Interview with Robin Gregory
QUESTION 18
INTERVIEWER:

What was the response to your victory? How were you officially accepted by students and by faculty, and even by the nation? What kind of reception did that get?

ROBIN GREGORY:

The reception was, ah, very interesting. Officially I wasn't accepted at all. I mean, the university administration did not like it. And the general population, you know, the people who had been doing this stuff for years, didn't like it. I mean, I'd like to sort of bring up that film, the Spike Lee film, "School Days", is a really good illustration of the atmosphere that was going on in terms of, of how people felt about themselves. So, the administration, a lot of things that they did for homecoming queens they didn't do for me. I mean, essentially, I was unaware of a lot of it, because I had never been involved in it anyway. But, you know, they would give a reception to the homecoming queen, and I didn't get one. You know, the Dean of Students would do something, he didn't do that. Um, there was supposed to be a float that the, that the, that the students put together for the homecoming queen, and they didn't want to do it. I had to get some other people to do it for me. Ah, so there was a lot of snubbing going on. Um, in the media, though, when, when the media began to report this stuff, people were really turned on by it. A lot of men wrote to me from prison. They, you know, they were really excited about what I was doing. You know, they were saying things like, you know, like, "This is--I've been waiting for something like this, you know, for a sister to come out, and just be her natural self, and to say, you know, that we are beautiful as a people." So, I got a lot of positive, ah, feed-back from prisoners. Male prisoners. I got some marriage proposals! You know, but, um, it was interesting, you know, because, because then people began to focus on other things. You know, the things we really wanted them to focus on. And you sort of have to do, ah, a thing like this to get people to look at other issues on the campus.