Rescind Margaret Wente's Massey College Appointment:
We — the undersigned students, faculty, staff, alumni, and donors of the University of Toronto — call on Massey College to immediately rescind their appointment of Margaret Wente as a Senior Fellow and Member of the Quadrangle Society.
In her career as a journalist, Margaret Wente published racist pseudoscience and was repeatedly investigated for plagiarism(1).
We believe this disqualifies Margaret Wente from serving in a group of “people who demonstrate the ethical pursuit of the public good that we want to model for our Junior Fellowship”(2).
Dr. Rinaldo Walcott and Dr. Minelle Mahtani said in a 2014 article that “journalists like […] Wente are committed to telling stories about race where a cast of stereotypes of the worst kind is rolled out, masquerading as insightful queries.”(3) speaking about her article promoting the claims of Nicholas Wade, a heavily criticized pseudo-scientist.(4)
In the same week where Massey College made a public commitment to addressing Anti-Black racism and held a talk on Anti-Black racism, we feel it is greatly disappointing that Governing Board did not back up these words with their actions. BIPOC Fellows, academics, and staff deserve to feel safe at Massey College.
Allowing Margaret Wente’s appointment to stand will make the College a less safe place for them. We stand in solidarity with the Fellows and academics who have already spoken out.
Humanists for Social Justice and Environmental Action supports Human Rights, Social and Economic Justice, Environmental Activism and Planetary Ethics in North America & Globally, with particular reference to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and other Human Rights UN treaties and conventions listed above.