An end-of-year Hump Day event featuring an on-campus camel was canceled in part because it might have been racist.
The Residence Hall Association of the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, Minnesota, wanted to bring the camel to the campus quad as a fun stress reducer while students crammed for exams and to create a “petting zoo type of atmosphere” for the students to enjoy. Last semester the group brought a reindeer to campus for a similar reason.
Wednesday, the middle of the workweek, is considered Hump Day (especially if you’ve seen the GEICO commercial embedded below), and the event was scheduled for Wednesday, May 14.
This time around, however, some students protested on Facebook that the planned event was a form of animal cruelty, a waste of money (about $500 to rent the camel), and was racially insensitive to Middle Eastern cultures.
In a Facebook posting (that appears to have been deleted), the RHA president explained that “RHA’s goal in programming is to bring residents together in a fun and safe environment where all people can enjoy themselves. It appears however, this program is dividing people and would make for an uncomfortable and possibly unsafe environment for everyone attending or providing the program. As a result, RHA has decided to cancel the event.”
On May 8, the RHA sponsored a southern hospitality event featuring mechanical bull rides.
According to a university spokesman, “… It was never the university’s intent to make a political or cultural statement of any kind by bringing a camel to campus. In light of the negative comments, it was clear that the camel’s visit would no longer be simply a fun, stress-reducing activity for students as originally intended. At that point, the university decided to cancel the event.”
As The Inquisitr previously reported, the song YMCA by the Village People was banned from an elementary school talent show after one mother raised racism claims.
Do you think the University of St. Thomas acted appropriately in rescinding “Hump Day”?
[image credit: Jjron]