Professor screens anti-Koch Brothers film, says success is about race
- After screening an anti-Koch Brothers documentary, a University of St. Thomas professor told business students that they have a social responsibility to help those with less money or education.
- The event is one of six choices that all business students must attend in order to graduate in that major.
A University of St. Thomas (UST) professor told students they have a social responsibility to help people if they have more money or knowledge, and they should feel guilty if they do not.
“If you’ve got additional resources, does that come with a responsibility to anyone other than yourself?” Barbara Gorski, director of the Business 200 program at UST, asked approximately 20 students earlier this month, according to an audio recording obtained by Campus Reform.
Gorski was leading a discussion on the 19th about social responsibility following a screening of a negative documentary on the Koch Brothers. The screening and discussion were part of a “Bigger Picture” lecture series business majors are required to attend. In order to complete the Business 200 class at UST—required for all business majors—students must attend at least one of six lectures.
A student answered that if someone works hard for their resources, like money or knowledge, than they have earned it and should not feel guilty if they don’t help others who may not have worked as hard.
“I think sitting here means we got opportunities that most people don’t,” Gorski responded. “We have tremendous access that others don’t. Some by color some by nationality.”
Gorski said that her family had obtained its wealth because her family is white. After World War II her family had received a house loan when, she said, black people weren’t allowed to.
“If my family had been black in 1953, they wouldn’t have gotten the house loan, and that affected me going to college,” Gorski said, calling it a “tremendous inequity.”
According to an email promoting the event obtained by Campus Reform, the discussion following the Koch Brothers Exposed: 2014 Edition documentary was supposed to be “about the influence of the Koch Brothers on American Politics and Policies.”
That email said the point of the film was “to shine a light on the Koch Brothers, and have delved in [sic] where their money is going, who their money is hurting, and how much they are making during this whole process leading up to the 2014 Elections.”
One student pointed out that George Soros is the equivalent of the Koch brothers on the left, and the left has previously raised more for elections than the right.
Gorski said the issue was not really about politics, but more about campaign financing, and she knows that this movie “only shows one side of the coin.” She said she had tried to find a film that represented the other side, but couldn’t find anything, and would send the students information in defense of the Koch brothers after the discussion.
But Anne George, a senior accounting major at UST, told Campus Reform that Gorski has not sent out any information in defense of the Koch Brothers, and she doubts that the professor will.
“The discussion, which really was more of a lecture, got off topic and seemed to be more of a political agenda,” George told Campus Reform in an interview.
“Clearly people who are successful have worked hard to get there, but I think we can agree that there are other factors such as financial upbringing and support from parents or mentors,” George added. “The notion, however, that somebody is successful or not successful based solely on their race is misguided and offensive.”
Follow the author of this article on Twitter: @AllisonMaass