An Ohio State University workshop warned white students about their privilege and told them that only whites can be racist.
A Tuesday seminar offered handy “Tips & Tools for White People,” the College Fix reports.
The university’s website announced the event with the promise that students would be shown how to “develop a personal plan of action to interrupt racism,” but, because only white students had any need to develop such a plan, only white students were encouraged to attend.
Of the 20 students at the workshop, 19 were white. One African-American student attended as an observer while a College Fix reporter recorded the proceedings.
The workshop attempted to demonstrate that race, power and prejudice are the “ingredients” that produce racism. This is why white people alone can be racist, explained Angie Wellman, because they wield power in society while non-whites do not.
The black student in attendance asked Wellmann, who is the associate director of the Student Life Multicultural Center at Ohio State, whether that meant that white people had a monopoly on racist attitudes. Wellman said, Of course it did.
The workshop also directed the students to talk about the first-time experiences with concepts like race, racism, white supremacy and white privilege. The white students seemed quite comfortable embracing the idea of white privilege.
“Whiteness grants you power and access to things,” one student confessed, according to the College Fix. “As a white woman, I can walk into any space and know that my white privilege will grant me power and access to things that someone else is not going to experience.”
The workshop moderators moved the students along other reflective paths, asking them about their feelings on such things as reverse racism, power and oppression, while inquiring if they could identify how white culture can be observed in society. Being punctual was one example of how white culture has become so pervasive in America.
One student suggested that when blacks get together for a demonstration, “it’s a riot,” while white people are just having “a protest.”
To conclude the introspective group conversation, the workshop leader provided the students with a helpful list of 26 examples of white privilege, that included such things as seeing white people report the news on television.