A controversy has broken out at Washington University in St. Louis over a Facebook photo apparently showing five students dressed up for Halloween as a Navy SEAL team capturing Osama bin Laden with garish neon water guns.
The photo was originally posted on Facebook on Oct. 30 with the title “Halloween ’13 Amurrica!!” reports the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. The photo shows three dudes in camouflage attire surrounding a kid also in camo garb who is sporting a long, fake beard and turban. There’s also a guy in the background holding up an American flag.
Washington University student Mahroh Jahangiri later objected to the photo because she views mimicking the American military’s killing of Osama bin Laden as a hateful Muslim stereotype.
“As a Muslim-American who has been subjected to taunts of ‘dirty paki’ and ‘get the fuck out of WU and America’ on this campus, the reasons why this photo are offensive are painfully obvious and represent a broader, more aggressive (and apparently violent) Islamophobia rampant here at WashU and in the United States,” Jahangiri has explained on her Facebook page.
“This photo makes a costume of the lives of the thousands of civilian Muslim men who have been murdered during our ‘War on Terror’ and the countless others who have been mutilated, robbed, and stabbed to death in hate crimes across the United States,” she also rants.
“This is disgusting and cannot be tolerated on this campus. There are very few Muslim students on this campus, and our voice is not loud enough. For those of you who had not heard of this until now, now you have. What are we going to do to change this?”
School officials at Wash. U. have sided earnestly with Jahangiri.
No fewer than three high-ranking functionaries at the school including the chancellor, Mark S. Wrighton, signed a statement saying they are “disappointed and saddened” about the awesome Halloween stunt, notes the Post-Dispatch. The statement called the image “entirely inconsistent with who we are as an institution, our values and the way in which we engage in the world around us.”
The statement from the administrators begs the question: exactly what is the image of Washington University? Without question, the school is famous for promoting massive amounts of anal sex.