Sunday, May 3, 2009

Racism Incident at Tufts

A couple weeks back, a racism incident occurred at Tufts University between a white freshman and members of Tuft's Korean Student Association.

There was a bias incident involving members of the Korean Students Association (KSA) that took place in the early morning hours on Thursday, April 9, in Lewis Hall Lounge, while the club members were practicing for their culture show.

Thirteen members of the KSA were preparing for their culture show at approximately 1:45AM. A white freshman male living in Lewis Hall approached five male members who were practicing their dance. He claimed that he had been drinking at a bar prior to arriving at Lewis Hall. He insisted several times that the KSA members teach him the moves to their dance and was repeatedly asked to stop. Despite this request, he continued to molest the dancers, imitating the dance moves and declaring, "This is the gayest shit I've ever done." The KSA members then asked him to leave, to which he responded, "Fuck you. Fuck you, I could take all of you. I'll kill you all." He then threatened to get his fraternity brothers to help him retaliate. At this point, he began to physically harass the dancers, spitting at one member and shoving another one of the guys. An altercation ensued during which the freshman ripped two shirts and inflicted minor cuts to a member's forehead. In order to restrain him, the KSA members pinned him to the floor and put him into a headlock, at which point the freshman mentioned that he could not breathe and the person holding him down immediately let go.

At this moment, the freshman's friend and his girlfriend, who watched from the side, stepped in to take him away. When he got up, he started cursing "Fuck you, fuck you" and spitting at the dancers again. As he was being dragged away, he shouted, "Fuck you all, you fucking chinks, go back to China! Go back to your fucking country, you don't belong in this country." His friends took him to the bathroom, where he could be heard repeatedly shouting, "If I see them again, I will fuck them all."

The fight was reported to an RA, who wrote and sent in a bias incident report. According to the RA, submitted within the report was testimony from his girlfriend supporting the fact that her boyfriend initiated the altercation.

Thirteen people, members and friends of KSA, were present during the fight. In the aftermath of the dispute, members were shocked and saddened that such racism and hostility could be found at our school. It is the collective wish of KSA and affiliated students, both of Asian and non-Asian heritage, that this event come to the attention of our community in order to shed light on discrimination among our peers and our ongoing fight for cultural understanding.

It is unfortunate that issues like this arise and that people who mind their own business are victims of these acts of racism. Fortunately, the student wrote a sincere apology for what he did. Now only if everyone could be this sincere for all of their wrongdoings.

Bringing this blog back!

MAASU's blog hasn't been touched since Ajay Alexander was Advocacy Chair ('07-'08) so I hope to do my best and discuss various issues, topics, and points of conversation that are important to the APIA community.

Please feel free to share this blog with others and spread the word!