Dr. Lee, the diversity director of a “woke” California college’s Office of Equity, Social Justice and Multicultural Education claims she was fired for questioning the institution’s anti-racism “orthodoxy” and what the term “anti-racism” even means.
Dr. Tabia Lee, a black, diversity director claims she was fired from her job for questioning California college’s anti-racism policies.
Dr. Tabia Lee said De Anza College, a community college in Cupertino, retaliated after she objected to several campus policies aimed at inclusion.
Two years ago, Dr. Tabia Lee was hired as Faculty Director for the Office of Equity, Social Justice, and Multicultural Education to lead a campus-wide equity transformation at De Anza Community College.
Dr. Lee says that after just a few days at De Anza, she says she found herself trapped in a web of mischaracterization, deception, and sabotage instigated by a group of faculty activists who weaponized policies that disallowed freedom of thought or expression.
A DIVERSITY DIRECTOR CANCELED FOR DIVERSE THINKING?
“I’ve always advocated multiple approaches in performing anti-racism work, which appeared from the get-go was perceived as a threat to what I now understand to be the critical social justice orthodoxy at De Anza. Through my work, I try to create a place of acceptance for varying points of view, but clearly, they didn’t find that acceptable,” says Dr. Lee.
“Another transgression was asking for a clear definition of the term ‘anti-racism,’ which immediately made me a pariah in their eyes. They accused me of ‘white speaking’ and ‘whitesplaining’ and said that I promoted white supremacy culture because I believed in being on time, setting agendas for meetings, and using strategic planning.”
According to Dr. Lee, another infraction involved a Zoom fireside chat with Black Lives Matter co-founder Alicia Garza, who refused to take questions from students that weren’t written by her PR handlers. Because Dr. Lee didn’t prevent students from asking the questions they wrote in anticipation of the chat, after the talk, Dr. Lee was accused of ‘disrespecting’ Garza and labeled as a ‘right-wing extremist,’ which was presented as a reason for her to be terminated.
The school decided to not renew her contract. They don’t agree with her characterization.
In a letter obtained by Higher Ed, district chancellor Judy Miner wrote Lee showed a “persistent inability to demonstrate cooperation in working with colleagues and staff” and an “unwillingness to accept constructive criticism.”
“In 2021, Dr. Lee reached out to the Foundation Against Intolerance and Racism (FAIR), when her programs were being blocked and her work impeded,” says FAIR staff attorney Leigh Ann O’Neill. They have taken her case.