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University of New Mexico

This New Mexico college bake sale charged customers based on race and ethnicity


A college bake sale that charged students based on their race and ethnicity sparked backlash at the University of New Mexico earlier this week.

Turning Point USA, a conservative non-profit organization, set up what's been dubbed the "Affirmative Action Bake Sale" on campus Thursday.

A sign placed in front of the organization's table advertised prices based on a customer's race or ethnicity.

"Asians $1.50, Caucasians $1.00, African American and Hispanics $0.50," the sign read.

William Witt, a Turning Point regional director, said the bake sale was meant to generate a conversation about affirmative action programs. Affirmative action, as defined by the Merriam-Webster dictionary, is "an active effort to improve the employment or educational opportunities of members of minority groups and women."

"Certain groups get different opportunities than other groups, and we believe it doesn't give equal opportunity," Witt said.

The bake sale certainly drew quite a bit of attention and the number of protesters soon outnumbered the people who organized it. Turning Point organizers eventually ended up leaving when counter-protests got out of hand.

"We had tons of people who wanted to have great conversations. But once people start yelling, destroying our stuff and breaking everything on the table, it makes it tough to have good discussions," Witt said.

The university said Turning Point, which bills itself as an organization focused on promoting the principles of freedom, free markets and limited government, is not recognized as an official student group.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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