By Darlene McCormick Sanchez
A Cornell Law School professor has launched the Equal Protection Project, a network of attorneys battling discrimination against whites occurring under so-called Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) mandates.
Professor William A. Jacobson, founder of the Legal Insurrection Foundation and Criticalrace.org, started his latest project, EqualProtect.org, in response to a disturbing trend that ditches the American idea that people should be treated equally, without regard to race or ethnicity.
“We reject the idea that the society we live in is systemically racist and that therefore racism is the default explanation for everything that happens,” Jacobson told The Epoch Times.
“In fact, our system is systemically against racism, from the 14th Amendment to federal law, state law, local law, ordinances, corporate policies, and programs at virtually every corporation,” he said.
So far, more than 100 attorneys from across the country have signed on with the project, which is part of the nonprofit Legal Insurrection Foundation, to stop discrimination within public institutions such as schools, universities, and cities, he said.
The new Equal Protection Project, launched in February, is an extension of Jacobson’s work against Critical Race Theory (CRT). He created public database Criticalrace.org to track CRT initiatives at K-12 schools and universities across the country.
Jacobson believes that DEI discrimination is the civil rights issue of our time and intends to fight it.
DEI programs include CRT, a neo-Marxist ideology that divides people into two groups—oppressors and the oppressed—based on factors such as skin color or sexual orientation. It claims that America was founded on racism, is hopelessly flawed, and must be dismantled.
One of the leading architects of modern CRT is Ibram X. Kendi, who wrote the book “How to be an Antiracist,” which promotes discrimination against groups that, according to Kendi, are “oppressors,” such as white males. Antiracist practices often are taught in schools and employer training that promotes DEI.
“What kind of society is that where you are holding people collectively guilty and collectively responsible, based merely on the color of their skin or their ancestry?” he asked. “It is a really regressive, pernicious ideology.”
Jacobson said he began to realize over the past few years of documenting instances of DEI that more needed to be done beyond compiling a database.
What pushed the project over the top was an incident in Providence, Rhode Island, where the Providence Public School District allegedly violated the civil rights of whites by offering a teacher loan forgiveness program to only non-white applicants.
Jacobson called the public education system in Rhode Island a “disaster,” saying it struggles to attract and retain teachers. He pointed to abysmal grade-level proficiency scores in English and math at 13 percent and 9 percent, respectively.
But they have “very aggressive and well-funded” DEI programming, he added.
Jacobson explained that the teacher population in Rhode Island is more white than the student population, and the districts wanted to change that by offering new minority teachers up to $25,000 in loan forgiveness.
Jacobson said his organization filed a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education that was transferred to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission for allegedly discriminating against new white teachers.
He said the Equal Protection Project has already had a victory by stopping Rhode Island schools from holding “segregated teacher meetups” organized by schools but held off school grounds.
Jacobson said his organization sent a letter to the venues where the meetings took place explaining that public spaces had to be open to everyone regardless of race under the Rhode Island Public Accommodations law.
Ultimately, the venue was canceled. The Rhode Island schools are still holding the teacher meetups but are now welcoming everyone.
“We do not accept that there is any good form of racism,” Jacobson said
Jacobson said that while the project is small, he knows others are stepping up across the country to reject a “regressive” ideology that could destroy the country by pitting races and ethnicities against each other.
“When you have a society that does that, what you end up with is Yugoslavia, a society that falls apart because people owe their allegiance to their racial and ethnic groups, not to their nation and not to their country,” he said.
He fears America is becoming more divided, with blue states falling deeper into a DEI agenda funded with billions of dollars in grants. He hopes there’s enough resistance to give red states time to ban the practice in its public institutions.
“I don’t know whether we’ll be able to stop it or not. But I think we can slow it down while, hopefully, people take a step back and say this is madness.”