The folks at Princeton are supposed to be smart. But you have to wonder about the intelligence of inviting federal scrutiny by declaring their own school guilty of racism.
Amid a struggle session with progressive faculty and students this month, Princeton President Christopher Eisgruber published an open letter promising to combat “systemic racism” at the school. That’s an eye-opener since Princeton has assured students and the federal government that it doesn’t discriminate. Has the university been lying?
Enter the Education Department, which wants to know. On Wednesday Assistant Secretary Robert King wrote Mr. Eisgruber requesting records related to his confession of bias. “Among other things,” Mr. King writes, “you said ‘[r]acism and the damage it does to people of color persist at Princeton . . .’ and ‘[r]acist assumptions . . . remain embedded in structures of the University itself.’”
Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 provides that no one on the basis of race should “be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance.” Colleges each year must certify to the Education Department that this is true to receive federal funds.