As racial tensions escalate at Evergreen State College, one state legislator is attempting to cut the college off from public support.
“At the end of the day, we the Legislature and the people have to speak up and say, ‘We are not going to contribute our taxpayer dollars to a college that wants to re-institute a Jim Crow approach to education and segregation,” Representative Matt Manweller told KIRO Radio’s Dori Monson.
Manweller — who teaches political science at Central Washington University — introduced a bill Thursday aimed at getting the state to ditch Evergreen. The bill, if passed, would phase out Evergreen over five years. After that, it would be a private college.
“When you cross the line and start attacking a Jewish professor when you cross the line and you start telling white people or anybody based on their skin color that they can’t come to school, that violates our anti-discrimination laws,” he said.
Each year, to make a statement, students of color spend a day away from campus. This year, the school changed things up by asking white students to stay off of campus. A professor’s protest prompted an uproar on campus with many students calling the professor racist. Administrators attempted to address the issue. A threat, reportedly from white supremacists, was called into the university and shut down campus Thursday.
The campus, according to KIRO 7, remains closed Friday.
Manweller argues that the college administration has handled the situation poorly.
“Let’s take that money and give it to the UW engineering program, STEM programs, math, science,” he said. “Let’s go compete on the global market again with the Chinese, the Japanese, the Indians and bring America back to technological prominence. Let’s spend the money on a credible degree rather than a social justice, victimization, woe-is-me, I want reparations, pseudo-science they are teaching at Evergreen.”
“My heart goes out to the non-crazy students, but there has to be change at the top,” Manweller said, noting that he is not attacking the school because it is a more liberal school.
“These guys are out of control,” he said. “They are openly advocating for racism and bigotry. It’s not appropriate to be spending taxpayer money on that. If they want to be a private institution and pursue their bizarre, bigoted ideology, that’s their prerogative. But taxpayers shouldn’t have to fund it.”
Whether the bill passes or not won’t be a concern for Manweller in the end. It’s just a first step. If it doesn’t pass, he has other plans.
“We can also go after their budget … I’m going to go after their budget,” he said.