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BERKELEY, Calif. "” Students at a California university used cookies instead of protest signs on Wednesday to demonstrate against college affirmative action policies.

A conservative group at the University of California held a bake sale with sweets priced according to the buyer's race or ethnicity. Whites paid more for their cookies than did Latinos, American Indians and other minorities.

But only about 30 cookies, bought in bulk from a big-box store, were sold.

"We weren't expecting to find 100 people coming out and agreeing with us," said Kelly Coyne, a member of Berkeley College Republicans, the group holding the sale. "What we wanted to do is to really inject this issue of debate on the campus and it has. People are talking about affirmative action."

For the same chocolate chip cookie, whites were being charged $1.50, Asians $1.25, Latinos (Hispanics not from Mexico) $1.00, Chicanos (Hispanics from Mexico) 75 cents, American Indians 50 cents, and blacks 25 cents.

Berkeley and the entire UC campus network stopped considering race and gender in 1997. Enrollment of blacks and Hispanics dropped sharply after that move but have increased in recent years, although that trend can be seen less so at the top campuses of Berkeley and UCLA.

UC recently switched to a system known as comprehensive review admissions, which takes into account factors such as hardship or poverty but not race.

UC students at the Berkeley campus had mixed feelings about the College Republicans' political bake sale.

Sal Daxamusan paid 25 cents for his cookie. His parents are Indian, but his grandmother was from Ethiopia. The college junior said the sale pointed out absurdities in the system.

"I think the goal of affirmative action is a noble one," Daxamusan said. But "I think it's the wrong way to do it."

Junior Mike Richardson, who is originally from Somalia, seemed a bit put off by the sales pitch "” "Twenty-five cents "” it's a real deal" "” and thought the sale trivialized serious issues and didn't offer viable alternatives.

"This might not be the best system, but it's the only system we have right now," he said.

The race card wasn't the only one played at Wednesday's sale.

Some students passing by the sale wanted to know why there was no price set for "legacy admits," the legal practice of giving preference to students whose parents went to UC.

Dave Galich, president of Berkeley College Republicans, responded by saying they were only dealing with one politically-charged issue at a time.

Race-based bake sales have been held by conservative students around the country, including UCLA, the University of Richmond and the University of Michigan, which is embroiled in a Supreme Court battle over its own affirmative action policies.

Conservative students at UC Los Angeles held a bake sale Feb. 3. Bake sale vendors were assigned the names of "Uncle Tom," "The White Oppressor" and "Self-Hating Hispanic Race Traitor." Another student was assigned the position of "Admissions Officer" and given the responsibility of assigning the cost of the baked goods by determining the buyer's race and gender.

"Unfortunately, this activity is consistent with the Republican right's tactics to engage in race based political discourse," California Democratic Party Chairman Art Torres said, citing recent controversies around comments made by U.S. Sen. Trent Lott, R-Miss., and Rep. Howard Coble, R-N.C. "It is a shame Republican students at UCLA have chosen to mimic the extreme views of their Republican leaders."

President of the Democratic Law Students Association, Juan Carlos-Orellana said "this event serves only to show that ignorance persists and that all political leaders must continue to work for equal opportunities for all Americans."

The Democratic Party has largely supported affirmative action policies due to its voter base.

"Once again we see hard-working students of color subjected to racist Republican rhetoric for simply seeking a good education and equal opportunity," Torres said in blasting the sales.

On the other side of the issue, UC Regent Ward Connerly laughed when he hard about the Berkeley sale.

Conner led the fight to drop race in admissions at UC and also chaired the campaign for a 1996 ballot measure dismantling most public affirmative action programs in California.

"I think that it highlights the absurdity of preferences on the basis of race or gender or ethnicity," he said. "I commend them for piercing through the clutter and getting to the heart of what is really wrong with preferences.",2933,79811,00.html
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In order to make their message to be true to form, the group would 1) have had to have stolen the cookies that were for selling;

2) the group would have had to give any White purchasers the money to make the purchase;

3) most of the proceeds would have had to be funnelled back to all White folk, whether they purchased cookies or not;

And lastly, all of the non-White purchasers would have had to be charged to actually eat the cookies, while being confronted by groups of White folks jeering at them for even having the cookies in the first place.

They just don't get it! Someone should send them MBM's posting about White Priviledge.
Kweli4Real, this article is just for you :@>:

Tim Wise

I think it's called 'projection.' When someone subconsciously realizes that a particular trait applies to them, and then attempts to locate
that trait in others, so as to alleviate the stigma or self-doubt engendered by the trait in question.

It's a well-understood concept of modern psychology, and explains much:
like why men who are struggling with their own sexuality are often the most outwardly homophobic. Or the way whites during slavery typified black men as rapists, even though the primary rapists were the white slaveowners themselves, taking liberties with their female property, or white men generally, raping their wives with impunity.

I got to thinking about projection recently, after receiving many an angry e-mail from folks who had read one or another of my previous
commentaries, and felt the need to inform me that people of color are "looking for a handout," and are "dependent" on government, and of
course, whites.

Such claims are making the rounds these days, especially as debate heats up about such issues as reparations for enslavement, or affirmative
action. And this critique is a prime example of projection, for in truth, no people have been as dependent on others throughout history as
white folks.

We depended on laws to defend slavery and segregation so as to elevate us, politically, socially and economically. We depended on the
Naturalization Act of 1790, to make all European immigrants eligible for nearly automatic citizenship, with rights above all persons of color. We depended on land giveaways like the Homestead Act, and housing subsidies that were essentially white-only for many years, like FHA and VA loans.

Even the GI Bill was largely for whites only, and all of these government-sponsored efforts were instrumental in creating the white middle class. But it goes deeper than that.

From the earliest days, "whites" were dependent on the land and natural resources of the Americas, Africa, and Asia. Since Europe offered no substantial natural riches from its soil, European economic advance and expansion was entirely reliant on the taking of other people's land by force, trickery or coercion. That, my friends, is dependence.

Then these same Europeans relied on slave labor to build a new nation and to create wealth for whites; wealth that was instrumental to
financing the American Revolution, as well as allowing the textile and tobacco industries to emerge as international powerhouses. From 1790 to
1860 alone, whites and the overall economy reaped the benefits of as much as $40 billion in unpaid black labor. That, my friends, is dependence.

Though apologists for black oppression enjoy pointing out that Africans often sold other Africans into slavery, this too indicates just how
dependent whites have been on black people: having to pay and bribe Africans to catch their own and deliver them to us so as to fatten the
profits of European elites. We couldn't even do that by ourselves.

Then whites were dependent on Native peoples to teach us farming skills, as our complete ineptitude in this realm left the earliest colonists starving to death and turning to cannibalism when the winters came in order to survive.

We were dependent on Mexicans to teach us how to extract gold from riverbeds and quartz--critical to the growth of the national economy in
the mid to late 1800's--and had we not taken over half their nation in an unprovoked war, the emerging Pacific ports so vital to the modern
U.S. economy would not have been ours, but Mexico's. That, my friends, is dependence. Then we were dependent on their labor in the mid 20th
century under the bracero program, through which over five million Mexicans were brought into the country for cheap agricultural work, and
then sent back across the border.

And we were dependent on Asian labor to build the railroads that made transcontinental travel and commerce possible. 90% of the labor used to
build the Central Pacific Railroad in the 1860's were Chinese, imported for the purpose, and exploited because the railroad bosses felt they
could better control them than white workers.

In fact, all throughout U.S. labor history, whites have depended on the subordination of workers of color; by the marking of black and brown peoples as the bottom rung on the ladder--a rung below which they would not be allowed to fall. By virtue of this racialized class system whites could receive the "psychological wage" of whiteness, even if their real wages left them destitute. That too is dependence, and a kind that has marked even the poorest whites.

The plantation owners in the South were surely dependent on blacks, and for more than field labor. We relied on black women to suckle and care
for our children. We relied on blacks to build the levees that kept rivers like the Mississippi from our doorstep. We relied on black girls
to fan our sleeping white ladies so as to ensure their comfort. We relied on blacks to do everything from cooking, to cleaning, to making
our beds, to polishing our shoes, to chopping the wood to heat our homes, to nursing us back to health when we fell ill. We prided ourselves on being (or aspiring to be) men and women of leisure, while black and brown folks did all the work. That, and a lot more, is dependence; and yet we still insist they are the lazy ones.

And northern industrial capitalism relied on black labor too, especially to break the labor militance of white ethnics by playing off one group of workers against the other. That also, is dependence.

During the civil war, the armies of the Confederacy relied on blacks to cook for the troops and to make the implements of war they would use in battle; and likewise, the Union relied on black soldiers--around 200,000
of them--to ultimately win the war. That too, is most assuredly dependence.

And white dependence on people of color continues to this day. Each year, African Americans spend over $500 billion with white-owned companies: money that goes mostly into the pockets of the white owners, white employees, white stockholders, and white communities in which they
live. And yet we say black people need us? We think they are the dependent ones, relying as we assume they do on the paltry scraps of an
eviscerated welfare state? Now let's just cut the crap. Who would be hurt more: black folks if all welfare programs were shut down tomorrow, or white folks, if blacks decided they were through transferring half-a-trillion dollars each year to white people and were going to keep their money in their own communities?

Or what about the ongoing dependence of white businesses on the exploitation of black labor? Each year, according to estimates from the
Urban Institute, over $120 billion in wages are lost to African Americans thanks to discrimination in the labor market. That's money
that doesn't end up in the hands of the folks who earned it, but rather remains in the bank accounts of owners. That my friends, is dependence.

Our dependence on people of color even extends to our need to have them as spokespeople for our ideologies and agendas: thus, the proliferation
of high-profile conservatives of color who bash their own people for us, so we don't have to do it alone. Ken Hamblin, Clarence Thomas, Larry
Elder, Walter Williams, Linda Chavez: all of them, walking, talking, lawn jockeys, shining their lights for white supremacy. And oh yes, our
need for them is most certainly a form of dependence.

Then, we rely on still more people of color to help further the agenda of white dominance: namely Asians, whom we proclaim to be "model
minorities." "See how hard the Asians work," whites love to say, "why can't blacks be more like them?" Of course, we fail to mention the
staggering poverty among Southeast Asians; or the fact that the most successful Asian sub-groups came to this country with both business experience and usually college educations; or the fact that despite hard work, Asian Pacific Islanders still earn between 11-26% less than their white counterparts, even when their qualifications are equal. Never mind
all that: the model minority myth has a power all its own, and is one more way in which whites have become dependent on those who are not.

Indeed, I am beginning to think that whites are so dependent on people of color that we wouldn't know what to do without them. Oh sure, some
neo-Nazis say they would love to try, but in reality I doubt they could make it. If there were no black and brown folks around then whites would
have no one to blame but themselves for the crime that occurred; no one to blame but themselves when they didn't get the job they wanted; no one
to blame but themselves when their lives turned out to be less than they expected. In short, we need people of color--especially in a subordinate
role--as a way to build ourselves up, and provide a sense of self-worth we otherwise lack.

To be sure, our very existence as white people is dependent on a negative: to be white has meaning only in terms of what it doesn't mean.

To be white only has meaning in so far as it means not to be black or brown. Whiteness has no intrinsic meaning culturally: can anyone even
articulate what "white culture" means? Not our various European cultures mind you--which do have meaning but have been largely lost to us in the
mad dash to accept whiteness and the perks that come with it--but white culture itself.

In workshops I have asked white folks and people of color what they like about being black, white, or whatever they in fact may be. For African-Americans the answers always have to do with the pride they feel, coming from families who have struggled against the odds, fought injustice, persevered, and maintained dignity in the face of great obstacles. In other words, to be black has internal meaning, derived from the positive actions and experiences of black people themselves.

Variations on the same theme tend to be expressed by Latinos, Asians and Indigenous peoples as well.

But for whites, if they come up with anything at all, it is typically something about how nice it is not to have to worry about being racially
profiled by police, or how nice it is not to be presumed less competent by employers, or discriminated against when applying for a loan, or
looking for a home. In other words, for whites, our self-definition is wrapped up entirely in terms of what and who we aren't. What it means to
be white is merely to not be "the other." And for that to have any meaning whatsoever there first must be an "other" against which to contrast oneself.

And that is the most significant dependence of all.

Tim Wise is a Nashville-based antiracist writer, lecturer and activist.

He can be reached at

You can't separate peace from freedom because no one can be at peace unless he has his freedom.
Malcolm X, 1965
Originally posted by obvious_1:

For the same chocolate chip cookie, whites were being charged $1.50, Asians $1.25, Latinos (Hispanics not from Mexico) $1.00, Chicanos (Hispanics from Mexico) 75 cents, American Indians 50 cents, and blacks 25 cents.

I think that if your Daddy buys a cookie, that you should get all of the cookies that you want for free! Razz Big Grin

"La vida te da sorpresas...
Sorpresas te da la vida...",
¡Ay, Dios!

Rubén Blades---Pedro Navaja

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