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U. Virginia frat, sorority in hot water for alleged ‘cultural appropriation’

A fraternity and sorority at the University of Virginia are facing criticism for “engag[ing] in alleged cultural appropriation” during chapter-sponsored activities.

According to The Cavalier Daily, images appeared on social media showing members of the Kappa Sigma fraternity dressed in Native American garb, and sisters of the Zeta Tau Alpha “wearing sombreros and holding maracas.”

The Daily’s Caroline Stoerker writes that criticism of the photos “underscored the racial dynamics” of UVA’s Greek system as the school’s chapters are “often predominantly white.”

The Inter-Fraternity Council at UVA posted a message on its Facebook page stating it was aware of “the prejudiced and culturally insensitive attire” worn by members of Kappa Sig, and is working with frat members and the Office of Fraternity and Sorority Life at UVA to “investigate this matter and sanction the identified parties.”

Ian Ware, an “angryqueer” UVA student according to his Twitter profile, posted photos of Kappa Sig members in Native headgear with the commentary “hey kappa sigma!! wonder if this pic will be valuable in 20 years when one of you racist assholes is governor!!!”

Ware was interviewed Monday by UVA news station WUVA and told them “This is just another example of white frat boys at UVA being blatantly racist.” He accused members of doing this sort of stuff “all the time” and of thinking it’s “funny.”

It’s unclear whether Ware was aware of the Kappa Sig incident when he made this Saturday tweet:

The UVA IFC also indicated it “condemns these actions and any others that appropriate culture.” The Daily said the Inter-Sorority Council has yet to give a comment while Zeta Tau Alpha refused to offer one.

Read the full story.

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