Past #MeToo allegations have come back to haunt well-known scholar and professor Dr. Michael Eric Dyson. Dyson was set to be hired at Vanderbilt University but some students are trying to block him from joining the faculty.
According to Her Campus, an online magazine targeting female college students, Dyson was accused by multiple Black women of sexual misconduct at Georgetown University, where he was a professor of sociology from 2007 to 2020.
Black women and their complaints about sexual abuse suffered on campus have been ignored, and now is the time to stand up against Dyson, according to some on campus.
“Hearing about Michael Eric Dyson’s hiring at Vanderbilt despite his past allegations of sexual misconduct is very disappointing given the events of this summer…This summer, multiple Black Vanderbilt women came forward and shared their stories of being sexually assaulted and raped by Vanderbilt Football players,” the Her Campus at Vanderbilt blog reported.
After calls fell on deaf ears for the former head coach of Vanderbilt Football and players to be held accountable, a petition circulated demanding change in athletics and the university. Head coach Derek Mason and the entire football coaching staff were fired.
The Black Survivors Coalition at Georgetown University and other Georgetown students staged a sit-in protest on Feb. 28, 2020. Students claimed that Dyson had subjected some students to acts of sexual misconduct. A full investigation was conducted. Following that, Georgetown announced that Dyson would not be teaching during the 2020 fall semester, Her Campus reported. Students demanded more and soon after, Georgetown announced that Dyson would not be teaching during the spring semester either.
No known charges have been filed against Dyson.
On Sept. 28, 2020, Vanderbilt announced that it was hiring Dyson for its African American & Diaspora Studies Department.
Ironically, Dyson spoke out against TV icon and convicted sex offender Bill Cosby. Dyson wrote that Cosby was “lacking in moral authority” in a book entitled “Is Bill Cosby Right? (Or Has The Black Middle Class Lost Its Mind)”
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Dyson said during a 2018 interview with The Philadelphia Citizen, “(Cosby) was going around the country condescendingly giving nasty and vicious moral lessons to young African-American people, and all the while he was hiding this fact about drugging and abusing women.”
Dyson has taught at other elite universities including Brown and Columbia universities, and the University of Pennsylvania, according to his speaker’s bio at Speak Out Now.