DU Native Student Alliance on Greek groups' party apology, school response

Categories: Education, News

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Big photos below.
Yesterday, Greek Life representatives at the University of Denver publicly apologized for a Cowboys and Indians-themed party dubbed "piercingly offensive" by DU's Native Student Alliance. And while the university's chancellor didn't attend, he has arranged to meet with alliance members next week -- a development that contrasts sharply with dismissive online comments about the issue from what the group's adviser calls "spineless vermin."

As we've reported, the February 25 party was sponsored by the Lambda Chi Alpha fraternity and Delta Delta Delta sorority. Attendees were encouraged to outfit themselves as either cowboys or Indians. Those who made the latter choice donned what an Alliance release describes as "phony headdresses, face paint, loincloths and all manner of stereotypical viciousness."

Alliance members found out about the bash a few days later after coming upon photos posted to a Facebook page. Here's an example:

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After the Alliance excoriated the event in a letter to the executive director of campus activities, who oversees Greek Life on the DU campus, a series of meetings took place, and the frat and sorority in question penned apologies they agreed to read yesterday near a tepee erected on the campus' Driscoll Green.

According to Simon Moya-Smith, a DU graduate student, Ogalala Lakota member and Alliance adviser, approximately 100 people attended the event, including many Lambda Chi and Tri-Delta members. DU chancellor Dr. Robert Coombe wasn't among them due to a scheduling conflict, but Moya-Smith is pleased he's committed to an upcoming conversation.

"We're happy and excited that the chancellor is finally going to sit at the table with us, not only to talk about the apology, but also about the future," Moya-Smith says. "DU likes to talk about 'inclusive excellence,' and we want to look at how we can put some gusto behind this campaign -- how we can get it moving, get things in motion and actually do things instead of just talk about them."

Page down to continue reading about yesterday's event.

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