In February 2013, Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity was suspended by Washington University in St. Louis after the fraternity’s pledges were accused of singing racial slurs to African American students.
Last November, the University of Connecticut suspended Pi Kappa Alpha fraternity after a confrontation with members of the historically black Alpha Kappa Alpha sorority in which AKAs were called racially and sexually charged epithets.
This year in March, a University of Maryland student resigned from Kappa Sigma fraternity after being suspended for sending an e-mail containing racially and sexually suggestive language about African American, Indian and Asian women.
Also this year, disciplinary action was taken against members of Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity at the University of Oklahoma who participated in a racist chant, caught on video, about lynching African Americans.
We have not seen the end of racist fraternity and sorority actions on college campuses.
That’s because the actions taken in response to these incidents by well-meaning universities were directed at symptoms. Epithets, chants and derogatory language about African Americans are indicators of an underlying problem within the offending white students, namely an antagonism against blacks based upon feelings of white superiority.
With suspensions and expulsions, the college community rids itself of a particular manifestation but not the underlying problem, which is racial prejudice.
The United States has been treating evidence of racism, and not the causes, since the Civil War.