On November.1st, Charlie Kirk will be coming to Clemson University to talk about why he thinks the theory of critical race separates our society further. Kirk is a radio talk show host known for his strong conservative beliefs. He co-founded Turning Point USA, a conservative group that advocates conservative values primarily on highschool and college campuses. Kirk attended Harper College, a community college near Chicago, but dropped out so he could focus on conservative activism. His talk is headlined:“Exposing Critical Race Theory.” What Charlie Kirk comes up to the stage to say has no real validity, simply because Kirk has never and will never experience what Critical Race Theory asserts.
According to Prudence Carter, a U.C. Berkeley professor who spoke on PBS Newshour, Critical Race Theory (CRT) can not be simply defined. Many believeCRT is simply the way we treat each other. However, it is a theory that asserts that structures in our society directly create disparities in education, housing opportunities, job opportunities, etc. It emphasizes that our society is structured in such a way that it is difficult for minorities to seek equal opportunity. In short, CRT states that the legal system negatively affects minorities due to deep rooted systematic racism in our society that still lingers today. The intersection between U.S. Law and race digs deeper than most know, and that is why CRT is often misunderstood.
Charlie Kirk has not experienced what critical race theory is trying to explain. Charlie Kirk can spur out what he wants, but until he has lived on the side of society that CRT is trying to explain he simply will not understand the true implications of it. I will be attending his talk and this article will be updated after his event. I look forward to hearing his perspective.
This is not to say that Clemson University does not have other speakers who offer different perspectives pertaining to the topic of race. On April 21th, Clemson is hosting its 5th annual Men of Color Summit. The intended goal of this summit, stated by Lee Gill, is to,“help to close the opportunity gap for young men of color as the summit has grown to be one of the top conferences in the country to help illuminate pathways to higher education.”
An earlier version of this article online and in print misidentified Turning Point USA as a Republican group, but Turning Point USA is not affiliated with any political party. The Tiger regrets this error and it has since been corrected.