In the wake of the murder of George Floyd and the weeks of protests after his death, Davidson alumni and students created the Instagram account @POCatDavidson to document and share stories of BIPOC students, faculty, and staff at Davidson. While many Jewish students at Davidson do not identify as people of color, they still hold a identity marginal to our school’s dominant culture. The 2020 Jewish Student Union has dedicated a space here for the anecdotes and stories of Jewish students.
For more digital resources with similar missions and styles take a look at the Davidson Microaggressions Project and @POCatDavidson.
* * *
On my Odyssey trip all the groups came together at Lake Campus. I was wearing a t-shirt that I got when I was in Israel with Hebrew writing. I was excited to meet new people, especially ones who could become my friends over the next four years. A kid I was talking to asked if I was Jewish as he motioned to my shirt. I said yes, excited that I had met another Jewish person. “Are you?” I asked. “No,” he replied. “But I am accepting.”Anonymous, Class of 2021
* * *
One evening on my way out of Commons, I passed a table of fellow students and overheard a bit of their conversation. “Jewish kids always get to go to private school,” one said. “Yeah, fuck the Jewish kids!” their friend responded.
It’s always frustrating to be confronted with how minimally people are educated about Jewishness, but more than anything, the comment made me sad – sad that these stereotypes persist, thereby erasing Jews who don’t fit into them, and sad that we (white-functioning Jews included) so often fall back on stereotypes instead of seeking solidarity and uniting to fight white, Christian supremacy.Anonymous, Class of 2022
* * *
The night after the Nazis were revealed at Davidson, two people came up to me in Union. I was talking to a friend about the Nazis, and my feelings/thoughts around their presence, as well as my very real fear for my safety. These two students, who I knew relatively well, overheard our conversation and decided that they would start telling me about how this was really an instance of free speech, pontificating about the legal perspective, and whether it was really that big of a deal what the Nazis did/said.
Their complete disregard for the impact the Nazis had on me and other students and their desire to facilitate a conversation on their own beliefs by silencing my experiences and fears was really disheartening. One of those students remained a close friend to many of my own friends for quite some time, even after I told my friends about the experience.Anonymous, Class of 2022