University of Oklahoma

Race and Diversity
5:06 pm
Mon April 20, 2015

University Of Oklahoma's New Diversity Chief: 'We Can Do Better'

Tape with the word "UNHEARD" covers the mouth of the sculpture "The Sower" at the University of Oklahoma on March 11, 2015 in Norman, Oklahoma. The statue was marked by the black student group OU UNHEARD at the university. (Brett Deering/Getty Images)

Originally published on Mon April 20, 2015 2:23 pm

The University of Oklahoma’s first chief diversity officer starts his new job soon, three months after the university kicked out a fraternity and expelled two students who were seen on video leading a racist chant.

University president David Boren was praised for acting swiftly once the video was made public last month. But the University of Oklahoma is one of only four schools in the Big 12 Conference without a chief diversity officer.

Some minority students at the university are asking, what took the university president so long to hire one?

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2:14 pm
Mon March 30, 2015

SAE National President Criticizes Boren In Facebook Post

In the post, which has since been deleted, Sigma Alpha Epsilon national president Brad Cohen noted that there is a difference between formally learning a racist chant and hearing and repeating such a chant. He called Boren's statements during the press conference "inflammatory and self serving."
Sigma Alpha Epsilon national president Brad Cohen posted a Facebook status criticizing comments made about national organization by OU President David Boren during a press conference Friday. In the post, Cohen noted that there is a difference between formally learning a racist chant and hearing and repeating such a chant.
Here & Now
1:36 pm
Mon March 16, 2015

The Week's News In Social Media

"Morning Joe" host Joe Scarborough came under fire in social media for his comments about the SAE fraternity at the University of Oklahoma that created racist chants. (MSNBC screenshot)

Originally published on Mon March 16, 2015 3:06 pm

Last week’s news blew up in social media circles, from Senator Tom Cotton’s letter about Iran, to comments from MSNBC hosts about racist chants by SAE frat members at the University of Oklahoma.

Slate editor-in-chief Julia Turner joins Here & Now’s Robin Young to discuss to round up how the news reverberated through social media.

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Oklahoma News
6:33 am
Mon March 16, 2015

Before SAE, Ferguson Inspires University Of Oklahoma Minority Rights Group

Duct tape with the word "Unheard" covers the mouth of the Seed Sower statue on the University of Oklahoma's South Oval
Jacob McCleland KGOU

A small group of black students at the University of Oklahoma were thrust into the national spotlight last week after a video surfaced of Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity members singing a racist chant.

In the days after that video surfaced, member of black social justice group Unheard seemed to be everywhere, including CNN, ABC and NPR.

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World Views
4:30 pm
Fri March 13, 2015

World Views: March 13, 2015

Rebecca Cruise and Suzette Grillot talk about racism and bigotry in a global context in light of this week’s events involving the University of Oklahoma's chapter of the Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity. 

Then journalist and activist Hannah Storm from the International News Safety Institute explains about how much protection correspondents can reasonably expect as modern warfare evolves.

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Oklahoma News
7:47 am
Fri March 13, 2015

Dallas Home Of Former OU Student Picketed

Demonstrators with Next Generation Action Network chant in North Dallas at home of Parker Rice.
Doualy Xaykaothao KERA News

Originally published on Thu March 12, 2015 7:20 pm

Protesters carried small anti-racism placards and walked up and down the street in the affluent Northwest Dallas neighborhood where Parker Rice lives.

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Oklahoma News
1:37 pm
Thu March 12, 2015

University Of Oklahoma President To PBS: Colleges Must Be Loud Voice Against Racism

University of Oklahoma President David Boren says the school has a responsibility to educate its students and be vigilant enough to stand up to even the subtlest forms of discrimination in light of the video that made international headlines showing Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity members engaging in a racist chant.

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Oklahoma News
7:36 am
Thu March 12, 2015

The 'Other' Parker Rice: How The OU Scandal Trapped A Student With The Same Name

This Parker Rice is a student at Oklahoma State University who's dealing with a social media deluge from people confusing him with the other Parker Rice, who's involved in the University of Oklahoma fraternity scandal.
Courtesy of Parker Rice

Originally published on Thu March 12, 2015 8:10 pm

This story is not about that Parker Rice -- the University of Oklahoma student from Dallas who was expelled this week after leading racist chants in a notorious fraternity video. 

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Oklahoma Watch
10:15 am
Wed March 11, 2015

Beyond The Racist Chant: The Facts About Black Inequality In Oklahoma

Predominantly black northeast Oklahoma City is plagued by abandoned and vacant homes.
Shawntel Brown Oklahoma Watch

Recent controversy over a racist chant at a University of Oklahoma fraternity focused attention on the state’s race relations. But the numbers beneath the headlines perhaps cast a longer shadow.

By almost every metric, blacks struggle in most of the quality-of-life factors in the state. Oklahoma is first in the nation, per capita, for blacks to die at the hands of police officers among states reporting. Blacks are about half as likely to own a home, are more likely to go to prison, less likely to go to college and less likely to graduate.

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7:53 am
Wed March 11, 2015

Fraternity In Racist University Of Oklahoma Video Has Roots In Antebellum South

The exterior of the Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity house on the University of Oklahoma campus, shortly before the letters were removed from the building March 9, 2015.
Jacob McCleland KGOU

Sigma Alpha Epsilon's international headquarters may be in Illinois, but the fraternity's roots are firmly planted in the antebellum South. "We came up from Dixie land," says a ditty from an old songbook, boasting about SAE's success.

Now, nearly 160 years after its founding at the University of Alabama, another song — this one chanted by members of the frat's University ofOklahoma chapter and containing racial slurs and lynching references — hearkens back to the bad old times in the land of cotton and puts a new spotlight on the group's activities over the years.

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