College Republicans’ ‘Diversity Bake Sale’ Sparks Controversy, Cries Of ‘Racism’

UC Berkeley College Republicans sparked a furor over its planned “Increase Diversity Bake Sale,” scheduled for Tuesday. The event was created to criticize a bill that would allow California public universities to consider race, ethnicity and gender in student admissions.

The group priced each baked good as $2.00 for whites, $1.50 for Asians, $1.00 for Latinos, $0.75 for blacks and $0.25 for Native Americans. All women would get $0.25 off those prices.

The trouble began when the College Republicans set up a Facebook page to promote the event, which drew hundreds of complaints:

The planned bake sale enraged many Berkeley students who widely decried the event as “racist” and prompted the student government to unanimously pass a bill calling for “respectful ASUC student organization conduct,” and condemning the “use of discrimination whether it is in satire or in seriousness by any student group.”

CNN anchor Don Lemon spoke to the event planner College Republican President Shawn Lewis and questioned him whether he was expecting such a backlash.

“We did expect opposition…we didn’t expect the volume, the amount of response that we got,” Lewis said. “And the tone of some of the responses — we expected people to be upset. We didn’t expect personal threats to be made. They were implicit and explicit threats made to the organizers of the event, from burning down the table to throwing our baked goods at us and other kinds of physical threats.”

Lemon asked Tim Wise, anti-racism activist and author of “White Like Me: Reflections on Race from a Privileged Son,” if the group had a point.

“It seems like theres a lot of ways to make a point about your disagreement with affirmative action without doing a sarcastic, rather smarmy slap at people of color,” Wise said. “It’s been done for 15 years, it’s not an original joke.”

In spite of the international controversy caused by the bake sale, Lewis said the group still planned to hold the event.

Watch the segment below, courtesy of CNN:

(h/t CNN)

New Details Emerge In The Arrest Of ACORN Whistleblower James O’Keefe

James O’Keefe — the upstart investigative filmmaker whose undercover video work got ACORN’s federal funding stripped — has been arrested by the FBI in Louisiana for attempting to wiretap the offices of Democratic Senator Mary Landrieu, according to the Times-Picayune. The paper is reporting that the FBI arrested O’Keefe and three others — Stan Dai, Joseph Basel and Robert Flanagan — two of whom dressed as telephone company workers to tap the Landrieu’s office telephone system. O’Keefe was reportedly posted inside the office and claimed to be “waiting for someone to arrive.”

Politico has the FBI affidavit available here.

Mediaite first chronicled O’Keefe’s rise to prominence when he posed undercover as a pimp looking for ACORN financing to run his fake prostitution ring, which resulted in the U.S. Census stopping work with the group. He also wore a pimp costume on Fox News, prompting us to interview some of O’Keefe’s former classmates to learn more about the man who brought such attention to himself and the then-newly launched BigGovernment.com.

O’Keefe had given a speech last week to Libertarian Pelican Institute for Public Policy in New Orleans, where he discussed “the role of new media and show examples of effective investigative reporting,” according to the paper. Now, it seems he took his undercover investigations too far. You could even say he got a little too big for his costume britches.



UPDATE — Andrew Breitbart provided Politico with the following comment:

“We have no knowledge about or connection to any alleged acts and events involving James O’Keefe at Senator Mary Landrieu’s office. We only just learned about the alleged incident this afternoon. We have no information other than what has been reported publicly by the press. Accordingly, we simply are not in a position to make any further comment.”

A Press Release from the US Attorney’s Office, Eastern District of Louisiana:

United States Attorney’s Office

Eastern District of Louisiana

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE CONTACT: KATHY ENGLISH

TUESDAY, JANUARY 26, 2010 PHONE: (504) 680-3068

WWW.USDOJ.GOV/USAO/LAE FAX: (504) 589-4978

FOUR MEN ARRESTED FOR ENTERING GOVERNMENT PROPERTY UNDER FALSE PRETENSES FOR THE PURPOSE OF

COMMITTING A FELONY

NEW ORLEANS, LOUISIANA – JOSEPH BASEL, age 24, ROBERT FLANAGAN, age 24, JAMES O’KEEFE, age 25, and STAN DAI, age 24, were charged in a criminal complaint with entering federal property under false pretenses for the purpose of committing a felony, announced the United States Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Louisiana.

According to the complaint, which was unsealed earlier today, the arrest of FLANAGAN, BASEL, O’KEEFE, and DAI took place after BASEL and O’KEEFE attempted to gain access to the New Orleans office of United States Senator Mary Landrieu on January 25, 2010, while posing as telephone repairmen. According to the complaint, FLANAGAN and BASEL were each dressed in blue denim pants, a blue work shirt, a light green fluorescent vest, a tool belt and a construction-style hard hat when they entered the Hale Boggs Federal Building, located at 500 Poydras Street, New Orleans, Louisiana 70130. Once in the building, FLANAGAN and BASEL sought access to the offices of Senator Landrieu. O’KEEFE was already present in the office, holding a cellular phone so as to record FLANAGAN and BASEL. Once inside Senator Landrieu’s reception area, FLANAGAN and BASEL told a member of Senator Landrieu’s staff that they were telephone repairmen, and they requested access to the main telephone at the reception desk. FLANAGAN and BASEL then manipulated the telephone system. FLANAGAN and BASEL next requested access to the telephone closet because they needed to perform work on the main telephone system. They were directed to the main office of the United

ineStates General Services Administration, also inside the Hale Boggs Federal Building, where they again represented themselves to be employees of the telephone company and stated that they needed to perform repair work in the telephone closet. Both FLANAGAN and BASEL stated that they had left their credentials in their vehicle. In addition, the complaint alleges that O’KEEFE and DAI assisted FLANAGAN and BASEL in the planning, coordination, and preparation of the operation. The men were apprehended by the United States Marshal’s Service soon thereafter.

If convicted, FLANAGAN, BASEL, O’KEEFE, and DAI each face a maximum term of ten years in prison, a fine of $250,000, and three (3) years of supervised release following any term of imprisonment.

The United States Attorney’s Office reiterated that the complaint is merely a charge and that the guilt of the defendant must be proven beyond a reasonable doubt.

The investigation is being conducted by Special Agents of the Federal Bureau of Investigation and Deputy Marshals with the United States Marshal’s Service. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Jordan Ginsberg.

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Right Wing Darling James O’Keefe: The Man Who Exposed ACORN and Lucky Charms

post_9-15James O’Keefe seems to be everywhere these days – or at least everywhere a right-winger would be paying attention to. He’s on Fox News all the time (sometimes even in a pimp costume), on Drudge Report, and today, on the cover of the New York Post.

Where did this 25-year-old intrepid conservative undercover reporter come from? We have the inside scoop – and it’s pretty spectacular.

Before we get into what we’ve found, it’s important to note just how much O’Keefe has accomplished in the last week. Since his undercover videos exposing ACORN were posted on BigGovernment.com, he got the U.S. Census to stop working with ACORN, and last night he got the Senate to cut ACORN’s federal funding. These are real, impressive results.

We talked to several of O’Keefe’s former classmates. Let’s get to know the GOP’s new young hero:

• He started an alternative, conservative magazine while a student at Rutgers University, called The Centurion. The most recent issue available is from March 2009, and features a cover story: “Paul Robeson: New Jersey’s Favorite Stalinist.” Here’s a bit of their mission statement:

We believe in fiscal and moral responsibility, a strong national defense, free-market economics, American exceptionalism, and God. We stand unyielding in defense of our motto, “Veritas vos liberabit,” or “The truth shall set you free.”

• He waged a campaign against dining halls serving Lucky Charms. You see, besides being magically delicious, O’Keefe thought the cereal was offensive to Irish Americans.

• He ran an affirmative action bake sale. Let’s repeat – an affirmative action bake sale, where they sold baked goods for different prices based on your race. This was all to prove a point, of course, that affirmative action is bad.

• He was in the Glee Club. That’s about it.

The best part about this – just like his hidden camera investigations of ACORN, O’Keefe documented these on YouTube as well. Find some of the videos below.

His Facebook profile is also popping with interesting info. Here are his favorite books:

Rules for Radicals, Dedication and Leadership, The Global Activist’s Handbook, The True Believer, Witness: Letter to my Children, Courage: The Joy of Living Dangerously, The Dream of the Ridiculous Man, Eclipse of the Sun, The Sea Within: Waves and the Meaning of All Things, Airborne: A sentimental Journey, The War Against Boys, The Death of the West, The Black Book of Communism, The Unaborted Socrates, The ISI Student Guide to Liberal Learning, The Closing of the American Mind, Anything by C.S. Lewis, Orthodoxy, Comedia Divina,

Also – there are some great pictures. We made a Flickr slideshow because they’re worth it – check it out.

He’s got some very detailed essays on his Facebook page as well – like this one extolling the virtues of living on a boat.

We’ve reached out to this up-and-coming O’Reilly ambusher-like 20-something. James – we’d love to talk to you, by phone, email or undercover video.

Here’s O’Keefe exposing the injustice that is Lucky Charms:

Here’s that Affirmative Action Bake Sale:

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