During the height of the racial protests at Claremont McKenna College last November, CMCers of Color issued a list of demands including the resignation of Dean Spellman and the establishment of a permanent “safe space” that would function as a Resource Center for students from marginalized backgrounds.

The student group wrote an official proposal to the administration, but also created a private Google doc with other miscellaneous items they wanted for their safe space, such as kitchen items and a sound system.

Among this list is a Shady Person of Color (SPOC) board, which includes a royal court of five members of the CMC community who opposed the group. Brandon Gonzalez, the King SPOC, is the Assistant Dean of Admissions. Gonzalez led the diversity initiative that CMCers of Color felt misrepresented CMC. The Queen SPOC, Hannah Oh (CMC ’15), was the Editor-in-Chief of the Claremont Independent at the time, and coauthored an editorial critiquing the protestors’ tactics. In a similar vein, Nathan Tsai (CMC ’17), the “Ignorant SPOC,” wrote a letter that garnered 277 signatures in opposition to the protestors’ demands.


Tony Sidhom (CMC ’17)  was included on the list because he was critical of the movement as a whole, particularly with regards to the methods they used. Sidhom didn’t agree with the idea that CMC was institutionally racist, and was vocal in raising his concerns at Student Senate.

The Court Jester SPOC, David Brown (CMC ’19), was critical of the protestors’ lack of logistics and data as well as their tactics. Brown told the Independent, “If [CMCers of Color] had provided a single piece of evidence indicating that they were being systematically kept from performing well, I would have believed them. If I, in my own experience, had noticed a single instance where I was being held down based on the color of my skin I would have believed them. But they didn’t, I didn’t, and I don’t believe them.”

“I find the fact that they named themselves ‘CMCers of Color’ an insult. Instead, they purposefully use their name to manipulate their appearance as if to seem they were anything more than just 30 militant new wave liberal students,” Brown added. “I heard one of the protestors called a friend of mine ‘too rich to be black.’ Doesn’t it seem a little strange to you that the people supposedly fighting racism are the ones perpetuating racist stereotypes? The entire notion of fake or ‘shady’ people of color is just blatantly racist. Since when does being a person of color not allow you free thought? The whole point of this is so the protestors can still feel good about themselves by saying that they represent all ‘real’ people of color campus, but in order for them to consider you ‘real,’ you have to be one of them. Martin Luther King, Jr. said he wanted people to be judged off of the content of their character rather than the color of their skin. Oddly enough, the protestors have consistently done the opposite. The protestors are the most racist group on campus I’ve seen to date.”

The use of the term ‘SPOC’ to dissociate students of color who dissented from the protest movement was widespread last semester. “Pomona’s new Latinx club was actually planning on creating a ‘SPOC calling-out’ committee” to target Latino students who did not agree with them, stated Kevin Covarrubias (CMC ’18). “The fact that such an idea was even brought up is deeply disturbing. As a 5C community, we should be all for constructively engaging with each other while debating the actual substance of our beliefs, not indulging in baseless ad hominems directed at one another.”

Edit: This story has been updated to include the name of David Brown, who initially requested anonymity.

Categories: Campus News
  • Brown Lightning

    I’m a “SPOC” by their definition and, if it means I get to have my own opinion, I’m proud to bloody be one.

  • Bob

    The court Jester is David Brown CMC ’19

  • Tammy

    David Brown CMC’19

  • OhCool

    I find it upsetting that although clearly wishing to remain anonymous, he was called out by commentors. Presumably, the commentors
    are students who claim that others violate the rights of people of color. Exercise your right to freedom of speech by all means and call out his name however my conclusion is that social justice warriors are the aggressors that they frame others to be.

    • Support

      I completely agree with your assessment.

    • Galaxy 500

      The so called social justice warriors are this generations socialist ner’do’wells seeking authority over others thru threats and intimidation.
      Bravo to those brave souls that oppose evil in its many forms

    • Jack Murray

      What other type of behavior would one expect to see at Portland Community College?

      Oops, this isn’t the PCC web site. Easy to get confused with all the hurt feelings and accusations of racism flying here and yonder.

      My bad.

    • Bob

      Thank you. I will continue to exercise my freedom of speech. My conclusion is that I find it humorous that you found my comment upsetting.

      • Haywood Jablowme

        Will you please go fuck yourself? Thank you.

        • Dale

          Wow. That was bold. You must be well educated. I would be afraid to debate with you. You have such a command of the English language….

          • OhCool

            Thank you Dale. Forgetting an “and” while typing does not make me illiterate. It means that while studying for finals, I had limited time to proofread responses to tacky comments on a CI article whereas that may not have been the case for you. However, on behalf of SJW’s, I’m mortally offended that you are judging me based on my grammatical skills. Maybe English is my second language. Maybe I’m a first generation American student who immigrated to this country as a POC during high school to escape a racist regime. I am so far triggered by your judgmental classism and your obvious racism against those who aren’t white, American humanities majors that I may actually need a safe space against your insensitivity.

        • OhCool

          I could, but naw. Thanks for the suggestion!

      • OhCool

        Bob, I find it troublesome that those who claim to stand up for marginalized students will outwardly oppose the wishes of marginalized students who disagree with those claiming to stand up for marginalized students [insert grammar check from Dale].
        That’s not really a humorous concept in my opinion.

  • Lol

    Will the real slim shady please stand up

  • curious

    Where did you find your image of the private Google Doc?

    • does it matter?

      I don’t think that that matters at all. For example, in the Trump facebook fiasco, I don’t believe the fact that it was a private group message discouraged commentators for maintaining the stance that the statement was completely uncalled for.

  • curious

    I appreciate the effort to complicate the narrative by exposing what can go on behind the scenes among members of the movement. The fact that the Doc is private does not excuse its divisive rhetoric, and the quotes included certainly help to bolster the argument.

    I hope that, as the CI writers continue to provide an alternative viewpoint in the predominantly liberal climate of Claremont, they will also strive to reach and maintain high journalistic standards by providing sources for all of their evidence. This article fails to do that.

  • Hannah Oh

    The screenshot was obtained and sent to us from a source within CMCers of Color. We aren’t publishing the name of the source, for obvious reasons. In every other case, the CI has cited where its evidence comes from.

  • Elliott Hamilton

    I’m glad that CMCers of Color are being exposed for being the racist, intolerant bigots they are. This screenshot only confirms what we’ve already known.

    Good job, leftists.

    • Once again its impossible for people of color to be racist. What is racism Elliott???WHaat is it????

      • student


        a belief that the members of different racial or ethnic groups possess specific characteristics, abilities, or qualities, which can be compared and evaluated.

        by definition, literally anyone can be racist.

  • Jonathan Mitrosky

    The people need to stand up to these groups period. I am so sick and tired of hearing these little left wing turds attempting to turn people in and demanding resignations of people that disagree with them. Just go to class and learn something. Stop with this liberal crap. We are destroying America. The media has only added fuel to this new age left agenda that is warping young people’s minds that it is ok to be offended by everything and expect people to bow for your every demand. Guess what? If you think someone disagreeing with your crappy agenda is bad wait till you get in the real world. Join the Military and go see how communist countries handle groups like yours. Let’s just say it won’t end well for you.

    • Little left wing turd

      @Jonathan Mitrosky – We’re making America Great Again. Have a good day sir

      • Cuckkiller

        Kill yourself, faggot

  • Andy

    I personally consider myself to be quite liberal in most regards but have become increasingly disenfranchised from the greater community in Claremont. The substitution of logic and understanding for irrationality and emotional reasoning is appalling and something to be ashamed of. Rather than spread a message through debate, benevolence, and being the better person these individuals and many others instead chose the path of proselytization via bullying. Any movement that sees force and the antagonizing of any who don’t conform to their twisted world view is a group I can never support in any capacity, regardless of whether I agree with their grievances or not.

  • Don’tkillmetoo

    You should clarify when your pictures are from (i.e. One at the top): makes a big difference to outsiders/alums if that’s from the fall fiasco or if there have been continued protests

    • Taylor Schmitt

      This picture is from the protests this past fall. Sorry for any confusion this may have caused.

  • Really?!?

    As a recent cmc alumna of color, I was pretty proud of the movement and all for supporting these students that felt neglect and overall lack of support. However when watching the protest I was ashamed of how these students voiced their opinions with unnecessary profanity and calling out. Now this?!?! I don’t know how these students expect to garner any support for their (actually) good cause. I’m very sad to see them misrepresent POCs and further discrediting all of their hard work and the issues at hand through this immature and inappropriate action. I get it, there’s a bunch of anger and frustration but this in no way was the right way to use those emotions. I hope they can learn something from this debacle and move forward to make some positive changes on campus.

    • So saith the Lord…

      The anger of man does not produce the righteousness of God. – James 1:20

      When you are angry do not sin; do not let the sun go down on your anger. – Ephesians 4:26

  • Marcus Agard

    The worst part of this whole movement is that there could have been an actual conversation and actual change, but at every opportunity for discourse, CMCers of Color has done something to shoot themselves in the foot. I really hope that this movement dies so that real positive change can happen next year.

  • Amused bystander

    The antics of “CMCers of Color” called to mind Winnie Mandella’s “Mandela United Football Club”. Obviously not in the same league, but suffering a similar perversion of ideals.

    Various folks have noted how sad it is that their goals, while laudatory, have been pursued in an immature, counterproductive, destructive, and prejudicial manner.

    This “list” they created demonstrates that they can be as racist as those they condemn as racists. It’s sad to see the damage they have created within the 5 Cs community. I’m just glad that their ideology now made so very naked. Time for reflection, contrition, and rebuilding trust. That begins with listening to others, rather than shutting them down.

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  • Clem Cirelli

    So this is what a liberal arts education has come to: suppression of dissenting views, silencing of voices speaking their own opinions instead of that of the mob, and students labeling people according to their ethnicity and race while bleating for “safe spaces” in which to hide under rocks for cover from the consequences of their own heinous behaviors? What a waste of time.

  • Holden Caulfield

    LMFAO. Why would anyone go to this school? What a piece of shit institution for putting up with this. I would transfer…yesterday.

  • CraigAustin

    You would think, with all the discussion about “rights”, some adult would, at some point mention “obligations”, there are no rights for adults without obligations. The right to free speech is only valid if you fulfill your obligation to let others speak freely, not your friends, your most hated enemies , once you defend their right to speak, you have earned yours, and your enemies are obligated to allow you to speak. If you think yours rights as a law abiding citizen are set in stone, break some laws and try execising them from jail, the rights of a taxpayer are tied to paying taxes. The idea of people old enough,but certainly not mature or bright enough to be in college whining about their “rights” without any idea of their obligations is a disgrace on their parents and peers, somebody should give them the details , and no Facebook until they get it.

  • Bill Pasadena

    SPOC –
    What happened to calling them Oreos?

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  • Sherlock

    It is a common tactic for apologists to attack the messenger to avoid confronting the issue. A protest is not the time for civil discourse, protests serve a different purpose. Complaints that calm conversation with the opposition does not happen at a protest is as straw man an argument as there is. No one likes protesters. Disruption is the point. Instead of complaining about the disruption, maybe try and root out the problem? Pretty sure CI’s predecessors would have done so…

    • Huh?

      So the burden of peace is on those being harassed and not on the harassers? Hmm… I suppose that means that the slaves of the American South just weren’t doing it right then… who knew?

      • Huh?

        Oh yeah, one more thing… also pretty sure we call it ‘domestic abuse’ when a man tries to force a woman to listen to him with “disruptive” tactics. Just saying.

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  • Amused bystander

    Enough commentators have noted that the protests had important points to make regarding their own opinions. But I disagree that the point of protests is to disrupt. The point of protests is to bring about positive change. That’s not accomplished by suppressing alternative viewpoints or by threatening and bullying, but by constructive engagement. Indeed, the shutting down of contrary voices is as baldy oppressive as anything they are protesting. Where does one draw distinctions between immaturity, naiveté, and evil? Shouting obscenities and shaming students of color with alternative opinions certainly reflects anger, but it does not set the stage for the dialogue needed to advance a cause. What makes such behaviors any different in tactics compared to crazed Trump supporters? If your cause is just, reason will win out in the court of popular opinion.
    If “safe spaces” are needed for anybody, it seems that the maligned “SPOCs” are the candidates for protection. Not the bullies. I agree with Dr. Martin Luther King: Don’t judge people by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character. And on that assessment, some of you guys fall short of deserving respect.

  • Maria Carreira

    Please add my name to the SPOC list.

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  • Jen

    We don’t teach tolerance anymore, with the disturbing effect of dismissing — with extreme prejudice — those with different opinions. A focus on race will enhance resentment and produce more racists. A focus on a vibrant intellectual life replete with diverse viewpoints enhances understanding. It’s mind and character – not skin color – that creates connections between and among humans. Strident demands stifle debate and encourage the very worst elements of the mob. Seek 1st to understand, then be understood.

  • Kyle

    SJW vs SPOC hunger games … can’t wait

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