|IUPUI and Diversity
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|There are apparently problems with racist people at IUPUI. Some of them are even white.
Sometimes I get confused.
We all know at least a little bit about the conflicts over minority Civil Rights of the 20th century. What was the watchword of the 1960's marches? Equality! People were sick and tired of being treated differently because of the color of their skin.
Rock on! I hear you. Equality I understand. Fairness I'll get behind. Equal treatment under the law I not only support, I demand.
That said, let's talk a little bit about the recent situation at IUPUI and why it isn't about equality.
First the IUPUI Black Student Union held a protest march on November 2, 2006 which they called "Black Thursday". This march was in protest to IUPUI's "false commitment to diversity." The situation took an interesting turn with the Black Student Union hosting a forum on November 12th to advertise the demands they had made of University leadership. Among other things, the Black Student Union included a campus center for black students, sensitivity training for administrators, more black faculty members, a new major in African-American studies and $78,000 in funding for Black student groups. They set a deadline and threatened to sue IUPUI and call for resignations if their demands weren't met. I didn't go to the forum, so I can't speak on what was said there, but I did hear that some people were upset because they felt they had been treated unfairly by IUPUI authority figures because of their race. Where that is true, there exists a problem. However, I strongly disagree with all of their proposed solutions.
They want a student-center ... for black students. This boggles my mind. So many questions jump to mind. Why? Why should black students be segregated from everyone else? What would a black student-center have that a race-neutral student-center couldn't? Would white students be allowed at the black student center? Who decides who is "black enough" for the black student center? Will there be a color chart by the door? Why should we duplicate facilities to keep racial groups apart? Didn't people complain about just that very thing fifty years ago?
I put $78,000 in bold, didn't I? Hmmm ... perhaps that is because the TOTAL amount of funding for ALL student groups (black, white and indifferent) is closer to $68,000. So the Black Student Union essentially wants the budget increased by $10,000 and then awarded in its entirety to groups based on ... get this ... their skin color. Racist much?
Anyway, on November 15th, IUPUI issued a press release that gave some general ideas about their plan to address the issue. Essentially, they gave in - at least partly - to the demands, while saying that it would take them some time to put together the details of the solutions.
This was, apparently, not enough.
Folks, racism doesn't suddenly become acceptable when you're black. Equality means what is sauce for the goose is sauce for the gander. I'm all for racial equality, but what the IUPUI Black Student Union demands is not racial equality, it is racist preferential treatment.
IUPUI Black Student Union - if your goal was improvement of racial equality and decrease the amount of racism on IUPUI's campus, you buggered the chipmunk bigtime.
IUPUI and Diversity