Sick & Twisted Frat house has Pilgrims & Indians Party- Support AISA UCI!

January 24, 2011 at 4:48pm

Show your support for AISA and help them fight this!

AIM SoCal

___________________________________________________________________________________

 

 

The American Indian Student Association at UCI is asking for your support and solidarity with us in regards to an event that occurred on November 23, 2010.  In light of Thanksgiving, the Phi Kappa Psi Fraternity at UCI decided to throw a "Pilgrims and Indians" party. 

 

As soon as AISA was made aware of this event, it was reported it to the Office of Equal Opportunity and Diversity and an official complaint was filed through the school.  While the right steps were taken to ensure that our voices were heard; they were seemingly NOT heard.  Although the school administration, faculty, and the fraternity involved were notified about the grievance filed and the situation; the party still went on. Advertisement for the event were still distributed throughout the UCI community through the attached fliers, Ring Road tabling and throughout the internet via a Facebook event.  To make matters worse, university shuttles served as transportation for students JUST FOR THIS EVENT! 

 

AISA members have went out of their way to voice their opinion on the issue.  Dedicated their time educating and explaining why this event was exceedingly disrespectful to the Native community. Yet AISA members were subjected to seeing students of all stature prancing around adorned in rainbow colored headdresses, skimpy "loin clothes" and warpaint. Making a mockery of our culture and a direct attack on our communities experiences for the sake of entertainment.

 

As university students and as Native community members, it is not acceptable for us to have to endure these repeated cases of hostility towards us as people of color and Indigenous peoples especially in an educational institution like UC Irvine that advocates its dedication to diversity. This events and others that make a mockery of peoples experiences and identity are not to be tolerated. They create a hostile campus climate for people of color that are not safe and welcoming. That is why we are taking a stand and making sure that our voices are heard at the University of California, Irvine.  We will not back down, and though we only have a .01% representation on the UCI campus; our voices are loud. Numerous other cultural and campus organizations stand in solidarity with us.  This is not an isolated incident to Natives or other cultural groups, and we demand that this outright racism and disregard for who we are as Indigenous peoples and disrespect of our culture stops immediately.

 

Due to the issue presented, you play a key role in making this issue, OUR issue, valid and seen.  We are asking for letters of support from all individuals, allies, organizations, etc. in response to the event that occurred on November 23, 2010. 

 

We are demanding a change in the UCI's discrimination policy for these types of events do not occur which cause distress upon Native and other students of color.  We are also demanding an increase of Native faculty (with UCI currently having none!), Native American courses taught by these professors, and THE AMERICAN INDIAN STUDENT ASSOCIATION AT UCI DEMAND A CHAIR THAT OVERSEES THE HIRING PROCESS, AND INVOLVEMENT IN ALL STEPS /ASPECTS OF CHOOSING THE PROFESSOR AND IN THE HIRING PROCESS.

 

These are not unreasonable demands for the university. In fact they are long overdue. These adjustments, increase Native representation, and classes will not only help the campus climate at UCI, but also bring awareness to Native and other student of color issues. Ultimately bringing a much needed structure of support and advocacy for the campus and serves to help with the retention of Natives at UCI. We hope that you will take the time to write a letter in support and solidarity in response to the events that have occurred on November 23, 2010, in support of our demands. 

 

Please forward this letter out to other individuals, allies, and organizations and send your letters to UCI's Assistant Vice Chancellor Thomas Parham at taparham@uci.edu and/or mail them to:

                   Thomas Parham

                   University of California, Irvine

                   Student Affairs

                   Irvine, CA 92697-2215

Thank you in advance for your support, time, and attention.  We greatly appreciate it and know that our voices will be heard. 

 

We have also attached a copy of a letter we sent to VP Parham from AISA for your viewing.  If you have any questions, comments, or concerns you may email our American Indian Student Association, Chair ,

Cheyenne Reynoso, at

reynoso.cheyenne@gmail.com. 

 

In Unity, Power, Strength & Solidarity,

The American Indian Student Association at UCI

www.clubs.uci.edu/aisa