University of Georgia TA Irami Osei-Frimpong came under fire after he tweeted that “some white people may have to die for black communities to be made whole in this struggle to advance to freedom.”
Osei-Frimpong didn’t back away from his claims when he spoke with Tim Bryant, a radio host on a local station in Athens, GA. From Campus Reform:
Speaking with Bryant, Osei-Frimpong called the issue of violence on campus a “little bit” dubious, citing the existence of UGA’s ROTC program. The TA went on to say that he did “not advocate for violence,” adding that he was “just honest about the history of racial progress in the United States.”
“Are you advocating for non-violence?” Bryant then asked Osei-Frimpong.
The TA responded with, “yeah, insofar, OK, so, what we have to understand about nonviolence…”
“That’s a yes or no. Why does that need a caveat?” Bryant asked. “Do you advocate for nonviolence?”
Again, Osei-Frimpong did not offer a definitive answer: “Insofar that it’s a transformative process that depends on the shaming of oppressors.”
“So you’re not ruling out violence,” Bryant asked.
“No, no, no,” the TA responded.
“Against who? Violence against who?” Bryant asked.
“Whoever the oppressors may be,” Osei-Frimpong said, adding that violence is “always a second-best option because it doesn’t have the same kind of transformative power that nonviolence does.”
“But it’s just an open question. Have we made a white culture that is able to be shamed? Because I suspect the people at those public lynchings would not be talked out of, if I was about to be lynched, of lynching me. As you said before, on my drive over here, mobs are kind of immune to facts so there is a way in which we have to create a populous that is actually responsive to the truth, and then they can be shamed, and then non-violence is appropriate,” Osei-Frimpong added.
The University of Georgia TA also noted that “it is just a fact of history that racial justice often comes at the cost of white life.”
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