Berea College in Kentucky released a statement Friday defending an upcoming event it’s hosting titled “White Citizenship as Terrorism: Make America Great Again, Again.”
The event is scheduled for March 17 and organized by the Women’s and Gender Non-Conforming Center at the private liberal arts college.
The event is set to feature a zoom presentation from Amy Brandzel, author of “Against Citizenship: The Violence of the Normative.”
“Against Citizenship provocatively shows that there is nothing redeemable about citizenship, nothing worth salvaging or sustaining in the name of ‘community,’ practice, or belonging,” according to the book’s online description.
“According to Brandzel, citizenship is a violent dehumanizing mechanism that makes the comparative devaluing of human lives seem commonsensical, logical, and even necessary,” it states.
YAF included a copy of the promotional flier for the event in its report:
“The school’s endorsement of such a radical claim that equates white people and Trump supporters to terrorists should not go unchallenged,” noted YAF’s Kara Zupkus in her write up of the upcoming event.
But the college is standing behind it, tweeting out Friday:
To some, the provocative title of the event implies that Berea is not a welcoming place for individuals with differing political views. That is not true. At Berea, we strive to live out our motto: God has made of one blood all peoples of the earth.
Berea accepts students of all faiths (or none at all), religious beliefs, ethnicities and political leanings, creating a diverse environment that encourages acceptance, respect and even appreciation across our differences.
We encourage open dialog on difficult topics. Racism and white nationalism have been topics of great debate over the past five years. The event planned for next week seeks to confront aspects of the political spectrum that relate to the difficult topic of race in America.
While that may cause discomfort, it is a valid and important conversation in this time of political and racial division. It is our hope that these types of conversations will occur across the country.
Open, honest dialogue is essential to understanding racism and moving toward an anti-racist society.