Michael J. Thompson, Campus Reform (Boise State University), February 16, 2010
Boise State’s Cultural Center director, Ro Parker, is at the center of campus controversy . . . because she put a racist illustration on her Facebook profile.
It began when Parker posted an image on Facebook. As the Boise State campus newspaper described, it’s an “illustration” of “two black women, one of whom is pointing a finger in the face of a white man. He is holding his hands up in a position of semi-surrender. The caption reads ‘shut the #### up, Whiteboy.'”
(Perhaps ironically, Parker’s goals–according to her BSU profile page–are to “plan programming that will raise awareness of marginalized groups, white privilege, identity and oppression.”)
The illustration was printed on handouts that were anonymously distributed across campus. Campus outcry soon followed. Student Senate President Pro Tempore Justin White explained his reaction simply: “I am siding with students. Content reflects personal opinion. Teachers get fired for this.”
Student Erin Malor said this entire episode showcases the hypocrisy of the center’s goals. “Most students on this campus are here for an education that will help them in the future, but it appears the Cultural Center is attempting to re-educate students. The sensible thing would be for [Ro] Parker to resign over this incident, to maintain the integrity of the Cultural Center.”
In this crisis for Boise State, one lesson is certain: cultural and diversity centers are well-funded at schools across the nation. They employ thousands, if not tens of thousands of individuals, who enforce a strict orthodoxy of political correctness, heavy on oppression and “identity.”
However, the coordinator of the Cultural Center at Boise State University has posted a shocking image that should cause reflection among those who question the allocation of resources to go towards departments that serve little educational value, save for the censoring of individuals they deem not diverse.
Boise State University students and SGA officials are working to see that proper actions are taken to ensure that BSU doesn’t harbor a climate for hate. Ro Parker is an employee of the state of Idaho and merely the action of posting this hurtful picture on her Facebook profile warrants immediate removal from her post as coordinator for the Cultural Center.
Diversity and tolerance mean inclusion for all, not just for those groups the Cultural Center deems worthy of protection.