Bake sale going forward as planned despite national protest

Students and community members pass through Sather Gate on their way to a meeting in the Multicultural Community Center.
Rashad Sisemore/Staff
Students and community members pass through Sather Gate on their way to a meeting in the Multicultural Community Center.

Despite massive outcries of protest from campus organizations, the Berkeley College Republicans are adamant in going ahead with their controversial bake sale.

The sale — intended as a satirical response to the affirmative action-like SB 185 currently awaiting Gov. Jerry Brown’s signature — will involve baked goods that are priced by race and sex. Under the pricing structure, white students would have to pay $2.00 for a pastry, for example, while Latinos would pay $1.00 and Native Americans would pay $0.25. Women would receive a blanket 25 cent discount.

It is scheduled to occur in Sproul Plaza from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. — the same time period as an ASUC-sponsored phone bank in support of SB 185.

Since its announcement last week, the sale has received the attention of several major media outlets and heavy criticism from the campus community. Most recently, a campuswide email signed by Chancellor Robert Birgeneau, Vice Chancellor for Equity and Inclusion Gibor Basri and Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs Harry Le Grande states that the publicizing of the event was “contrary to the Principles of Community we espouse as a campus.”

“It is our sincere hope that the strong reactions generated by the proposed bake sale provide a vivid lesson that issues of race, ethnicity, and gender are far from resolved, and very much a part of lived experience here and now,”  the email states.

The email also “firmly endorses”  the sentiments of a bill in support of respectful student group conduct,  passed by the ASUC Senate in a special meeting Sunday night.

Due to the amount of press coverage that the event has garnered, Andrew Glidden of the California Patriot, a conservative political magazine published at UC Berkeley, said there is a possibility that other universities’ political student groups will show up tomorrow to voice their opinions as well.

“We’re going to see college Republicans from San Jose, Sacramento, (UC) Davis, University of the Pacific,” said Shawn Lewis, the president of Berkeley College Republicans. “We’ve heard that they’re going to be sending some people out. There’s a lot of excitement building.”

Anais LaVoie, president of the Cal Berkeley Democrats, called the event “too much of a publicity stunt.” She said she encourages UC Berkeley students to attend the originally planned phone bank event in Sproul.

Some members of the Berkeley College Republicans said they have received threats from opponents of the bake sale.

“I’ve been personally targeted many times,” said Mia Lincoln, the group’s external vice president. “People are saying that we brought this discussion off in an inflammatory way, and that’s true. It was just meant to get the discussion started: Is it fair to base college admissions off of race? Is it fair to base cupcakes off of race?”

A similar anti-affirmative action bake sale, also staged by the Berkeley College Republicans, occurred at UC Berkeley in 2003. Bake sales have also occurred at UC Irvine and UCLA, among other colleges.

UC Student Regent Alfredo Mireles Jr., who was present at the 2003 bake sale, expressed his disapproval about tomorrow’s event.

“I remember being kind of baffled by such a clumsy, insensitive way to deal with an issue that is very sensitive,” he said. “It is not only an offensive way to address a sensitive issue, but it is also something college Republicans have been doing for years. The affirmative action bake sale is not only offensive, but it is really unoriginal.”

Lincoln said that the current group knew about these previous events.

“We were thinking it would be timely with the ASUC-sponsored phone bank — this is a really timely issue,” she said. “We thought the ASUC was sponsoring something that the (student body) might not have a complete opinion on.”

A number of people have posted their personal comments on the Facebook event page for the bake sale.

“I support the work that the College Republicans are doing on our campus. Their fight against affirmative action is honorable and justified by any means necessary,” posted Daniel Cardenas, a UC Berkeley alumnus. “This fight has been going on since before I was a student.”

UCPD Lt. Marc DeCoulode said the police are aware of the bake sale. Following traditional procedures, the department will monitor Sproul Plaza in ways similar to how they monitor any event, said DeCoulode. In addition to a Sproul Plaza officer, other police officers will be also on the scene to ensure crowd safety.

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  • Anonymous

    Chancellor Robert J Birgeneau ($500,000 salary) of University of California Berkeley displaces qualified
    for public university education at Cal. Californians for $50,600  payment by FOREIGN students.


    The University
    of California Berkeley,
    ranked # 70 Forbes, is not increasing enrollment.  $50,600 tuition FOREIGN students are accepted
    by Birgeneau at the expense of qualified instate students.


    UC Regent Chairwoman Lansing and President Yudof agree discriminating
    against instate Californians for admission to UC Berkeley. Birgeneau, Yudof, Lansing need to answer to


    Your opinion makes a difference; email UC Board of
    Regents   [email protected]

  • Ignorance is bliss

    Do athletes get a discount?  How about the children of alumni?  What about white students who attended a private school?  Those from wealthy neighborhoods?  Students who had tutors or took SAT courses?

  • Anonymous

    I have to say this is brilliant (but going first – not so much)! Now Progressives can just hold their own bake sale – it would go something like this:


    Wealthy Folks – You get a 15-20% discount (the more you make, the more you save)

    People working for oil companies – We PAY YOU to take a cupcake!

    People working on Wall Street – You get them all for free (plus we’ll cook you another batch if you “somehow lose them”)!

    Work for a Chinese Company? – We’ll give YOU our secret (patented) recipes!

    etc., etc., etc.

  • Seer of Things

    What a ridiculous circus.  All this fuss only serves to validate the BCR.  But both sides will enjoy their self-righteous buzz, and isn’t that really what it’s all about?

  • David Nathan Viger Jr

    I thought we are supposed to be color blind! College aps should be judged strictly by merit, and the board who is judging should not have access to names, addresses, or anything that would indicate race or color. If color and being a minority gets you to the first place in line for admissions and scholarships, then Berkeley should be all white, because white people are now a minority! See how that shoe fits!

  • ME – ’09

    First off, yes I support the BCR Bake Sale, but let’s put that aside for one second.

    How does the ASUC get away with a “sponsored phone bank in support of SB 185” –  the ASUC represents the entire population of students and alumns to represent the student body of Berkeley.  Taking a political stand on a topic such as this, regardless of the uneven political split on campus is absurd.  The ASUC SHOULD have more important things to worry about on campus rather than worry about whatever plans Governor Brown has.  If the Cal Dems want to support and sponsor the bank that’s one thing, but the ASUC has no business doing so.

  • the devil

    Any juvenile delinquent knows this meddlesome tactic of drawing fire so they can cry foul after action is taken against them. They will be disappointed that the target  of their meddling doesn’t take the bait and they’re left looking like the fools they are with thier masks off.

    • workinDawg

      I can assure you they will not be disapointed.  They weren’t hoping to draw fire so they aren’t the least bit worried that they won’t “have action taken against them.”  They used satire to point out the gross hypocrisy of the liberal mind generally, and the college addmission policy specifically.  They are pretty happy with the outcome and attention, no mask needed.  

  • Anonymous

    “I remember being kind of baffled by such a clumsy, insensitive way to deal with an issue that is very sensitive,” he said. “It is not only an offensive way to address a sensitive issue, but it is also something college Republicans have been doing for years. The affirmative action bake sale is not only offensive, but it is really unoriginal.”
    Hmmm… that’s the point, isn’t it?  Affirmative action itself is a clumsy, insensitive way to deal with an issue that is very sensitive.  It’s an offensive way to address a sensitive issue, and is really unoriginal.

  • Kenneth

    The Berkeley College Republicans’ social lists may not be Politically Correct (PC), but the Berkeley College Republicans’ social list is NOT Correct Politically (CP) if the idea behind political parties is to gain the support of the of 21st century voters.

    Freedom from government intervention of expressers is great because the audience of free expression will always be able to evaluate any expression be that expression free, paid for, or coerced.

    Can anyone construct a law that would prohibit freedom of interpretation of ideas that are expressed?

  • workinDawg

    I would like to point out that insensitive is not the same thing as racist.  Further, anyone who allows themselves to get worked up over a bake sale should investigate the deeper issues beyond their misunderstanding of racism and political correctness.  Finally, the irony of the attack on the bake sale, which is modeled on the “wider view” of minority preference in the college appliation process nonetheless, is obviously lost on liberals who are being mocked by the bake sale itself.  And a Vice Chancellor of Equity and Inclusion??  LOL……no wonder California is dead broke.  

    • 19devils51

      Ignorance is no excuse. If you make it this far, you know better.

  • Boycott Apartheid

    Glad to see this protest. So where is the protest to boycott Israel?


    That video shows there is a real panic whenever you even mention the boycott of Israel.

    • This is not the forum to discuss Israeli-Palestinian issues.

  • str

    Well, they are protesting against racist discrimination. I believe that’s a good thing.

  • How is Birgeneau a “censor in chief.” That’s a rather ambiguous comment considering that he did not explicitly condemn the College Republicans in any way. I don’t really give a sh#$ what these idiots are gonna do tomorrow, but just bear in mind that the majority of campus is laughing at the stupidity this “Club” has raised. 

    • Pretty Hips McGee

      To question the fairness of a public policy is stupid? 

    • If they are “laughing” at the BCR, why are they panicky, worked up, and demanding that they be punished? When lefties alternate between derision and hysteria, you can bet that they feel genuinely threatened.

  • wakawaka

    Time to find Native American girls – they get free cupcakes! ^_____^

  • Metsfan57

    Better be some yummy cupcakes. I’m latino and hungry! 

  • Perspective

    While misguided in their approach (which is racist) the message is dead on. Unfortunately there aren’t many unoffensive ways to get people’s attention – controversy is what makes the biggest splash, and sometime ripples just aren’t enough. Just think would you have know what AB 185, or would have anyone in the country have, it this hadn’t happened?

    What most people don’t realize is that this isn’t about racism (any more), but about a racial disparity (and yes there is a different, one has causality). Racism (in the Jim Crow sense, is now long gone, especially in the college age generation) but it did leave a racial disparity which has yet to dissipate. 
    You can’t use racism to defeat racism. But you can work to break down the new source of the problem – the poverty cycle. I just hope someone figures it out.

    • the devil

      Dead on what- that if you’re a minority you are automatically subsidized and less intelligent? That is what they are insinuating and it is racist.

  • Student

    Ignore the College Republicans. They are trolls. You know what to do with trolls, right? You don’t feed them.

    • Pretty Hips McGee

      The problem is that they were not ignored.  Their “stunt” was a political statement that was censored by the authorities.  The U.S. Constitution’s first declared freedom was the right to freely express your views on government policies.   This freedom trumps the recipients of affirmative action’s “pseudo right” of not getting their feelings hurt.

  • RealEyes_Realize_RealLies

    “contrary to the Principles of Community we espouse as a campus”
    On the fo’-rilla LeGrande?
    What principles are those?
    The willful and continuous violation of students constitutional rights by your office?

    Harry, You Are A CRIMINAL and EVERYONE on Campus KNOWS All About It.

  • Chancellor_Bob_Race_Exploiter

    Chancellor Birgeneau is the Biggest Race Baiter on Campus.
    He should keep quite on this bakesale shindig, b/c he has no credibility on matters of race.

  • Anonymous

    Yep the racist faction of the republican party never fails to show up in one way or form.

    • Registered_Democrat

      What form is it this time?
      The form that correctly calls out SB185 for what it is:  racist.

      Can’t get past the trivial matter of cupcake prices, and thereby acknowledge the larger issue of the Senate bill?
      The truth hurts, don’t it?

      • Anonymous

        #1. I don’t believe at all that you’re a registered democrat so don’t make that your username because that’s just stupid.
        #2. It’s in the form that thinks that it’s okay and not insensitive to develop a sliding scale of prices from whites to native americans.
        #3. SB 185 is not racist. It’s the opposite of racism since it encourages an larger view when looking at an admission application, and does not even require that these factors be taken into account.
        #4.  This bake is actually racist because it has offended many people and developed unnecessary tension on our campus.

        • Perspective

          I can’t comment on item 1 it’s more of a personal mater, but a reminder that not all democrats are all inclusive and not all republicans are racists, no one fits the stereotype perfectly. 

          On #2 and 4 you are right, it is insensitive and not OK.

          But on #3, while it doesn’t require the use of race, allowing the use of race in the decision process is by definition RACIST, even if it does permit a “larger view (which it can, but it can also permit a skewed view.”

          If you application gives you a check box of Black, White, Asian, ect… what does that convey for a “larger view” either nothing since being a minority doesn’t mean you were disadvantaged, just that at this time you are likely disadvantaged. You could have been a millionaire afforded every opportunity and no barriers, but “Black” or “White” doesn’t convey that, all it conveys is a sterotype.

        • [SB 185 is not racist. It’s the opposite of racism since it]

          …since it only discriminates against whites, right?

          How Orwellian.

    • And you keep spouting your nonsense, while ignoring that the Republicans were being totally consistent with the spirit of Affirmative Action, which is a higher cost of entry (in this case, GPA and test scores) for whites than non-whites – which was their purpose in doing this in the first place, whether you like it or not. Funny how the cognitive dissonance of the Left works. They can see the racism in the deliberate satire, while completely ignoring the racism of the act being ridiculed.

  • Guest

    Birgeneau = censor-in-chief