The so-called Trump Effect was demonstrated recently at Tulane University, where the Kappa Alpha fraternity erected a sandbag wall and wrote the words “Trump” and “Make America Great Again” across the front.
Students of color took offense to what they believed was the fraternity’s racist message. Eventually, a group of men, allegedly football players for the school, dismantled the wall at the frat’s off-campus house, The Times-Picayne reports.
Tulane spokesman Mike Strecker explained to The Times-Picayne that Kappa Alpha builds a wall every spring around its private property. Traditionally, the wall-building is a lead-up to its annual “Old South” get-together. Strecker said the use of Donald Trump’s campaign slogan on this year’s wall, which was built on April 7, was intended to be satirical.
But students of color were not amused. More than 800 people signed an online petition expressing solidarity with the “brave” individuals who dismantled the wall.
Directed toward administrators at Tulane, it reads, in part:
“The labels “Trump” and “MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN” have connotations that reverberate beyond this campus and into the larger xenophobic and racist discourse that has surrounded this general election.”
A Facebook post by Ana De Santiago, commenting under #StandWithYourGENTE, said the fraternity crossed a line this year with its wall-building tradition: “…This time it was a wall filled with connotations of hate and ignorance. These connotations most directly mocked the experiences of Latino immigrants and workers throughout our nation.”
Jesse Lyons, the national fraternity’s assistant executive director for advancement, issued this statement to The Times-Picayune:
“Our chapter takes KA’s values of gentlemanly conduct very seriously. This respect extends to every student of Tulane and every member of the broader community. The comment was written on a makeshift wall on our private property, normally used for a game of capture the flag, to mock the ideologies of a political candidate. This had a unintended negative effect and as such it has been dismantled.”
The Southern Poverty Law Center released an informal survey recently of K-12 teachers who said they’ve witnessed an increase in uncivilized behavior and bullying toward minorities in their classrooms. The teachers pointed a guilty finger at presidential candidate Donald Trump.
SOURCE: Times-Picayune | PHOTO CREDIT: Getty, Twitter | VIDEO SOURCE: YouTube