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Letter: Criticism of Fall Weekend stoked racial antagonism

To the Editor:

I was struck by the social and academic irresponsibility displayed by your published selections of Keith Dellagrotta's '10 speech at Monday's rally against "Fall Weekend" ("Rally against ‘Fall Weekend' takes on U.'s name change"). I am aware that his intention was to belittle rather than engage the community he belongs to — how else to explain his choice to describe our faculty as "naive, arrogant (and) haughty?" However, this accounts neither for the extraordinary lack of research behind his statements nor their terrifyingly racist undertones. In stating that Brown faculty "sid(ed) with American Indians, less than 1 percent of Brown's student body," Dellagrotta casts this decision as one made against 99 percent of Brown, and in doing so pits community members against one another in an unapologetically racialized way. The fact that such a distasteful position is built upon a clearly unresearched understanding of pre-American history only adds to the embarrassing quality of Dellagrotta's words. I hope that the conservative community at Brown can forgive Dellagrotta for further caricaturing their campus presence through his unserious and antagonistically trite analysis of our history and community.

Geoffrey Mino '12

Oct. 13

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