Is UC Berkeley's Affirmative Action Bake Sale Racism or Satire?

UC Berkeley College Republicans are cooking up a bake sale where the price is based on race, gender and ethnicity – and people are finding the plan hard to swallow.

In the “Increase Diversity Bake Sale” whites will be charged the most, Native Americans the least and women will get a 25 percent discount.

The group, at the University of California at Berkeley, say their bake sale is a satirical way to oppose legislation that would allow public colleges to consider race and other factors in student admissions.

"If you don't come, you're a racist!" a Facebook post says. The group's website contains a link to the Facebook page.

In response to the sale, the Associated Students of the University of California unanimously approved a resolution Sunday that "condemns the use of discrimination whether it is in satire or in seriousness by any student group."

Student Republican groups have held similar events on other college campuses to oppose affirmative action policies.

The Berkeley event is aimed at opposing a bill on Gov. Jerry Brown's desk that would allow the University of California and California State University systems to consider race, ethnicity and gender while deciding admissions.

California previously banned affirmative action in public college admissions, hiring and contracting when voters approved Proposition 209 in 1996.

The bake sale on the famously liberal Berkeley campus was organized to counter the student association's plan to sponsor a call-in booth where students can urge the governor to sign SB185, the bill authored by Sen. Ed Hernandez, D-West Covina.

Members of the Republican group say the bake sale illustrates that affirmative action policies are a form of discrimination.

"Measuring any admit's merit based on race is intrinsically racist," according to the event posting. "The pricing structure of the baked goods is meant to be satirical, while urging students to think more critically about the implications of this policy."

Joey Freeman, a spokesman for the student body association, said campus Republicans have the right to organize against the legislation and the campus phone-in effort, but he's disappointed in the tactics.

"The bake sale planned for Tuesday is an offensive event that has deeply hurt and insulted members of our campus family," Freeman said in a statement.

Based on reporting by The Associated Press. 

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