REPORT: University Paid Ibram X. Kendi $20,000 For Hour-Long Event

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ANN ARBOR, MI - AUGUST 09,2020: University of Michigan's Central campus board at the entrance, Central Campus was the original location of U-M when it moved to Ann Arbor in 1837

The University of Michigan reportedly paid Critical Race Theory (CRT) proponent Ibram X. Kendi $20,000 to speak at an hour-long virtual event last fall, Campus Reform reported.

Kendi’s Nov. 11, 2020 “Discussion with Dr. Ibram X. Kendi” over Zoom was partially paid for by state funding and student fees, according to the event contract obtained by Campus Reform through a public record request. In the contract, Regents of the University of Michigan agreed to pay Penguin Random House, Kendi’s speaking agency, $20,000 for the event.

Kendi spoke for 45 minutes and answered questions for 15 minutes, Campus Reform reported. According to the contract, Kendi was not available to do “sound checks, microphone checks, AV checks” and said Penguin Random House would charge a higher amount if the event had more than 1,000 attendees.

The discussion related to Kendi’s book, “Stamped from the Beginning: The Definitive History of Racist Ideas in America,” in which he describes the “myth” that “we are living in a post-racial society,” instead contending that “racist thought is alive and well in America – more sophisticated and more insidious than ever.”

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The event was sponsored by the School of Education, School of Social Work, Rackham Graduate School and the Ross School of Business.

Kendi is the author of “How to Be an Antiracist,” a Boston University humanities professor and founding director of the Center for Antiracist Research. He has been at the forefront of the conversation surrounding race in recent months, advocating that policies should create equal outcomes instead of equal opportunities and saying that policies yielding unequal outcomes are inherently racist.

CRT holds that America is fundamentally racist, yet it teaches people to view every social interaction and person in terms of race. Its adherents pursue “antiracism” through the end of merit, objective truth and the adoption of race-based policies.

“Costs for this event were covered by the university’s General Fund,” Director of Public Affairs and Internal Communications at the University of Michigan Rick Fitzgerald told Campus Reform. “General Fund money comes from a variety of sources, including student tuition and fees, state appropriations and costs recovered from sponsored research activities.”

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“It pays for teaching, student services, facilities and administrative support for the university,” Fitzgerald added.

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