Teachable Moments

Yale is having something of a meltdown over Halloween costumes.

If I was higher-up administrator I’d also send out an annual warning about insensitive costumes.  And I’d encourage a healthy debate as to what is or isn’t appropriate.

I spent a few years as a graduate student at the University of Virginia.  It’s a cut below Yale, I freely admit, but the undergraduate student body is composed of some of the smartest and richest offspring of the DC area elite.  And without fail, whether it was Halloween or one of the many “Pimps and Hos” celebrations or random outbursts of Confederate flags hanging from fraternity houses, some students felt it was appropriate to wear blackface.

The point being, if even the so-called “best and brightest” don’t know about the ugly history of an American institution, you can’t blame administrators from trying to cover their asses when it comes to outbreaks of racism on campus.

It’s not P.C.-ism run amok, it’s a necessary measure given how little younger Americans tend to know about the history of race and racism in their own country.

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