When high school senior Drake Johnson got into Harvard, he decided to share the news with his Twitter followers, as many teenagers his age do.
Johnson, an 18-year-old from California, got into Cornell, Dartmouth, Brown and UCLA, too. However, when he found out that Harvard was offering him the required aid, he decided to choose his “dream school”.
Most people were happy for the accomplished teenager. One joyless person, however, tried to dampen the teenager’s enthusiasm; George Clayton, who describes himself as an "educator, former member Texas State Board of Education and candidate (for) Texas State Board of Education" enquired whether Clayton was admitted on “merit or quota”.
Thank you! Valedictorian, ASB President, World Champion, good SAT, and a couple handfuls of other involvements, so I would think merit?— Drake Johnson (@_littledrizzy) April 20, 2018
The comment reeked of racism, especially as Johnson is a visibly biracial teen. Instead of being undermined by this envious remark, Johnson let his achievements speak for themselves.
"I wanted some subtle way to prove him wrong, but not be aggressive," Johnson told Dallas News. "I thought that was the best way to civilly defuse the situation and clearly show I was accepted on merit."
The curios man is not your garden variety racist; George Clayton is a former member of Texas State Board of Education. He held the District 12 seat from 2010 to 2012. According to his Twitter bio, he is again eyeing a spot on the state board, although there is no proof of him having filed nomination papers. Clayton’s tweets show he is not only racist but also freely participates in gender discrimination.
Were you admitted on merit or on quota regulations? If on merit, great job--congratulations. If on a quota number, work hard, make the best of it and thank the merit applicant you replaced.— George Clayton (@SBOEDist12) March 30, 2018
PS here's a selection of George Clayton's old tweets, which I happily reported pic.twitter.com/ma9JeudE9V— Sue Kelly (@SueKelly10) April 22, 2018
As a member of the Texas Board of Education, Clayton had influence on state policies on education and their implementation. It is bothersome to think how such a blatantly racist man may have impacted, or resisted, legislation designed for the provision of equal opportunities to students of color.
Banner/Thumbnail: Reuters/Jessica Rinaldi