Same Frat Killed a Black Man, and Other Messed Up Things About Racist SAE

When video surfaced of racist frat boys singing a racist chant, the response of Oklahoma University administrators, politicians, celebrities, and the public alike was swift. Already, two students were expelled, Waka Flocka cancelled his upcoming concert there, and the Sigma Alpha Epsilon chapter is forever tainted.

There’s so many messed up things about the entire situation. Here’s just a few I could come up with.

1. The same frat is responsible for the hazing death of a Black man.

Four years ago, the Cornell University chapter was shut down after killing George Desdunes. Found dead by a cleaning crew, Desdunes, the son of Haitian immigrants and a 19-year-old aspiring doctor, was hogtied and was forced to drink toxic sums of alcohol.

2. SAE is known for being racist.

Despite the statement from SAE national leadership, the frat attracts the most racist elements. The chant is popular with the University of Texas chapter, and the house mother is shown on camera using racial slurs.

3. These racists were set to be politicians, lawyers, business leaders, administrators, community stakeholders …

4.  White silence

Notice in the video, there were women there who weren’t singing along, but were participating in their silence. It’s unclear who these girls are, but the Tri Delta sorority is “cooperating fully” with the ongoing investigation.

5. Black people harmed in the fallout.

After the swift action of OU administration, Howard, the SAE house cook, also suffered. He lost his job after OU shut down SAE’s doors. Fortunately, two crowdfunding pages have been set up to help him. Collectively, close to $57,000 has been raised on Indiegogo and GoFundMe.

And should we go into the historical nuances of a Black man cooking for a racist frat? Paula Deen anyone?

6. Respectability Politics. Ugh.

Respectability politics won’t save us. Being good Black folk won’t stop racism. It’s a shame some of us are still enslaved to such a bullshit mentality.

7. Racism is a learned behavior.

Someone taught them how to be racist. Who was it?

8. For every video that surfaces, there’s fifty that don’t.

I don’t think this video is the exception — I think it’s the norm. From my personal experience, I find that white boys, particularly those in frats, have no qualms about using racial slurs…just so long as there’s no Black people around.

9. The narrative: “It’s okay to be racist, just don’t get caught.”

Although the reactions are more than warranted, I can’t help but think that the SAE (the chapter, the participants, and leadership) are less concerned about the harm they caused an entire race of people, and are more sorry for themselves. They’re sorry they’ve been caught, and if they could go back…they’d make sure their antics weren’t being recorded, instead of avoiding such antics altogether.

10. Black trauma.

The video surfaced following the death of Tony Robinson and just before the death of Anthony Hill. The scandal broke during Selma50, where leaders across the nation converged to the historic battleground of racial equity. Black folk have been through so much trauma in these recent years. And this is just the cherry on top. So far, mainstream America has commodified our stories through police brutality, and not the very daily forms of racism we face every.single.day. Racism exists. But no one believes us until a video surfaces.

 

photo 1Arielle Newton, Founder/Editor-in-Chief. Get at me @arielle_newton. Get at us @BlkMillennials.

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2 responses to “Same Frat Killed a Black Man, and Other Messed Up Things About Racist SAE

  1. so much to be said. first wonderful post. I’m glad you write about real topics that matter.

    The house mother claimed to be shocked about the video! HA! after seeing her video…please! I am upset to hear about the death of another person in another state. Honestly, when it comes to frats & sororities…I believe if there is an issue at one chapter…all chapters need to be investigated or looked at closely. They all have the same code of conduct and by laws…just living in different areas. I hate to see that their cook lost their job over this. I also agree with you…the fact that their cook was black raises eyebrows. Of course if this video and song had never come to light I would not see an issue with that if that is the profession that he chose. I applaud Waka for not preforming there. I think there are so many artist that may have over looked it or may not have had it brought to their attention and would have gone there and made money anyways, but Waka kept his morals. It hurts to see a black man who feels as though a black rap artist needs to censor his music because someone of another race may feel it is acceptable to use. It isn’t.

    Like

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