Friday, January 26, 2007

MLK, Jr Day On Campus

The Smoking Gun reports that students at the University of Connecticut Law School and Tarleton State University in Texas decided to celebrate Martin Luther King, Jr. Day in an unamusing fashion. The UConn Law Student party featured guests with gold teeth, do-rags, Baby Phat fashions and throwing up faux gang signs. Kurt Strasser, the law school's interim dean, told the Courant, "I hope the students will come to realize that pictures that are put on the Internet are likely to be available to potential employers, clients, and parents."

The event at Tarleton State University featured Aunt Jemima, various takes on gang apparel while guests chowed down on fried chicken and drank malt liquor. The Smoking Gun reports that one of the organizers noted that the party was started a few years earlier "because one of best friends is black or African American, whichever you deem politically correct, to be his day not to dishonor him."

plez sez: My, my, my! I've seen a few diatribes about this incident for other Blacks. Am I offended? Yes, I am. Am I surprised at the audacity of people to have these kinds of racist parties and then post the pictures to the Internet? Nope.

What does surprise me are the Black people who get all upset when they see white people mimic the very stereotypical behavior that many of us deplore. I'm more upset with the pants sagging teenagers, gold-teeth wearing athletes and rappers, shuckin-and-jivin' pimps and hustlers, and scantily clad video ho's who provide the fodder for these events.


Arch City Expatriate said...

I agree with you for the most part.

However, white people manage to provide society with stereotypes of themselves, but do Black folk have "KKK", "Hillbilly" or "Redneck" parties on campus? Are such parties held on Confederate Heroes Day or Presidents Day? No.

These people are trash - plain and simple. Looks like some Latinos and Asians were participating too. And to think they will be entering the workforce.

Anonymous said...

I get where you're coming from in terms of "our" behavior being fodder for the white folk, but that doesn't give them a pass. This is especially true on MLK's B-day. The thing that I find hardest to swallow is that this post is the first time that I'm hearing about this party. Why isn't it egregious enough to make it to the News at Ten? If the news in NYC can make a big friggin' deal about it being cold in the winter, then surely they should have something to say about this blatantly racist party.

plez... said...

Terrence & Keith,

Please don't get me wrong! I am in no way giving the participants a pass... I am PISSED OFF that someone would go to such lengths to plan, coordinate, and execute on such a blatantly racist party that sullies the name and work of MLK, Jr. I'd love to see some of those law students lose out on that summer internship or better yet, that J-O-B because they showed their ignorance on the Internet!

But I also think that WE need to look at ourselves and ask why we allow ourselves to give aid and comfort to these BAD behaviors in our communities. We let our boys go to school with sagging pants and wearing do-rags and BLING-BLING fake diamond earrings, we buy our kids the gold fronts for their teeth, we watch and purchase the music (and videos) by our artists that degrade women and glorify a thug-ethic. It cuts both ways and there's more than enough blame to go around.

mythoughts! said...

That these folks would do this is nothing for me to be upset about. It is however something for me to take notice of, and thus not allow myself to be lulled into a false sense of reality about the world we live in. Because I am aware, I can better navigate through it.

As for the blacks that give them fodder; don’t waste your emotion on them either. They don’t do what they do out of any concern for BLACK solidarity or to make some type of statement about being black. They are comfortable in the world they live in. So should you be. Besides, white racist of this nature would find other ways to manifest their racism. They, in their hate, associate that behavior with blackness but you know like I do that those things are more aptly associated with ignorance and as we all know, ignorance knows no color.

So what some black folk wear gold, ICE, listen to rap etc. My feeling is that you should wear what you want; buy what you want, listen to what you want, watch what you want so long as you don’t infringe on my, or anybody else’s ability to do same, and too that you understand how those choices affect you otherwise. It’s real simple with me...”live and let live”. I don’t concern myself with collective guilt; I’m too busy trying to do me. Those guys (black or otherwise) don’t represent me. I represent me. You should represent you.

meera bowman-johnson said...


I knew about the ig'nant white folks party at Clemson (check for those sorry ass photos - pun intended), but I didn't now about the other parties. Who is that couple supposed to be, Russell and Kimora? Or just random black people? Did dude grow his beard like that for the party? I guess it doesn't matter.

I don't put anything past these types of people, so I guess that's why I'm not outraged by this. It's to be expected. Not that it makes it okay. At all.

Another reason why I'm sending my girls to Spelman and my boy to Morehouse. I don't care where they think they're going, that's where our tuition money is going. If Harvard offers someone a free ride, we can talk. Other than that, it's HBCUs all the way.

You raise some good points, plez. Unfortunately, half the fools who give them the fodder in the first place would be flattered to see this...

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