After a stint heading up a group called Youth for Western Civilization, a student at Maryland’s Towson University is looking to start a White Student Union on campus.
I wrote about the White Student Union phenomenon a few years ago, saying that I’d never heard anyone make a sincere argument for the creation of such groups:
When someone asks me [why white students can’t have WSUs], my response is always pretty much the same: “Do you actually want to have a White Student Union on campus? Would you be active in a WSU there was one? Is there stuff you’d like to be doing that the absence of a WSU is keeping you from doing?”
So far, nobody has ever answered any of these questions with a yes.
The guy I’ve been talking to on Twitter says he wanted “to make a point about the wrongness of segregation, regardless of purpose.” But you don’t demonstrate that something is bad “regardless of purpose” by showing that it’s bad if it has no purpose, you demonstrate it by showing that it’s bad even if it has a great purpose.
That’s the first fundamental problem with the WSU thought experiment — it doesn’t engage with the reasons that BSUs exist.
While I stand by everything I wrote back then, this case is a little different than the ones I’d seen before.
Matthew Heimbach, the flag-bearer for Towson’s WSU, is an active neo-Confederate who attended a white supremacist conference earlier this year, and paraphrased a notorious neo-Nazi slogan in a recent letter to the Towson student newspaper. He believes that the 69% white Towson campus is “hostile toward white students,” and that white students, who “share a bond that is far deeper than skin color,” must “take a stand for our people before it is too late.”
So yeah, let me rephrase. I’ve never encountered anyone who actually wanted to have a WSU on their campus who wasn’t an aggressively paranoid racist.