Nayla Kidd
WABC screenshot

Every day, numerous black women go missing, and most of the time their disappearance never gains media attention. While people are still searching for Natalee Holloway, oftentimes when you hear or read about a missing black woman, it's only because social media has amplified it. Which brings me to the story of Nayla Kidd.

Kidd, a 19-year-old black student at Columbia University, was reported missing in May when she failed to show up for her finals at the Ivy League school in New York City. Immediately, social media, even before news media, hopped on the story.

Here we had an educated black woman missing. Thoughts about what happened to Kidd ranged from a possible kidnapping to even murder.

But of course, we all know Kidd's story by now.

Neither of those things happened.

Kidd, in a well-calculated move, decided to chuck deuces to her Ivy League life and start a new one. Kidd didn't bother informing family or friends that she was moving into a new apartment in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, and that she'd changed banks and cellphone numbers.


In a piece for the New York Post, Kidd explained why she did what she did.

“I had been waking up every day for months with a feeling of dread and doom,” Kidd wrote. “I couldn’t keep putting my all into something I cared nothing about.”

She added, “I finally broke down because I was living a life I thought I should be living instead of living the life I want.”


Unlike Demetria Lucas D'Oyley in her piece for The Root, I'm not going to use adjectives such as "courageous" to describe Kidd. But I will use "entitled" and "selfish." This is what's wrong with her generation.

So you realize you can't cut it in your major. Guess what? Thousands of college students eventually figure that out their first year in college. And guess what? They change majors. How much easier would that have been, instead of trying to run off to hipster town Williamsburg to be an artist and model?

So you realize college is stressing you out? A simple search on Columbia University's website shows various services for students dealing with mental-health issues. And I'm also pretty sure that Kidd's mother had her on an excellent health insurance plan that gave her access at her fingertips to the help she needed. But she made the deliberate and well-thought-out choice to run and not inform her family or friends.


The time she took to plan out her escape could have been used to better her situation without the unnecessary drama. The time police used to look for her could have been used to search for countless other missing people in New York City.

Tell me this: If Kidd, who says she has no plans to return to school, doesn't make it in art or modeling, where is she going to run to next? Bed-Stuy?