The Young Conservatives of Texas club at the University of Texas at Austin sparked outrage Wednesday after hosting an “affirmative action bake sale” and charging people different prices based on their race and sex.
The Dallas Morning News reported that a cookie at the sale cost $1.50 for Asian males, $1 for white males and 50 cents for African-American and Hispanic males. Native American men and women were given free cookies.
Asian women had to pay $1.25, white women 75 cents and Hispanic and African-American women 25 cents.
The club drew heavy scrutiny from a crowd of hundreds, but it insisted that the bake sale was a protest against the “institutionalized racism” of affirmative action programs at colleges and universities. Some in the crowd chanted “racists go home.”
"Our protest was designed to highlight the insanity of assigning our lives value based on our race and ethnicity, rather than our talents, work ethic and intelligence," club chairman Vidal Castañeda said. "It is insane that institutional racism, such as affirmative action, continues to allow for universities to judge me by the color of my skin rather than my actions."
According to the paper, the Young Conservatives of Texas came under fire in 2013 for holding a similar bake sale. The university’s vice president for diversity and community engagement Gregory J. Vincent called that sale “deplorable.”
This time, Vincent said this bake sale was “inflammatory and demeaning.”
“Yet focusing our attention on the provocative nature of the YCT's actions ignores a much more important issue: They create an environment of exclusion and disrespect among our students, faculty and staff," he said.
He further questioned the club’s motive behind the bake sale.
"In seeking an audience for their ideas, the YCT resorted to exercising one of the university's core values to the detriment of others," he added. "Such actions are counterproductive to true dialogue on our campus, and it is unrepresentative of the ideals toward which our community strives."