‘My beliefs do not align with this campaign’s values and undertones’: Adrienne J. Hines from Unite TU has withdrawn from TSG election
She released her statement to The Tab Temple tonight
Adrienne J. Hines, formerly from Unite TU, has decided to withdraw from this year's election regarding her belief of being used as a 'token' on the Unite TU campaign.
She states, "It has come to my attention that as of late, the people closest to me, and even those with whom I have not yet had the chance to be personally acquainted with, have come to view me as a token on the UniteTU campaign. You’re right. I applaud your keen perceptiveness, as this is something that has taken me some time to finally realize for myself."
Adrienne is a junior political science major with a minor in Economics. She has worked as a Civic Engagement Fellow to Former Mayor John Street. She also currently serves as an External Engagement Organizing Intern to support the development and implementation of external relationships in the Greater Philadelphia Area. Adrienne also volunteers in the Metropolitan Area Neighborhood Nutrition Alliance which helps prepare nutritious meals for residents of Pennsylvania struggling with life-threatening diseases such as HIV/AIDS and cancer.
Read her full statement here:
To Whom It May Concern,
It has come to my attention that as of late, the people closest to me, and even those with whom I have not yet had the chance to be personally acquainted with, have come to view me as a token on the UniteTU campaign. You’re right. I applaud your keen perceptiveness, as this is something that has taken me some time to finally realize for myself.
I entered this race as a candidate for Vice President of External Affairs on the UniteTU ticket with the best intentions at heart. Despite my qualifications and experience on this campus, during my tenure on the UniteTU campaign, I have felt like nothing more than a puppet controlled by a team that does not share the same values or beliefs as me, using me as a tool for victory.
I thought that running for Temple Student Government would give me a platform to use my voice for good. But unfortunately, my beliefs do not align with this campaign’s values and undertones.
I was not asked to join the campaign until the platform was nearly complete and was then granted few editing privileges. Walking into my first meeting, I was greeted by a conference table of all white campaign members, none of whom I had previously met. Since the first meeting, I have been excluded from the majority of team conversations, isolated in my own belief-system and background, and invisible in every meeting.
I was on the UniteTU ticket running for Vice President of External Affairs, but I felt silenced. Rarely was I able to give my input. Simply put, I was part of a campaign that claims to champion diversity, acceptance, and “unity” yet focuses their efforts on shallow methods of securing votes for office.
I joined the campaign to represent the needs of the entire student body, though I have only been asked to present the platform to choice organizations that align with the campaign’s narrow perception of my identity: black, liberal, and female. As an educated, accomplished, and passionate woman of color, it hurts that I have been reduced to just a face in some bogus diversity initiative.
I would like to thank those who have supported me throughout this experience. I am so proud to have had this opportunity to represent the university to the best of my ability. This journey—and finding the courage to release this statement—have helped me realize my true voice. I can’t be part of a greater narrative in which I am simply a supporting character whose lines are scripted and insincere. As a token, I have felt an immense amount of pressure to project an image that both protects the reputation of this campaign, and represents the voices of all Black students of Temple University. In the beginning, I thought I was recruited because the UniteTU campaign actually valued my voice, and the things I believed in and wanted to fight for were reflected in the platform. Now, I understand that my wishes for the campaign were paradoxical, and I had no real say.
With that, I wish to inform you, the Temple student body, that I have chosen to withdraw my candidacy for the office of Vice President of External Affairs on the UniteTU campaign.
Adrienne J. Hines