^
Keep New Times Free
4
| News |

ASU Fraternity Celebrates MLK Day with Party Mocking Black People

Photos posted to social-media websites show white Arizona State University students dressed up in basketball jerseys and bandannas, throwing up gang signs, and drinking out of a watermelon cup as part of an "MLK party."

"Just a day after the nation celebrated the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., racism has reared its head at one of the America's largest universities," says the Reverend Jarrett Maupin, a local black activist.

Maupin, who saw photos of the party early this morning, says the "MLK Black Party" was organized by members of ASU's Tau Kappa Epsilon fraternity.

You can see some of the students' posts to Instagram below:

Maupin fired off an e-mail to ASU president Michael Crow, calling for any student involved in the party to be expelled.

"There should be a zero tolerance policy for racism at ASU. Period," Maupin says.

ASU spokeswoman Sharon Keeler tells New Times that the frat already was on "social probation," which means it's not supposed to have parties. She notes that the party wasn't held on campus, nor was it sanctioned by ASU.

I Support
  • Local
  • Community
  • Journalism
  • logo

Support the independent voice of Phoenix and help keep the future of New Times free.

"ASU has suspended chapter operations, can and will take additional action against the individuals involved, and is meeting with the national TKE organization today to take further action," Keeler says. "ASU has one of the most diverse student bodies of any major university in the country, and it is unfortunate that a few misguided individuals held an offensive party at a time when ASU, the state and the nation are celebrating Dr. King's achievements and legacy. The university will not tolerate this kind of behavior."

Police said in late 2012 that members of the TKE fraternity were involved in a brawl with another fraternity chapter.

Down south, the TKE chapter at the University of Arizona lost its recognition from the university in 2012.

Send feedback and tips to the author.
Follow Matthew Hendley on Twitter at @MatthewHendley.

Keep Phoenix New Times Free... Since we started Phoenix New Times, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Phoenix, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Phoenix with no paywalls.

We use cookies to collect and analyze information on site performance and usage, and to enhance and customize content and advertisements. By clicking 'X' or continuing to use the site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. To find out more, visit our cookies policy and our privacy policy.

 

Join the New Times community and help support independent local journalism in Phoenix.

 

Join the New Times community and help support independent local journalism in Phoenix.