Theo E. J. Wilson, an activist who went undercover online as a white supremacist in the Alt Right movement to investigate open hatred in America, will speak at 6 p.m. on Nov. 5 in the Cherokee Park Ballroom at the Lory Student Center. The event is open to the public.
Wilson – also known as slam poet Lucifury and a founding member of the Denver Slam Nuba team that won the National Poetry Slam in 2011 – was invited by CSU to speak following an opinion piece he published Sept. 15 on the Colorado Sun digital news site. In the essay, Wilson addressed the image of CSU students in blackface, writing that “CSU lost out on this teachable moment, and the irony is costly. There are so many things that could have been taught here. First among them is history, a subject America as a whole struggles with.”
Subsequent CSU responses to the incident, including President McConnell’s Fall Address, have addressed Wilson’s very critique, most notable with the launch of the Race, Bias, and Equity Initiative. The University extended an invitation to Wilson to come to campus as part of this initiative and as part of CSU’s institutional commitment to open dialogue and critical discourse.
In previous speeches, Wilson has addressed discovering roots of cultural issues, black male privilege in the #MeToo era, race issues, and human connections. He is the executive director of Shop Talk Live, Inc. The organization uses the barbershop as a staging ground for community dialogue and healing. In 2013, Wilson began speaking with “Rachel’s Challenge,” an organization dedicated to ending school violence through compassion.
Wilson’s appearance is co-sponsored by the Black/African American Cultural Center at CSU.