There was a big turn out for a very controversial bake sale on the Cal campus Tuesday.
The Berkeley College Republicans said the sale was meant to show how affirmative action is a form of discrimination. Students were charged different prices for cookies based on their race, gender and ethnicity.
Berkeley College Republicans posted the prices of its cookies this way.
- "White/Caucasian" pastries for $2
- "Asian/American" for $1.50
- "Latino/Hispanic" for $1
- "Black/African American" for 75 cents
- "Native American" only had to pay a quarter
- Women get a 25-cent discount
The signs were posted Tuesday, but people were allowed to pay whatever they liked - buyer's choice.
Hundreds of people who said they were outraged by the idea turned out in a counter protest. That group formed a lie-in about 20 yards away from the bake sale table. Chopper video from above campus showed hundreds of people lying down in what appeared to be a peaceful protest.
The "Increase Diversity Bake Sale" kicked off right on schedule in Sproul Plaza at 10 a.m. One of the people manning the table was former UC Regent Ward Connerly. Connerly was the author of Prop. 209, the voter-approved initiative that bans using race in government programs.
"People have been mostly civil," Connerly told the Oakland Tribune. "Back in 1996, believe me, this would have been a much more hostile situation. The issue is rapidly approaching the point of irrelevance."
The Republican group announced the sale last week. They said it was designed to spark conversation about a bill that is now on Gov. Jerry Brown's desk that would allow California public universities to consider race, ethnicity and gender in student admissions. The bill is SB185.
Brown has until Oct. 9 to sign or veto the bill.