GW Faces Controversy Over Racially Insensitive Sorority Shapchat Photo

DU7NxRJXUAEoJNAGeorge Washington University is embroiled in a controversy over the posting of a racially insensitive picture on social media. The sorority snapshot picture shows two white Alpha Phi sorority women holding up a peeled banana with the caption “Name: ‘I’m 1/16 black.’”  Media however is reporting that neither woman posted the photo, so it is not clear who posted photo or added the quotation.  [For full disclosure, I am a full-time law professor at the university].

The photo was reposted on Twitter by Imani Ross, a student at George Washington University, who noted that see saw the photo on the “eve of Black History Month.”

George Washington University Provost Forrest Maltzman called the incident “disturbing, hurtful and not reflective of who I know we are as a community. . . . Images like the one posted on social media can make people question whether they are welcome at the university, and that is unacceptable to me.”

The sorority has announced that three members have been suspended:

On January 31, 2018, a member of our chapter posted a racist image on snapchat that contained two other members in our chapter engaged in offensive and inexcusable behavior. We apologize for the delay in posting this response. We recognize that our earlier response, supplied by our National Headquarters, did not reflect the severity of this racist act. We want to take this opportunity to apologize without qualification and take responsibility for the actions of our members.

We are culpable for this action as a group in which a few felt comfortable making a joke that was distinctly racist, ignorant, and harmful. We are in no way trying to contextualize, excuse, or forgive the events that occurred.

We recognize that there are issues within our organization relating to our privilege and lack of diversity, and we are committed to listening to the voices of those who have been harmed by the actions of those individuals and by our actions as a chapter.

The three members in question are in the process of having their membership terminated.

At this time, we have reached out to the Multicultural Student Services Center in an effort to begin the process towards reconciliation and reeducation.

It is not clear if all of the students were aware of the racist quotation but the matter is under investigation.

Here is the full statement from the university:

“There was an entirely inappropriate posting on social media last night. Whatever the circumstance, or true intention of those involved, the image was disturbing, hurtful and not reflective of who I know we are as a community. As a university, we have emphasized our commitment to inclusion and have made clear that “You are Welcome Here.” We do this through our actions and our words. Images like the one posted on social media can make people question whether they are welcome at the university, and that is unacceptable to me.

Unfortunately, we have heard and read about too many instances of racist language and imagery on college campuses. They reflect the need for an ongoing discourse about race. Universities are special places that thrive because of the diverse perspectives and background of those who study, teach, research and work on those campuses.

Since the report, we have been in active dialogue with the national headquarters of Alpha Phi and students on campus who have been affected. We take this very seriously.

I hope we utilize these occasions to engage in dialogue across our community. We must remember that words and symbols have tremendous consequences. And, when they are made without regard to how those who receive them react, we can cause harm and hinder the university’s ability to achieve the preeminence to which we all aspire.”


66 thoughts on “GW Faces Controversy Over Racially Insensitive Sorority Shapchat Photo”

  1. One interesting attribute I noted last week when I visited the law school building at GW University was that around 9 out of 10 women students I saw were wearing high heals. I’ve yet to see that any other college I’ve been to.

    1. Interesting note. I look back on my law school experience with awe, due mainly to the unmitigated terror of the first year and later the exposure to the incredibly intelligent people sitting to the left and right of me at all times. I wish I could recall what the women students were wearing on their feet, but for the life of me I can’t. Based on the type of people that attended my law school here in Texas, I’d wager that most wore high heels.

      1. Marky Mark Mark – the book is still out on whether you went to law school or not. Some of us are not even sure you went to college. I am beginning to lean towards para-legal and community college.

          1. Haha. Excellent. Call someone who cares.

            this is to “educated people make me feel inferior” willie (see ridiculous anecdote below)

      2. “… the incredibly intelligent people sitting to the left and right of me at all times.”

        LOL — so I guess you didn’t go on to become a lawyer?

        I spent the best years of my life in court, and in all of that time I never met an intelligent person. Never ever. Not anywhere near a courthouse anyway.

        I’ve seen a few smart lawyers on TV. I’ve read some stuff written by lawyers that appears reasonably intelligent (but most of that is stuff written by people long dead).
        I’ve had a few close friends that were lawyers, and the fact that they were friends prohibits me from commenting on their level of intelligence.

        How stupid are lawyers? As an ignorant pro se litigant, I’ve taken two cases to the court of appeals and won both cases, which sort of indicates that a moron with ZERO training in the law knew more about the law than at least two judges and teams full of attorneys that opposed me with BOGUS claims and charges.

    1. andrewworkshop – Warren contributed a plagiarized recipe to the book. It was edited by another relative.

        1. mespo – there was never a time in her life that Elizabeth Warren made us wish we could be Sonny. 😉

      1. Paul – that was true. She contributed a recipe plagiarized word for word from a French chef, that had been printed in a newspaper. i.e. It was easy to prove.

        I always thought that she was called Fauxcahontas, which would have been more appropriate, without besmirching the name of the tragic Pocahontas.

        To me, Elizabeth Warren will always be Fauxcahontas, unethically claiming minority status and plagiarizing French recipes. She handled the discovery that her claims were false quite poorly. Family oral tradition could explain her original misconception, but not the plagiarism or her clinging to the claim.

        The only fair universal way to handle someone claiming Native American ancestry on a form is to ask for proof of Tribal membership. They usually ask for supporting documentation of an honorable discharge from the military on employment documents. Native American heritage is well documented among all the tribes that I know of, for the fractional heritage that would count.

        This is why we should ask for proof of identity to bank, to vote, to get a driver’s license, to get pulled over…people lie.

        1. Not to mention the fact that earlier applications or forms filled out by Warren before the Harvard gig opened up bear a check mark in the box next to the word, “Caucasian.” I guess she “forgot” her proud Native American heritage a few times. Sure, that can happen.

          1. William Bayer – she did not join the Native American Assoc on campus. She checked the box to get hired then unchecked it. She is being hounded by Native Americans wherever she speaks in public. It is pretty funny. She is such a hypocrite.

        2. I also believed her to be named Fauxcahontas then Marc informed me her name also was Lieawatha.

          Perhaps she known as Fauxcahontas west of the Mississippi and Lieawatha to the east.

          1. Darren Smith – well, she is a fraud on both sides of the Mississippi. 😉

  2. As with all these alleged hate crimes this one too was perpetrated by a person of color. When that revelation emerges it will of course receive next to no media attention.

  3. I wonder if they will allow the movie Blazing Saddles to be shown at that university.
    Anyone on the blog recall some of the inflammatory statements or questions asked?

    Such as: Where da ……

    1. Have you seen Rock’s video, “How Not to Get Your A&(*&( Kicked by the Police”? He is hilarious. PC has no place in comedy.

  4. The premise of this article is problematic. It’s like “racially sensitive” people loitering around a Rolls Royce dealership. That dudn’t make any sense. There is something disingenuous in this situation. Most folks in metaphorical “Compton” are not perusing “visitor pamphlets” from GW.

    George Washington University Tuition, Costs and Financial Aid

    Cost of Attendance $70,443
    Tuition and Fees $53,518
    Room and Board $13,000
    Books and Supplies $1,325
    Other Expenses $2,600

    Seems like a huuuge, disingenuous exercise in sub rosa indoctrination – all the “rich” must pay homage to the “poor” to mitigate the adverse effect of their wealth. What?!!! Are the barbarians at the gate?

    How do “racially sensitive” people and residents of “Compton” form a relationship to GW?

    The expenditure by redistributionist liberals of $22 trillion of compulsory, punitive taxation confiscated from Americans since 1965 on generational welfare and affirmative action has had the effect of “fundamentally transforming” America. It is mystifying how the beneficiaries of “assistance” and artifice have been gifted exponentially increasing purchasing power. The Founders intended a free America to facilitate “the pursuit of happiness” by self-reliant, honorable, capable and ambitious people. Central planning, redistribution of wealth and social engineering came from Marx 59 years later.

    How about a new slogan – “I’m Rich And I’m Proud”? And you’re not. C’est la vie.

    People must adapt to freedom.

    Freedom does not adapt to people…dictatorship does.

    1. GW is kind of like that cathouse in Amsterdam which charges waaay too much for a simple roll in the hay.

  5. Professor Turley,

    Your comment section is a sinkhole of racism. Why do you allow these people to pollute your blog with their vile bigotry? Better to have no comment section at all. Let these people spew their venom on Twitter or their own blogs. You have no duty to give them a platform.

    James Walker

    1. Why are you in America as you have no grasp or appreciation of freedom; only that of dictatorship?

      1st Amendment –

      “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”

    2. Can you define what “racism” is??? Because anymore, it is simply wishing to have secure borders. Or reading bed time stories to your kids, Or Yoga-ing While White. Or putting on blackface and doing Mammie. Or putting wedding pictures in the paper. Or asking someone for their mother’s maiden name. Or shooting somebody who is mugging you, if you are black and the mugger is white. Slamming Maya Angelou’s writings as sheer dreadful crap. I could go on and on.

      Sooo, I think maybe you need to be specific, OK??? Because the ways things stand, you are being unconstitutionally vague.

      Thank you!

      Squeeky Fromm
      Girl Reporter

      1. How ’bout yearning for the “good ole days” when your klan heroes kept the darkies in line? Don’t complain about “racism” as if it doesn’t apply to you when you wholeheartedly and proudly profess that you are racist.

        this is to “one can’t have enough white pillowcases on hand” squeeKKK

        1. Marky Mark Mark – from what I have read of your work, you know nothing of those days, except what you might have picked up in a class by accident. You certainly didn’t learn it on purpose. You are not old enough, educated enough, well-read enough to even be in this discussion.

          1. My “work”? Please. My pronouncements here are entertainment. Your mileage may vary; but poking at ridiculous and gullible dupes, rubes, hillbillies and klan-lite wannabees is great fun.

            this is to “if the shoe fits, wear it” paulie – georgie

    3. Why is it your business – other than virtue signaling – to assess the content of Turley’s comment section AND to question Turley’s choice of having a comment section?

    4. “Better to have no comment section at all. ”

      Agreed. One of these days maybe the good professor will see the light…

  6. Presumably, GW sells a product which is in demand by the public. Good for it. Freedom and free enterprise are what the Founders codified. When demand for its product diminishes, GW will transform to reverse that trend. If consumers enjoy the abrogation of their constitutional rights to freedom of thought, speech, expression, belief, press, assembly, etc. by GW, its product sales and revenue will increase. All will be happy. If consumers reject dictatorship, they will purchase product from competitors. All will be right in America.

    1. Squeeky – I am expecting that FIRE will get involved, I think they have GW on their hot list anyway.

  7. She’s as black as Rachel Dolezal – shouldn’t that be enough?

    “Eve of ‘Black History Month'”? No such thing. It’s either fact (history) or it’s not. Methinks paying any attention to such folderol is why those “historically black” colleges and universities have SIX-year graduation rates mired in the 20% and below quintile.

  8. We are Balkanizing and will continue to do so. Multiculturalism was supposed to bring peace and understanding but this has not happened. Maybe because it is all based on a lie, just as Communism was.

  9. If she wants to self-identify as 1/16 black she can, isn’t that the Progressive Way? There is nothing racist about it.

  10. There is a sign on the wall of a men’s room at GW which says: “We Don’t Need No Wops Teaching Round Here.” Now what is that all about? What is a WOP? White Oriental Policeman?

  11. BBM: Black Bananas Matter.

    Shouldn’t say “colored people” anymore. NAACP needs to change its name. NAABP.

  12. Several Asians I’ve known in the past referred to other certain stereotype of Asians as “Bananas”–Yellow on the outside, White on the inside. They referred to Asians who maintained a lifestyle of Western White culture.

    1. May we stipulate that every race is racist?

      May we stipulate that loyalty is a virtue?

  13. … begin the process towards reconciliation and reeducation.
    Oh the historical connotation of “reeducation”

  14. I M 1/16 Black. So what. ? Be it true or a lie what does it matter and who cares. Now the leaders of this college ladies group said. ‘ a group in which a few felt comfortable making a joke that was distinctly racist, ”
    The college itself said ” There was an entirely inappropriate posting on social media last night. ” OK. Show me in detail EXACTLY what was racist about the photo and the comments. Then Why is the university involved in this.?? Let those who claim “offence” step forward be identified, and make there case. Perhaps there would be no complaint if it turned out the lady was 1/16 Black.

    1. So what? I agree. But the Marxist Thought Police is going to get them. So anybody on campus can get an abortion but if there is any whiff of “racism”, (whatever that is), then the Saudi Arabian religious police, i.e. the Marxist Thought Police, charge in and prosecute. We are living, George Washington University is living under Religious orthodoxy—not Catholicism, but Judeo-Masonic-Bolshevist religious state.

  15. Why is the sorority terminating the membership of the 2 girls in the photo? They did not post the photo. They just were texting and holding a banana peel. Did an investigation find that the girls in the photo knew their photo was being used to make a racist joke? Did they determine that they were not victims of a prank?

    Do sororities and fraternities terminate members who make racist comments and jokes against whites? Who refuse to take classes if they are “caucasiod” or “Eurocentric”? What about members who make jokes or bigoted comments against Jews, Muslims, Catholics, other Christians, Republicans, Democrats…

    Does the universe take very seriously racism against Caucasians? Bias against conservatives?

    I hope this was properly investigated, and that equal rules apply for everyone. An organization has the right to protect its reputation.

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Res ipsa loquitur – The thing itself speaks
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