George Washington University associate professor Jessica Krug just shocked the nation and admitted today that she is actually white. That she was pretending to be black.
In a medium post she came clean and canceled herself: “For the better part of my adult life, every move I’ve made, every relationship I’ve formed, has been rooted in the napalm toxic soil of lies,” Krug wrote.
“To an escalating degree over my adult life, I have eschewed my lived experience as a white Jewish child in suburban Kansas City under various assumed identities within a Blackness that I had no right to claim: first North African Blackness, then US rooted Blackness, then Caribbean rooted Bronx Blackness.”
“I have not only claimed these identities as my own when I had absolutely no right to do so — when doing so is the very epitome of violence, of thievery and appropriation, of the myriad ways in which non-Black people continue to use and abuse Black identities and cultures — but I have formed intimate relationships with loving, compassionate people who have trusted and cared for me when I have deserved neither trust nor caring. People have fought together with me and have fought for me, and my continued appropriation of a Black Caribbean identity is not only, in the starkest terms, wrong — unethical, immoral, anti-Black, colonial — but it means that every step I’ve taken has gaslighted those whom I love.
Intention never matters more than impact. To say that I clearly have been battling some unaddressed mental health demons for my entire life, as both an adult and child, is obvious.
Mental health issues likely explain why I assumed a false identity initially, as a youth, and why I continued and developed it for so long; the mental health professionals from whom I have been so belatedly seeking help assure me that this is a common response to some of the severe trauma that marked my early childhood and teen years.
But mental health issues can never, will never, neither explain nor justify, neither condone nor excuse, that, in spite of knowing and regularly critiquing any and every non-Black person who appropriates from Black people, my false identity was crafted entirely from the fabric of Black lives. That I claimed belonging with living people and ancestors to whom and for whom my being is always a threat at best and a death sentence at worst.
I am not a culture vulture. I am a culture leech.
I have thought about ending these lies many times over many years, but my cowardice was always more powerful than my ethics. I know right from wrong. I know history. I know power.
I am a coward.
There is no ignorance, no innocence, nothing to claim, nothing to defend. I have moved wrong in every way for years.
I believe in restorative justice, where possible, even when and where I don’t know what that means or how it could work. I believe in accountability. And I believe in cancel culture as a necessary and righteous tool for those with less structural power to wield against those with more power.
I should absolutely be cancelled. No. I don’t write in passive voice, ever, because I believe we must name power. So. You should absolutely cancel me, and I absolutely cancel myself.
What does that mean?
I don’t know.
Accountability works only when you are in community with people. How can I be in any type of meaningful community with those whom I have so harmfully and horrifically deceived for so long?
I don’t believe that any anti-Black life has inherent value. I don’t know what to build from here. I don’t know that it is possible to repair a single relationship I have with another person, living or dead, and I don’t believe I deserve the grace or kindness to do so.
My politics are as they have ever been, and those politics condemn me in the loudest and most unyielding terms.”
Read the full post here.
jessica krug's old author bio is, uh, something else pic.twitter.com/YMKW8eHiI0
— graham starr (@GrahamStarr) September 3, 2020
She’s a professor at GWU!
“Jessica A. Krug is a historian of politics, ideas, and cultural practices in Africa and the African Diaspora” https://t.co/QnRzkDerkq
— Yashar Ali ? (@yashar) September 3, 2020