,” Campbell said. “I’m feeling I’m being scapegoated and I can’t defend myself.”

She admitted to knowing Copney, but only through Smith.

Campbell, who suffers from the autoimmune disease lupus, is a sociology major and National Merit Scholar. She has won scholarships from Goldman Sachs, Coca-Cola and The New York Times.

She was a star student at Brooklyn’s Packer Collegiate Institute and is a member of the National Honor Society.

“I’ve been practicing law for almost 17 years and have rarely come across someone as highly educated and articulate as Chanequa,” said her lawyer, Jeffrey Karp.

He said his client worked four jobs to pay for her education.

“Harvard is being cold and callous,” the lawyer said. “What they have done to Chanequa is equivalent to having your house foreclosed and losing your job on the same day.”

Karp said the school did not give a reason for barring Campbell from graduating, but he’s still hopeful that something can be worked out to let her participate in the ceremony.

With Lorena Mongelli, Christina Carrega and Matthew Nestel

- end of initial entry -

May 27

Ken Hechtman writes:

Note to the New York Post: If you want to claim the subject of your story is “brilliant”—don’t quote her saying dumb things!

Something isn’t right about this story though. Chanequa Campbell was close to the victim and she’s being punished and called an “accomplice.” The other student was close to the killer and she gets questioned once and cleared. Maybe Harvard has a good reason for the different treatment but the Post hasn’t said what it is.

LA replies:

I agree, the story has big holes, and Harvard’s behavior is mysterious. To kick a student out of the campus, out of her dorm, without explanation, is wrong. I guess that they have damaging info connecting her to the crime and making her a dangerous person that they don’t want to disclose.

LA continues:

To amend what I said, apparently Harvard did have evidence that she allowed a drug dealer to enter the dorm.

Ken Hechtman replies:

My speculation is a bit more cynical than that. Suppose there’s no easy case to make against the other girl, for whatever reason. Then Harvard can do one of three things:

They can do nothing and then explain why, while ghetto gangsters are dropping bodies inside their student dorms, they’ve chosen to do nothing.

They can try to make the hard case using a campus police force of glorified security guards that don’t have the skills or resources for a real investigation. At best this will take time, during which time the public perception will be that they’re doing nothing.

Or they make the case they can make right now. They can prove Chanequa Campbell did *something* wrong. She used her Harvard ID to bring a minor criminal into the dorm so he could commit a minor crime. They punish her, that changes the story right now.

Tim W. writes:

First, Michelle Obama was so tormented by racism at Princeton that she felt compelled to write her thesis about it. Then, at Columbia, Madonna Constantine had a noose hung on her door (what became of that story, by the way?) while being investigated for plagiarism. And now this racist travesty at Harvard.

A black woman just can’t get justice in the Ivy League.

Richard writes:

You might want to check out my book review on the advantage affirmative action blacks get, especially at top universities.

Most people are unaware of the advantages that blacks have in American society. They’re shocked at behavior of people like Marion Barry and claims by black studies professors at the most prestigious universities. It’s a question of IQ. Meeting a white person who got accepted to a Harvard, you can be sure his IQ is high enough that things like this don’t happen. But thanks to massive affirmative action at all levels of society, blacks without the least bit of intelligence or common sense end up in positions of power and influence. You also might be interested in how white guilt works in unconscious affirmative action grading.

Affirmative Action grading doesn’t have to be official policy or even conscious. Ken Harber wrote an essay filled with grammatical and content errors and gave it to 92 white college students to grade. They were given different biographies of the author and some indirectly revealed that he was black. On a scale of 7, papers that the white students thought were written by a black person got a grade of 3.5 and papers they thought were written by a white person got 2.7. On the essays supposedly written by a white some students wrote things like “when I read college work this bad I want to lay my head down on the table and cry.” The comments written on the essays supposedly written by a black were overwhelmingly positive. The mystery of how Michelle Obama could graduate from Stanford while not mastering basic English is solved.

Posted by Lawrence Auster at May 27, 2009 12:16 AM | Send

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