Oregon civil rights group offers scholarships to white students
Historically, the civil rights movement has sought out white allies, says Kenneth Nunn, a law professor at the University of Florida who teaches a course in African-American history and the law. “We have all understood that nothing is going to change in America unless the majority feels it is the right thing to do,” says Professor Nunn.
One reason the Oregon group can undertake this initiative, he says, is because they are a private group. “When you are talking about public institutions, it’s very difficult to do anything that is racially targeted,” he says.
The Oregon League of Minority Voters is trying a new civil rights tactic: offering scholarships to white students to take classes in race relations.
By Michael B. Farrell Staff writer
posted February 9, 2010 at 7:21 pm EST San Francisco —
In a unique twist to the notion of using educational scholarships to improve minority representation, an Oregon civil rights group says it will offer a $2,000 scholarship to encourage white college students to pursue studies in race relations. The initiative by the Oregon League of Minority Voters, a nonprofit, nonpartisan group based in Portland, Ore., may well be the first of its kind. College scholarships have long been seen as a vehicle – albeit a controversial one – for improving the condition of minorities, but this appears to be the first time that white students have been singled out for assistance in the name of promoting civil rights.