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Harvard Researcher Dubbed 'Sidewalk Suzie' After Making Innapropriate Comments To A Mother And Her Child

Harvard Researcher Dubbed 'Sidewalk Suzie' After Making Innapropriate Comments To A Mother And Her Child
(scorpio stings/YouTube)

Another overly-concerned racist white woman caught on video is making the rounds on the internet. Joining the likes of "Permit Patty" and "BBQ Becky"––who've become notorious for harassing people of color for simply living their lives––is the new entrant to the hall of shame: "Sidewalk Suzie."

Theresa Lund, the Executive Director of the Harvard Humanitarian Initiative, wasn't very humanitarian-like when she asked the mother of a biracial daughter if she lived in "affordable housing" after asking them to leave the premises for being disruptive.

What sets Sidewalk Suzie apart from the others is the fact that she didn't contact authorities. Instead, she exerted her authority on the mother to make sure the "problem" was rectified on her terms.

Lund claimed she was trying to get her kids to nap...

Alyson Laliberte, the person whom Lund interrogated, posted the video of their awkward standoff on Facebook.

Y'all here is another Permit Patty trying to kick me off my own property because she's having a hard time getting her kids to take a nap at 3:30 in the afternoon on a Saturday.

Lund asked Laliberte to take her daughter and play elsewhere so that her "kids" could nap. It turns out, Lund was lying about having kids.

She followed me around and harassed me trying to get my information and apartment number as if she had a right to know. When I wouldn't tell her she proceeded to ask me if I lived in the "affordable apartments" of the building for Cambridge residents or if I lived in one of the Harvard owned apartments (which is all the same building anyways). It was totally discriminating and racist of her.. or maybe it was because my daughter is biracial who knows.

In the footage, Lund audaciously addresses Laliberte's 3-year-old daughter who is out of frame.

You are a sweetheart. I'm sorry that I'm arguing with your mommy. She's not being very nice.

Laliberte refused to leave the scene, so the next logical question in Lund's mind was this:

Are you in one of the affordable units, or are you in one of the Harvard units?

She proceeded to ask which unit Laliberte lived in and asked for her unit number. Laliberte told her it was none of her business and later expressed her frustration over the confrontation with the Harvard researcher on Facebook.

She wanted to know what apartment number I lived at so she can yell outside my window to see if I like it (real mature) as you hear her say in the video. This woman's house is no bigger than mine even if she lives in one of the apartments that are owned by Harvard.
Despite color, where I live, how much money I have she will be buried 6 feet under just like me... Why do people think they are literally better than others? Why does she think she has a right to make us move?

And people have just about had it.

By Monday, the viral video showing her true colors made Lund offer an apology via email to the Boston Globe in which she admitted her conduct was "inappropriate and wrong."

I want to be accountable for my actions in a situation where I fell far short of my values and what I expect of myself. This clearly wasn't my best moment, and I have work to do to more consistently be my best self.

Michael VanRooyen, director of the Harvard Humanitarian Initiative, stood by Lund and said that the video was taken out of context in a deleted tweet. His excuse was dismissed immediately.

Lund also apologized to Laliberte on Facebook, saying she should never have addressed her daughter and asked where they lived.

I offered my sincere apology to her, her mother, and her daughter in person [Sunday] morning. I love our community and am committed to engaging in dialogue and actions about how to make it more welcoming and pleasant for all of us to live in together.

At least there's a sense of closure on this incident with no one getting fired from their jobs or authorities getting involved.

But is harassment of this nature finally running its course? Probably not. And all we can do is go about our lives, and have our smartphone readily available to hit the record button.

H/T - Facebook YouTube, Twitter, Globe,