Martin Luther King Jr., Malcolm X, W.E.B Du Bois, Farrakhan, Dr. Umar Johnson and Robin Vos. What do each of these names have in common?
All are champions in the plight to end racism in the United States.
Few hallow names carry through history as these heroes of the civil rights era. Now, Wisconsin state Assembly Speaker Robin Vos, R-Rochester, has taken up the torch running as he vows to end DEI efforts in UW System schools.
It is certainly easy to think Vos’ proposition is insane. These services are, after all, vital for protecting several classes of marginalized groups like Black, Latino and Hispanic, Asian and LGBTQIA+ people as well as the poor, the elderly, the disabled, and veteran students and faculty.
These services, which cost $32 million — .048% of the UW System’s operating budget and protect the state’s most vulnerable populations — are a waste of our state’s $7 billion surplus, and Vos knows it.
Vos vowed to cut these services to finally end racism — a task thought to be impossible by most, but not Vos.
“We are not giving UW that money unless they work with us to eliminate all these racial preferences and all the things that are rampant on college campuses,” Vos said. “The overt racism, the overt exclusion, the overt indoctrination is so deep inside the UW System. I am embarrassed to be an alumni.”
But that’s not all. Vos has once again taken a sledgehammer to the city of Milwaukee to finally end some of the nation’s most drastic racial segregation.
The latest local government funding bill aims to avoid spending the state’s hard-earned $7 billion surplus on frivolous things like equity initiatives and street cars. Vos promised to use it for meaningful things we need: for our wealthy to get wealthier.
"That's not what taxpayer dollars should be for," he said. "If you want to raise money in the private sector, if you want to have a bake sale or put money into your own ideology, you have every right to do that because we live in America. But it's not the right to use taxpayer dollars to try to push one ideology over another."
Vos' plight to heal the nation often falls on deaf ears. But he knows the work is hard and that it could be years before any progress is made.
“You’ve always told me, ‘It takes time.’ It’s taken my father’s time, my mother’s time, my uncle’s time, my brothers’ and my sisters’ time. How much time do you want for your progress? The time is now,” Vos said passionately. “I have a dream.”
Vos is currently organizing a sit-in at the Multicultural Student Center at UW-Madison until action is taken.