As the 25th anniversary arrives of women being allowed to attend the oldest state military college in the country, the Virginia Military Institute (VMI) is drastically changing its approach as it attempts to keep pace with not only progressive academic norms but also with the woke culture that has been sweeping across Democrat-led states.
Kimberly Dark, the author of lesbian fanfic and a fat rights activist, was invited to VMI in honor of the anniversary of women being permitted to attend the institution. Meanwhile, a diversity training presentation at the Institute poses the question, “How have you benefited from adherence to your gender role?”.
Under Superintendent, Cedric Wins, VMI has seen a drastic shift toward woke culture and a focus on gender, redefining “masculinity,” and intolerance toward white people.
At VMI’s Preston Library, the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) resources include “The History of White People” and “White Guys on Campus” which discuss “whiteness” along with the “habits of racism among white male undergraduates” and include other texts such as Ibram X. Kendi’s “How to be an Antiracist” and “White Fragility” by Robin DiAngelo.
The changes have come from Wins whose “One Corps, One VMI Unifying Action Plan” is driving away cadets who are drawn to the institution for its warrior-centric appeal rather than a DEI-centered curriculum that aims to “empower Cadets to gain strength through diversity, acceptance by inclusion.”
Enrollment for the new VMI curriculum has fallen by 25% from 522 freshmen in 2020 to only 375 in 2022. Wins has attempted to put the blame for the drop in enrollment on everything from the Covid-19 pandemic to falling birth rates.
VMI’s Inclusive Excellence plan whose focus was pushing “diversity, equity, inclusion and social justice” on cadets was based on the One Virginia Plan which claimed that, “Inequity is rooted in America’s foundation.”
Not only is the institution erasing historical components from its own legacy but the staff has apparently turned a blind eye to it with one faculty member going so far as to declare, “We really aren’t military. I have a bird on my shoulder – doesn’t mean anything – just I am a field professor, so – compare us more to the University of Maryland than a military academy.”
DEI training is being used as a cover-up for teaching critical race theory (CRT) at VMI with videos like “White Like Me: Race, Racism, and White Privilege in America” which claims that “white privilege” is “built into the very foundations of the country.” A separate video, “Disarm Hate” uses the attack on the Pulse nightclub in Orlando to “demand LGBTQIA equal rights, fight the NRA and challenge America’s obsessions with gun violence.”
While it appears that DEI and CRT are running rampant at the institution, critics of Wins’ new woke policies are speaking out through the Spirit of VMI PAC with Glenn Youngkin’s election as governor bringing hope for a return to militaristic values and education at VMI. Meanwhile, Wins has been publically defending his VMI budget that includes extensive spending on “equity” telling a critic, “You have no understanding of DEI or what it means, or how much of the funding for DEI is represented in our request.”
Wins has gone on to also blame the drop in enrollment on “ideological differences among a divided alumni base” although the division is not among the alumni but rather between current and potential future cadets and Wins’ woke agenda and CRT curriculum.
In another failed attempt to shift the blame for alarmingly low enrollment figures Wins went on to say, “Misinformation regarding our initiative for diversity, equity and inclusion and the thought, the notion, the misinformation about the institute and what it’s doing or what it’s not doing with critical race theory is certainly having an impact, we believe.” This from the superintendent of an institution whose DEI resources have a direct link to “anti-racism resources” to be used as a “resource to white people.”
It is heartbreaking to see the institution that produced Marshall, Patton, and Byrd giving in so easily to the left’s woke agenda and critical race theory curriculum that has all but erased American history and now the legacy of the Virginia Military Institute. Where does it stop?