Nearly 300 Baylor University students walked Natasha Nkhama to her class after she alleged that a student pushed her, called her the n-word, and told her he was “trying to make America great again.”
Twitter user Jaileene Maite posted a video of her friend Natasha Nkhama describing an incident that took place on Nov. 9 at Baylor University in Texas.
In the video, Nkhama said that while she was on her way to class, a guy “went out of his way to bump into me and shove me off the sidewalk.”
“He said, ‘No niggers allowed on the sidewalk,’” Nkhama said. “I was just shocked, like I had no words.”
She said another male student whom she did not know tried to come to her rescue and told the guy, “Dude what are you doing? That’s not cool.”
According to Nkhama, the guy then said, “Dude, like what…I’m just trying to make America great again.”
“So if you voted for Donald Trump, I hope you understand what that means from someone else’s point of view,” Nkhama said in the video, which was widely shared on social media.
In a statement, Baylor University said they were aware “of a student who was pushed and subjected to racially offensive language from another student yesterday while on campus.”
The university condemned the male student’s behavior and said it was “deeply disturbing.” They said they were working with Nkhama “to ensure she feels safe and supported by the Baylor community.”
The university also commended the bystander “who intervened and defended the female student during this encounter.”
After the video went viral, hundreds of students gathered on campus Friday to walk Nkhama to class and to support her using the hashtag #IWalkWithNatasha.
Around 300 students waited for Nkhama to come out of her class.
When Nkhama saw so many of her peers waiting for her, she couldn’t stop her tears. “I just wanted to thank everyone for being here, and I want everyone who sees this to know that Baylor is a campus of love.”
“And Baylor is a campus who watches out for each other,” Nkhama told the crowd.
“And that one person is not a reflection of us, they’re a reflection of themselves. We look out for each other out here. And I want everyone to just continue to not allow things like that on our campus… because not on our campus.”
And then hundreds of students walked Nkhama to class.
It was a massive entourage.
Nkhama also thanked the other male student who defended her during the incident. “To whoever defended me that day, I don’t know who you are, but I thank you for being an example to everyone on campus.”
“To the gentleman who said those words, I’m praying for you and I love you… And everyone here loves you, and we just want to see the world be a better place,” Nkhama said.
“Teaching my third grade black and brown babies to push through today,” Wright wrote on Facebook. “Due to unwelcoming, unsettling, and uncomfortable election results, this was our lesson for the day.”
The call and response is about affirmation. “I specifically used the people I used because they know them. They know how resilient they are.”
The recording inspired many people. “OMG. This just motivated me for the rest of my natural life,” one person commented.
“I know this is for the babies, but I needed this too after the election,” said another.
“She makes me want to be a teacher! These babies are going to remember her for a long time!” said one person.
And others, just expressed gratitude. “This made me cry. Thank you.”
Wright said the mantra made an impact.
“I believe that they felt empowered. I noticed that. They felt confident, competent and unstoppable,” she said.
The school’s principal, Tom Weishaupt, commented on how this wasn’t a “one-time reaction to current events,” but rather, an enduring tenant of Wright’s teaching style.
“What makes her great is her kids know that she loves them. Before kids can be good readers or writers, they need to know they have someone in their corner. And she reminds them of that every day,” he said.