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UChicago cross country team no fans of ‘DEI coordinators’

Smart athletes not interested in illegal immigrant fundraising

DEI faces an uphill battle on the University of Chicago’s cross country team.

The team’s “DEI coordinators” have reportedly struggled to get the team interested in reading books about racism or supporting efforts to aid illegal immigrants, according to The Chicago Maroon.

Runner Mónica House lamented how male runners, on their own, will run near Parkway Gardens Apartment Homes, an apartment complex that has had crime issues.

House is involved with other activism work, including writing a paper on abortion following the reversal of Roe v. Wade. “Passionate about the intersection of social justice and research,” according to her LinkedIn, House is in the “Institute of Politics’ Leaders of Color” and the “Committee of Marginalized Student Affairs.”

“It’s almost like you want to go see a monument to violence and segregation,” she told the student newspaper. “It’s trivializing, I think, the pain and the history there. You have an all-white team… and they’re in their booty shorts, and they’re running to [the apartment building]. It’s a ridiculous image.”

It is the South Side of Chicago after all – it might be difficult to get an eight-mile run in without being in a violent neighborhood. One can imagine the criticism if runners objected to running near the “black-owned housing cooperative.”

An anonymous person said the women’s locker room was “unwelcoming for people of color,” as reported by The Maroon.

This led to DEI initiatives including “a shoe drive for migrants who had recently crossed the Mexico-U.S. border in collaboration with the Arizonan advocacy group No More Deaths.”

“Comments like, ‘Why are you helping illegals?’ popped up in that space,” an anonymous source told the student newspaper.

What might else be at play?

UChicago cross country runners must have shown a dedication to both academics and athletics to get into the school and onto the team.

They’re probably incredibly bright students and also disciplined to succeed both in academics and sports. (Just for one example, one member of the men’s cross country team is a former runner of mine. At the age of 10 or so, he explained cryptocurrency to me).

The runners don’t have much interest in mixing their long runs or mile repeats with Ibram Kendi or Robin DiAngelo books.

There are plenty of opportunities for students who want to get involved with political activism on campus – so it does not need to happen after a long practice or before an early morning run.

House is learning a valuable lesson. While the media and universities may be interested in pushing DEI programming, many people are sick of the constant talk of “privilege” and “intersectionality” – and are sprinting away from it.

MORE: Florida bans DEI spending

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About the Author
Associate Editor
Matt has previously worked at Students for Life of America, Students for Life Action and Turning Point USA. While in college, he wrote for The College Fix as well as his college newspaper, The Loyola Phoenix. He holds a B.A. from Loyola University-Chicago and an M.A. from the University of Nebraska-Omaha. He lives in northwest Indiana with his family.