“In the holy name of Diversity, NASCAR presents Racism”: Fans left divided by NASCAR’s new diversity internship scheme

The NASCAR Diversity Internship scheme
The NASCAR Diversity Internship scheme

In an ongoing bid to foster inclusivity and diversity within Motorsports, the NASCAR Diversity Internship Program has once again captured attention in 2023.

The initiative, widely recognized for its dedication to providing opportunities for underrepresented groups, is embarking on a mission to pave pathways for young talents to experience the exhilarating world of Stock Car Racing.

Established back in 2000, the Diversity Internship Program by the American brand has assumed a pivotal role in nurturing a more diverse talent pool within the competitive racing industry.

However, the program has recently found itself embroiled in a storm of controversy due to its admission criteria that have left fans divided.

The central point of contention arises from the requirement that applicants must belong to specific racial or ethnic minority classifications, effectively barring white applicants from applying based solely on their race. This move has elicited strong reactions from supporters and critics alike.

Social media platforms have been buzzing with reactions this new approach. Here are some of the reactions from X (formerly Twitter).

One fan, expressing their disapproval, exclaimed,

"In the holy name of Diversity, NASCAR presents... Racism!!!!!!"


Another user voiced the idea of a potential boycott, suggesting that the stock car racing brand could face repercussions due to their stance on the matter.

The individual stated, "They could use a good boycott."

The situation has led to a broader discussion about the relationship between fans and organizations they support.

A perplexed fan questioned, "Why do people support NASCAR if they are participating in these kinds of actions?"

Law professor tags NASCAR's internship scheme "blatantly illegal"

Critics have honed in on the openly discriminatory nature of the program's requirements.

The demand that applicants belong to specific racial or ethnic groups has raised eyebrows, as it appears to directly conflict with principles of equal opportunity and fairness.

Legal expert David Bernstein, a professor at George Mason University’s Antonin Scalia School of Law, weighed in on the matter, deeming NASCAR's racially discriminatory program as "blatantly illegal."

Bernstein further noted that such a program could potentially violate Title VII and the 1866 Civil Rights Act, landmark legislations designed to eliminate discrimination.

As the controversy rages on, NASCAR finds itself navigating a complex landscape where it's commitment to diversity and inclusion is being questioned. The organization's efforts to create pathways for underrepresented individuals to enter the racing world are being juxtaposed with allegations of discrimination.

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