The day I heard that Omarosa Manigault was going to be Trump’s Director of African American outreach, I had to really sit back and think hard about how I felt about that. I’ve met Omarosa before, and she was in a unique position to where she could have immensely influenced my political, moral, or spiritual beliefs.
The end result is that she did none of those things, and perhaps it was for the better. Lucky me, I guess.
Omarosa and I went to the same undergraduate university, and let’s just say that when I went there, she was a legend. One professor who she seemed to have impressed the hell out of was Dr. Chinwah-Agdebola, the (then) chair of the Central State University
Cosby Center for Mass Communications.
Dr. Chinwah-Agdebola loved Omarosa to pieces. I didn’t know much about Omarosa, but as homecoming crept up during my senior year, I knew that Dr. Chinwah-Agdebola talked her up to me a lot more than usual. I suppose Dr. Chinwah-Agdebola wanted me to be influenced by other Centralians who once faced the same hardships as myself, but made it through. So she planned a meeting between myself and Omarosa during homecoming. Dr. Chinwah-Agdebola didn’t want much, just for me to shake Omarosa’s hand, ask her a few questions, and then go on about my day. When I realized that this meeting between Omarosa and myself was really important to Dr. Chinwah-Agdebola, I started to get a little nervous.
Before we met, I went digging up some information on her, so that I could know who exactly I was meeting, and why she was so important. During my research, I found myself impressed with her resume. She graduated from Howard, she was once Miss Central State, she was Miss District of Columbia, and she was working her tail off. The more I read about how accomplished she was, the more excited I grew about meeting her.
Then the day came where we met. I saw her from across the room, because who could miss her? She’s a very tall woman.
As she walked around the room canoodling with some of her former professors, she finally spotted Dr. Chinwah-Agdebola and I, and walked over to say hello.
She approached me with a commanding demeanor, and I instantly grew nervous. Here was my time to actually see a black girl who made it, and was the product of a professor who influenced us both. At that moment, as I got tongue tied with sweaty palms, I thought to myself, “Get it together, girl! This is your chance to ingest some advice that obviously worked for Omarosa, and if you listened, it could happen for me too.”
After saying hi to Dr. Chinwah-Agdebola, Omarosa shook my hand, and excused herself. I was crushed.
So as she gets comfy in her job, and reaches out to other black kids, I pray to God that they don’t have the same encounter that I had with her. I hope that if she is invited back to our alma mater, that she tells young ladies in the communications program the truth about what it feels like to be am unapologetic black woman who will never coddle a man’s feelings. Regardless of how I feel about her, she’s in a position to impact a lot of people.
But if that does not happen, I will not be surprised.