Known for being the ugly underbelly of American culture, even in present day racism seems to keep rearing it’s head, proving that even 50 years after the events at Selma there is much work to be done.
The University of Oklahoma remains under fire following the emergence of a video in which members of the school’s Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity were seen chanting an offensive song to the tune of “If You’re Happy & You Know It (Clap Your Hands.)” With lyrics including “There will never be a n*gger in SAE” the entire chapter has been disbanded; two members have already been suspended from the university with others potentially facing additional disciplinary actions.
Yet even after the University jumped to action, many already claiming that these practices are nothing new. After originally condemning the chant, a video of the fraternity’s “house mother” Beauton Gilbow (also known as “Mom B”) surfaced in which the 78-year-old uses a racial slur herself.
And the plot thickens.
Despite declining to file any charges against Darren Wilson, the officer responsible for fatally shooting teen Michael Brown, the Justice Department released the Ferguson Report, which detailed the clear unethical practices of it’s police force including disproportionately ticketing and arresting African-American residents in order to generate funds for the city. As the nation has gathered to question just how many other cities are practicing the same unjust tactics, those involved in the original case are already facing the fallout from the report, as a judge named within it has already resigned.
In Wisconsin, over 1,500 protesters flooded the streets following the recent shooting of the unarmed Tony Robinson, a death that has once again placed authorities under scrutiny for yet another minority fatality at the hands of law enforcement. According to Madison Mayor Paul Soglin, “The investigation is being conducted by the state. We have a new law here in Wisconsin where departments are no longer conducting their own internal investigations for officer-involved shootings.” This may alter the investigation of this case, as Wisconsin and Connecticut remain the only states which such a law on the books.