Harvard Students Attempt Satire: ‘Asians…practically indistinguishable from one another’

The Harvard Voice — “Harvard University’s premiere student-life publication” — recently published, then retracted, the following paragraph:

You can always spot the Asian contingent at every pre-interview reception. They dress in the same way (satin blouse with high waisted pencil skirt for girls, suits with skinny ties for boys), talk in the same sort-of gushy, sort-of whiny manner, and have the same concentrations and sky-high GPAs. They’re practically indistinguishable from one another, but it’s okay. Soon, they will be looking at the same Excel spreadsheets and spend their lunch talking about their meaningful morning conversations with the helpdesk of Bloomberg. Uniqueness is overrated when you make six-figure salaries.

The Crimson says the paragraph was eventually scrubbed from the listicle (“5 People You’ll See at Pre-Interview Receptions”), to which the Voice’s editors appended the anonymous author’s response (which, incredibly, was also deleted):

Clearly, I’ve been censored, which in itself is an interesting reflection on free speech in America. If you couldn’t tell that this article was satire, then we have bigger problems than me being ‘offensive.’ (If you are curious to know what the censored stereotype is, just take a quick look around the room. JK!)

And then the author took it all back, launching into a careful—yet honest, yet brave—discussion over how to confront the racial resentment that continues to plague the Ivy League. JK! That probably would have been deleted too.

[The Crimson]

New York Times: “Is It ‘Cause She Was Black?”

The gusts in the veritable shitstorm around Columbia College dean Michelle Moody-Adams’ abrupt resignation last month just keep swirling. In addition to fierce speculation about what pushed the cool-headed MiMoo over the edge, Moodygate has touched off a vigorous debate over whether or not the role of the undergraduate College is being steadily and unfairly diminished by the big, bad(?), Columbia administration (for our take on it, see here). Most recently, the New York Times has joined the fray, with their Sept 2nd. article, “At Columbia, Faith of Some in President is Shaken“. Let’s see what they have to say: Read the rest of this entry »

Hispanic Worker Alleges Princeton Club Prefers White People

File this piece under “Predictable as Hell”: the NY Daily reports that the Princeton Club of New York has been accused by a fired Hispanic worker of, well, firing her for a white guy. Fifty-one year old payroll manager Jo-Ann Garcia of New York alleges that she was forced out after 29 years of employment, during which she claims she “was never reprimanded for anything and did wonderful work”, because the general manager desired “white, native English speaking personnel and found the Hispanic accent… to be embarrassing.”

We’re a little disappointed that it took Ms. Garcia 29 years to realize that the Princeton Club prefers pale white men. But we’re more disappointed with Princeton. I mean, come on. Country club racism is so passé (didn’t they hear that sexual harassment is the new big thing in this city?). And while it might make sense for a Club with such distinguished guests to be a little image conscious, Ms. Garcia was a payroll manager in the back room. That means if the Princeton Club was an Abercrombie, Ms. Garcia would’ve been on the “impact team“. It’s not like the Club’s courtly clientele would’ve been forced to hear her “embarrassing” accent while enjoying a leisurely game on one of the “recently renovated, international-sized” squash courts or dining beneath the ”coffered ceilings” of the Woodrow Wilson room. We send our condolences to Jo-Ann and wish her a successful job hunt. Stay classy, Princeton.

Greetings! Yale Alum Hopes You’re Well, Wants to Tell You About His Racism

Those Yalies! Iconoclasts, the lot of ‘em. Seems like they never miss an opportunity to turn some heads and ruffle some feathers, usually with unfortunate results. To wit: Politico’s Ben Smith tweeted today about one such Eli, who wrote a letter to the university’s alumni magazine this month — you know, just to catch up and stuff.

His name is Sam Taylor. He’s Class of ’73. And, he’s what some might call a casual racist. (By “some” we mean the Southern Poverty Law Center, who know something about the subject.) But that’s no problem, because it doesn’t seem to bother Sam all that much. In fact, he gets a big ol’ kick out of it, and he thinks you will, too.

The letter opens:

Did you know that one of your classmates is officially considered a “hate-monger” by the Southern Poverty Law Center?

… Go on.

I believe this is a first for Yale.

(Unlikely, but whatever.)

You can judge for yourself whether I am a “hater” if you read my just-released book, White Identity: Racial Consciousness in the 21st Century.

The book argues, by the way, that: “If [white people] do not defend their interests they will be marginalized by groups that do not hesitate to assert themselves, numerically and culturally.”

Oy. So we’re really going there? Fine. Tell us more. (After the jump!)

Read the rest of this entry »

Cornell Hazing Looks a Lot Like Heart of Darkness

UPDATE: the purported pledge in the photo has notified us that this is all a misunderstanding. He is holding a light reflector used for professional photography; the photo is a test shot. We’ve posted his full email after the jump, and sincerely apologize for this misrepresentation. (Hazard of the gossip trade, folks.)

Given how freaked out everyone is about campus bullying, you’d think the brothers of Cornell’s well-heeled Sigma Phi fraternity would know better than to engage in an astonishingly tasteless form of frat hazing. You’d also think they’d know better than to photograph said hazing, and then allow the snapshot to leak into cyberspace. But lo and behold, the brothers of Sigma Phi are not as smart as you think.

IvyGate received several tipoffs this morning about the photo below, which it seems was taken during Cornell’s Hell Week this past spring:

(Image removed at the request of the copyright holder)

The pledge, left, is a current sophomore whose name we’ve redacted, and the brother is a senior.

Perhaps we’re just misguided–maybe this isn’t an ill-conceived and derogatory nod to colonial assholishness. But it sure looks that way, doesn’t it?

The Sigma Phi hazing process is apparently notorious for unpleasantness. According to one of our sources, the hazing also involved locking pledges in the frat’s in-house squash courts for hours without food or drink, and forcing them to sit  naked on ice blocks until their gonads turned to ice pops. It’s not clear if white students were also obliged to stand around half-naked holding makeshift shields or mirrors or sun reflectors or whatever it is they’re making him hold. There was only one black pledge, and you’re looking at him. (Update: new info suggests that our initial head count was wrong here. We’re still not convinced that Sig Phi is a scion of diversity, though.)

So far neither party in the photo has responded to requests for comment, but we’ll keep this story updated if and when they do. In the meantime, what say you? Is it cruel and demeaning, or just innocently stupid?

Update: we received this email from the pledge in response to a request for comment. While we’re hastily backpedaling, we might as well add that we thoroughly appreciate the tone of this email, and remain skeptical about the “no hazing” business.

First and foremost, I would like to assure you that any racially offensive interpretations of the photograph are vastly inaccurate. Also, the Sigma Phi society does not condone hazing and as such, the “Sigma Phi hazing process” which you refer to several times in your email does not exist. The rumors about the content of the photograph are just that, rumors. I am more than happy to put them to rest.

This past summer, I remained on campus for the first summer session to take classes along with several other brothers in the house. One afternoon, a representative of Cornell University requested a picture of my brother, Eric Stern (seen sitting in the chair). Another brother in the house volunteered to take the picture and came to my room requesting a helping hand. I had just awoken from a nap and did not bother to dress myself before walking downstairs to our living room where the photo was taken. The photographer asked me to hold the light reflector that can be seen in the photograph – a trick used by experienced photographers to highlight the subject of their work. The image that has been questioned was actually a test shot taken by the photographer to get a sense of the lighting in the room.

I would like to stress that this image was not intended to have any racial undertones and its unfortunate that people choose to interpret it that way. The Sigma Phi Society is one of the more diverse houses on campus – racially, religiously, financially, etc… During my time as a rush and now as a brother in the house, I did/have not felt racially targeted in any way. If you are looking for a story surrounding a racial injustice, I can confidently say that there is nothing to be found here. In addition, my decision to assist my brothers in taking this photograph was not influenced by any pledging protocol – I was already a brother in this house when this photo was taken. Again, I appreciate your concern in this matter but the rumors surrounding this photograph are unfounded and inaccurate.

Regards,

[name redacted]

Consider us humbled. This is why you can’t believe everything you read on CollegeACB.

UPDATE: Harvard Law Student / Accused Racist Defeated by Internet

Gawker has posted the name and photo of Harvard Law School’s maybe-racist emailer, so that pretty much ends that mystery– along with the girl’s professional career:

As comment moderators fought to keep her name off their site, Stephanie apparently navigated to Facebook and began scrubbing herself from the internet, presumably to minimize how closely the imbroglio would be tied to her name, face, and reputation.

She ignored our requests for comment, giggling, “That’s not me,” when she hung up on us on the phone. (It was her. The outgoing voice message said so.)

This girl has made a series of seriously bad mistakes over the last few days. Apparently, the most damaging one she made was catching the attention of Gawker and Nick Denton, who seem to have impeccable powers of deduction and don’t take kindly to giggling racists giving them the slip.

Breaking News: Racism Still Not Completely Eradicated (Thanks, Harvard Law)

It wasn’t too long ago that you needed to be an accomplished member in your field before your racist rants started raising eye brows. E-mail, the Ivy League and Huffpost’s College section have just managed to set the bar a whole lot lower. (Hey, a suitemate of mine once sent me a text once describing how swarthy Eskimos are, and he scored a 1300 on his SATs! Quick, post it on CNN’s iReport!)

What’s even more disturbing than the fact that this story headlined one of the most-widely read publications on the web is that it has elicited nearly 2,000 comments, a lot of which are racist themselves. Again, how is this a national story? Because a smart woman in a lot of other ways happens to be a moron when it comes to judging groups of other people? Harvard’s used to that. Because she conveyed this ridiculous sentiment in a private email? Either it’s a very slow news day, or interest in anything Ivy League has reached hysterical proportions.

And while the law student in question can protest all she wants, she’s probably a racist, just like Larry Summers is probably a misogynist and thinks that a man would have made a stronger argument because of all the complicated genetics and science involved.

UPDATE: “White People… PRETTY White People” – Yale’s 50 Most Beautiful List is, well, Racist

There was something about Rumpus’ recently released 50 Most Beautiful list that seemed a little off. No, not the typos, falsifications, or numbers accidentally written in Arabic (seriously). We couldn’t quite put our finger on it. Something about the gradient: white after white after white. Maybe their printers ran out of black ink? If only…

Apparently, in the gossip rag’s esteemed opinion, a disproportionate number of Yale’s pretty people are, well, of the Caucasian variety. We’ll let the ’50 most’ numbers speak for themselves.

For comparison’s sake, here are the racial demographics of Yale as a whole, courtesy of Questbridge:

  • Caucasian: 68%
  • African American: 9%
  • Asian American: 14%
  • Hispanic: 8%
  • Native American: 1%
  • (FYI, 20 out of the 29 Rumpus-ites who worked on the issue are white… yup, about 68%)

    So, using the power of math, our crack quants at IvyGate HQ have calculated that Rumpus’ 50 Most Beautiful List is 21.6% whiter than Yale in general. Ouch.

    So much for the post-racial America, Barry.

    Jersey Shore Cast to Beat Up the Beat at Yale

    jersey-shore-castOur friends over at The Bullblog have delightful news for the Ivy League’s hair-gel, fake-tanner, and Axe deodorant enthusiasts (a bigger demographic than you would expect.) In the coming week, Yalies will have not one, but two opportunities to fist pump the night away with everyone’s favorite oversexed bon-vivants: the cast of MTV’s inexplicable-reality-hit, Jersey Shore. Vinny “I don’t know if she’s using that for protection” Guadagnino, the Jersey Shore’s least stereotypical resident (not saying much), will be throwing down at Elevate bar and nightclub on Thursday. Grab tickets fast; the Facebook Event indicates that over a hundred lucky Yalies will be in attendance. We presume that he will then be leading a Master’s Tea discussion on the topic of futurism and transnational identity in early 20th century Florence. The scholar muses:

    Guys with the blow-outs and the fake tans, and guys that wear lip gloss and makeup, those aren’t guidos, those are retards.

    A freethinking iconoclast indeed. But if you can’t make the Vinny party–or if you’re on the market for a far more ludicrous caricature–then head on over to Gotham Citi Cafe this weekend, where none other than the infamous Nicole “Snooki” Polizzi will be preaching the guidette gospel. Highlights might include:

    My ideal man would be Italian, dark, muscles, juice-head, guido.

    When I say I’m ready to go wild, I’m gonna go wild.

    I’m fat. I’m about to eat a sausage right now. F*CK YOU ALL!!!

    I am a princess at home, like, I am the f*cking princess of f*cking Poughkeepsie. Here, I am nobody, I’m like emotionally exhausted.

    We’re waiting with baited breath. Will Snooki find love and existential fulfillment at Yale? Will she find a New Poughkeepsie in New Haven? Will she eat a sausage? Will she get punched in the face? Vinny has similarly high expectations for his Yale visit:

    When I hear the music, I start fist-pumping, I start dancing, I’m pulling girls on stage and now… Vinny came out to play baby.

    Drink your Red Bull, Yalies. And girls?:

    I don’t give a f**k if you’re fat, you’re ugly, you’re 45 years old. I’ll dance with ya. I think it’s hilarious.

    In short, any fun-loving Eli on the market for a misrepresentative Italian-American–or an intellectual, emotional and sexual clubbing experience of epic proportions–should have one hell of a weekend. Get juiced, get tan, get ready. Well, except if tacit racism and stereotyping aren’t really your thing.

    A splendid time is guaranteed for all:

    Time: Harvard Hoops Star to Win the NBA…Or Something

    tumblr_kuix3qJq7q1qzfbjwo1_400Time notes that it’s unusual that any Harvard hoops star getting national attention is particularly rare. But Jeremy Lin is doubly a special case.

    There’s a chance Lin might take Harvard to the NCAA tournament! (Time, wisely, makes no guarantees.) We’ll leave it to the magazine to crunch numbers, as we thought Yao Ming’s arrival on the scene meant a critical mass of Asian basketball stars was coming soon:

    Fewer than 0.5% of men’s Division 1 basketball players are Asian-American. Sure, the occasional giant from China, like Yao Ming, has played in the NBA. But in the U.S., basketball stars are African Americans first, Caucasians second, and Asians … somewhere far down the line.

    The magazine also lists some impressive stats — for an Ivy or a Big Ten school! Lin has 18.1 points per game on average, Harvard’s top record. Somewhat troubling, though, is the ethnic taunting that Lin has faced:

    I’ve heard it at most of the Ivies if not all of them.

    …Lin tells the reporter which, um, doesn’t surprise us). He seems very calm about it though — which possibly can be credited to his Christianity. (Apparently, he wants to be a pastor post-grad.) An uncynical Ivy League student?! That’s rarer than an — oh, wait.

    After the jump: Jeremy Lin’s impressive dunk (or lay-up?) against Santa Clara.

    Read the rest of this entry »