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The University of Georgia chapter of Tau Kappa Epsilon has been suspended following a viral, racist video featuring its fraternity members. The video features a student, apparently drunk, playfully hitting a fellow frat member with a belt and telling him to pick cotton. He also uses the N-word.
The fraternity, which claims in its motto and Twitter bio that it’s been “Building Better Men for a Better World on college and university campuses since 1899,” issued a statement denouncing the racist video: “Tau Kappa Epsilon is disgusted, appalled and angered by the remarks shown in the video. TKE does not condone or support any actions by its members that would be defined as racist, discriminatory, and/or offensive.” It also said it’s booted the four students involved in the video from its membership, according to HuffPo.
UGA’s student council on Friday likewise denounced the video after the Snapchat clip went viral via Twitter; several users complained about the clip and tagged school officials. In a letter, it wrote that there is an ongoing investigation and that the “executive officers of the Student Government Association are aware of a video circulating on social media that depicts individuals identified as members of a UGA Greek organization using racist language and engaging in behaviors that mock the suffering of enslaved peoples.” The university also chimed in via its official Twitter, writing that it “condemns racism in the strongest terms. Racism has no place on our campus. We will continue our efforts to promote a welcoming and supportive learning environment for our students, faculty and staff.”
In February, the president of Tau Kappa Epsilon’s University of Wisconsin-Whitewater chapter issued another apology after members were criticized for racist comments, according to campus newspaper the Royal Purple News. Their comments were not made public.
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Ramon Ramirez is the news director, and formerly the Dot's entertainment editor and evening editor. His work has appeared in the Washington Post, Grantland, Washington City Paper, Austin American-Statesman, and Austin Monitor.