McCaskill: “I’ll Pray for Them”

According to a news article published today by NewsChannel 8 of Washington, D.C., Dr. Angela McCaskill is happy to be back at Gallaudet University serving in her role as Chief Diversity Officer.  After a three-month paid administrative leave, McCaskill says she felt welcomed back and does not feel nervous about her return.  The article fails to mention that the majority of the faculty, staff and students are away on winter break and are not expected to return to campus until January 22. 

The article goes on to state that McCaskill is still seeking compensation from the university.  She believes the university is responsible for damages to her reputation and she should be compensated.

When asked if she had a message for those who don’t understand or support her return, McCaskill told the reporter, “I’ll pray for them.”

Coming Soon from Planet DeafQueer:

– McCaskill Reinstatement: Reactions from Gallaudet LGBT Faculty, Staff and Students
– Why We Don’t Support McCaskill’s Reinstatement



  • When she said “I’ll pray for them” – it smacks of arrogance at its best. This proved us all along that she is not a good fit for the position and yet, she THINKS that she is qualified just because she’s black woman.

    • Kriston

      Ricky, you just shot yourself in the foot. Seriously?? At this point, it’s no longer about her being black, in fact, I dont think it has ever been about her being black. It’s the institutions focus on what “diversity” means. The university chose her in the first place, right? AND because Gallaudet is at the forefront of our community (with all our most educated deaf members — says a lot right?) it just goes to show how problematic our approach has been for decades. The Deaf community has always focused on its deaf identity with little heed for the intersectionality that is prevalent within. Diversity has a different meaning now than it used to mean — with that in mind, you should be looking at the system not the individual. Gallaudet is in itself is a system that is very oppressive. Your comment is extremely offensive to me. The queer in me understands your anger but when you put down the other half of my identity, how can I rally behind you?? The big picture — you cannot fight one ism without fighting ALL isms. Targeting her just because she is black is WRONG! If you want to focus on that, take it to the institution but DO NOT, by any means, fault her for her identity. period. All of us minorities have suffered from oppression with a wide range of impact resulting mainly in complicity and projection of self hate. Your paradigm is yours. Her paradigm is hers and she is fighting from the only thing she knows. I repeat, the only thing she knows as a person of color surrounded by a community that has little regards for 3/4 of her identity. Yes, she needs to be educated but the problem is Gallaudet. NO, scratch that, the entire deaf community. All we do is sit around and vomit on each other. sick.

      Do you know anyone who has a PhD with administrative experience that can truly champion our diverse community? Sadly, I dont. But I can name a few who could that DONT have a PhD.

      If you do, send a shout out, provide an example to compare to so the community can acknowledge what’s really going on here. Right now your comment is despicable and non progressive.

      • Kojo Amissah

        Kriston, well said! Thank you!

      • What? I am alumni of Gallaudet. I had been very out at Gallaudet from day one. You argued about the systematic oppression, I certainly can see that. Gallaudet has improved on many fronts. And it is not perfect. It shall continue to improve on all areas. World was not created in a day.

        On other hand, you obviously are defending her just because she is African-American despite the *fact* that there are allegations of her being discriminating towards her peers. I have heard the stories where people filed the complaints with EEOC which was handled by Anthony McCaskill (Pun intended), and it was often ignored/dismissed. You probably heard the remarks she made at the expense of other groups as well

        You will do anything to defend her just like many African Americans would defend Reginald Redding when he was repeatedly arrested for beating up on women. I had vlogged & blogged about him each time he was arrested and guess who went after me the most? Your people. You claimed that it was racism that I did it. It does not matter to me if he is black or not, I will still blog or vlog about it.

        Who can champion the diversity at Gallaudet with Ph.D? Easy. MJ Bienvenu. Laurene Simms.

        There are people who are qualified to lead the Office of Inclusion & Diversity at Gallaudet other than Anthony. She was merely the token of Alan Hurwitz’s administration.

        The problem is that Anthony belongs to a church which is part of oppressive institution – That institution has spewed tons of anti-gay remarks for many decades. She failed to acknowledge that. Instead of acknowledging it, she made a press conference that included her minister to defy Gallaudet and Deaf GLBTQA communities. She *knew* that her church is PART of the PROBLEM. And YOU knew it. And you ignored it by arguing against Gallaudet’s invisible systematic oppression? Pathetic.


        • Kriston

          You are completely missing the point. My problem with you is on how you are going about attacking her — using race. Now to add to that, just because of my racial background you’re going to flip the table on me claim that I will do anything to defend her? How ignorant.

          I don’t think you can even begin to understand the level of betrayal that I feel with Angela. I am determined to see that changes are made if the right actions are not taken.

          And let me ask you something, if you “know” that I “knew” all this about Angela (as you mentioned above) why not personally converse with me for I might have a different perspective to offer? No wait, since it’s only about race to you — i’m not polished enough to speak your language, sir, to act like you, to dress like you for you to even have an ounce of respect for me.

          My goal here is for open mindedness, a willingness to shift paradigms, for respectful civil discourse.

  • Posted this on my facebook, a friend suggested that I repost this here too.

    How is this okay? Why aren’t people doing something about this?

    From what I’ve seen so far, most of the people who don’t support her
    return are LGBTQA. This is based on what I’ve seen so far, I’m not
    talking about the entire community but who were the most vocal about
    calling her out.

    Now she says she’ll pray for them.

    You just don’t tell a gay person that you’ll pray for them considering
    the history the LGBTQA community has with the church. When people come
    out, churches pray for them to become straight and we all know about the
    camps to turn people straight.

    This is not the right way to
    make her return. Why not say that she’ll work to earn their respect
    instead of hurting a community that she is supposed to work with?
    Especially when the said community has a legit reason to be apprehensive
    of her.

    Has she learned anything during her leave? I’m not sure.

    • Kojo Amissah

      I am not sure where this is coming from. I am a member of the Gallaudet community. I am often shocked at how many can misdirect the conversation to make it sound like Dr. McCaskill has done so much for everyone else on campus. I am shocked to read that many of you post camouflage nonsense that come across as if she has ignored the LGBTQA members on campus. She hasn’t! All she has done since her appointment has been focusing on the LGBTQA community on campus. I would like all of you who claim to know what is going on, to name one program that this woman has planned for other members of the Gallaudet community. Just one will be sufficient. What I am seeing, after all she has done for the LGBTQA students and members of the Gallaudet community is that no matter how much she does, it will never be good enough, it will never meet the expectations of the LGBTQA, or satisfy this community. It sounds like a child who no matter how much candy you give him or her, he or she wants more, and more, and more. Get your facts straight. Dr. McCaskill is the reason why LBGTQA students has a prom on campus! Something they missed out in high school. Dr. McCaskill is the reason why the same group of students has their Lavender graduation. An experience many LGBTQA students didn’t have. She is the one responsible for finding money to support the LGBTQA resource center at Gallaudet. She is doing more even as you are all kicking her while she is down. She is holding up her head while the leadership, the deaf community, the LGBTQA community, and everyone who disagrees with her continues to bash her, scold her, stomp on her, and make an example out of her for doing what she felt was the right thing to do. Who is winning? No one. We are all losing. At then end of the day, the deaf community, the LGBTQA community, and the leadership of the university are the losers. Shame on you! Shame on all of you!

      • Prom at Gallaudet University? Please. Gallaudet is not high school. If you want to do something junk like that, do it somewhere outside of Gallaudet. The bottom line is that she is no longer fit to run the position because she *knew* better not to do things like that such as signing the referendum that *took* the already *passed* bill off from legislators’ hands into the voters.

        Don’t you get it? It is not about giving people the opportunity to *vote*. She signed the petition to TAKE away the *ALREADY PASSED* bill by ELECTED LEGISLATORS.

        I appreciated that she established LGBTQA resource center, that is something we need at Gallaudet. But so far, her actions speak of paternalism. When she said, “I’ll pray for them.” It speaks volumes. Period.

        And for you to ignore her repeated actions, I should say: Shame on you, Kojo.

      • gogallybison


        You are a straight, Black, Christian man that supports Angela. Own your privileges and get *your* facts straight:

        You write: “I am not sure where this is coming from.”

        Well, where have you been? Hiding under a rock? Angela signed an anti-gay petition. Hello?! She can claim it was simply participating in the democratic process, but the nature of the petition was anti-gay. Fact.

        You write: ” I am shocked to read that many of you post camouflage nonsense that come across as if she has ignored the LGBTQA members on campus.”

        Huh? Many people have bent over backwards to point out how they felt she was supportive on campus. This is why so many of us be hurt, shocked and betrayed when we learned about the petition.

        You write: “All she has done since her appointment has been focusing on the LGBTQA community on campus.”

        Laughing. You be serious? You actually been at her side 24-7 watching her every move? Naw, didn’t think so. Let’s assume for a moment that this farfetched idea of yours is true. If so, then she hasn’t been a very good chief diversity officer by ignoring other minority groups and issues on campus, has she? And if so, she should be fired.

        You write: “I would like all of you who claim to know what is going on, to name one program that this woman has planned for other members of the Gallaudet community. Just one will be sufficient.”

        I’ll give you 10:

        1. Dialogue Facilitator Training in Aug. 2011

        2. Turn-A-Page Together (TAPT) started in Sept. 2011

        3. Diversity and Inclusion Lecture on Sept. 22, 2011

        4. Religious Knowledge Event in Oct.4, 2011

        5. Martin Luther King, Jr. Celebration on Jan. 19, 2012

        6. Black History Month Presentation on Feb. 12, 2012

        7. Campus-wide Diversity Dialogue on Mar. 6, 2012

        8. Establishment of Diversity Advisory Board (DAB) on March 25, 2012

        9. Several “Lead On!” Sessions

        10. Establishment and selection of various Diversity Fellows

        None of the above or countless of other events and programs from ODI have anything specifically to do with the gay community on campus.

        You write: “Dr. McCaskill is the reason why LBGTQA students has a prom on campus! Something they missed out in high school. Dr. McCaskill is the reason why the same group of students has their Lavender graduation. An experience many LGBTQA students didn’t have.”

        Fact: Everyone except you apparently knows that Stephanie, one of the graduate assistants who runs the LGBTIQQA Center who is a Black deaf lesbian, is responsible for making this happen. It is true that Angela approved funding for these events and was supportive, as she *should* be as part of her job. But Angela can’t take credit for these programs. Nor is she responsible for the formation of the LGBTIQQA Center which had already existed before she became chief diversity officer. It was part of *her job* to monitor and support the new Center and programs it came up with. Angela is *paid* good money to do this as part of her employment.

        You write: “It sounds like a child who no matter how much candy you give him or her, he or she wants more, and more, and more.”

        How condensing and patronizing. You equate equal rights to candy. If these were your civil rights we were talking about, you wouldn’t be acting like such a jackass and would get behind us, show your support and be an ally.

        I will pray for you.

      • I was a Gallaudet student last year so it’s not like I’m some random deaf person with no connection with Gallaudet at all. I knew what was going on campus.

        I personally helped out with the LGBTQA prom. I did not even see her at all while I was helping my friend who did EVERYTHING. I’m not even sure if she showed up. I think she did, my friend who was heavily involved in the planning doesn’t think so.

        So, I don’t think Angela is the one to credit for the prom. I feel kind of insulted that you’re trying to pin the prom onto her. She has done some good things for the community, yes but not everything that happened since she took office is because of her.

        A lot of LGBTQA-related things was already in plans way before she took office. By giving her all of the credit, you completely ignore the LGBTQA community who has done so much for Gallaudet.

        Please know your facts before making assumptions.

        I don’t hate her. I’m just disappointed in her.

      • Kriston

        Greedy little child? What are we a charity case?!

        “Now now, you got enough treats for one day. More later. We mustn’t ruin your appetite before dinner”

        Now tell me Kojo, what is dinner? Well you certainly don’t think we deserve just as much rights as you do.

        Please do some unpacking and check your privileges.

        WE CANNOT allow ourselves to take on the same frame of mind that our oppressors have dealt with us.

    • gogallybison

      Apparently not. She needs to resign.

  • DSQ

    I had met Dr. Angela McCaskill many times back in the 80’s and she is a decent and determined woman. After I heard the stunning news about Dr. Angela McCaskill’s conduct a few months ago. Honestly, as an Alumni, I have been betrayed by her and It hurts. I am sure many students, staffs, and alumnus feel the same as well. Once Dr. McCaskill returns next week from her three months LOA, Everything will NOT be the same. You will see. In my personal opinion, I highly recommend Dr. McCaskill should be placed or transferred to the different job position on Gallaudet campus. I applaud Dr. MJ and the staff (name?) who approached Dr. Hurwitz nicely and told him not to terminate but place Dr. McCaskill to the different job on Gallaudet campus. Unfortunately, It is not going to happen however Dr. McCaskill will sense everything will NOT be the same for her… and even for everyone too. Dr. McCaskill is not honest with herself but I guarantee she will quietly leave her job one day. Good Luck Dr. Angela McCaskill. Peace. DSQ

  • To Kojo and others on this thread and the wider readership of this site, I would like to share a few thoughts and responses to the article and the comments.

    First, Kojo I would like to address some of your remarks. I understand your desire that Dr. McCaskill’s many good works not be forgotten in the fray. As I have mentioned in previous writings, I have long beleived in Angela as a champion for diversity and as a friend. The notion that all her past good works mean nothing now because of these recent bad acts is as false as the idea that her past good works should negate the impact and damage of what she has now done. I still love Angela, I can’t help but love her, she has always had a kind word and a heartfelt hug for me. So, you can be sure that I have not forgotten the good that Dr.McCaskill has done here at Gallaudet, but neither will I forget the shock and pain I felt when I found out that my champion had acted to take away my Civil Rights! Good deeds indeed, but that is why the sting is felt more sharply.

    Some few people have, as you said, engaged in bashing and scolding. That does not change the fact that many more of us in the LGBTQA Galllaudet community have serious questions to pose, not just to Dr. McCaskill, but to Gallaudet as a diverse community and to the wider scope of people in our lives and societies. The questions we have are hard questions. They won’t be comfortable and we will ALL need to work to ensure that we create civil discourse while not softballing the very real concerns our community must confront.

    Dr. McCaskill will return to Gallaudet after months of virtual silence since the initial outcry over her signature on petition and the later events that led to her Administrative Leave. That silence has spoken volumes to the LGBTQA community. In the immediate media circus once the news broke, opportunities for real dialogue focusing on the Student, Faculty, and Staff community were swallowed up in the politicizing of the issue by outside groups. This meant that many of us in the Gallaudet LGBTQA community were left grasping, not as greedy children wanting ever more candy as you said, but searching for understanding, and meaningful discourse on the attack on our Civil Rights that the petition she signed represented.
    Dr. McCaskill also returns to an LGBTQ community that saw her only through the lens of press conferences throughout this whole affair. It was very difficult for me to see my onetime champion stand next to Anthony Perkins of the Family Research Council and laud their support and their work. Mr. Perkins and the FRC are well known in our community for their virulently anti-gay work. The efforts of the FRC and of the church that put the petition in Dr.McCaskill’s hands were intended to take away the CIVIL rights of Lesbian and Gay Marylanders. Marriage Equality was already the law when the petition was created, so arguments that signing it was intended to help LGBTQ Marylanders won’t fly. The only reason to sign that petition was to try to take away a civil right from a group of citizens by a popular vote.

    Similar attempts were made here in DC after the right to Marriage Equality was recognized by the DC Government, but failed because the District has existing laws that prohibit taking away civil rights a group of citizens by popular referendum. This law recognizes the danger inherent in allowing the majority free reign to trample on the fundamental rights that should be shared equally among all citizens.

    Franklin Delano Roosevelt spoke of this problem in a 1930 radio broadcast when he said ” The moment a mere numerical superiority by either states or voters in this country proceeds to ignore the needs and desires of the minority, and for their own selfish purpose or advancement, hamper or oppress the minority or debar them in any way from equal privileges and equal rights– that moment will mark the failure of our constitutional system”

    One of my concerns and questions is how a Cheif Diversity Officer can miss this fundamental danger to the rights and liberties of a minority people. The rights given by the State to civilly married couples are numerous, and critical in the lives of Gay and Lesbian spouses. A faithful partner odf 50+ years will be taxed on their joint property and any inheritance as though they were a perfect stranger, a loving and committed spouse may be refused admittance in a hospital in a time of dire need, or a couple purchasing a home may be denied the protections for their home afforded by status as ‘tenants of the entirety’. These rights are anything but trivial, and are far from candies to begged for by greedy children.

    I recognize that in the limited discourse there has been around the issues here, polarization of our various communities has led to many all or nothing assumptions in the debate. There are many more issues involved here than the signing of one petition and its subsequent effects. Issues of race, gender, the balancing personal moralities and civil liberties and hopes for any easy answers are misplaced. The only worthwhile course is to know the road will be difficult and the answers will take work, patience and humility.

    Without real dialogue in our Gallaudet community we are adrift on the water and will go wherever circumstances toss us. Our compass should be the direction that serves all of our students and community with dignity, and our sails filled with the will to create a better Gallaudet.

    Adam Bartley

  • Keri (MacFarlane) Ogrizovich

    As a long-time Deaf, female, white Ally of the LGBTQ community, I am offended by Dr. McCaskill’s actions. Her signature on the petition takes away my step-sister’s rights, my best friend’s rights and many, many friends’ rights. I would never dream of doing such a thing for any minority. In fact, I did the opposite; my signature in support for civil unions in Vermont is on public record. I am proud that Vermont made history by leading our nation towards marriage equality for all. We, the Deaf community, need to remember that Alexander Graham Bell, was a leader who opposed deaf people marrying each other. We also need to remember that people of different race were not allowed to marry each other either. All of us have fought for the right to marry who we love and now we need to fight for our brothers and sisters of the LGBTQ community to marry who they love.

    People, including myself, make mistakes. Had Dr. McCaskill simply apologized for her actions, we would not be having this discussion at all. The fact that she threatened to sue Gallaudet University, seems to be resistant to taking on another position, and did not issue any sort of apology to the minority that she so deeply offended is of great concern to me. She needs to take accountability for her actions because of her role as the Chief Officer of Diversity. Even in her private life, she continues to represent Gallaudet University and its diverse population.

    And now Dr. McCaskill is saying that she will pray for us? That’s like adding salt to our wounds. I believe it’s the other way around. WE will be praying for her and sending her lots of love and light, hoping that she will see the truth of how her actions have harmed our Deaf LGTBQA community.

  • What if she had signed a petition to revoke the voting rights act? Or to repeal women’s right to vote? To say that she was just signing the petition to put gay marriage on the ballot so the voters could decide is disingenuous. The people sponsoring the petition were clearly anti-LGBTQI. And besides that, to actively work to take away civil rights is in direct conflict with the job of CDO, clear and simple. If she worked in the private sector she would have been fired for working directly against her employment goals. Also, I am dismayed to see the contentious remarks about race. When we as oppressed minorities begin attacking each other, it only fractures our strength, just what the doctor ordered! We weaken our solidarity. There are plenty of people of color in the LGBTQI ranks whose civil rights were at issue. Let’s bring this discussion back to the point – that a person who claimed to be an ally and a champion of civil rights betrayed those who trusted her, by working to deny their civil rights. Without an apology, or an attempt to make amends, or acknowledgement of or attempt to heal the wound she inflicted, I feel double betrayed, first by her acting against my civil rights then by her reinstatement. We are going to need a big mother of a prayer to cover all of that.

  • Adam Bartley, beautifully said. As Gallaudet Alumni, I never met or heard of Dr. McCaskill before the news broke out. Then I was stunned to learn more about her while watching your vlogging, expressing your shock and pain. By the way, OMG, BEAUTIFUL PUMPKIN CARVING!!!

    Certainly, many critical questions were raised. If I am a student, I am not sure I can go to her and ask for her LGBTQQIA/Queer resources. I would be afraid that she might hand out a pamphlet from her antigay “buddy” Tony Perkins.

    Will she share real stories, newspaper articles, TV news and media with her face all over the places about Maryland’s referendum Question 6 history as she was a very big part of this history? Or hide them from students? Will she apologize? Change of hearts? Will she share Maryland stories about happily wedded same-sex couples, even a story about trolley business owner in Annapolis refusing gay marriage ceremony? Will she share her antigay perspectives? Will LGBT students be willing to hear her antigay says (as most of us never see a logical reason/debate to deny us equal rights based on their religious beliefs)?

    Will she support and raise the gay civil right awareness in her Diversity office? Post on bulletin board state by state gay marriage such as only 9 states allow gay marriages and most states ban gay marriages? These students come from all over the country and need to know their state’s gay rights especially many states still can fire LGBT employees.

    I saw her on TV news that she said she wanted to see a public vote on our (not her) constitutional rights to pursue happiness. Yet, she twisted around like a victim declaring that she has a right to sign a petition in front of TV news all over the country. This upset my stomach and left a big scar in my head. Can she get away with her antigay action leaving a big scar in many Maryland LGBT residents plus Deaf LGBT people all over the world? I have no clue on how students can trust her with all LGBTQQIA resources in her hands.

  • DSQ

    I P R A Y for Dr. Angela to resign politely from her job and finds a new job on Gallaludet Campus.

  • Kojo, first of all, using ad hominem comments invalidates anything you have to say, even if true.

    Secondly McCaskill aligned herself with Tony Perkins (on televison to
    boot). A nationally esteemed civil rights group has labeled Perkin’s
    organization a hate group: http://www.splcenter.org/searc… For a CDO to not check out who Perkins is, especially with access to Google right under her nose, is unforgivable and indicates her ineptness at her job.

    Thirdly, working on behalf of LGBT at GU was part of her job. If she
    didn’t do it, she would have had to be replaced. Bravoing someone for
    doing their job isn’t an argument. She EXPECTED to do this.

    Fourth, if she thought she was doing the right thing, she thought
    wrong. People lose their jobs all the time for making mistakes,
    especially if they don’t own up to them (and pal around with hate