Ithaca Student on Protests: Students Found ‘Preps and Crooks’ Frat Party ‘Unsettling’
ROBERTS: "Thanks very much. And now let's move on to our Erica Hill. Because, Erica, the issue with Ithaca is new, but what is it? Because there is an issue of what they have planned for today."
HILL: "The issue somewhat new, at least we are hearing about it for the first time. at this point, not much is planned for today. What we heard from folks at the paper and different students we have spoken with, at this point, they are talking about the solidarity walkout that happened yesterday afternoon, with a prolonged moment of silence and reacting to that, about 1,000 people showed up for it. But nothing is planned today. I want to bring in Kira Maddox, who is the editor-in-chief of 'The Ithacan', the paper on campus. For a little more perspective to your point of how we got to this point. So, there's what's happening at Missouri which we were just talking about with one of our reporters who is out there at Mizzou. How is the situation here different and how did it spring up?"
MADDOX: "I think there are actually a lot of parallels to how the students are reacting compared to Mizzou and here at Ithaca College. Mainly we see a lot of students coming out expressing they are not happy with the way things are going. That's where the big issue kind of lies, is that students on this campus that are leading these protests aren't happy with the racial climate and the campus climate in general of Ithaca College and pretty much their main point is that they want to see change."
HILL: "They have also pointed specifically to the reaction which they have used the term inconsistent in terms of the reaction of the president, and there also, there has now been a vote launched by students and even the faculty which is on the front page of the paper today also launching this no confidence vote for the president. What specifically do they take issue with in terms of his reaction?"
MADDOX: "[About in I would say mid to early October, an off-] campus unaffiliated fraternity had planned to host a party, the theme of which a lot of students found to be having a lot of racial connotations. It was a lot of use of language of thug and that kind of thing people found unsettling and weren't happy with. The administration here at Ithaca College responded to that almost immediately through intercom, our online announcement mechanism, pretty much distancing themselves from the fraternity and saying that they wouldn't stand for this kind of thing, that that is not what they do and taking a very harsh position. But around the same time, the college had its own event called the blue sky kickoff event where they brought in a number of alumni to speak about where they wanted the college to go moving forward, kind of the mission of the college, what the college would look like at its core. And at this event, one particular alumni had used what some are calling racist language toward another, specifically calling a woman of color a savage."
MADDOX: "At that event, the administration took about four or five days to respond in any way and that was only after a push from the students to get them to do something."
HILL: "As you told us earlier, nothing is planned today. There is a group of color at Ithaca College that is organizing these things. You described it as more of an occupy wall street so not a lot of chiefs there but a lot of members. We will be looking to the Ithacan and some of the students we are talking with for more. Thanks for being with us.
MADDOX: "No problem."