This week, the Young America’s Foundation produced footage from the University of Virginia (UVA) showing a woman complaining that there were “too many white people” in the college’s Multicultural Student Center (MSC).
“If ya’ll didn’t know, this is MSC and frankly there are just too many white people in here and this is a space for people of color,” the individual can be heard saying, adding that their presence made her feel “uncomfortable.”
She subsequently bragged online about having intimidated white students into leaving the area:
Vicki Gist is listed as as Associate Dean of Students at the MSC, and an article written by the campus newspaper says that she declined to comment on the matter.
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It goes on to report that the woman featured in the video offered no comment either. The paper doesn’t provide her name, but Twitter users have identified her as Ezinne “Brittney” Ogbonna.
According to her Linkedin profile, Ms. Ogbonna is employed by the university as a health system marketing specialist.
She is also listed as having participated in a theater production called the “Black Monologues.” A review of the production published last spring stated “third-year College student Brittney Ogbonna defined her blackness as the ‘force that inspires me to be unapologetically authentic.’”
After the video was released, UVA issued a statement clarifying that its “centers are open to all members of the University community.” However, the school did not address the fact that allowing one of its employees to discriminate on the basis of race is a violation of federal law.
Title VI of the 1964 Civil Rights Act reads, “No person in the United States shall, on the ground of race, color, or national origin, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance.”
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Racial discrimination on college campuses has become a high-profile issue in recent years. Harvard University has been accused of employing discriminatory practices in its admissions policy and is currently being investigated by the Department of Justice.
Harvard is also being sued by a group called Students for Fair Admissions (SFFA). SFFA alleges that the Ivy League school’s affirmative action program is being used to exclude Asian Americans.
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