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NAACP Speaks Out Against UCSD ‘Compton Cookout’ Party

The NAACP today condemned an off-campus party held by members of a UC San Diego fraternity mocking Black History Month and urged the university to punish those involved.

"This event was intended and did expose the true feeling of a group of people, who either are racist, who acted out their beliefs, or people who say they are not racist, but engaged in acts that were racist," said Leon Jenkins, president of the Los Angeles NAACP.

Monday's party, allegedly organized by some members of the Pi Kappa Alpha fraternity, was themed "Compton Cookout" and urged attendees to dress and act in a manner perpetuating racist stereotypes.

The fraternity has denied that it sanctioned the event.

University officials initially indicated that because the party was held off campus, there may not be grounds to punish those involved under the student code of conduct. After The San Diego Union-Tribune published a story on the party, university officials said they were investigating the incident.

A UCSD spokeswoman did not immediately return a call seeking information on the status of the investigation.

The NAACP maintains that if the university does not sanction those involved, it willl "send a less than clear message that such future reckless or intentional behavior will not be tolerated, which may embolden the perpetrators, and future perpetrators' beliefs that they will not suffer any serious consequences concerning acts of discrimination and racism, which may cause such actors to act out their racist tendencies in the future."

Councilman Tony Young, San Diego's only black City Council member, is scheduled to meet with UCSD Chancellor Marye Anne Fox about the party early next week, according to an aide.

Jimmie Slack, Young's chief of staff, said he plans to "talk to the chancellor about what she is doing and ways they can possibly ensure these types of incidents don't happen again."

UCSD students, staff and faculty are planning a "teach-in" on Wednesday to discuss the incident and promote "mutual respect and civility on our campus."

Comments

Avatar for user 'jenjen'

jenjen | February 19, 2010 at 2:28 p.m. ― 4 years, 5 months ago

OK, I think the party was deplorable, let me just get that out there. And the university condemns it as does the frat that some of the organizers were members of. And I think having the discussions and teach-in are good steps. But... when it comes to UCSD punishing the students... how exactly is that supposed to work? These are adults, doing something that's not illegal on their own time on their own property. It university computers were used to create the Facebook invitation, or if they claimed it was a UCSD event, then they can go after them for that. But otherwise, the university can't go after people for non-criminal activities on their own time when they don't involve university resources or the UCSD name. (Which is why they CAN go after the SRTV folks) Overall, I think that's a good thing. As much as I decry racism and hatred, I do not want to see a thoughtpolice state emerging where the university can be arbiter of what thoughts are OK and what thoughts are not OK.

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Avatar for user 'rgasca'

rgasca | February 25, 2010 at 6:49 p.m. ― 4 years, 5 months ago

As women of color at the University of San Diego, we are outraged and saddened by the events and actions of the students involved in the “Compton Cookout” from the University of California San Diego. This is not merely a disappointment in the implicated fraternities, but also in any other persons who planned or attended this event. To those students who were affected by this disgusting display of racism, know that members of the USD community support you. An injustice to one is an injustice to all.

Incidents like this confirm that the legacy of American colonialism still pervades our everyday lives. White supremacy and heteronormativity, built on the backs of people of color and low-wage labor, are the standards by which social structures are constituted and passed down to the next generation. The party that was meant to be a lighthearted event parallels 20th-century lynching parties where throngs of people would congregate to lynch one or more African-Americans and then proceed to feast and BBQ.

It is a mockery, an attraction created for the socially and politically protected so that poverty and racism are no longer real and viable issues; instead they have become themes for parties of the privileged. This heinous disregard for the plight of people living in impoverished communities justifies their continued dehumanization. The students who took part, whether they organized or attended this racist, heterosexist, classist party, must be held accountable for their actions and make a public apology for this inexcusable gathering. We call for this to be an educational moment on the themes of self-definition and community self-determination because, in the words of Malcolm X, “Without education, you’re not going anywhere in this world.” We stand in solidarity with UCSD’s Black Student Union and support its important demands.

ADRIANA SECORD

ALYSSA CROW

C. MARIE HOLLOWAY

RACHEL GASCA

SARAH MIRALLES

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Avatar for user 'CaliforniaDefender'

CaliforniaDefender | February 26, 2010 at 5:19 a.m. ― 4 years, 5 months ago

Rgasca,

You are incredibly misinformed and quite uneducated with your blanket statement that you have copied and pasted throughout the KPBS articles.

The creator and mastermind of the "Compton Cookout" was in fact, a black man. See his response to the Black Student Union's overreaction here:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y95G-L...

We think you owe an apology to every single Caucasian you pass at UCSD and should be grateful to attend such a world-renowned institution. "An error does not become truth by reason of multiplied propagation, nor does truth become error because nobody sees it." -Mahatma Gandhi

BILL JOHNSTON

DAISY MCCLEMONT

ROGER STANFORD

LYDIA ALLEN

STANLEY WERNER

...and the rest of the reasonable rational moderates of San Diego who sat in committee and concluded we should answer your blanked post with a blanket post

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