February is not just the shortest month, but it is also a month that carries the theme of love. The second week in February is not only Valentine’s Day, but it is also the week that President Abraham Lincoln and Frederick Douglass were born. February is also known as Black History Month, or African Heritage Month. Black History Month is a time to recognize the achievements of African-Americans who have made a difference in the community and in the world. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. is often amongst those recognized in February. This month has been celebrated annually in the United States since 1926. This remembrance was founded by United States historian Carter G. Woodson. It was originally called “Negro History Week,” and took place during the second week of February. The purpose of Black History Month was to debunk the myth that blacks only had the capacity to hold positions of slaves and those of low social status.
Despite it being a different time than in the previous segregation and separation of races, some places in the United States still see African-Americans as ignorant, low-class, uneducated human beings. There has been much controversy surrounding an event linked to the fraternity Pi Kappa Alpha on the University of California in San Diego campus. The event themed the “Compton Cookout” was posted on Facebook and invited students to celebrate Black History Month. The invitation read:
"February marks a very important month in American society. No, i'm not referring to Valentines day or Presidents day. I'm talking about Black History month. As a time to celebrate and in hopes of showing respect, the Regents community cordially invites you to its very first Compton Cookout.
For guys: I expect all males to be rockin Jersey's, stuntin' up in ya White T (XXXL smallest size acceptable), anything FUBU, Ecko, Rockawear, High/low top Jordans or Dunks, Chains, Jorts, stunner shades, 59 50 hats, Tats, etc.
For girls: For those of you who are unfamiliar with ghetto chicks-Ghetto chicks usually have gold teeth, start fights and drama, and wear cheap clothes - they consider Baby Phat to be high class and expensive couture. They also have short, nappy hair, and usually wear cheap weave, usually in bad colors, such as purple or bright red. They look and act similar to Shenaynay, and speak very loudly, while rolling their neck, and waving their finger in your face.
Ghetto chicks have a very limited vocabulary, and attempt to make up for it, by forming new words, such as "constipulated", or simply cursing persistently, or using other types of vulgarities, and making noises, such as "hmmg!", or smacking their lips, and making other angry noises,grunts, and faces. The objective is for all you lovely ladies to look, act, and essentially take on these "respectable" qualities throughout the day.
Several of the regents condos will be teaming up to house this monstrosity, so travel house to house and experience the various elements of life in the ghetto.
We will be serving 40's, Kegs of Natty, dat Purple Drank- which consists of sugar, water, and the color purple , chicken, coolade, and of course Watermelon. So come one and come all, make ya self before we break ya self, keep strapped, get yo shine on, and join us for a day party to be remembered- or not. "
Although there is not much that the school can do to penalize the students, given that it was an off-campus event, many members of the school faculty and the president of the fraternity to which the event was linked spoke against the behavior of the students. The fraternity president plans on penalizing members who were involved with party. UCSD Chancellor Mary Anne Fox is holding a teach-in on February 24th to educate staff and students on mutuality and respect on campus.
As a member of the black community, and a former resident of Compton, I find this behavior rude and appalling. For students to behave this way in an environment they are to be educated and respectful of people from all backgrounds, genders, and orientations, I find this is unacceptable. Not only Black History Month, but all other months, should be used to recognize the achievements of people who have made a difference. On an everyday basis, Blacks have to prove themselves to be better than what people expect of them. Every day, they have to hope that nothing shows up in the news about a black person doing something embarrassing because they all know that it will be another reinforcement of negative stereotypes. This event is simply a physical illustration of what people think of blacks. While reading what has happened, I could do nothing but shake my head and hope that one day, Dr. King’s dream will come true.
*More information regarding this event can be found on: [http://www.10news.com/news/22588063/detail.html]