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Group explains their stance with painting of MSU rock

The group says they have two issues and are using The Rock as their medium.
Updated: Jun. 14, 2021 at 7:09 AM EDT
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EAST LANSING, Mich. (WILX) - A group that has been using Michigan State University’s campus rock to tell Spartans to boycott diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) training is now explaining their stance.

In a statement released overnight, Helen Wilson says a large group of university students, faculty, and staff have an issue with the DEI training.

Wilson, who is part of that group, goes on to say they will continue to paint the rock to spread their message until the university removes its mandate on the training.

The group says they have two issues:

  • The training draws on ideas from post-colonial theory, queer theory, and critical race theory, which believe are flawed and non-scholarly.
  • The group rejects the university’s unilateral mandate of the training.

“In a similar case, the University of Oklahoma has come under heavy scrutiny for violating its stakeholders’ first amendment rights by compelling speech in their DEI training,” the statement says. “We believe freedom of speech is indispensable within the academy and threats to these freedoms must be addressed swiftly and forthrightly.”

Last week, MSU’s Black Student Alliance said the message on the campus rock to boycott DEI training crossed the line from free speech, to hate speech.

“Dissent is not hate speech,” Wilson said. “There is no hate in our message, and the claims that our paining [sic] has been targeted to cover pride messages is false.”

Copyright 2021 WILX. All rights reserved.

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