Today, October 14th, Stanford University sponsored an event featuring How to be an Anti-Racist author Ibram Kendi, to discuss the concept of “anti-racism.” In doing so, Stanford gave a platform to a man who has made millions of dollars weaponizing race for political gain, dividing Americans along racial lines by preaching that they are defined by nothing more than their skin color.
Ibram Kendi’s invitation to speak at Stanford is blatantly hypocritical, as Kendi is a textbook example of the racism Stanford claims to stand against. And while we fully support Ibram Kendi’s right to speak to a Stanford audience, the University’s decision to endorse this event by sponsoring it directly has exposed their deep-seated ideological radicalism and hypocrisy.
Kendi has redefined racism to fit his own ideological purposes, arguing that “racism is a marriage of racist policies and normalizing racial inequities.” However, Kendi’s definition of racism extends to any ‘system’ that perpetuates inequality. There are no nuanced answers to this question from Ibram Kendi. Rather, by arguing that there are only racist and “antiracist ideas,” he can then label any political disagreement as racism. And by doing so, he only highlights his own racism.
For example, upon the announcement of Judge Amy Coney Barrett’s nomination to the Supreme Court, Ibram Kendi could only coldly opine that while Barrett has adopted Hatian children,
"Some [w]hite colonizers [had also] ‘adopted’ [b]lack children...they ‘civilized’ these ‘savage’ children in the ‘superior’ ways of [w]hite people, while using them as props in their lifelong pictures of denial, while cutting the biological parents of these children out of the picture of humanity."
It is disgustingly racist for Ibram Kendi to reduce the loving relationship between a parent and her child to racial insecurity. Yet increasingly, that is what Kendi and his followers at Stanford aim to expand into every domain.
But most disturbingly, Ibram does not believe that black Americans have any self-agency. He has impugned black Americans who reasonably disagree with his redefinition of racism as race-traitors. But while Stanford will gladly fund and platform racial warmongers such as Kendi, Stanford has continually undermined attempts by our organization to host conservative speakers.
When the Stanford College Republicans (SCR) hosted counterterrorism expert Robert Spencer in 2017, Stanford administrators banned live-streaming of the event and banned the general public from attending; while making preparations to host Dinesh D’Souza, Stanford administrators imposed exorbitant security fees along with other restrictions designed to stop us from paying Mr. D’Souza; when conservative commentator Andrew Klavan came to deliver a lecture on the Judeo-Christian heritage of our nation, Stanford administrators baselessly smeared him as ‘Islamaphobic.’
In contrast to Stanford's repeated efforts to undermine conservative speakers, Stanford has been more than willing to roll out the red carpet to true radicals, such as antisemite Linda Sarsour, and Angela Davis, who was on the FBI’s Most Wanted List for her involvement in the murder of six people. Both of these events were officially sponsored by Stanford.
Moreover, Stanford eagerly covered for Senior Associate Vice Provost and Dean of Students Mona Hicks when she quoted in a student-circulated June 1st email a “loving refrain” from Assada Shakur, a domestic terrorist who was convicted of murdering police officer Werner Foerster in 1973.
During a time when our country could not be more divided, Stanford has invited one of the very individuals responsible for fanning the flames of racial discord. If Stanford wanted to actually address racial issues, they would invite speakers who would discuss the policy proposals necessary to uplift the lives of all Americans, not leftist hacks who project their own racism onto those with whom they disagree. The next time Stanford tries to block our ‘controversial’ speakers, we suggest they take a hard look in the mirror at their own history of platforming radicalism, violence, and hatred.
President of the Stanford College Republicans