In a ruse straight out of the movie Soul Man, Mindy Kaling’s older brother posed as a black man to get into medical school.
Vijay Chokal-Ingam recently revealed that he self-identified as black on his medical school applications to give himself a better chance at getting accepted.
“I was determined to become a doctor and I knew that admission standards for certain minorities under affirmative action were, let's say… less stringent?” Chokal-Ingam wrote in his blog Almost Black.
The Indian-American said that to look more the part, he shaved his head, trimmed what he describes as his “long Indian eyelashes” and even went so far as to join the Organization of Black Students. His transformation was so drastic that he claims even his fraternity brothers didn’t recognized him.
— BuzzFeed News (@BuzzFeedNews) April 5, 2015
Chokal-Ingam was apparently convincing enough that he was soon interviewed at Columbia and HarvardUniversities and was on the waiting list of Mt.Sinai, University of Pennsylvania and WashingtonUniversity. He has even posted screenshots of medical school applications and interview invitations on his Almost Black Facebook page.
He was finally accepted to St. Louis University School of Medicine but dropped out after two years.
He pulled off his so called “twisted social experiment” 15 years ago but decided to reveal it now to underline his anti-affirmative action beliefs. Chokal-Ingam even called out his alma mater UCLA for, according to him, strengthening its affirmative-action admissions policies.
Describing himself as an “affirmative action hacktivist,” Chokal-Ingram is also planning to write a memoir about his ruse, aptly titled “Almost Black.”
Great discussion of Affirmative Action why aa racism survives: simple explanation - blacks are as racist as whites http://t.co/guUtsERUUG
— Vijay Chokal-Ingam (@VijayIngam) April 3, 2015
Would you rather accept racism or defy those who want to discriminate against you? I chose the latter and applied to medical school as black
— Vijay Chokal-Ingam (@VijayIngam) April 4, 2015
As expected, his revelation has received a lot of backlash, with people angrily commenting on how he took advantage of the system or how he deprived a worthy black student of an opportunity.
Dude has finally reached the point where being Mindy Kaling's brother isn't enough & now he wants some attention. Hope he chokes on it.
— Nichole (@tnwhiskeywoman) April 4, 2015
Mindy Kaling's brother thinks black people are as racist as whites. He has grudges against black ppl & wants to profit from anti blackness.
— Cultural Sovereignty (@Payitforward87) April 4, 2015
Mindy Kaling's brother would rather pretend to be black to get into med school, than actively work with black people against discrimination.
— المثيرة للفوضى (@RomanKush) April 4, 2015
And thank you Mindy Kaling's brother, for the onslaught of hot takes we'll have to endure from clueless white people.
— Fed-Up Early Retiree (@thewayoftheid) April 4, 2015
Mindy Kaling's brother is a perfect example of why I will never use or support the term "people of color." We ain't in this together.
— jdan (@JHatesSports) April 4, 2015
I know a number of black people with higher GPAs than Mindy Kaling's brother who didn't get into med school. Is he outraged for them too?
— Karaba la Sorcière (@Miss_Talie) April 4, 2015
Representatives of Mindy Kaling have not issued any comment on the matter. However, Chokal-Ingam did admit that his sister didn’t approve of his actions and that they’re fighting over it.
— Young Conservatives (@YoungCons) April 3, 2015
“She says this will bring shame on the family,” he admitted.