Syracuse University Food Services recently issued an apology for its Martin Luther King Jr. Dinner menu which featured fried chicken, mac and cheese, and lemonade.
The menu (pictured), originally posted last week by SU Food Services on its Instagram page, later was reposted by the Barstool Syracuse Instagram account with the accompanying text “SU Food Services posted this yesterday and was later taken down” followed by a hand-over-face emoji.
Food Services’ apology stated it had “recognized that [the menu’s] content was insensitive,” and it “regrets that [its] actions have negatively impacted” the people it serves on a daily basis.
It added everyone involved in the menu’s creation “worked hard to be inclusive.”
Reactions to the menu were mixed; on the Barstool post, some asked what the big deal was with one commenter pointing out the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture serves the exact same menu as a “celebration of traditional, authentic African American cooking.”
One commenter didn’t believe the menu was real, another said Food Services needed to be “helped [sic] accountable,” and the student group Palestine Solidarity Collective said the menu was “extremely racist, but nothing new for [Syracuse].”
This story is but the latest in a long line of similarly politically correct incidents. A year ago, a New York State middle school ran afoul of the sensitive after it served chicken and waffles for lunch (with watermelon for dessert) on the first day of Black History Month.
A few years before that, a black New York University student complained about a black employee-created Black History Month menu consisting of barbecue ribs, corn bread, collard greens, Kool-Aid, and watermelon-flavored water. The employees ended up being fired.
Perhaps most hilariously, following numerous complaints about a San Francisco-area private school’s Black History Month cuisine — fried chicken, cornbread and watermelon — a local NAACP official said “What is the big deal? Historically and even now, we like our chicken and I’m not going to stop eating my fried chicken, nor my cornbread, nor my watermelon.”