Universities Say No Blackface and Offensive Halloween Costumes to Students

Universities Ban Blackface and Other Offensive Halloween Costumes

“Enjoy the holiday without being extremely offensive.” Some universities advise students on Halloween costumes

No blackface. No squaw costumes. No offensive Halloween costumes, No pimps and hookers. After a year of protests about race at campuses across the country, and a string of racist incidents this fall, some college officials are asking students to think twice about their Halloween costumes — and flat-out telling them to avoid some.

“Our thing is about teaching students about how to enjoy the holiday without being extremely offensive,” said Carolyn Barber-Pierre, assistant vice president for multicultural affairs at Tulane University.

But with the ongoing debate about political correctness and free speech on campuses across the country, efforts at some schools are generating eye-rolling from some on campus, who say people should be able to dress up in silly costumes without being accused of racism, and negative headlines in conservative media.

Blackface and Offensive Halloween Costumes

Blackface and Offensive Halloween Costumes

Colleges Advise Students on Halloween Costumes

An extended debate about political correctness and what constitutes cultural appropriation has led a number of colleges to ban offensive costumes, the Washington Post reports.

One such school is Tulane University. “Our thing is about teaching students about how to enjoy the holiday without being extremely offensive,” assistant vice president Carolyn Barber-Pierre told the paper.

Yale also issued a school-wide warning prior to this weekend’s festivities.

“With fall break here and Halloween just around the corner, we hope you are all planning to take some time to relax and have fun with people you care about,” the faculty wrote in an email to students. “We also hope you that you will stay safe, think about the choices you are making and be aware of how those choices affect other people. Yale should always be a community of care and mutual respect, and we invite your active participation in that shared effort. If you see someone who needs medical attention, call for help. If you dress up for the holiday, don a costume that respects your classmates. If you engage in sexual behavior, do so with consent and mutual respect.”

This is an issue we take very seriously. As Kayla Monteiro wrote in our piece on NOT offending anyone with our Halloween costume, “Unfortunately, for many, [Halloween] can be a day of aggravation when they have to see their culture — or their lived experiences and trauma — caricatured and turned into a costume.” Head over to the Washington Post for the full story, and then check out Kayla’s handy guide for what to avoid while you’re celebrating the spookiest time of year.

Update: Sorry, I missed the original link. Please tell me that if you know it. I would like to add the source url once I get it. Thank you.

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