Wesleyan U invests $220K/yr. in queer, transgender center
WU President Michael Roth informed the student body and faculty members last month that school officials are moving forward with plans to open up a new multicultural resource center on campus – out of popular demand.
“[The queer, transgender center] was demanded by hundreds of students who campaigned for a number of changes to be made to address ‘discrimination and lack of equity on campus’ after an op-ed in the school newspaper that was critical of Black Lives Matter had upset some students,” The Christian Post (CP) reported. “Roth explained that the center will be housed in a building that is currently being used as the Shapiro Creative Writing Center. Additionally, the school will begin searching for a director of the resource center.”
In an effort to promote the new queer and trans center as a victory for tolerance, equality and LGBT rights, Roth offered his thanks to the steering committee for it vision.
“[The resource center] will help to meet the needs of students who are most vulnerable, maintain awareness of matters related to intolerance and inaccessibility, and empower collective work to address root issues of injustice and inequity,” the university’s head proclaimed in a statement, according to CM.
Funding the Left, silencing the Right
Tens of thousands in university funds will be spent in building costs for the LGBT-friendly center, while hundreds of thousands more will be required to run the facility on an annual basis.
“According to a proposal for the Equity and Inclusion Resource Center drawn up by the equity and inclusion steering committee, the school will spend about $33,000 to renovate the Shapiro building to accommodate the center,” CP’s Samuel Smith noted. “[It is reported] that the proposal estimates that operating the center will cost the school about $220,000 per year.”
Four separate sub-centers will be make up the facility, including one for queer and transgender students that will facilitate workshops to “encourage activism and participation” for the LGBTQ community and other promoters of the homosexual agenda.
“The four sub-centers will serve students of color, first-generation and low-income students, queer and trans students, and female-identifying students,” the proposal states. “The center will work closely with individuals, groups and student-staff, who cultivate intersectional work and spaces on campus, providing avenues for the engagement of others who have an interest in social justice.”
Not stopping there, the WU document declared that the facility will act as hub to encourage and propagate alternative lifestyles that run contrary to biblical teachings.
“The space will operate as a central location where students, faculty and staff can engage in dialogue, academic enrichment, healing, organization and solidarity,” the proposal continues.
Considerable funds will be allocated to manning specific appointments in the campus’s hub for LGBT activism.
“The proposal calls for the hiring of two full-time staff members – a director and associate director – and the creation of an advisory council that consists of two tenured faculty members, two alumnae/representatives, two staff members – one from the Office of Student Affairs and one from the Office for Equity and Inclusion – and five students to represent each sub-center, plus a [student association] representative,” Smith pointed out.
Silencing those who disagree
Even though the university is promoting its new center as a bastion for equality and justice, conservative students see the facility as a headquarters for Leftists to silence the free speech of those with whom they disagree.
“The plans for the center mark a new level of commitment to Left-leaning identity politics at Wesleyan, which was rated by the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education [FIRE] as one of the ‘Top 10 Worst Colleges for Free Speech’ in the country in 2016,” The College Fix reported. “It earned the distinction after nearly shutting down the campus paper for publishing an article that was mildly critical of Black Lives Matter and tormenting its student author.”
It was also noted that a WU student is responsible for triggering the whole controversy.
“Wesleyan student Bryan Stascavage, who stood at the center of that controversy as the author of the Black Lives Matter column, [stated] that conservative students are tolerated on campus – as long as they don’t make too much noise – and that the center is nothing new since ‘classes have already been penetrated by social justice theory,’” The College Fix’s William Nardi of Liberty University explained.
The concerned student wanted to make it known that the progressives are in charge of WU.
“…If social justice wants to lean further into intimidation to achieve their goals, then all I have to do is not be intimidated,” Stascavage told The College Fix via email. “Furthermore, professors with tenure have a lot of control over their own classroom, so the ones who believe in social justice have already incorporated it, and those who are resistant will continue to do so.”
Even though the center will champion the “rights” – or privileges – of LGBT students, it is argued that it is actually school officials who are at the helm of promoting Leftist campus politics at their new command center on campus.
“[The social justice center] will be much more under the control of the university itself – it will essentially be a Wesleyan-run student society,” Stascavage continued. “I personally will not have use for the center, but I am only one vote. And if they do help students, then I think it is money well spent. If it is a waste of money, then that will become apparent soon enough.”
Keeping social conservatives quiet
When an op-ed exposed some of the racist and violent strategies used by the Blacks Lives Matter movement a year-and-a-half ago, a campus-wide crusade ignited to shut the school paper down.
“In response to a recent Argus op-ed that was mildly critical of BLM’s tactics, the protest group launched a petition calling for newspaper staff members to undergo diversity training and set up a space on the front page specifically for ‘marginalized groups/voices,’ an op-ed written on Reason.com in September 2015 reads. “If no one submits content for this space, Argus staff members are instructed to instead print an advertisement ‘for your voice.’ More than 100 students and staff members have signed the petition.”
In the name of “tolerance,” a strong message was delivered that those opposing the BLM movement would not be tolerated – and their materials would be confiscated.
“Unless these and other conditions are met, members of Black Lives Matter will dispose of any copies of The Argus they find,” the op-ed writer Robby Soave wrote. “They also want the student government, which allocates funding to The Argus, to take action. Troublingly, they seem to have the support of both the student government president and vice president.”
In the spirit of free speech, Argus Editor-in-Chief Rebecca Brill announced in September 2015 that even though she would like to reconcile with BLM activists, she did not agree with their boycott that violated the paper’s rights protected by the First Amendment of the United States Constitution.
“We would love to work with the WSA on how to achieve diversity, but editorial independence remains a huge priority for us,” Brill wrote in The Argus. “There’s an important conversation going on right now about The Argus representing the voices of all students; it seems counterintuitive to censor the voice of a student expressing their views – offensive as they may be to some. We will continue to publish even if we are defunded. It’s our responsibility to cover news on this campus and to represent our community.”
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