DePaul, Meet Kutztown

By February 10, 2006

DePaul University, a private institution that proudly bills itself as the nation’s largest Catholic university, could learn a few lessons from Pennsylvania’s little-known Kutztown University. Earlier this week, the College Republicans at Kutztown did exactly what the DePaul Conservative Alliance tried to do—that is, they had an “affirmative action bake sale.” As FIRE’s recent press release on DePaul noted:

Affirmative action bake sales are a widely used form of satirical protest against affirmative action. Organizers display a menu on which black and Hispanic students are charged lower prices than Asian and white students for the same items. The bake sales are intended to spark debate about affirmative action policies, not to raise revenue.

DePaul, like many other universities, responded to the provocative protest by shutting it down. And to make matters worse, at least one student organizer was ridiculously charged with “harassment.” DePaul President Dennis Holtschneider, who’s so far been publicly silent on the matter, could learn a few things from the administration at Kutztown. Not only was the bake sale there not shut down, but university officials told the media that “they hope the bake sale promotes healthy debate on campus.” To be clear, Kutztown’s actions actually fly in the face of its red-light speech code, so its administrators are at best inconsistent friends of liberty. But, unfortunately, it doesn’t take much to be better than the folks running the show at DePaul, where FIRE has had three cases in less than a year.

Schools: Kutztown University of Pennsylvania DePaul University