University Students Vote to Double Ethnic Studies Requirements to 'Combat Current Systemic Racism'

University Students Vote to Double Ethnic Studies Requirements to 'Combat Current Systemic Racism'
(AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin, file)

Are college students in need of more ethnic studies?

In Madison, Wisconsin, the answer is Yes.

So says a school government.

As reported by The College Fix, the University of Wisconsin-Madison’s Associated Students of Madison (ASM) recently unanimously voted to bump up the number of such classes required for graduation.

The amount of increase: 100%.

Following the vote to upgrade three to six, committee leaders issued a news release:

UW-Madison is responsible for providing students with the knowledge to become more understanding and empathetic individuals.

The group made clear there is indeed systemic racism, and the classes will fight such a foe:

Increasing the Ethnic Studies Requirement is a way to combat current systemic racism and encourage a dialogue around its history.

So much — it seems — has been made of hidden racists running a system whose racism can be pinpointed enough to declare its existence. If only we could finger the actual racists and oust them and their racist ways, none of the less direct methods would be necessary.

Such an attempt at exposure, perhaps, is being made at Kentucky’s Berea College.

As I covered Friday, the Christian school will soon host an event called “White Citizenship as Terrorism: Make America Great Again, Again.”

A flyer lays it out:

Despite calls for multiculturalism and color-blindness, segments of white America mourn their so-called loss of privilege, consistently begging to return to the nostalgic past in which their esteemed value as white citizens went unquestioned. Trump’s “Make America Great Again” appears to follow suit by offering a seemingly benign promise to return to America to a previously “great” past. But the offer to “Make America Great Again, Again” requires we refocus on how the last four years of daily tweets and administrative actions redefine whiteness. … If terrorism is redefined as the use of violence and threats to create a state of fear toward particular communities and identities, then this is what “Trumpism” is at its core.

Back to UW-Madison, the ASM’s resolution is non-binding. The university’s General Education Committee is the only body that can change course requirements.

According to the ASM document, nonwhite students “often feel excluded and unsafe on campus and experience exclusion, microaggressions, and/or blunt racism during their college career at UW-Madison.”

As evidence, the group points to 2019, in which a homecoming video released by the school didn’t feature many nonwhites (the homecoming committee later apologized).

Additionally, in 2020, someone chalked the sidewalks to blame the coronavirus on the Chinese government (No word on whether distinguished members of the Chinese government attend UW-M).

In an email to the Fix, school spokeswoman Meredith McGlone confirmed that nonwhite students may indeed feel bad:

“UW–Madison recognizes that many students of color and other marginalized students do not experience as positive a campus climate as majority students, both in and outside the classroom. We’re committed to changing that.”

The school wants to — get ready for it — educate its customers:

“We also embrace the responsibility of helping students become knowledgeable, engaged, empathetic citizens.”

And ethnic studies help:

“Ethnic studies courses are one important tool to meeting that responsibility and equipping our students to help lead positive change.”

But, she said, they can’t be too willy-nilly about changing the requirements:

“Consideration of changes to gen-ed requirements, including the ethnic studies requirement, involves a range of factors, including clear articulation of learning goals for the requirement, availability of/access to sufficient course offerings in a variety of disciplines for students to complete the requirement, and potential impact upon progress to degree.”

The school’s certainly trying to give racism the heave-ho.

Last November, it voted to rupture and remove a 70-ton rock — because it was called something racist 95 years ago.

It seemed they believed sticking it to the stone would roll racism.

Apparently — given the ethnic studies news — the shattering fell short.

Resolution co-sponsor Crystal Zhao is optimistic that the new mandate — if passed — will…rock:

“I hope that the six-credit ethical studies requirement will decrease a lot of bias incidents. For a lot of schools, STEM and business majors have experienced bias from faculty and students within the classroom.”

Fingers crossed.



See more pieces from me:

Oregon Eyes Giving $123,000 to Black Residents Who Can Prove Ancestral Slavery

Kentucky College’s ‘White Citizenship as Terrorism’ Event Schools Students on Trumpism’s Criminal Core

Mega Millions: Minneapolis Pays George Floyd’s Family $27 Million

Find all my RedState work here.

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