Native Studies Students’ Association Responds to “Western Bros and Nava-hoes” | The Wanderer Online

Several days ago, the Deke fraternity on campus created an event to be hosted at The Ranch Roadhouse, where the event name is a cultural appropriation of the Navajo Nation: “Western Bros and Nava-hoes.” The NSSA, which advocates on issues related to the students in the Faculty of Native Studies, posted a blog on November 29 outlining students’ reactions to the regrettable name, which can be found here. In particular, a prominent blogger named Cosette Dubrûle was quick to question The Ranch over its name-choice, leading to the eventual changing of the name and cancelling of the party.

Without question, the NSSA’s efforts are an example of what student advocacy can and should do. A huge congrats go out to President Kirsten Lindquist, Ms. Dubrûle and the rest of the NSSA for their action here.

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  • Anonymous

    Make sure to proofread before you post things. The Delta Kappa Epsilon Fraternity is not “On campus” and is not affiliated with the University of Alberta in any way right now. The Greek community on campus is not currently affiliated with Delta Kappa Epsilon and it erodes the positive image that many strive very hard to maintain. This article is simply sensationalism and was not thoroughly thought out.

    • Shut the fuck up. Don’t try to distance yourself from the DKE frat. Frat boys are frat boys. The Dekes were just unlucky to get caught hazing and got kicked out for a little while. The other frats were better at hiding it. Don’t pretend like the other frats are different, because that’s a goddamn lie.

      • EtaThetaIota

        “Frat boys are frat boys” is a highly ignorant mindset to possess, as well, Asbscondicus.
        You seem to forget that the entire Student’s Union is made up of Greeks — Colton and his team of VPs are all “frat boys.” The presidents and execs of a great number of other student groups are associates and initiates of fraternities and sororities on campus. Fraternities are all founded on the values of social excellence and academic achievement. The other fraternities ARE different; they are genuine, honest, ambitious people just like anyone else in or out of the Greek system.
        DKE is not a recognized fraternity within U of A’s Greek system, and so you CANNOT judge the rest of the Greeks based on their actions. Keep that in mind the next time you start to marginalize Greeks the same way that other groups are marginalized.

        • “you CANNOT judge the rest of the Greeks based on their actions.”

          Well, unfortunately that’s reality. Don’t like being associated with the negative stereotypes of the frat community? Don’t join it.

          “Fraternities are all founded on the values of social excellence and academic achievement”

          That’s lovely, but I’ve seen some interesting papers that have argued that joining a frat decreases academic performance. Google it.

          I’ve also seen some papers that argue that frats perpetuate, tolerate, or facilitate “rape culture”. You should google that too, if you’re brave enough.

          Also, if your community is so righteous and noble, why didn’t YOUR community speak out against all the hazing that was going on in the DKE frat? Why did a big news story have to break for the hazing to stop, hmm? Maybe you frat boys aren’t as righteous as you pretend to be.

          “Keep that in mind the next time you start to marginalize Greeks the same way that other groups are marginalized.”

          This statement is an embarrassment to you, I’m afraid. It’s one thing to perpetuate stereotypes against a minority with a history of repression and poor treatment by the majority. It’s another thing entirely for a privileged group to feign oppression when they’re called out for the terrible shit they do.

          • A. Valencia

            While I would not call myself an ally of the U of A’s Greek community, I would say that the sort of criticism you are doling out to them is unsubstantiated and unfair. Yes, the group’s choice of name was very offensive, and I am highly unimpressed by this chapter of DKE. Furthermore, I would disagree with the original post of this thread in saying that this piece is necessarily sensationalist. However, the U of A’s Greek community has distanced themselves from the group, and to paint them in the same light would be comparable to other gross and irresponsible generalizations. This attitude is what allows negative stereotypes and attitudes, such as that perpetuated by the DKE in Edmonton, to flourish. Please don’t fall back on saying that “that’s reality” because doing so is not a solution. Aboriginal groups and organizations can be viewed unfairly because of the large discrimination and stereotyping that Aboriginals face in Canada. Does that constitute grounds for the self-renunciation or disaffiliation of indigenous groups and peoples? After all, this is the reality of living in Canada today.

            I have had the pleasure of working with a variety of members of this university’s Greek community, and I have found that despite my own personal reservations about the system, they have demonstrated a spirit and attitude consistent with what many of these groups claim of themselves. Until you can substantiate your claims that other Greek groups on our campus were or are able to hide hazing practices, they remain to me as hearsay. Your appeal to academic sources may present disturbing truths, but please consider context and subtleties. Do these studies align well with the context of our university’s Greek system? Have all members of the Greek community earned the particular distinctions you’ve granted them? Study and inquiry also shows that Asian Americans maintain a disproportionate share of college admissions in elite American universities, and statistics show that African Americans make up a disproportionate share of the American prison population. But, of course, you’re not going to claim that all Asian Americans are good at math and that African Americans are criminals. That’s rather discriminatory, and simply uninformed. The constituents of both Aboriginal groups and campus Greek communities are much more complex than you are taking them to be, and both groups deserve more than a reductive “us versus them” (or “them versus them”?) treatment.

      • Anonymous

        Who’s to say they’re in a Frat? Stereotyping is wrong.. no matter what group it’s against. Calling out all frat boys as “frat boys” is just as bad as me saying all university students are white collar pretentious attention whores seeking social justice on insignificant social issues. Grow up.

        • Well, not all university students are white collar pretentious attention whores seeking social justice on insignificant social issues. Unfortunately, some of them are also douchebag frat boys who do racist and sexist things then go after anyone who points it out. Hm.

      • HI there was another UofA Aboriginal Student Group involved as well, ASG did contact the President of said fraternity, to express our displeasure and did get an apology over the phone. More needs to be done however, in regards to cultural sensitivity training to ensure this type of thing does not happen again! But yes I agree NSSA & Cosette GMCC student played a key role in brining this issue forward. cheers, Gail Gallagher, ASG President

  • Anonymous

    Are the dekes a fraternity?.. NO they lost that status with their stupidity which they again displayed here… don’t they have a media relations/president that should be monitoring these things??..

    • So, what are they then? Pretty sure they self-identify as a frat. Are they just some dudes who hang out near campus who happen to use greek letters to identify themselves, but not a fraternity? Must be. Not sure what we’d call that though.