An assistant professor from Saskatchewan has stirred up quite a controversy over a speech he was invited to give at Trent University in Ontario.
The main title was “It’s OK to be Against White-ness”
Michael Capello (PhD) is and anti-oppressive educator and the Chair of Educational Core Studies at the University of Regina.
The full title was “It’s OK to be (against) White (ness) : Racial justice in a time of racist entrenchment”
This fuelled a great deal of backlash even before the event was held this week.
The title was a play on posters last year that said simply “It’s OK to be White”, which some have claimed were racist.
However, some editorialists felt that the title of this event, if not the talk itself, was divisive.
An editorial by Post Media said “it’s about a toxic and divisive ideology steeped in the intolerant loathing inherent in postmodernism and cultural Marxism that divides the world into us versus them groups, into victims and oppressors. It is the definition of bigotry, not the antidote to it”.
Capello says that people have either misunderstood, or deliberately misunderstood, the purpose and meaning of his talk.
Trent Central Students Assoc. Facebook announcement
He has described whiteness as “ the ideologies that describe the practices, beliefs, habits and attitudes that enable the unequal distribution of power and privilege based on skin-colour”.
He says we must have the discussions about institutionalised privilege and discrimination in Canadian society before we can move forward.