Professor Cooper’s concerned: Professor Cooper is concerned about Mo’ne Davis.
A male college baseball player referred to Davis as a slut. When he got kicked off his college team, Davis, who is 13 years old, wrote a letter to the college president saying the offending party deserves a second chance.
The professor voices her concerns in this piece for Salon. For our money, it’s better than her usual fare, which has been both undercooked and perhaps a bit overwrought.
That said, which part of the following paragraph isn’t about Professor Cooper’s greatness? Perhaps you can see what we mean.
We’re just saying, of course:
COOPER (3/25/15): Her level of empathy is remarkable but not particularly surprising. Black girls learn almost from the womb to empathize with others, even when those others have committed deep injustices toward us. Perhaps it is the unparalleled level of our suffering that makes us always look with empathy upon others.Whatever! We’re not even saying she’s wrong!
Davis appeared with Lawrence O’Donnell on last evening’s Last Word. On that basis alone, we’re prepared to forgive Lawrence his endless affronts to the well-being of the world.
As we watched O’Donnell’s unusual guest, we couldn’t help thinking of a few other people. One commenter at Salon drifted in the same direction.
The commenter quoted one of the great souls, someone who addressed the United Nations on her sixteenth birthday. In the passage the commenter quoted, this young person spoke about the man who shot her in the face:
Even if there was a gun in my hand and he was standing in front of me, I would not shoot him. This is the compassion I have learned from Mohamed, the prophet of mercy, Jesus Christ and Lord Buddha. This the legacy of change I have inherited from Martin Luther King, Nelson Mandela and Mohammed Ali Jinnah. This is the philosophy of nonviolence that I have learned from Gandhi, Bacha Khan and Mother Teresa. And this is the forgiveness that I have learned from my father and from my mother.Watching Davis last night, we thought of Malala Yousafzai and we thought of Anne Frank. We also thought of Nelson Mandela, who can be seen on YouTube discussing the way he and his comrades, locked in prison, “identified with” that young European girl.
This is what my soul is telling me: be peaceful and love everyone.
The comments at Salon are full of anger at the college player, full of the desire to see him punished. In the end, the world remembers the Kings, the Mandelas and the Lincolns—the people who announce their refusal to judge or to hate. At least, before ISIS it did.
Also the Franks and the Malalas. Last night, as we watched an unusual guest, we were pleased to find our thoughts drifting away toward those famous great souls.