Ann Arbor, MI - A University of Michigan activist group, Students4Justice, has demanded space on central campus for 'black students and students of color' for what they refer to as social justice work.
The demand is part of several from the activist group, which recently held campus demonstrations and began a petition which stated University President Mark Schlissel refused their demands. In its own words, Students4Justice want “a permanent designated space on central campus for Black students and students of color to organize and do social justice work," according to The College Fix.
And the demands come just as the public University is building a $10 million student center in the center of campus. The new student center has been described as 'multi-cultural,' and is supposed to be open to all students. Its construction is due to complaints from another student activist group, 'Being Black at the University of Michigan,' who had complained that black students were being treated unfairly because the original multicultural center that they use is located at the edge of campus.
In their demands, Students4Justice said that the currently under-construction student center is not enough because they 'want a space solely dedicated to community organizing and social justice work specifically for people of color.'
Rick Fitzgerald, campus spokesman, said that university officials had been working with the activist group "to better understand its concerns." The Michigan Review, an independent student news paper, first reported this issue and openly criticized it. The newspaper said that the same organization that criticized the University for failing to create an environment ...'of diversity, equity, and inclusion' has demanded the University engage in what appeared to be on its face 'segregation', and that undermines its current efforts.
The demands of Students4Justice were first made last fall but were resubmitted in January, 2017. The group defined 'marginalized students' as those under oppression, including blacks and Arabs. They held a sit-in at the Michigan Union on February 09, 2017, according to The Michigan Review.
Other demands from Students4Justice include expression of solidarity with students of color, streamlining the bias incident report system, and increase black enrollment. Their demands are not unique. California State University - Los Angeles, has decided to establish separate dorm housing for black students.
Do we really want segregation all over again? That's exactly what Students4Justice is asking for. And whoever decided on separate housing for blacks at CSU - LA is openly promoting segregation. That ugly period of history is over and does not need to be revisited again.
This is a public university and as such is tax-payer funded. Giving in to the demands of this activist group would have disastrous, dangerous consequences.
To these "Students4Justice" I say, Get over yourselves, realize why you are at college, and grow up. The world does not have a responsibility for what you think you need. Why not take all of this energy and focus not only on your education but on making the world a better place?
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