Event on ‘white supremacy’ organized in response to Shapiro
- Amid ongoing tension between conservative students on campus and university administrators, the University of Minnesota Women's Center plans to host an event on "white supremacy" ahead of an upcoming Ben Shapiro talk.
- The Women's Center claims that Shapiro has demonstrated a "racist indifference toward the pain and suffering of black and brown people," telling Campus Reform the counter-event has received an "outpouring of support."
In response to an upcoming Ben Shapiro speech on campus, the University of Minnesota’s Women’s Center is sponsoring an event on “white supremacy in the age of Trump.”
Shapiro’s February 26 event has been the source of ongoing controversy on campus, with Shapiro’s host groups and the university’s administration in a continuous battle over whether or not the event was deliberately moved to a decentralized location.
The Minnesota Republic and Collegians for a Constructive Tomorrow (CFACT) recently claimed that they had repeatedly requested a larger venue for Shapiro’s event, and one central to campus, unlike the St. Paul Student Center where the lecture is currently set to take place.
The venue for the upcoming event has already sold out, even after the university added additional seating.
“The venue added 49 seats, bringing capacity to 449. The additional 49 seats will have an obstructed view due to pillars in the room. The new tickets were given to the first 49 people on the waitlist and the event remains sold out,” CFACT and The Minnesota Republic added.
Now, the university’s Women’s Center is set to sponsor an event titled “White Supremacy in the Age of Trump: An Anti-Racist Teach-In.”
The event, which will occur directly before Shapiro’s talk, has outlined its goals as “mapping the connections between white extremist groups and American conservatism today,” while “unpacking the ways white supremacy manifests itself in systems, language, and culture.”
On the University of Minnesota’s website, and the event’s Facebook page, organizers refer to Shapiro as “a conservative political commentator whose racist indifference toward the pain and suffering of Black and Brown people is well-documented.”
Additionally, they note that the event will discuss how “white extremists plan to focus their 2018 outreach and recruitment efforts on Midwestern colleges and universities like the University of Minnesota.”
“We do not know whether Ben Shapiro is a white supremacist,” organizers of the event told Campus Reform. “What we know is that we have received an outpouring of support.”
Madison Dibble, editor-in-chief of The Minnesota Republic and a Campus Reform correspondent, expressed frustration with the way the event has panned out.
“I find it rich that the University of Minnesota Women's Center is protesting Mr. Shapiro and labeling all conservative women at the university as racists.” she said. “The Women's center is attacking student groups that have offered countless leadership opportunities for women on campus, including myself.”
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