Clemson University Apologizes For Holding Mexican Food Night

ClemsondiningWe have often discussed how universities have become battle grounds over so-called “microaggressions” and offensive terms or images involving race, religion, or culture. Some of these efforts raise serious questions of the erosion of free speech as well as double standards applied to faculty and students. The example of the sensitivity toward such objections was evident this week at Clemson University, which apologizes for racial or cultural insensitivity for holding “Maximum Mexican” night featuring Mexican cuisine. Two students were offended and the university has apologized.

Clemson Dining’s “Maximum Mexican” night is popular among students for Mexican themed food and festivities. However, two students, who took to Twitter to voice their displeasure with the school’s decision to host such a “#CUlturallyInsensitive” event. “Amanda A” was one of those students:

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The university also has themed nights for St. Patrick’s day etc. Yet, one student objected to the wearing of sombreros: “Our culture isn’t a costume and we will not be mocked!” Yet, is it mocking to wear a hat associated with Mexico? If so, they might want to check out Cinco de Mayo celebrations?

Dr. Doug Hallenbeck, Clemson University’s Senior Associate Vice President of Student Affairs, however, went public with an apology for the event’s “flattened cultural view of Mexican culture. . . It is the mission of University Housing & Dining to create supportive and challenging environments that enrich and nourish lives. We failed to live out our mission yesterday, and we sincerely apologize.”

Hallenbeck promised reforms.

At times, stereotypes are evident in celebrations. For example, when I take the kids to places likes Busch Gardens both my Irish and Italian heritage is representing by common imagery and stereotypes, but I am not offended. Indeed, I am glad that my two cultures are so widely enjoyed. Is it a “flattened” presentation? Yes, but all imagery and symbols are reductionist to some extent. My concern is that we are becoming a hyper-sensitive society where people are increasingly attuned to take offense, even when the other party is acting with no malice or disrespect intended by their actions.

What do you think?


139 thoughts on “Clemson University Apologizes For Holding Mexican Food Night”

  1. Paul….naw dat characteristic is pretty accurate” dontcha tink ” ? At least it’s not the Paddies, Micks or mackerel snappers

    I don’t think there is another European or Asian heritage named “combative” US team either.

  2. Paul,

    Please KNOW, that even though you and I do not agree politically, in NO WAY
    do I think you are racist, homophobic, sexist.. etc.. etc… etc…

    Though I am a Liberal, I don’t call people those names, unless they actually deserve it,
    and while YES, those people do exist, NOT in the numbers that the Far Left
    like to think.
    Hell, I am liberal, and have been called racist…. So, I understand perfectly where you
    are coming from.

  3. They could probably have had Mexican food night without the ridiculous mustache balloons or the sombreros.

  4. Back to being offended and necessary corrective action. Now with tongue in cheek…….

    Let’s see I’m offended with all the green on St Pats day as that is the Catholic color. A city “owned” river is colored green. Parades hinder my driving rights and stop traffic. As a Protestant, my color is Orange. Separation of church and state. Leprechauns and pots of gold are offensive as I say they characterize Irish as inherently mischievous and lazy.

    I’m offended by Christmas Day being celebrated near a pagan rite of December (not on a more realistic date) as a federal holiday….it gives non-believers a holiday (holy day) who don’t deserve it. Why don’t we have Easter Monday off? That Sunday has more real meaning than Christmas. Easter bunnies are offensive….for a variety of reasons.

    I’m offended that teams are named after animals. Lions and tigers and bears (oh my) fighting sometimes defenseless broncos and colts. Seahawks and Dolphins.

    Now if I can just get one or two other like minded individuals, we’ll boycott and sue every chance we can.

    Judges and other authorities need to be given a large self-inking stamp which reads “YOU HAVE GOT TO BE KIDDING!”

    1. Renegade – I have thought of complaining to the NCAA about the Fighting Irish since it shows them as a stereotype. Want to join in?

  5. Paul, you are using the NAMES of the party’s when the fact is… The names mean NOTHING,
    as they are NOT at all what they are NOW…

    Southern Democrats were CONSERVATIVE… PERIOD!!!
    Northern Democrats were LIBERAL…. PERIOD!!!!

    The Southern Democrats Party Platform was for SMALL Government…
    They were all about States Rights… which is what the Republicans NOW champion…

  6. JAG

    No linkage between voter’s card and social security.

    And spot on all those ‘illegals’ just dying to go into a polling place with all those cops and officials standing and watching you sign some documents.

    Thanks for trying to set Paul straight. Unfortunately it is a impossible task (he and Lisa make a great team) He delights in counting all the Rs and all the Ds without any accounting of history. It’s historical blindness. Best just to placate him – his off the wall comments add nothing to the conversation anyway except for the occasional ‘Huh?’.

  7. JAG

    I don’t know that Paul is a racist (although I’m sure his father was), I just know that he does not support the Civil Rights Laws that were passed fifty years ago. Those laws were critical in ending the awful Jim Crow laws and are still necessary in order to combat the continued racism in America today. And the ‘market’ in America, particularly in some regions, is most definitely NOT an equalizer.

    I’ve listed some important policies that will occur under a Republican sweep and those changes will make life very different for many Americans. Every liberal I know finds that list horrifying. It is difficult for me to understand how one might just shrug their shoulders and say ‘both sides do it’ – that one might say feminazis are really unpleasant and are just as bad as limiting minority voting or eliminating reproduction choice.

    1. It will not make you feel any better to know that my father was NOT a racist. And, like my father, I am not a racist. I have been the subject of racism. But I have spent my teaching career teaching black and Latino teenagers.

  8. Mike – only the losers shot the messenger. Do I remember you complaining about ad hominems?

  9. Illegals, as you call them… DON’T VOTE!!!!

    When somebody is not in a country in a legal capacity… They do NOT go LOOKING for
    trouble.. they don’t go where they KNOW they are going to be seen by authority figures….
    They don’t go to VOTE…. they would be too much in fear of being caught.

    It is NOT logical that they would go to a place, where they would be asked for a Voters Card…

    I always thought that Voters Registration Cards are often linked to your Social Security Card, Number…

  10. Paul, when I was speaking of libertarians, I was not referring to you. I have no idea if you are a libertarian or not. I was referring to self identified libertarians.

  11. OOpps… That went all wonky… Here, I hope this is better….

    I have a jpeg of it, I just don’t know how to include a jpeg in the text area here.

    __________Democrats/ Union_______GOP/ UNION_ Union meaning LIBERAL..
    House_____ 144 of 152 (95%)_____137 of 161 (85%)
    Senate _____ 45 of 46 (98%) ______ 27 of 32 (84%)

    ____________Dem/Confederate_____ GOP/ Confed… Confederate meaning Conservative….
    House ________8 of 91 (9%)_________0 of 11 (0%)
    Senate________1 of 21 (5%)________0 of 1 (0%)

  12. Ohhhh Paul…. Paul…Paul… Paul…

    ( ͠° ͟ʖ ͡°)

    NO!!! Republicans did NOT get Blacks the RIGHT to vote…
    See, I don’t care if we agree… I do however respect when people are intellectually HONEST…
    This is not the truth at all….

    You act as if The Southern Democrats of that time, were LEFT wing .. They were RIGHT WING….
    This is why they are now, RIGHT WING REPUBLICANS… and have been since the 70’s – 80’s..

    Nearly 100% of Union state Democrats supported the 1964 Civil Rights Act compared to 85% of Republicans. None of the southern Republicans voted for the bill, while a small percentage of southern Democrats did.

    1964 Civil Rights Act Senate Version Ayes

    The Southern former Confederate States were RIGHT WING… Right Wing Democrats and Right Wing Republicans…
    Those Republicans that voted in SUPPORT of the Civil Rights Act, were indeed LIBERAL…

    __________Democrats/ Union_______GOP/ UNION_________Dem/Confederate_____ GOP/ Confed
    House_____ 144 of 152 (95%)_____137 of 161 (85%) _________8 of 91 (9%)_________0 of 11 (0%)
    Senate _____ 45 of 46 (98%) ______ 27 of 32 (84%)__________1 of 21 (5%)________0 of 1 (0%)

    1. JAG – who do you think was in charge of Congress in 1870 when the 15th Amendment was passed? I am an Independent, I do not care one way or the other, but historically you are incorrect.

      1. Paul,
        you may call yourself an Independent… BUT, you are a Conservative…
        Just as some people called themselves Democrats back in the Civil Rights era
        they were still CONSERVATIVES…

        1. JAG – I am proud to call myself a conservative. However, I am not now, nor have I ever been racist. I am not now, nor have I ever been a homophobe. I just have no time for ‘special snowflakes.’

  13. Mike…

    The FAR Left is just as bad as the FAR RIGHT… BOTH can ruin countries…

    What I hate seeing is people making the claim that Rand Paul is racist…

    While I do NOT agree with him on the Civil Rights laws…. I DO understand what he was saying…

    He was NOT saying this as a racist thing… he was saying that HE THOUGHT the market
    would weed out the racists…
    That does NOT make him a racist… it just means he had MORE trust in people than I do…

  14. I’m sorry… Which party talks about deporting Hispanics?

    I’m sorry… Which party talks about yuuuge walls on the Southern border?

    Most likely scenario… Two spoiled Republican brats complained about Mexican night.

  15. ROFLMAO. We have our own Barry McGuire singing the 2015 version of Eve of Destruction. JAG, you are probably not old enough to remember the 1960’s version. “Think of all the hate there is in Red China, then take a look around @ Selma Alabama..”

  16. There is nothing worse than a country club run by the Far Right. Lefties get screwed. Hole in one by a lefty never happens. They wont hire lefty caddies. They think that their itShay dont stink. So watch out for Far Rightwing Country Clubs. I heard that Barry Goldwater belonged to some club called Choice Not An Echo Country Club. No Mexicans were allowed in except to work the tables in the cafeteria. They were called FMs. Friggin Mexicans. Ask Phylis.

  17. JAG cont’d

    Then after your visit you’ll have to write and tell us which is worse – a country run by the far right, or a country run by the far left.

  18. JAG

    If the Republicans sweep in 2016, you’ll need to come for a visit (be sure you buy a round trip ticket) along about June or July 2017. Here’s some of what you’ll find:

    Abortion will be outlawed. Obamacare will be repealed. Unions will be outlawed. Religious schools will be tax supported, same sex marriage banned, school day begins with a (Christian) prayer, we’ll have shooting troops on the ground SOMEWHERE, we’ll be building a wall between us and Mexico, Hispanic families will be broken up with deportations, the debt will grow exponentially due to tax cuts and the cost of a war…

    Then after their eight week summer break, they’ll REALLY get started.

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