Administrators confident they have done enough lip service now
BY BLAKE LEE MATER, Staff Writher
In response to widespread student protests, Xavier University has released a statement formally denouncing the Three-fifths Compromise.
A statement published on Xavier’s official Instagram account reads “Students, we see you. We care about you. We are committed to working with you for change. A few weeks ago, our students, faculty and staff protested anti-Blackness and systemic racism and were clear: personal, institutional and systemic racism are significant and real obstacles our students experience on Xavier’s campus. They are right. To all: Let Xavier University be clear, Black People Are Five-Fifths of a Person.”
The Three-fifths Compromise was created in 1787 at the Constitutional Convention and stated that enslaved individuals in southern states would count as three-fifths of a person for taxation and representation purposes. While the agreement was abandoned following the abolition of slavery and the expansion of the Union, Xavier University maintained the belief that Black Americans are legally less than one human.
Some students were confused by the timing of the statement. “I don’t get it. I mean it’s nice that they said something but, isn’t it a little bit late for this? Wasn’t that like a pre-Civil War legislation?” asked Lizzie Meyers, a Senior early childhood education major.
Sophomore English major and President of the African American Student Collective, Michael Kennedy, pointed out that Xavier did not listen to the student’s demands. “We just wanted them to say Black Lives Matter, not comment on an issue from the 1700s. Does this mean they had previously thought I was three-fifths of a human?”
Christian Abbort, President of Residents Against Putting Infant Souls Through Stress, was similarly unenthused. “None of this matters. Nothing matters until the sanctity of life at conception is protected. We will not rest until Roe v. Wade is overturned.”
Dave Dukes, a first-year business undecided major, decried the statement as “Xavier caving into the demands of liberal-fascist SJWs,” adding that Xavier is not doing enough to protect students who hang racist flags in their dorm room windows.
Jessica Krout, Vice President of Enrollment Management explained that Xavier will readjust its diversity statistics to reflect the change. “While Xavier has historically had very few black students enrolled, the number was actually lower than reality. Counting every student as an entire person not only allows Xavier to more accurately report its diversity statistics but will also ensure the university receives greater federal funding.”
“I didn’t realize they released a statement,” said Caleb Smith, a Junior Philosophy Politics and the Public major and President of the Melanin Deficient Students Club, as he looked through his email. “Oh here it is. Hmm, I understand them wanting to say something but I just really wish the administration would stay out of politics. It’s not like things are even bad right now, everyone seems like they’re getting along alright and Chilli’s is offering free appetizers if you’re a registered Republican.”
The university also plans to create a Civil Rights Commission to further address student concerns. Students can join the commission in the same way they can schedule a protest: by receiving explicit written approval from the Associate Director of Student Involvement and signing a document stating they will not say anything about the university that could result in negative press.
“We want students to feel they have a say in matters regarding diversity and institutional racism and encourage them to do so, as long as their statements do not reflect poorly on myself, the President or the Office of Student Involvement,” added Krout.
“At the end of the day we want to treat our Black students the way our wonderful and infallible founder, Archbishop Fenwick, treated his slaves: like family.”