Jonathan Munshaw, The Towerlight, September 5, 2012
A White Student Union could form on Towson’s campus, former Youth for Western Civilization President Matthew Heimbach said.
Heimbach said that the purpose of the White Student Union is to create a support network for white students on campus and to celebrate various elements of white history, figureheads and culture.
“We essentially want to replicate what every student union does on campus,” he said. “You have a Black student Union who promotes black heroes, we want to do the same thing.”
The union is meant to be more open than Heimbach’s former group, YWC.
YWC’s goals included active political discourse and campaigning. A White Student Union would be friendlier, he said.
“We’d also want to create a safe space for members who have filed hate/bias reports and who have had anti-white language used against them,” he said. “Especially the female members who have heard ‘cracker’ and ‘honkie,’ and nothing has ever come of it. It’s a support network for a campus that is hostile toward white students.”
Sophomore music education major Liam Hurlbut said he believes it is unfair for white students to have their own union.
“White power movements are illegitimate,” he said. “In the history of this country, whites never lost their power. They have always run this country and oppressed all other races. Even today whites have unearned ‘privileges’ in our society. Whites must recognize and reject this privileges to atone for the evils of our ancestors.”
The group hasn’t filed any paperwork to become a student group, according to Student Government Association President Brandy Hall, although the group’s leader met with SGA Adviser Chris Rindosh.
Hiembach said that 17 students have submitted their information and are interested in joining.
Because there has been no formal application, Hall said the SGA is not currently concerned with the proposed union.
“We aren’t concerned with them right now,” she said. “We are interested to see how it will pan out. If they do become a student group, SGA will get feedback from students about how they feel the group is on campus, and we will act from there. I am always open to acting on what the students want.”
Hiembach and his supporters have also advertised rigorously, posting over 150 flyers around campus.
He said that they disappeared almost as soon as they are put up.
Heimbach posted a Facebook status Wednesday stating, “So Facebook banned me for a day and took down the Towson University White Student Union page for ‘hate speech.’ Funny enough, the Towson University Black Student Union page is still up.”
Numerous fliers were posted on the door of the Center for Student Diversity asking students to support a White Student Union, according to Assistant Vice President for Student Diversity Victor Collins.
Collins said that he would not be opposed to a White Student Union on campus, as long as they follow the proper procedure to become a student group.
“I have no objection to students creating an organization if they follow the procedure,” he said. “However, I don’t think they should have their own space or office on campus because it would promote the idea that white students have the same experience on campus as African American students and LGBT students, and that’s just not true.”