So you’re a white supremacist who wants to raise some money for your local private school. What do you do? Host a barbecue, of course. That’s one of the fundraising tactics that hate group Council of Conservative Citizens uses to pump thousands of dollars into two private Mississippi academies, the Southern Poverty Law Center has found.
What kinds of schools do white supremacists like? Virtually all-white schools. And that’s just the type of schools that Calhoun Academy in Calhoun City, Miss., and Carroll Academy in Carrollton, Miss. are. Calhoun boasts four non-white students; Carroll has only one. Scroll through the photos on both schools’ websites and you’ll see only white children; Carroll Academy happens to be the proud home of the Rebels. When contacted by the SPLC, the heads of both schools refused to speak critically of the Council of Conservative Citizens. Carroll’s headmaster added, “they have their right to feel how they feel.” That’s a chilling statement coming from an educator.
As Change.org reported earlier this week, both schools are accredited by the Mississippi Association of Independent Schools, which certifies private schools in Mississippi and surrounding states.
But here’s some news: Sponsors of the MAIS, proudly displayed on the association’s homepage, are household names including Wilson Sports, Russell Athletic, Mutual of Omaha Insurance Company and Mississippi Farm Bureau Insurance. “Our major sponsors help to make it possible for us to provide quality academic and athletic events for our students, teachers and administrators,” the MAIS writes glowingly. White Supremacist 101, brought to you by . . . Wilson Sports?
From funding sporting events to sponsoring science fairs and spelling bees, Wilson, Russell Athletic and other brands are supporting the MAIS, which in turn accredits, funds and sponsors Calhoun and Carroll. By accrediting schools funded by a hate group, the MAIS is helping prolong a legacy of hatred and ignorance. And Wilson Sports, Russell Athletic and the other sponsors are unwittingly aiding white supremacists in molding a new generation of young minds. (The MAIS did not respond to queries made by the Southern Poverty Law Center or by Change.org.)
Don’t let this injustice go on any longer. Join Change.org members in telling Wilson Sporting Goods and other businesses to Stop Sponsoring Racist, Anti-Gay Schools.