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Black Professor Ordered to Show ID in Her Home

Danielle Fuentes Morgan, in her home, was told to prove she's on the Santa Clara faculty
By Bob Cronin,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 24, 2020 7:30 PM CDT
Updated Aug 25, 2020 1:44 AM CDT

(Newser) – Black people can face harassment anywhere in America, Danielle Fuentes Morgan said, even on the campus of a peaceful Jesuit university. "I wasn't surprised," she told the Washington Post. "I was just hurt that it was taking place in this place that I love." Morgan is an assistant English professor at Santa Clara University, which has only seven Black faculty members. The university's president sent a letter to students and staff over the weekend saying he's "deeply sorry" about Morgan's encounter with campus police. "Racial bias or profiling has no place on our campus," Kevin O'Brien wrote. The school is launching an investigation, per the Hill, and the officers involved will undergo racial sensitivity training. "It's not extra sad or extra troubling because this happened to a college professor," Morgan said. "It's explicitly sad because this should not be happening in the year 2020."

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Morgan's brother, Carlos Fuentes, was visiting her when he went across the street to find a spot outside, on campus, for a video call. He was in the middle of the meeting, with computer and books around him, when campus safety officers arrived and asked him to leave; they later said he seemed suspicious and might be homeless. Four police cars pulled up. An officer took Fuentes, who is Black, to Morgan's front door. "I'm so sorry about this," Fuentes told his sister. "They're demanding you come out and vouch for me." The officer told Morgan to produce her campus ID, as well as prove she was on the faculty and lived in the home, which she leases from the university. "Being Black in America means there is an expectation that you have to show your papers," Morgan said, "that you have to prove you are who you say you are and you belong where you say you belong." (Harvard's Henry Louis Gates was arrested at his home.)

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