New York’s prestigious Cornell University is requiring students to get a flu vaccination or face punishment. Unless, of course, they’re students “of color,” in which case they can apply for exemption. What happened to equality?
A vaccination program that discriminates based on race might seem a little Jim Crow, but it’s actually the kind of program being pushed by Cornell University in Ithaca, New York. Monday marked the start of National Influenza Vaccination week, but Cornell was ahead of the curve, requiring all students to take the shot before coming to class this academic year, even if their classes are online-only, as well as comply with Covid-19 “surveillance testing requirements.”
That is, unless those students are “Black, Indigenous, and other People of Color (BIPOC).” Those students aren’t subject to the same stringent vaccine requirements of their white classmates, and though they are strongly encouraged to get tested and get the flu shot, the university offers them an exemption should they choose not to. The university even describes the requirements foisted on whites as “suspect or even exploitative” to its students of color.
Cornell won’t dispatch racial scientists to check the skin tone of any of these students, or ask for a DNA test. Merely identifying as “BIPOC” is considered grounds for exemption, meaning bonafide crackers like Shaun King or Rachel Dolezal could avoid the shot, were they students at Cornell.