Wisconsin Public Universities Study ‘White Privilege’

Jul 21, 2014 by

Two Wisconsin watchdog groups report that taxpayers foot the bill for dozens of university students and faculty to attend a white privilege conference that included sessions on “The Pitfalls of Working with White People” and suggestions that President Bush took money away from New Orleans levees “because they protected black people.”

In sum, at least $50,000 from taxpayer-funded public universities in Wisconsin went to help fund the fifteenth annual White Privilege Conference held in Madison, Wis., in late March.

The data was obtained through public records act requests.

The MacIver Institute reports that the public University of Wisconsin-La Crosse spent $26,000 to send 23 faculty and 91 students to the event. Money was also used by University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire, which spent more than $16,000 to send 13 staff members and 13 students, the institute uncovered.

Investigative reporter Adam Tobias of the watchdog Wisconsin Reporter reports other university support includes $5,000 from UW-Madison and $3,000 from Madison Area Technical College.

In its ongoing investigation into the conference, the MacIver Institute has calculated total taxpayer expenses at $85,899 – and counting. In addition to public universities, other funding sources include the city of Madison, K-12 school districts and the state’s education department.

“MacIver is still waiting on responses from numerous other open records requests, so the total taxpayer cost for the conference is expected to increase even more,” the institute notes on its website.

Much of the money went toward registration fees, the MacIver Institute found. UW Eau Claire spent almost $6,000 on registration for its 26 attendees while UW La Crosse spent $16,000 to register the 114 people it sent. Both universities spent $2,000 for a co-sponsor fee.

The White Privilege Conference rotates host cities every year. Wisconsin hosted once before, in 2010, when the conference was held in La Crosse.

Topics include discussions on racism, but also homosexuality and gender issues.

In 2008, one point tossed around was “the fact that successful white males are more likely to be honored with their own holiday, while Black History Month is celebrated during February, the shortest month of the year,” according to the UW La Crosse’s student paper after the 2008 conference.

Other topics at the 2014 conference, as reported by Kyle Olson of Progressives Today, included claims that “white people do not experience racism,” “rape is not intrinsically bad,” that Tea Party members are racist, and that capitalism perpetuates white supremacy.

via Wisconsin Public Universities Fork Over $50,000 to Study ‘White Privilege’.

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