The University of Virginia paid prominent Boston University professor and “antiracist” theorist Ibram X. Kendi $32,500, or approximately $541.67 per minute, for a one-hour virtual interview open to the public, The Daily Wire reported.
The public university hired Kendi through the Penguin Random House Speakers Bureau for a conference in April 2021, according to documents obtained by The Daily Wire through the Freedom of Information Act.
Kendi appeared as part of the university’s “Racial Equity Speaker Series” with other speakers who argued America is “systemically racist.”
In summer 2020, a task force at University of Virginia appointed by President Jim Ryan recommended that UVA focus on diversity initiatives as “a central focus of leadership and governance,” one that should “pervade all decision-making.”
In books like “How to be an Anti-Racist,” Kendi has redefined racism to refer to any policy that creates or maintains racial inequity — regardless of the prejudices or intentions of the people involved. For Kendi, “racist ideas follow from racist policies,” as Ezra Klein summarized it in the New York Times. “They are created as rationalizations for racial inequity.”
Kendi’s central idea has been criticized by writers across the political spectrum. Among many other critiques, Coleman Hughes at City Journal accused him of making erroneous claims and cherry-picking data, and Eric Levitz at New York Magazine stated that Kendi’s theory “suffers from some glaring contradictions.”
The College Fix reviewed previous speaking contracts for Kendi in March 2021 and found that the universities paid him a combined $91,500. The Fix also estimated that Kendi had likely made at least $300,000 total from his speaking appearances up to that date.
MORE: Ibram Kendi likens CRT opposition to backlash against Brown v. Board of Education desegregation case
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