The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

White Student Union leader holds meeting on TR to attract, enlist new group members

By Elaine Bonilla/se news editor

Ten people have signed up to join the White Student Union, an unofficial club that has caused controversy on TCC campuses for celebrating white culture.

Club founder Richard Railey set up an information table on TR Campus about the group and talked to students about what the union is and tried to recruit members to make the organization official.

Forming a TCC student organization requires at least five signatures of interested students and a faculty sponsor.

The words “White Power” were what caught TCC freshman Billy Lyons’ attention, but after talking with Railey, he said he thinks the WSU should be allowed as long as it’s not a hate group.

“The last time I heard that was when there was the Nazi party and the Ku Klux Klan,” Lyons said. “As long as it’s not to practice supremacy or hatred, it should be OK.”

TCC and UTA student Johnathon Miller was one of the students who signed up to join the group. Miller said his Spanish class discussed the group after a classmate mentioned reading negative language supporting a “whites are better mentality” instead of equality.

“We’re not Aryan Brotherhood,” said Railey’s friend, David Lambertsen.

Railey denied this being on his website but said he does have a Facebook and maybe someone posted something on there.

“I can’t be responsible for the things everyone else posts,” he said.

Miller told Railey there might be some negative connotations that can make the group look bad.

“The literature and website listed doesn’t necessarily mean I agree with all of it,” Railey said. “What it means is I agree with their core values.”

The group isn’t going to engage in any negative attacks against any other organization, Railey said.

“We are not going to tolerate anyone that has a negative perspective,” he said.

TCC student and Gay-Straight Alliance TREE president Gail Lockwood said she doesn’t want anything to do with the WSU and wasn’t willing to go to the table and get the paperwork Railey was handing out.

“I am against it,” she said. “If you look at the links and his Facebook page, it shows what the real agenda is.”

Lockwood doesn’t like how Railey calls himself “Mstr Rick” on his brochure.

“He says it’s ‘Mister’ Rick, but that is the term they use in the KKK [for Master],” Lockwood said. “I see the wolf in the sheep’s clothing.”

One of the group’s big issues is designating a month to devote to white history, Railey said.

“We want to petition the school for a white history month,” Railey said. “We’re running out of months, and if we don’t move quickly, we might not get one.”

On his brochure, Railey has declared April as the unofficial white history month for the group. But others object to this.

“What do we really have to be proud of in white history in coming into this country because we totally came in on eminent domain, and the Native American reservations are still suppressed?” Lockwood said.

Another major issue Railey has is ending affirmative action on TCC.

“As part of WSU, we want to engage in those things that interest us and that affect us personally, and discrimination is one of them,” he said.

Railey told students he was interested in participating in TCC’s Men of Color program and wanted to take advantage of the resources they were getting but was turned down because he wasn’t African-American or Hispanic.

Those participants get to use resources such as tuition reimbursement, vouchers for books and tutoring, Railey said.

“I have attempted to participate in the program, and they have told me I cannot,” he told students. “The school has a policy of non-discrimination. However, they admittedly engage in programs that discriminate.”

Railey said he filed an action with the local Office of Civil Rights against TCC, alleging discrimination because he couldn’t participate in the Men of Color program.

A spokesperson for the U.S. Department of Education would only say there is an ongoing investigation into the allegations that TCC discriminated against a student on the basis of race regarding a particular program.

As part of the group, Railey said he wants to help allocate the resources of the school and make them available to all students.

“Although, they claim it’s justified discrimination, it’s still discrimination,” he said. “You would think in the 21stcentury that it [discrimination] would not be a very controversial idea. However, it is because there are some that believe there are some reasons to justify discrimination. We seem to be the only group left [without an organization], and I feel left out. It’s the only group that feels reluctant to embrace their own unique and cultural heritage.”

Vice chancellor of communication and external affairs Reginald Gates said that no student organization has any special resources through TCC that any other student can’t use.

Railey said it’s good for students to have a club they feel they can be a part of because it helps them build their self-esteem.

“I want to bring dignity back to the word white,” he said.

Railey said he doesn’t understand why the formation of the WSU is receiving so much attention.

“It’s not that big a deal. It’s just a student club, and we encourage anyone to join,” Railey said. “The best way to resolve the negative connotations is to lead by example, make sure that no one is discriminated against.”

 
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