The Kappa Sigma fraternity at Baylor University is under fire after hosting a racially insensitive Cinco De Mayo party, according to The Washington Post.
The event was reportedly advertised as “Cinco de Drinko” or “Drinko de Mayo” to students. Some attendees were dressed according to racist stereotypes, wearing items like sombreros and ponchos. And as if that weren’t bad enough, others took it to another level of insensitivity by dressing up as construction workers and housekeepers. PopSugar reported that some attendees wore brownface, but this claim was disputed by the Waco Tribune-Herald. According to Teen Vogue, at one point participants even chanted “Build that wall!,” a reference to the Mexican border wall Trump promised to build if elected.
The backlash against the party was immediate, with some students reacting on Twitter the night of the party.
so kappa sig threw a “mexican” party? yall are bold to yell build a wall but quick to have my culture as a theme for your wack ass party pic.twitter.com/vs9rfvP1iK
— andrew (@terrifving) April 30, 2017
Y’all know I had to write a strongly worded letter pic.twitter.com/PZnQM6YBPL
— Halley (@halley_blakess) April 30, 2017
Both Baylor and the national organization of Kappa Sigma issued statements about the party. Baylor’s vice president of student life, Kevin Jackson, released a statement saying, “The reported behavior is deeply concerning and does not in any way reflect Baylor’s institutional values.”
In response to the party, a protest called “Love Thy Neighbor” was held Monday at Baylor. Organized by the Baylor NAACP, the Hispanic Student Association and the LatinX Coalition, students of all races gathered to demonstrate, in the hope of promoting diversity and inclusion. The organizations also drafted eight initiatives which they believe will help with inclusion on campus.
“I’ve been told to go back to my country, especially after the last election…I want you to be empowered by the culture around you.” pic.twitter.com/HuOPnJOtWS
— Baylor Lariat (@bulariat) May 1, 2017
Students sharing their hopes for more inclusion on Baylor’s campus. pic.twitter.com/oFmRdb1oVR
— Baylor MA (@BaylorMA) May 1, 2017
Kappa Sigma was placed under investigation by Baylor University and is currently suspended during the investigation. Until further notice, the fraternity is not permitted to hold meetings, social events or even intramurals.