The Renegade Rip

Distinguished speaker at BC talks about MLK Jr.

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Dyson looking over to the crowd.

Dyson looking over to the crowd.

Issy Barrientos

Issy Barrientos

Dyson looking over to the crowd.

Issy Barrientos, Reporter

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The Office of Student Life welcomed Dr. Michael Eric Dyson on Feb. 8 to speak at the indoor theater. Dyson’s speech is part of the the Distinguished Speaker Series, an initiative began by Director of Student Life Nicky Damania, and SGA President Dezi von Manos to invite speakers that left an impact on American society.

Dyson is a professor from Georgetown University, and has authored many books. His speech that night was open to the public and students. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in the 21st century was the talking point.

Dyson started the night by praising the Bakersfield College Chamber Signers, as they performed before him, and asking if they could sign again so he could post their performance on “Facebook, Instagram…Tinder.” With that comment he established the tone for the rest of the night. His wit and references created a solemn, but rarely quiet room. He had references for the younger members of the audience and the older ones too. He would sing and rap and have the audience continue the rest of the song.

King was a public figure that spent his life fighting for equal rights for everyone. “He wanted people to be equal to each other,” said Dyson. Just as King fought for equality, Dyson expressed concern about minorities being attacked by the public and the current presidential administration.

Dyson recounted a story of how someone told him that he was going to hell because he said that God created gay people. His rebuttal was that if God created everything then how could gay be people be imperfect. “Don’t be going to church and having God cosign your bigotry,” said Dyson.

Dyson reflected back on then-presidential candidate Donald J. Trump’s attack on the Hispanic, but more specifically Mexican community, by calling them rapists during his campaign. “You’re going across the country calling Mexicans rapists. You’re the one trying to grab something.”

“King was seen as the enemy of the state,” said Dyson. He was attacked by the police; just as black people still are. He said that, “We not dogging the police, we are just saying to stop killing us unjustifiably.”

Executive Assistant to the Chancellor’s Office and Board of Trustees, Danielle Hillard went to the event because she heard about Dyson’s visit through his political analyst. Hillard agrees with a lot of what he says, but disagrees with him on the book “Holler If You Hear Me,” a book about Tupac. Hillard said, “Thorough analysis, but there could have been more.”

Members of the public, Danneyl and Maggy Kelly attended the event because they heard about it on the news. Danneyl Kelly has been following Dyson for the past decade and agrees with him a lot too, “If a lot is the value we are assigning it.”

President von Manos at the end of the night reflected on the event, “It was definitely an enhancement on cultural awareness, and it was beneficial overall for the students to be exposed to distinguished speakers.”

to hell because he said that God created gay people. His rebuttal was that if God created everything then how could gay be people be imperfect. “Don’t be going to church and having God cosign your bigotry,” said Dyson.

Dyson reflected back on then-presidential candidate Donald J. Trump’s attack on the Hispanic, but more specifically Mexican community, by calling them rapists during his campaign. “You’re going across the country calling Mexicans rapists. You’re the one trying to grab something.”

“King was seen as the enemy of the state,” said Dyson. He was attacked by the police; just as black people still are. He said that, “We not dogging the police, we are just saying to stop killing us unjustifiably.”

Executive Assistant to the Chancellor’s Office and Board of Trustees, Danielle Hillard went to the event because she heard about Dyson’s visit through his political analyst. Hillard agrees with a lot of what he says, but disagrees with him on the book “Holler If You Hear Me,” a book about Tupac. Hillard said, “Thorough analysis, but there could have been more.”

Members of the public, Danneyl and Maggy Kelly attended the event because they heard about it on the news. Danneyl Kelly has been following Dyson for the past decade and agrees with him a lot too, “If a lot is the value we are assigning it.”

President von Manos at the end of the night reflected on the event, “It was definitely an enhancement on cultural awareness, and it was beneficial overall for the students to be exposed to distinguished speakers.”

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Distinguished speaker at BC talks about MLK Jr.