This letter is being written with the intent of expressing concern for the manner in which the Advocates for Conservative Thought attempted to show their views on affirmative action Feb. 25. This group planned to have an “affirmative action bake sale.” Irregardless of one’s view on this touchy topic, the derogatory nature of the sale is extremely upsetting to many students on campus, especially women and minorities.
Illustrating afirmative action by charging differential amounts to students based on appearances does NOT begin to show the mechanism or purpose of affirmative action – it just portrays this group as racist. By attempting to hold this bake sale (which was allegedly cancelled due to lack of volunteers, but maybe they were just scared?), ACT has shown a complete disregard for the respect and dignity of students at this campus.
It is extremely disturbing to couple the actions of ACT with the comments that were made last week by SG vice-presidential and presidential candidates regarding minorities at this campus — anyone remember minority groups being called “small people” or “disorganized organizations”? If you stopped by the breezeway this Wednesday, you would have seen three of the largest minority groups on campus (COISO, SpectrUM, and UBS) passing out free food and information about what affirmative action really is and how it actually works. So much food was brought in by concerned students that a large part of it was donated to a homeless shelter. Hundreds of students stopped to sign the petitions being circulated. It seems that these “small” people got “organized” enough to make a huge statement.
This goes to show that when the groups that are often ignored by many facets of student life get together, a huge impact can be made. Our groups have expected decency and respect in all that we do, and this attempted bake sale was a blatant disregard of that. As students at such an extemely diverse university, we have the duty to respect and learn both from and about those around us. By portraying our views in a disrespectful manner, nothing positive can be accomplished.
The Students of The Council of International Students and Organizations (COISO), SpectrUM, and United Black Students (UBS)