‘Get Back On The Boat’: Students Target Black Sororities and Fraternities

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Students at Arkansas State University are hiding behind an anonymous app to post racially-fueled attacks toward Black sororities and fraternities at the school. 

As the National Pan-Hellenic Council (NPHC) Black Greek organizations were celebrating Greek Week at Arkansas State University, students took to the social media app Yik Yak to mock Black students strolling on campus.

The anonymous post called for Black Greeks to “get back on the boat” and declared that “Black is a disease,” according to a statement released on the university’s NPHC chapter Instagram. 

Kenyon Atkins, Arkansas State’s NPHC president, continued in the statement, “Not only is it shameful and discouraging to see our peers using an anonymous app to shame and belittle us, but it is also a mockery of our traditions and history behind our organizations.”

Atkins added, “For so long, minority students have been unable to feel comfortable on their college campus[es], and this is a prime example. As a student body, we are to exemplify unity and understanding for EVERY student—no matter their race or ethnic background.”

 

 
 
 
 
 
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A post shared by National Pan-Hellenic Council (@astate_nphc)

Following the release of the anonymous post, students in a moving car reportedly shouted “white power” at Orion Husley, a junior at Arkansas State who was being interviewed about the ongoing situation. 

Arkansas State University Chancellor Kelly Damphousse said in a statement on Thursday (April 14), “The language and labels used by persons posting about the weekly [National Pan-Hellenic Council] events on campus is simply unacceptable and disgraceful.” 

Damphousse added, “The type of statements made recently related to Black students and members of NPHC organizations are shameful and unwelcome at Arkansas State University.”

However, Jamal Romes, president of Arkansas State NAACP told KAIT, “It’s the same statement over and over again and nobody is going to deal with it.”

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