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13 of The Most Racist Moments of 2014

This post could easily be filled with the dozens of instances of Black people who were shot and killed by police under questionable circumstances — shootings that often could have been prompted by racist fears or preconceptions held by the police officers. We have decided to leave those shootings in a separate category. Consider this a list of racist moments that doesn’t include police killings of Black people.


Arizona State Fraternity Suspended After Racist MLK Party Mocking Black People

January 2014

An Arizona State University fraternity prompted national outrage by celebrating Martin Luther King Jr.’s birthday by holding a party mocking Black people. After the party, the university suspended Tau Kappa Epsilon and said it would take action against the individuals involved. The fraternity encouraged guests to attend its “Black Party” by wearing hoodies, baggy basketball jerseys, bandanas and sagging pants, and then post photos of themselves on social media with the hashtags #blackoutformlk, #ihaveadream and #mlkparty. At the party, students drank from cups made out of hollowed-out watermelons.


Racist Reactions to Richard Sherman Rant

January 2014

During the exciting moments after Seattle’s NFC championship victory, cornerback Richard Sherman went on a rant on national television during an interview with Fox’s Erin Andrews, loudly calling himself “the best corner in the game” and belittling the skills of 49ers receiver Michael Crabtree. Sherman has always been a compelling, passionate player, but the reaction to his statements, with white people all across the media using words like “thug” to describe the Stanford graduate, was clearly inspired by racism. Sherman said as much himself in his reaction to the reaction: “To those who would call me a thug or worse because I show passion on a football field … don’t judge a person’s character by what they do between the lines,” Sherman wrote in the column posted on “Judge a man by what he does off the field, what he does for his community, what he does for his family. But people find it easy to take shots on Twitter, and to use racial slurs and bullying language far worse than what you’ll see from me. It’s sad and somewhat unbelievable to me that the world is still this way, but it is. I can handle it.”

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