Utah ‘Mestizo’ activist group promote social justice despite alleged tax woes

, Spencer Irvine, Leave a comment

The Mestizo Arts & Activism Collective, a self-proclaimed social justice think tank in Salt Lake City, Utah, is trying to raise a new generation of left-wing, social justice activists from high school through college in Utah.

The collective’s mission statement said that they use their own “research and personal experiences as a way of promoting social justice to make our voices heard.” Additionally, the collective said that they aim to “create positive change” and “informing the world about issues young people of color face and finding creative ways to solve them.”

It also noted that it was “envisioned as a creative space of social justice for activist scholars of all ages to come together, make art, do participatory research, and engage in change in our community.” The collective’s first projects “focused on issues of education, immigration, and racism.”

The collective promotes its legislative internship, in operation since 2009, to help “introduce students not only to the educational pipeline but the political pipeline.” It listed other projects, such as “Dreaming of No Judgement” about immigrants being stereotyped and a sustainability team project.

Nowhere on its website does the collective mention its tax-exempt status, though it calls itself an “intergenerational social justice think tank.” Think tanks are usually a specific type of tax-exempt non-profit organization known as a 501(c)(3) organization, which is officially approved and registered with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). The IRS does not list this collective as an officially-sanctioned non-profit organization.

The collective also claimed that it is a part of the University of Utah community, which sparks concerns that a state institution could be somehow affiliated with a radical, left-wing group of activists.

Also, there is also a similar organization called the Mestizo Institute of Culture and Arts. But the IRS does not have any available copies online for viewing, which is atypical for non-profit organizations. For example, organizations have a 990 form which shows the organization’s revenues, expenses, names of its board of directors, and salaries for employees. The IRS only lists its government-issued identification number and its official name as “Mestizo Institute of Culture and Arts.”

According to the non-profit organization database GuideStar, the Mestizo Institute’s tax-exempt status was “automatically revoked by the IRS for failure to file a Form 990, 990-EZ, 990-N, or 990-PF for 3 consecutive years.” GuideStar noted, “Further investigation and due diligence are warranted,” meaning that the disappearance of Mestizo Institute from IRS’s files was due to the lack of properly-filed tax paperwork.

Both of these organizations are pushing left-wing social justice agenda to children and their communities, which is a warning sign of how the Left tries to indoctrinate race-based politics from an early age.