Whitening Academia

While a House Republican proposal to tax the tuition waivers of graduate students may not be among the highest-profile Trump-era assaults on people of color, it represents a serious threat to racial equality. If included in the final tax plan, it would disproportionately harm nonwhite graduate students and be disastrous for the already dismal diversity of academia, putting an additional roadblock between people of color and the ivory tower and depriving all of us of their desperately needed intellectual contributions.

If graduate students were to be taxed on free tuition valued at tens of thousands of dollars, the bulk of their small stipends would have to go to pay tuition tax, rendering doctoral education inaccessible for all but the independently wealthy.

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