THE HIVE MIND

I come across like someone who is very harsh on students but more often than not I just feel bad for them when they're at their worst. Most of what they are at 18-21 reflects their upbringing, and I'm not eager to punish them for the fact that they grew up in Pigsknuckle, Tennessee or were raised by people whose parenting skills were limited to showering them with money and looking the other way. I mean, given that they were raised on Glenn Beck, drive a car that costs twice my annual salary, and have never met a black person who wasn't serving them food or holding a rake, the only surprise is that they're not more screwed up than they already are. The existential dilemma of teaching becomes clear when you try telling some lackadaisical fratboy "You need to try harder" when it's clear that he already has everything and very clearly doesn't need to try in order to maintain it. But I digress.

The point is that I understand that the decision-making skills of undergrads are subpar. That is not an excuse; they are old enough to accept consequences. I simply mean that it does not shock me when students – especially groups of them – make idiotic decisions. It is what they do. I expect it. This is what I tell myself. But every so often I reel from shock despite how well I prepare myself for their ignorance.

University of California-San Diego is the latest school to have what amounts to an annual tradition in American academia: the comically racist frat party. This year's UCSD "Compton Cookout" is just the latest version of the fraternity slave auctions, the blackface and gold teeth Halloween costumes, and the fried chicken-and-watermelon email "jokes" that we've come to know and love. The invitation to this year's event promises attendees "dat purple drank" – which is what the coloreds drink! ha ha! – and helpfully offers the following tips:

For girls: For those of you who are unfamiliar with ghetto chicks-Ghetto chicks usually have gold teeth, start fights and drama, and wear cheap clothes – they consider Baby Phat to be high class and expensive couture. They also have short, nappy hair, and usually wear cheap weave, usually in bad colors, such as purple or bright red.

They look and act similar to Shenaynay, and speak very loudly, while rolling their neck, and waving their finger in your face. Ghetto chicks have a very limited vocabulary, and attempt to make up for it, by forming new words, such as "constipulated", or simply cursing persistently, or using other types of vulgarities, and making noises, such as "hmmg!", or smacking their lips, and making other angry noises, grunts, and faces.

The objective is for all you lovely ladies to look, act, and essentially take on these "respectable" qualities throughout the day.

Hilarity ensues.

Here's what baffles me about these incidents. I know these kids are mostly the ignorant progeny of ignorant adults, but fraternities are large. The planning of this party had to involve dozens and dozens of people (within and outside of the frat in question). There wasn't one person with enough brainpower to think, "Hmm, this doesn't seem like a good idea"? Not one? I understand groupthink, peer pressure, and conformity. Honestly I do. Cognitive biases interest me. But you would imagine that if for no reason other than self-preservation – "Gee, I don't want to get in trouble for this" – one out of every hundred would be smart enough to do something. Even my jaded, blackened heart has a hard time believing that they are unanimously that dumb.

Overall today's undergrads are probably less racist than past generations so we can't make a good-ol'-days argument here. But the sheer stupidity of the racism that remains more than compensates for whatever improvements we've made as a society. It's sad enough that this happens, and sadder yet that these people are too dumb to express their racism at a level higher than "Haw haw! Them negroes sure do talk real funny and drink lotsa Kool Aid!" If the sentiments they express aren't enough to convince us of their dull minds, they ensure that we get the message with their chosen manner of delivery. I mean, if you're going to be completely offensive you could at least do humanity the favor of attempting to be clever. Then again, if these people were mentally capable of clever they'd wouldn't be doing this in the first place.

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82 Responses to “THE HIVE MIND”

  1. RosaLux Says:

    Yea, that's bloody racist and they should be expelled if the disciplinary authorities at UCD have one iota of courage, or any sense of justice (let's not count on it). But mainly I just feel sorry for these fucking morons, whose worldview is apparently so constrained that they don't know what urban black people look and talk like. How poor their lives must be, even if they have the trappings of economic wealth. I take the subway from Brooklyn to Manhattan mostly every day and I don't think I've ever seen this fictional "black woman" with the gold teeth, the poor fashion sense and the "angry noises." How is it that these kids have never seen real black people before? Did they ALL grow up in gated communities?

    Nonetheless, we shouldn't draw generalizations from isolated instances of breathtaking moral depravity. This crap would never have happened at my college back in my student days – there would have been blood in the streets. And most college kids I meet nowadays are smart, motivated, and not racist. UC-San Diego is an intellectual and moral backwater and should be named as such, often and loudly, until they shut down this nonsense.

  2. jon Says:

    RosaLux, these things happened in the good-ol days just as often if not more than today. The biggest difference is that there are other campus organizations that take notice of such things and there are non-campus organizations that also notice and report these things on the internet.

    Where the rubber hits the road will be if any of the pictures of such events hit the internet and whether or not they affect future careers. Facebook and similar sites aren't just looked at by old high school buddies anymore.

    But in privileged-ville where most of these people live, this won't matter. There's a sort of "No Thugs in Our House" desire to ignore any unpleasantries such as violence, sexism, and racism, or at least a desire to suggest that such things are impossible because these are successful kids with bright futures. Funny how the same crudeness that keeps the lower classes down (to the privileged mind) is the same thing that keeps the upper classes up.

  3. jon Says:

    Forgot that linky-dinky-do: http://www.lyricsdepot.com/xtc/no-thugs-in-our-house.html

  4. Daniel Says:

    I guess the "Golf pros, tennis hoes" parties didn't piss off enough people as it is.

  5. schooner Says:

    Wanna bet that the party's soundtrack is 90% hip hop.

  6. Julie Says:

    Yuck. Someone should light a burning cross in their yards.

  7. RosaLux Says:

    Unfairly reducing social groups to simplistic stereotypes is FUN! With a little cutting and pasting, you can try this at home!

    ——

    Join us for the California Frat Boy Keg Party! Show up in Costume!

    For guys: For those of you who are unfamiliar with frat boys – frat boys usually have perfect teeth and like to get shit-faced drunk and start fights due to deep-seated insecurities about their masculinity. They consider mind-numbingly conformist polo shirts and cargo shirts to be high class and reflective of personality. They also have short, equally boring haircuts.

    They all have thick necks and obnoxious names like Elton, Chad, Tucker and Beau.

    Take Note: Frat boys speak in monosyllabic fragments. Frat boys have a very limited vocabulary due to brain damage from years of binge-drinking and a general lack of intellectual curiosity. They may refer to you as "dude" or "bro," even though you are not their actual biological brother. When binge-drinking, their veneer of social propriety fades and they amuse themselves by telling racist jokes and dreaming up schemes to date-rape women.

    The objective is for all you guys to look, act, and essentially take on these "respectable" qualities throughout the day. Have fun!

  8. beau Says:

    Rosa – you know frat boys named "Elton" and/or "Beau"? And they were allowed to join fraternities, as opposed to just being chased around and beaten up by Chad, Tucker & co? Wow. Doesn't match my 30 years experience of being named Beau. I guess Australian jocks (antipodean fratboy equivalent) are a little less open-minded and inclusive of we unfortunate souls named in a haze of bong-smoke and Zeppelin.

  9. RosaLux Says:

    Well, with all that bong-smoke and Zeppelin, I suppose you should just feel lucky your name isn't Starship Flower Bracelet, no? But Beau is a lovely name and I didn't mean to disparage it in my feeble attempt at irony. :)

  10. jaybee Says:

    I await the invitation to next year's "Goblin Kike Mixer."

  11. JM Says:

    "I take the subway from Brooklyn to Manhattan mostly every day and I don't think I've ever seen this fictional "black woman" with the gold teeth, the poor fashion sense and the "angry noises."

    Where are you taking the subway from, Park Slope? Williamsburg? Greenpoint? I worked as a janitor at a public K-8 school in the south bronx near yankee stadium for two years after undergrad. These "fictional" women do exist, a lot of them. They're people from the lower classes (or as stated in the invite, the "ghetto"), it doesn't matter what color they are, many of them are not going to be very smart, many are going to be brought up with little supervision by irresponsible, lazy, possibly criminal parents, and many are going to conduct themselves in an outrageous, bombastic manner that is equally hilarious and disturbing to a smarter person brought up in calmer, more restrained, and affluent community. This blog would have no problem railing on the abhorrent behaviors of lower class whites (also known as white trash), or even the more middle class, tea party whites; but if someone's making fun a lower class person who happens to be black or hispanic, and draws attention to the paraphernalia unique to that low class culture (gold teeth instead of missing teeth? completely unnecessary 22" rims instead of completely unnecessary monster trucks?) well then it's reducing people to disgusting, vile, racist stereotypes. I'm sure any of those frat boys would trust a black surgeon, and i'm sure they laugh at black comedians, and i'm sure that at least a significant minority probably voted obama (it is california). They were more out to make fun of the lower classes, because many members of those classes do behave in a crazy way…that's why I, and I imagine many of you, believe in liberal economics and social policies–to help those who can't seem to be able to help themselves, and provide them with opportunities for edification and advancement that are more readily available to those born into the right end of the wealth bell curve.

    Anyway, the idea to have a party *in reaction to* black history month was certainly inappropriate and a bit insensitive, but responding to this kind of thing with outrage and calls for 'diversity training' and the like probably just make it worse. Part of what makes a party like that attractive to the frat boy is the fact that it subverts the cloying, kumbaya, barney and friends "tolerance" he was raised to internalize, and in doing so pisses off those they perceive as the squares.

    This blog is really insightful and terrifically written, but so damn boilerplate and uninteresting when it comes to racism/sexism.

  12. Comrade PhysioProf Says:

    I understand groupthink, peer pressure, and conformity. Honestly I do. Cognitive biases interest me.

    Your incredulity that 100 frat brothers could muster up the common delusion that their grotesquely racist party theme was a good idea suggests that you were never a member of a fraternity. AMIRITE?

  13. Michael Says:

    1991-1992, my senior year in college, at our annual lip-sync contest, a group of frat boys performed in blackface. When people were offended, and it blew up into big campus drama, this group of all-white frat boys offered as a defense: Well, *we* didn't find it offensive.

    Really? No shit?

    Living in Alabama (born and raised in Boston) I am amazed at the wink-wink nudge-nudge racist comments that people make all the time.

  14. Hobbes Says:

    In my (effectively) all-white high school in Central Wisconsin, we had a redneck-themed Sadie Hawkins dance my senior year. It was slightly more okay since, to be honest, quite a few of my classmates embraced the stereotype, but I still felt kind of ishy about the idea. Better than, say, a "white trash"-themed dance, though, since said high school was private and about half extremely affluent (the other half were composed of people like me whose parents wanted them to have a good catholic education).

    This intuitively suggests to me that it's more okay to make fun of stereotypes to which you belong than those to which you don't. Perhaps one of the frat boys who suggested this theme had fought his way out of the ghetto and into college and a frat – at my large public university this was not impossible – and thought it'd be funny. Likely not, granted, but it would make me less depressed about the state of humanity.

  15. Pan Sapiens Says:

    Rosalux,

    I'd have gone with the "Pederasty in ancient Greece" theme.

    And I propose that, since there is no really good insulting term for white people, that we all use "douchebag" from now on. I'm open to other suggestions.

  16. Amelia Says:

    A news flash from the land of pathetic: This sort of behavior isn't limited to privileged, ignorant undergrads. I just got an invitation from a certain pair of IU graduate students, both in their 30s (one in political science, one in communication and culture, surely you can deduce from there) that read: "Politically Incorrect Ethnic Party: Dress up and make fun of your favorite stereotype! As always, BYOB."

    The only light in this is that for the first time ever, their not attending : attending ratio is right around 4:1 (instead of the reverse), and that two of the responses so far include: "I appreciate the invite, and hate to miss the party, but I don't think the rhetorical leeway necessary for effective parody is there with this kind of stuff" and, more directly "I tell my students not to dress up as ethnic stereotypes each Halloween to avoid the old school ass kicking coming their way, so I'll pass."

    Don't you miss Bloomington now?

  17. Liz Says:

    "I'm sure any of those frat boys would trust a black surgeon, and i'm sure they laugh at black comedians, and i'm sure that at least a significant minority probably voted obama (it is california)."

    Oh, well then I guess they can't be racist. I wonder how all of those people who had probably never interacted in a meaningful way with any members of the lower class (or even those phantom two or three who were there on scholarship and, once they "fought their way out of the ghetto," decided the best use of their time would be to join a fraternity that throws racist parties) all came away with the same impressions about how black women act as someone who picked up black women's trash for a living on the other side of the country? Could it be because a character like Shenaynay is the only interaction with black culture so many affluent white people in their twenties had access to thanks their parents' white flight and refusal to do any anti-racist work because they had already ended racism when some people their age worked their asses off to get some civil rights legislation passed? I mean, we're all the same color on the inside, right? So as long as we don't talk about the fact that the only person of color our kid ever sees is a member of the cleaning staff at his private school, racism doesn't exist.

    Ed regularly shows a healthy disdain for politicians who make cynical attempts to understand or, worse, just plain ignore their poorer white constituents. You're writing liberal thought processes off as boilerplate but really they're just designed to point out that it's not fucking cool to exploit people with less money, power, or intelligence than you, whether it's for entertainment or for profit.

  18. Hazy Davy Says:

    I think it's been repeatedly demonstrated that social pressures (esp. at that age) often lead to lack of social censure.

    It's not that there's groupthink. It's that, at some threshold of acceptance of an idea (esp. if there are rebukes for dissention), nobody speaks up. I promise you, lots of people *knew* this was wrong…they were just afraid, lazy, or too socially-awkward to say anything.

    But back when I was a college student, man…you spent about 5 seconds coming up with a name/theme….the party was all abou the alcohol and attempted pairups. (For others, it may have actually been about the sex, but the word "attempted" is a necessary qualifier for my own college years.)

    (Oh, also…the stereotype of the black custodian/gardener doesn't play in southern California. But pimps/hoes parties invariably bring out the racism in folks.)

  19. Susan of Texas Says:

    All insecure, frightened, self-hating people want to feel they're better than someone else. Women, minorities, poor people, Arabs, the family down the street with a used car instead of a new one–the particulars don't matter. A person can grow up being told that Jesus says love one another and we all all equal in God's eyes, but if he was raised by unkind authoritarian parents he will end up looking for a scapegoat for all his inner misery. And he'll tell himself that they deserve it, just look at them, with their low class ways and ugly clothes and loud voices. Or he'll tell himself that he is merely reacting to all the kumbaya, barney and friends "tolerance" he was raised to internalize, and merely wants to pisses off those he perceives as the squares.

    You can have a party with grass skirts and umbrella drinks and dance and have a good time. Or you can decide that your party is the perfect opportunity to mock people whom you consider scum, without the actual confrontation of the scary dark-skinned people, of course.

    My ideal fraternity party would include homoerotic rituals, torture of someone grabbed off the street, poisoning of the air, water, and food, excruciatingly bad entertainment, and women who can't enjoy sex unless they get a diamond ring out of it.

  20. ts46064 Says:

    "I'm sure any of those frat boys would trust a black surgeon, and i'm sure they laugh at black comedians, and i'm sure that at least a significant minority probably voted obama (it is california)."

  21. RosaLux Says:

    "They're people from the lower classes (or as stated in the invite, the "ghetto"), it doesn't matter what color they are, many of them are not going to be very smart, many are going to be brought up with little supervision by irresponsible, lazy, possibly criminal parents, and many are going to conduct themselves in an outrageous, bombastic manner that is equally hilarious and disturbing to a smarter person brought up in calmer, more restrained, and affluent community."

    Dear JM:

    I respectfully find your post abhorrent. A shocking and repulsive bit of elitism.

  22. ts46064 Says:

    sorry, bumped the enter button
    Everyone should have a card that that says "i voted for obama" so whenever they say something racists they can show the card and everyone will know they aren't actually racist.

    Also, all anyone who makes Jew/Holocaust jokes needs to say is "I'm a Seinfeld fan" to prove that they aren't actually antisemitic and embrace Jewish culture.

  23. ts46064 Says:

    "They're people from the lower classes (or as stated in the invite, the "ghetto"), it doesn't matter what color they are, many of them are not going to be very smart…"

    Sounds like some ayn rand "Affluence and intelligence are in direct correlation" bullshit.

  24. Zeb Says:

    This seems more like a sin of ignorance than one of malice. Their actions were undoubtedly insensitive, particular given the references to Black History Month in their invitation, but I'm not sure if I'm ready to brand them racists yet. Maybe I have a stricter definition of racism, which I think requires a certain degree of malice. These kids probably aren't racist (for the most part), they just did something really stupid and somewhat hurtful and should be reprimanded for it.

  25. RosaLux Says:

    Pan Sapien: I love the idea of a "pederasty in ancient greece" party. Except not ironical, since I think Plato's Phaedrus is probably the greatest work of philosophy ever written.

    JM: Sigh. I don't have time to go line by line through your post to deconstruct its multitude of misunderstandings and bigotries. But suffice to say: I find it impossible to believe that you ever lived in the Bronx, if you actually think that the Compton Cookout stereotypes bear any relation to the reality of urban black people.

    Secondly, I retract my accusation of "elitism" because I hate when that term is thrown around. Hell, I feel like an elitist myself most of the time, vis a vis almost everyone I meet. Really, the absurdity is that you feel elite on the basis of social class and suggest that "low class culture" is inherently depraved. JM, I'll defend poor white trash in the same breath as I defend ghetto culture. I know morally depraved people from the upper and lower classes; I know mentally incompetent people from the upper and lower classes.

    Third, I too grew up scornful of the "cloying, kumbaya, diversity-training" response to institutionalized racism. You're right, it's stupid and ineffective. But that is not this. This is rightful moral outrage at blatant racism. Not just an "inappropriate" or "insensitive" party, as you describe it, but an outright racist party. What, we shouldn't respond with "outrage"? What is the alternative, acceptance? Mild rebuke? Indeed, instead of remaining in the front of the bus that day in Montgomery Alabama, Rosa Parks should have just written a really biting, but calm, letter to the bus company. Why react so strongly?

    JM, most often, all we have is our sense of outrage, our beautiful, liberal outrage. Outrage in response to patent injustice is precisely the appropriate moral response and I fear for the day that these Compton Cookouts do NOT elicit immediate, visceral outrage from those of us who still retain inherent senses of justice and fair play. You're apparently not one of those people.

  26. SarahMC Says:

    Zeb, it's not merely ignorance. These people went out of their way to act out a racist caricatures.

  27. Brandon Says:

    Ah yes – the leaders of tomorrow!

  28. Zeb Says:

    "Outrage in response to patent injustice is precisely the appropriate moral response and I fear for the day that these Compton Cookouts do NOT elicit immediate, visceral outrage from those of us who still retain inherent senses of justice and fair play."

    I agree with you on this, RosaLux, and I think JM's response was misguided. My only worry is that we seriously damage some kids' lives and future prospects by branding them as racists for something that, as I said above, seems to stem more from an 18-year-old's ignorance than malice (unless there's some more information to which I'm not privy). Give them sensitivity training and reprimand them, but there's no need to drag them through the mud and publish their names, as some people are calling for. It's not like they burned crosses or wore white hoods.

    I grew up in Southern California, and while I'm not going to say that there isn't racism there, I don't think it's as prevalent among the general population as it may be in some other parts of the country. We don't have a history of it in the same way many other states do. What we do have, especially in the areas of San Diego many of these kids likely grew up in, is a remarkable lack of understanding of other cultures, particularly those of the poor.

    This is not to defend their actions, of course, only to say that the response must be proportional.

  29. RosaLux Says:

    Fair enough, Zeb. I agree the response should be proportional and UCSD shouldn't ruin these kids' lives. But they should be disciplined (something strict but short of expulsion) and, frankly, I have no pity for them if their names are published. They're adults: if they want to express their views on black people, they should be subjected to thorough, personal critique if those views turn out to be vile.

  30. Zeb Says:

    "Zeb, it's not merely ignorance. These people went out of their way to act out a racist caricatures."

    Yes, but I believe in second chances for most things. One racist or insensitive act doesn't make one a racist for life (within reason… there are some racist acts that do, this doesn't seem to me one of them! ) Without knowing these kids, and given only the details mentioned above, I'm not ready to brand them racists yet.

    And even if they are, they're only kids–we can still make efforts at changing their thought and behavior. It seems like educating them about stereotypes, teaching them why this action was hurtful, and asking from them a sincere response and change of behavior is a far better course of action than simple outrage.

    Maybe I'm too optimistic, but it's better to try and change a racist's mind than to simply condemn him.

  31. SarahMC Says:

    When have white people's lives and future prospects ever been "ruined due to being labeled racist? I mean really. They'll have their entire community of white people behind them, ready to pat them on the back for being so bravely "politically incorrect."
    Racism is more than burning crosses and wearing white hoods, Zeb. What about the lives and future prospects of students of color – whose "ghetto sounding" names will get their resumes tossed in the bin by "ignorant" white hiring managers who think black people's natural hair is not "respectable?" How do you think the black students on campus feel?

  32. Zeb Says:

    "But they should be disciplined (something strict but short of expulsion) and, frankly, I have no pity for them if their names are published. They're adults: if they want to express their views on black people, they should be subjected to thorough, personal critique if those views turn out to be vile."

    I would concur, except that with Google out there (and the increase in employers, colleagues, etc. using it), this could haunt these kids for the rest of their lives. If they make sincere efforts to change their behavior and atone for what they did, there's no reason it should follow them forever. What is put on the internet is almost impossible to take down, and who among us hasn't said or done stupid things that, were they published online, would harm us?

  33. Zeb Says:

    "When have white people's lives and future prospects ever been "ruined due to being labeled racist? I mean really. They'll have their entire community of white people behind them, ready to pat them on the back for being so bravely "politically incorrect.""

    I'm not so sure of that. Especially not with my generation, the 18-21 year olds who generally look at racism as being the same degree of evil as Nazism. That also seems to apply more to the wealthy and hyper-privileged, like politicians, than it does to ordinary people. I think having "racist" attached to you these days can really fuck up your job and career prospects–and rightly so, when that label is deserved.

    "Racism is more than burning crosses and wearing white hoods, Zeb."

    You're absolutely right. Racism comes in many shades and degrees, and should be stamped out where found. \

    "What about the lives and future prospects of students of color – whose "ghetto sounding" names will get their resumes tossed in the bin by "ignorant" white hiring managers who think black people's natural hair is not "respectable?" How do you think the black students on campus feel?""

    I agree that this is very sad, and I empathize with the students on campus. But excessive punishment of these things benefits nobody, and only cheaply satisfies a desire for revenge. Lex talionis.

  34. Brandon Says:

    RosaLux and ts46064, I don

  35. Will Says:

    I'm gonna go with JM on this. This is classism (albeit classism mixed with some vile racist bullshit).

    Around MIDWEST COLLEGE TOWN, "White Trash Parties" are a regular occurrence, to the point of banality. I've never been to one, but judging from the facebook pictures, the usual tropes get much play and big laughs: incest, cow-related bestiality, poor hygiene, etc etc etc. This is all expected and normal, apparently. You don't see people getting all worked up about it because apparently it's OKAY to make fun of poor people.

    I could be wrong, I admit. This could be pure and unadulterated racism happening here – it just seems unlikely to me.

  36. Brandon Says:

    RosaLux and ts46064, I don't think you go far enough in your criticism of JM. His post isn't simply abhorrent, repulsive and evidence of his affinity for Ayn Rand, it's a clear demonstration that he's a worse version of Hitler. It also wouldn't suprise me to learn of his membership in the Aryan Nation or his authorship of The Protocols of the Elders of Zion. Holy frickin' Christ, people, the guy makes some comments you disagree with, and the baseless attacks on his character let loose.

    Liz, I think you made a number of valid points in your post. But I'm not sure I agree with your contention that characters like "Shenaynay" derive from these students' limited interactions with black women. I'm guessing that this character has no basis whatsoever in the real-life experiences of these students. They've probably never met a Shenaynay in their lives, if such a person even exists. The character is purely a product of the trashy stereotypes of African-American women in countless media.

    An JM makes a valid point about double standards that I'm not sure you adequately address. I recall responding to a post on this blog during the election season a couple of years ago about small towns. I thought the post overall was insightful and witty, particularly Ed's valid critique of politicians who constantly extol the virtues of small town life and speak of rural residents as "real" Americans in an attempt to pander to them. But the post was also littered with pretty broad-brush and fairly meanspirited characterizations of rural residens, something I pointed out in a comment. I think there are valid discussions to be had about whether stereotyping historically marginalized ethnic grounds and lower class whites is morally equivalent. Maybe it is, maybe it isn't. Same with the question of whether stereotyping should only be done by members of the group being stereotyped. But merely pointing to the existence of this double standard shouldn't invite the type of vitriol being directed at JM.

  37. SarahMC Says:

    "I'm not so sure of that. Especially not with my generation, the 18-21 year olds who generally look at racism as being the same degree of evil as Nazism."

    Yeah, but don't seem to think anything less than KKK membership qualifies as "racism."

  38. Zeb Says:

    "Yeah, but don't seem to think anything less than KKK membership qualifies as "racism.""

    Is that a jab at me? It seems awfully unwarranted, and you didn't even respond to the rest of my post. I wholeheartedly agreed with you that there is more to racism than its most evil variant, and I absolutely agree with you in deploring racist hiring practices that are unfortunately widespread.

    I can't speak for everyone in my generation, obviously, but I can say that in the highly unscientific sample of people my age I've known, I have never encountered somebody who truly thought less of black people, or any other minority for that matter.

  39. SarahMC Says:

    But here's the thing: most racists do not think they are racist. They will not admit they are racist. I don't know any 18-29 year olds (is that the age range you meant?) who will say flat-out, "I think less of black people." Not many people will say that. But they will throw parties like the one in this story, to mock and degrade people they perceive as The Other. They will laugh about how weird non-whites are and how goofy they supposedly act (according to the shows they watch on Vh1 anyway). That's racist. We're all a little bit racist, but at least some of us are working to overcome it and not celebrate it.

  40. Amy Says:

    As a member of the group frequently referred to as 'uneducated, lower-class white trash'*, I'd have to say that even I get that there is no comparison to the institutionalized racism present in the invitation discussed in this post and the existence of 'white trash parties'. Mainly because all I have to do is get lucky enough to find a nice suit at Goodwill or Salvation Army, and I could pretty easily pass as one of those fancy degree-having, white-trash-party-throwing people.

    *living at or below the poverty line, no college degree, raised by people who have never set foot inside a college classroom, from a small town in the Midwest where the largest percentage of the residents are also at or below the poverty line.

  41. Susan of Texas Says:

    So if it's not racism, just kids being kids by perpetrating vile stereotypes in a deeply offensive manner, the "kids" must just be assholes. This would also explain the poor white stereotypes, of course. It's not racism or classism, some people are just dreadful failures at achieving the minimum standards of decency, self-respect, and respect for others. They will be bad employees, bad citizens, and bad parents, and they will not grow out of it.

    Exposing them is a civic duty.

  42. Zeb Says:

    Sarah,

    Point conceded. But I'm still an optimist for my generation, as I think we've improved on these issues quite a bit and will raise children who will be even less biased. Maybe I'm wrong on this, but until I see ample evidence otherwise I can keep hoping.

    Susan,

    I detect some sarcasm in your post, but one can never be sure online. I wouldn't give up on the people who attended this party so quickly. One of the problems with this world is that we don't give people chances to better themselves.

  43. Susan of Texas Says:

    You can assume that there will be sarcasm in my posts at all times.

    You are discussing their redemption. I am discussing their ostracization. They should be very strongly condemned in no uncertain terms. It is irresistibly ego-gratifying to damaged people to tell themselves that they were born superior to them, whoever they are, otherwise.

    The people being mocked do not have to sit around and wait for some overprivileged jerk to grow up. If the "kids" don't like being criticized, they can change their behavior. Which is what you want anyway, right?

  44. Zeb Says:

    "You are discussing their redemption. I am discussing their ostracization. They should be very strongly condemned in no uncertain terms. It is irresistibly ego-gratifying to damaged people to tell themselves that they were born superior to them, whoever they are, otherwise."

    I'm not denying that they should be condemned. I'm only arguing that public exposure and excessive punishment will do nothing to solve the problem. These would come only from a desire for revenge, not reform. Hell, such things may only make things worse.

    "The people being mocked do not have to sit around and wait for some overprivileged jerk to grow up. If the "kids" don't like being criticized, they can change their behavior. Which is what you want anyway, right?"

    Absolutely. And I don't think anyone should have to sit around and wait. Instead, the people who organized and attended this party should probably be brought to meet with members of the Black Student Union, and attempts could then be made to explain to them why the party was wrong, why it was hurtful, etc. Judge them by the sincerity of their reaction to this process; those who react well and respectfully, who sincerely apologize, can be written off as kids who made a stupid mistake. Those who are still recalcitrant can be punished further.

    That's, at any rate, how I'd try to work through this if I were a UCSD administrator. I know it sounds kind of "kumbaya," but I'll bet it would really work on many of them.

  45. JohnR Says:

    That's funny! Take away the gold teeth and Baby Phat references, and that invitation could describe my fellows at almost every Boy Scout Drunk Party I ever went to. Hardest drinking bunch of guys I ever hung out with, the Scouts. I suppose those frat boys could make an effort, but every time I think of frat boys, I see Casanova Frankenstein's guys in my mind's eye. Not impressive.

  46. MarilynJean Says:

    It gets really, really tiring explaining why shit is racist to (some) white people, but I do it anyway because some of them really don't get it. I do believe, to Zeb's point, that ignorance needs to be corrected. So every time a white woman asks to touch my hair, I patiently tell her why her request to satisfy her curiosity is sorta annoying.

    However, it's the people who will deny, deny, DENY that something is racist, or make excuses for it AFTER you explain the history, the context, the statistics and whatever other information that sheds light on the ugly relationship between whites and non-whites, who are so frustrating and infuriating.

    THAT is the part that pisses me off. I've seen plenty of headlines like this one and it's always the same type of culprits. I'm too tired to be outraged anymore. I got called a nigger by a white woman some time before the age of ten so I have been dealing with this crap for a long time. I got to college and white dudes would ask if they could sleep with me so that they could know what it's like "to fuck a Black chick". Then there's the "I voted for Obama" white people and the people like John Mayer who think they're "down enough" with Blacks to say ironic things about race that end up coming off as racist and not enlightened. I was just in this punk rock, vegan bar in my neighborhood and they had Black History Month drink specials that included watermelon and grape flavored vodkas. For real? You're supposed to be progressive hipsters who don't eat meat because it's cruel, yet you sell these drinks during the month of February and name them after Queen Latifah and Bill Cosby? Seriously??? You're not being subversive. We're not there yet as a country where that shit can be taken as it was probably intended.

    Sometimes, I'd much rather people just burn a cross on my lawn so I don't have to listen to them ask me how excited I must be that Obama is in office. (No, really. I had a white woman walk up to me the day after the election and go, "Congratulations!" and she meant it with the utmost sincerity.)

    It's all about the classism, too. Everyone who made that point is spot on. I don't appreciate "white trash parties" anymore than I appreciate the Mexican-themed, immigrant parties (wish I could find the link) or the parties like the one in this post. Class and race overlap in painful places for many people in this country. The "What about poor white people?" argument isn't really valid in this conversation. Not to mention that many poor, white people are racist. So, whatever. I will still call bullshit on trailer park references and NASCAR quips.

    The way white men have treated Black women for centuries tells me that this party was malicious, racist, vile and unfortunately, not the first nor the last of its kind.

  47. Susan of Texas Says:

    Why do you think meeting with the justly irate target will change the frat boys' minds? If they were capable of thinking about other people's feelings they wouldn't have held that party in the first place. How will the presence and words of people the frat boys look upon as vulgar, stupid and bestial suddenly change their minds?

    1. Assholes meet with people they loathe.
    2.???????????
    3, Peace and Harmony and Respect!

    Why would public criticism be excessive punishment? Why should they not have to suffer the consequences of their actions? Poor kids certainly have to live with their mistakes for the rest of their lives.

  48. Zeb Says:

    "Why do you think meeting with the justly irate target will change the frat boys' minds? If they were capable of thinking about other people's feelings they wouldn't have held that party in the first place. How will the presence and words of people the frat boys look upon as vulgar, stupid and bestial suddenly change their minds?"

    Because I don't think most people want to hurt other people. They probably either didn't realize that this party would be so offensive, or didn't understand the extent to which it would be. When they are shown the magnitude of what they did, I suspect many of them will genuinely feel sorry for it. I know that when I do something to hurt somebody else, which I maybe didn't realize hurt that person, I feel really bad, especially when that person confronts me. This is an excellent opportunity to show a group of people where they went wrong.

    I think you're making a huge assumption about their overarching beliefs about black people, too.

    "Why would public criticism be excessive punishment? Why should they not have to suffer the consequences of their actions? Poor kids certainly have to live with their mistakes for the rest of their lives."

    They've already been publicly criticized. A lot. And rightly so. I'm just against naming names, at least until some attempt to educate them is made. That will undoubtedly make it into news stories, blogs, commentary, etc. and will follow these guys for the rest of their lives. Future employers may search for them, and find this as one of the first things that comes up. Future acquaintances, future coworkers, etc. may do the same. Before something like that happens, they need to be given a second chance. That is a very permanent form of punishment akin to a scarlet letter that should be reserved for very heinous or repeated crimes. This problem plagues the criminal justice system, and it shouldn't be brought upon the fratboys as well.

  49. Susan of Texas Says:

    You are arguing that because you would be sorry, they will be sorry. You don't have enough evidence to back up that assertion.

    My descriptions of their attitudes about African-American women are based on their own words. "Vulgarities." "Grunts." "Very limited vocabulary."

    If they didn't want to be known as racists, they shouldn't have decided to broadcast their racist views on Facebook.

  50. John Says:

    I don't see why people have problems understanding why this was wrong.

    Take the invitation, replace "ghetto chicks" with the word they really wanted to use there — "niggers" — and it should become fairly obvious.

    That there exists a sizeable portion of this nation that doesn't understand why it's deplorable is pretty much all the proof one needs when pointing out that racism is not dead in America.

  51. John Says:

    Addendum: Their names should be aired for all to see. Such unashamed racism should be stamped out, not coddled and protected under the guise of mere ignorance.

  52. ts46064 Says:

    "RosaLux and ts46064, I don't think you go far enough in your criticism of JM. His post isn't simply abhorrent, repulsive and evidence of his affinity for Ayn Rand, it's a clear demonstration that he's a worse version of Hitler. It also wouldn't suprise me to learn of his membership in the Aryan Nation or his authorship of The Protocols of the Elders of Zion. Holy frickin' Christ, people, the guy makes some comments you disagree with, and the baseless attacks on his character let loose."

    Ok, lets get one thing straight. My comment was a joke and isnt a personal attack. At no time did I say JM adheres to any randian bullshit nor did i accuse him of racism I simply said that that kind of stance seems alot like randism bullshit.

    I made the joke because his point that "They're people from the lower classes (or as stated in the invite, the "ghetto"), it doesn't matter what color they are, many of them are not going to be very smart," is absolute bullshit. Generalizing an individuals or groups intelligence because of who you saw on the subway and because of their socio-economic position is absurd.

    I stand by what I said because JM's point was begging for ridicule.

  53. Brandon Says:

    Well, I think you are completely mischaracterizing the quote of his that you selectively cut and pasted from a much larger paragraph. He was responding to a specific argument that the "ghetto" stereotypes these idiots at USCD were mocking have no basis in reality. As I understand it, he was saying that there IS some basis to common cultural stereotypes we have of rednecks, poor inner city residents, etc. Considering that many cultural representatives of those groups often perpetuate those same stereotypes, I'd hardly say that that's controversial. And admitting that fact in no way is the same as saying either that EVERY member of said group fits that stereotype, OR that it is okay to mock people of said group. How many times I have I heard stories from friends about going to Wal Mart and being surrounded by rednecks who yell at their kids and use poor grammar. This usually doesn't raise too many objections in polite society, nor should it, because I think we've all had similar experiences. But if you're going to adopt that position, at least be consistent in your outrage. Heck, the very second sentence of this post takes a jab at people from rural Tennessee, who are obviously all racists whose only experience with blacks is having them serve their food. I don't have much of a problem with that reference, and having grown up in a small town I recognize some truth to that stereotype, but it seems inconsistent to get all upset over JM's fairly uncontroversial observation while ignoring other observations based on stereotypes.

  54. ts46064 Says:

    Copying and pasting is not that same as taking something out of context.

    One of his points in the paragraph was that these "fictitous" women exist, they are from lower classes and many are not smart.

    Ok, I'm ridiculing the pure bullshit that is that vague generalization of lower class inner city people.

    I missed this in my last response but excellent usage of Godwin's law.

  55. Aaron Schroeder Says:

    Hate to show up late to a party (er…) but there's a lot of talk here about how the frat boys should be punished–whether it should be public or private, merciful or 'haunt them for the rest of their lives.' Let's just be clear: they didn't do anything illegal. And they don't appear to have done anything that violates USCD's Student Code of Conduct, either. So, it's not clear to me why anyone feels that their names should be made public in some official way, since its not clear that they've behaved in any way that requires official retribution.

    Sure, no one disagrees that racism is racism, no matter how small, but for all of the liberal advocacy I'm reading in these responses, no one has said anything approaching the argument that one would expect from a true liberal: "In America, free speech guarantees the right of racists to be racists, as much as it guarantees the right of the 'tolerant of all cultures, great and inferior' types to hold those attitudes." After all, even if what they said is wrong–even if they wanted to peaceably assemble to say it–I don't think we should be so quick to call for the public lynching of people who behaved as they are constitutionally protected to behave. It's akin to having reporters try to unearth the names of members of Alcoholics or Narcotics Anonymous–because goddammit, only pieces of shit use drugs and 'we' oughta know who they hell they are; maybe the shame will shove them back on the wagon.

    So, complain about racism as we might, the response I'd advocate is something closer to Ed's head-shaking empathy for the pathetic nature of the plight of the frat boy. It's a response in keeping with what we'd take to be the import of free speech, it casts aspersion on just the sort of racist attitudes we despise, and it saves us hours and hours of time worrying about a problem that won't even begin to be solved by (A) the sort of solutions suggested here or (B) the establishment of a "Gin and Tacos Comments Section Chapter" of the " League of Bellyachers United For Justice" that a few here are clamoring for.

  56. Susan of Texas Says:

    Calling someone an asshole is lynching?

    I value free speech very much. That's why I feel free to call these guys assholes. Don't you care about my free speech to call people assholes?

    You seem to forget that they did not commit this act anonymously. They put it up on Facebook. If their names are public it is from their own acts. That simple fact makes any subsequent exposure irrelevent.

  57. Ed Says:

    I don't even know where to begin.

    I'll limit my contribution at this stage to pointing out that "freedom of speech" means the freedom to say or do what one pleases, NOT the freedom from consequences thereof. If your exercise of that right gets you suspended from school or causes everyone to think you are a racist asshole, those are the breaks.

    I have a right to say "Dick Cheney flew American Flight 11 into WTC 1!" but it is going to result in A) me getting fired if I say it in class, as I surrender some of my freedoms in exchange for a job and B) you will all think I am an idiot.

    Consequences are beyond the purview of 1st Amendment rights. And I sincerely doubt that these kids will learn anything if they're sheltered from the consequences of their actions.

  58. Darkmoth Says:

    I'd just like to make a (probably obvious) point about the 'White Trash" versus "Ghetto Trash" double standard. If a group of wealthy black frat kids (e.g. Morehouse Alpha Phi Alpha) were to throw a "Ghetto Trash" party (sadly not unlikely) it would be a perfect example of sneering classism. It would not, however, be racism, and it would probably not inspire much outrage.

    By the same token, a mostly-white fraternity mocking "White Trash", while insensitive boorish and elitist, isn't racist, and doesn't evoke the same reactions. That's just normal.

    It's mocking *another* race, in addition to the classism, that makes this such an awkward situation. if the aforementioned black Morehouse frat had a party where they put on "poor white people" makeup and dressed like Hee-Haw, THAT would probably garner negative attention.

    I don't think the classic "double-standard" rebut applies here.

  59. Desargues Says:

    Is it racist? Is it classist?

    Can't it be both? I can't see how mocking black women's "short, nappy hair" is really not racist. I bet they don;t know many black people either. I don't think "dat purple drank" means what they think it means.

    And the charge of a limited vocabulary is especially rich. I have had some of these asswipes as students in my courses, and their linguistic skills are barely within Neanderthal range. This is particularly inexcusable if you're a white, middle class kid in America. Everyone else has some justifiable defense for their incomplete success in life, but a white middle class white college dude has no fucking excuse whatsoever. Lex talionis, about which a commenter complained above, would require organizing a counter-party — "Come dressed as your favorite dumb jocko parent!" The thought of mocking privileged white Americans who couldn't do better than raising a stupid dipshit fratboy moves me to mirth.

    In any event, I'm not especially worried about the present. More and more women and ethnic minorities are making it to college, to the detriment of white guys. Thirty years down the road, Latinas will be yelling at white men to mow their lawns, hijos de puta, and nobody will bat an eye. The population of fratboy assholes will slowly shrink to endangered level status; and fraternities will be looked upon as quaint zoos for bizarre species — the anomalous institutions they were in the first place. No other civilized country in the West has them.

  60. beau Says:

    Liz, MarilynJean, Ed, Darkmoth – bravo.

    Everyone else here is just furiously scribbling in the margins. Except Zeb, who appears to be almost wholly delusional, and JM, who appears to be almost wholly a douchebag.

    And (way, way back) Rosa – I was just trying to be funny too. No offense taken.

  61. Sator Arepo Says:

    Hegemony is, pretty much, a one-way street.

    Darkmoth: "It's mocking *another* race, in addition to the classism, that makes this such an awkward situation. "

    No, it's not just that it's "another".

    Students dressing up as "billionaires" to protest the economic policies of the Republicans during election season–or, fuck it, even at a party–isn't "classism" in the same way that children of privilege's dressing up as poor people is demeaning. Likewise, the notion that it's the appropriation (through misguided caricature) of "other races" that is offensively racist ignores the fundamental relationship between the power-holding, self-proclaimed dominant culture/race/economic group (not necessarily the majority, in the latter case) and everyone "other".

    Desagues said: "The thought of mocking privileged white Americans who couldn't do better than raising a stupid dipshit fratboy moves me to mirth."

    Precisely. "Ha ha, you have all the money and power!" is not insulting. It is, in fact, to laugh. "Ha ha, you're marginalized!" (whether it's in regard to race, class, religion, or whatever) incites anger, and for good reason.

    And I'm with Ed. "Free speech" is not the same as "consequence-free speech".

    Also, it's that the fraternity system is often a shortcut/fast-track to future business leaders and the like. So fuck a "boys will be boys" consequence-free approach to dealing with this shit.

  62. Zeb Says:

    "Except Zeb, who appears to be almost wholly delusional,"

    It's delusional these days to think there's a more appropriate way of handling this situation than dragging these idiots through the mud? How definitions of delusion have loosened…

    I read their full Facebook thing and I will admit that it's worse than I remembered (I first read it late last night, before joining the discussion). They should be strongly reprimanded, as others have suggested, but I'm still adamantly against dragging their names through the mud in public for all to see…for now. If they don't respond appropriately to their mistakes, then there's a case for it, but I still think that my suggestion above that attempts to educate them be made before this drastic step is taken. We're dealing with people's reputations here, which could be permanently tarnished. It sounds like some people here are just very bitter at fratboys–and don't get me wrong, many of them are complete dumbasses–but they're still human being and, given what they did, deserve a shot at redemption.

    Anyhow, I've enjoyed the discussion with everyone, and I think it very rewarding. I'm a new reader here, and I'd like to say that you have a great blog, Ed.

  63. daphne Says:

    I read sophomoric, asinine comments from these people and others with the same mindset on almost every ostensibly adult blog I visit. they make me feel even older than I am and a little pathetic for joining their midst.

  64. CP Says:

    Americans have the right not to be offended, dammit! Offensive people should be punished!

    Most of you have stooped down to the level of the UCSD frat boys without even realizing it. If they are racist for making fun of ghetto people, then you are all guilty of being racist for hating frat boys. It may sound ludicrous, but it's the same logic you used to accuse them. All of your "psychological" ideas make me wonder if you're all racist for assuming they were talking about blacks because they used the word ghetto. They did not bring up race once. Maybe you're all subconsciously racist. Or maybe you were itching to hate on people from a wealthier background because of jealousy. I wonder if there was a black kid in the fraternity because I know black frat boys who have participated in such events. Maybe a bunch of white boys thought it was okay because one black boy did. It's also possible some people were against the party, but not enough to stop it.
    Anyway, it really is the same as a white trash party. Why are frat boys white and ghetto people black? Stereotyping to prove your point? Kudos! The problem is America's history. A Jew party would be fine here, but not in Germany. Nobody would dare say St. Patrick's Day gives the Irish a bad name. But God forbid there ever be a Native American holiday during which everyone drinks until they vomit.
    Are the frat boys insensitive? Yes. The point is, as you all have shown, everyone has something against someone. It does not matter who you make fun of when it comes to morals. Your morals have failed when you make fun of entire groups. There isn't a list of who is allowed to make fun of who. You can either believe in stereotyping or be against it. If you think it should be selective, you're wrong.
    Ed, the party was a bad joke. However, it was still a joke. I know you've offended many people with your jokes and have probably said "it's just a joke" to defend your insensitivity. I doubt you cared what they thought…neither do the frat boys.
    I apologize for the terrible delivery of my thoughts. I know you people are smart. I'm under the impression most of you are smarter than me. However, I believe most of the comments were emotional rather than rational. Just because the frat boys were irrational doesn't mean you have to be.

    PS- I doubt the frat boys wanted to offend the entire nation. They probably thought it would be a funny joke among peers. To my knowledge, frats don't think about national outrage when party planning.

  65. Laval_Mosley Says:

    so pumped about the goblin kike mixer!

    just kidding, this stuff is straight reprehensible

  66. Desargues Says:

    Shorter CP:
    The Germans who hate Nazis for hatin' on the Jews are really just like the Nazis.

  67. CP Says:

    I'm saying stereotyping = stereotyping. Not stereotyping = committing genocide.

  68. CP Says:

    I should have said that judging a political party guilty of genocide and stereotyping people because of their social class are quite different.

  69. CP Says:

    I do believe neo-Nazis are entitled to their opinions no matter how misguided they may be. I also believe they have the right to offend anyone they so choose. If they do so much as deny someone service because of prejudice, they should be punished.

    Anyway, I'll limit myself to 1 reply when anyone addresses me.

  70. Cartmanne Says:

    See that little Jersey girl in the see-through top
    With the peddle pushers sucking on a soda pop
    Well I bet she's still a virgin but it's only twenty-five 'til nine
    You can see a million of 'em on heartattack and vine

    Boney's high on china white, Shorty found a punk
    Don't you know there ain't no devil, there's just God when he's drunk
    Well this stuff will probably kill you, let's do another line
    What you say you meet me down on heartattack and vine

  71. Cartmanne Says:

    That was Tom Waites by the way. His submit too early.

    Honestly, there are a lot of people here wasting their time thinking about a bunch of knuckleheads, many of whom will be ashamed of themselves in a few years for participating in this.

    College students and especially those in the greek system have been majoring in stupid stunts forever. While I find this stunt inexcusable and offensive, I am hardly surprised that yet another fraternity has had a "pimps and hos" party. Rush and Glenn have done an exemplary job of using coarse humor to deflect offensive views and lowered the bar for what is really necessary to pull a stunt nowadays. I would just move on knowing that these guys will eventually figure out why they shouldn't have ghetto parties or just remain clueless and lesser people the rest of their lives.

  72. Aaron Schroeder Says:

    Susan,

    You're wanting their names publicized not so you can call them assholes, but so that you can relish the general scorn and long-lasting suffering that such publication will heap upon them. In other words: sure, the frat boys behaved shamefully, and shameful behavior demands a worthy punishment. But should the behavior of one fraternity command the attention of anyone outside of the community damaged by its behavior–let alone the attention of an entire nation? It might be fair to say that "Racism hurts everyone," but so does drug abuse, speeding, theft, and just about every other crime out there. We don't make a point of pillorying in the national media every single criminal–who, arguably, have committed worse offenses in that they actually broke the law. And on top of that, it just doesn't seem very healthy for " national public humiliation" to be the order of the day for whatever unsavoriness is serving as our repulsion du jour.

  73. Liz Says:

    CP, you must be new here.

    http://www.ginandtacos.com/category/ed-vs-logical-fallacies/

  74. beau Says:

    Zeb – I was refering to the 'how far we've come' theme of your posts. We haven't come that far. Not in the US, and not here in Australia. Institutionalized and socially accepted racism are rife, while "reverse racism" is held up as a serious issue the public should be worried about. The European political landscape is infested with anti-immigration white power parties. Since others have raised the specre of Nazism, I would add that Hitler didn't invent racism, he just tapped into the background, ambient racism that he found lying around the place.

    The other problem I see with your (and other) posts is how concerned we are with the consequences for these Future Leaders. Individually, I say fuck them. Fuck them right in the ear. This is about what we (or Californians, or Americans) deem acceptable AS A SOCIETY. We all keep discussing this as though each of the rich/white/suburban kids is a special little individual, while the people they are demeaning is an amorphous blob of humanity. Part of the problem, methinks…

  75. Aslan Maskhadov Says:

    Let's track the history of this so-called stifling "political correctness."

    Few hundred years back to about the 1960s- White folks could say pretty much anything they wanted about any group without fear of reprisal.

    1960s-1990 or so- Idea that maybe it isn't such a great idea to insult people based on race begins to grow.

    1990-present- White folks start bitching to the high heavens about how terrible it is they can't openly say or do racist things.

  76. CP Says:

    Liz, I am not sure what you are getting at.
    I want people to realize that their comments are grossly out of scope. One frat (I know there are others, but not many) does something extremely offensive and people use that as ammunition against all frat boys, upper-middle class children, and upper-middle class parents. Not only that, but people have also assumed that "privileged" children live perfect lives and have no excuses.
    Quite frankly, many of the comments were worse than the frat boys invitation. "Ghetto chicks" is a specific group with the qualities mentioned. They never said every "chick" in Compton is ghetto. They never even said many ghetto chicks reside in Compton. In your defense, none of you are stupid enough to throw such a party on a college campus in the name of a national fraternity. You're not worse than them, but you're undoubtedly as judgmental. Why are they ignorant and all of you are enlightened? You're all speaking ignorantly. Whether you are ignorant or are not, I don't know. But quit acting like it.
    Hating white people for hating you will only fuel their hatred. In other words, white people will hate you for hating them. Sound racist? It is. It's not a goddamn race war. Condemn the racists, not their race. Condemning the race is out of scope. Hopefully you get the point.
    Ed is right that Freedom of Speech has consequences. It would be prudent for both the school and national fraternity to punish the kids in some way. In my opinion, community service in Compton would suffice.

  77. Susan of Texas Says:

    Aaron,, it would be ever so nice if you would actually address the facts. They already exposed themselves. That is a fact. Whether or not someone else decides to spread their names further is utterly outside my control. If they do it, I don't care, because the men already told the world who they are. If they don't do I don't care, becasue the men already told the world who they are.

    If someone doesn't like the rest of the world pointing and laughing or pointing and mocking or pointing and condemning, maybe they shouldn't post racist messages on Facebook, huh?

  78. Prudence Says:

    I get a warm fuzzy feeling thinking about all the jobs and opportunities these racist wankers have lost out on by "expressing themselves".

    There are many things that are annoying about England, but one of my favourite moments ever was when the anti-fascists (who are kind of vicious) confronted the BNP (UK's white power party) leader, Nick Griffin, outside of the House of Commons and chased him (and his "security") to his car. He was caught on camera sprinting away, terrified by a bunch of grumpy, dread-locked, patchouli'd hippies.

  79. Brian Dodge Says:

    "one out of every hundred would be smart enough to do something. Even my jaded, blackened heart has a hard time believing that they are unanimously that dumb."
    I suspect that some smarter frat members found they had other plans for the weekend, avoiding participating in an ugly mockery while avoiding pissig off the racist rednecks they have to live with in the frat.

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