Skip to comments.Gamma Phi sorority on suspension for dressing like Indians
Posted on 03/29/2008 12:35:24 PM PDT by RogerFGay
The Gamma Phi Beta sorority at University of North Dakota has been put on temporary social probation while the university investigates complaints stemming from a November party during which sorority members and their guests donned mock Indian garb and red face and body paint.
The temporary probation was issued by both the UND Dean of Students Office, which will investigate the complaints, and by the Gamma Phi Beta International office in Centennial, Colo.
The probation means Gamma Phi wont be allowed to host or participate in social activities with other sororities and fraternities or other student groups, either on or off campus, during the investigation, UND Dean of Students Lillian Elsinga said.
Photos from the November party show sorority members in Indian maiden-style dresses and feather headdresses. Some male guests are dressed in makeshift loincloths and smeared with red paint.
Elsinga wouldnt speculate on what, if any, penalty her office will recommend once the investigation is complete, but said, as dean of students, she did not condone the behavior be-ing described.
In a brief statement released late today, UND President Charles Kupchella gave his support to the investigation and said appropriate action will be taken at the conclusion of the review.
Gamma Phis central office also issued a statement today.
Gamma Phi Beta International Sorority sincerely regrets the recently-reported actions involving chapter members at the University of North Dakota. We realize that the actions of the chapter demonstrate the need for greater chapter education about diversity and personal dignity.
The Gamma Phi party first came to public attention late last week after Margaret Scott, an American Indian student who frequents UNDs American Indian Student Services house, found photos of the party on the Facebook site of Anastasia Ginda, the sororitys current president.
The American Indian Student Services House is next door to the Gamma Phi house.
Scott copied the photos onto her photobucket.com site and forwarded that link to an anti-nickname campus e-mail list.
The Herald also linked to Scotts photobucket site in its early coverage of the Gamma Phi party. Many of those photos have since been removed from the site and replaced with a note that they violated the sites user agreement.
About 10 American Indian students wrote an official discrimination complaint about the Gamma Phi party late last week, and that form was delivered to Elsinga this morning.
Between 50 and 60 discrimination or harassment complaints are filed at UND every year, covering a broad range of issues, Page said. Elsinga said it has been several years since a complaint was filed against a fraternity or sorority.
Calls made to Ginda and the sorority house since Friday have not been returned.
You mean the ones that run all the convenience stores and Best Westerns?
Did they dress like Navajos, Arapahoes, or St. Louis ‘hos?
Wonder what they’d do to “Princess Summer Fall Winter Spring”?
So they weren’t ten little Indian boys? Seriously, what the hell right does a public university have to tell these people how they can and can’t dress- especially at a private function in their own sorority house? If this was the University of Pennsylvania, not only could they dress up any way they liked, but they could do it at the university president’s home and get their picture taken with her to boot!
I know a lot, and I mean a lot of Indians. Most of them are big Washington Redskins and Cleveland Indians fans. Go figure. It's hilarious how easily white liberal kids can be "offended."
Her penalty should be a huge drop in tuition dollars for next year, as prospective students seek out other institutions where free thought is still respected.
We had an anti-nickname agitator in my town. She also filed suit against the performance of “Little Mary Sunshine.”.
The team name is Blackhawks. In the 1990s, permission was asked of the ancestors of Chief Blackhawk to use the name. Permission was granted and there was actually a ceremony involved.
The real kicker is this person is Scots Irish. She has no Indian blood. She has a daughter conceived by artificial insemination whom she claims is 1/2 American Indian. Thing is, while the girl *looked Indian*, I saw a photo of the mother at the same age and she looked exactly like her daughter. The key appearance element here is straight black hair.
My husband was investigating this person and went to the anti-nickname site she frequented. At the time, there was a huge uproar there over the agitator not being Indian. Turned out that her main supporter on the site, who posted under an Indian-sounding name, was also Caucasian.
Fast forward several months after the demonstrations and national news coverage. We are attending a potluck at our sailing club. One of the members is a sociology teacher at a university 45 miles from our little town. HE had instigated a group of his students to attend the demonstrations and was bragging to me that he was producing activists. I gave him a piece of my mind, explained the Blackhawk family permission history and he just looked at me blankly. Evidently, it is not possible for anyone to agree to the use of any American Indian name for any purpose other than the name of a tribe. Period. End. Oh, and this person is also Caucasian.
Oh well. In my college fraternity we wore Confederate uniforms, flew the stars and bars, and we owned and fired a real cannon. We even sang “Dixie”. (I’m not kidding either.)
Unlike the drunken pugnacious Irishman , or the cheap Scotsman like Janitor Willie on the Simpsons, or the dull Canadian, or the rigid German, the drunken Russian etc etc etc. Grow up.
I forgot to mention that I even dated a few Gamma Phi’s.
I’m not clear on what you’re saying here. That all those stereotypes are okay? That it would be okay to have a party and dress up like any of those stereotypes?
Will there ever be an end to this PC BS?!
I think you had more of a point earlier. Now that you have elaborated, you just look kindof silly...like a liberal charicature.
The outfits are no big deal. The red paint is a bit reminiscent of "blackface" (depending upon how it was applied).
I was hoping for some pics of sorority girls in costume! A search has found nothing. Anyone?
Are Federal funds being used to support this infringement on a freedom of association? I think the UND should voluntarily decide not to accept federal funds if they want to impose such bans.
...and they pretended to be running the Quick-ee Mart???
Thank you! Come again!
I and many others I know are NOT offended in the least. We find it flattering.
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