It’s officially over for Arizona State University and Tau Kappa Epsilon. The university formally cut all ties with the frat days after it hosted an MLK Day party that played up on racial stereotypes and sparked outrage among civil rights leaders, the Arizona Republic reports.
ASU released a statement on Thursday night saying that the frat has been notified that its recognition as a chapter at the school has been permanently revoked, according to the site. This means that the 65-year-old chapter will no longer be affiliated with the university, will no longer be listed on the university website and cannot recruit members or hold meetings on university property, the Republic notes. According to the newspaper, officials from the university are still examining the situation and deliberating how to handle the individual cases of student discipline.
Over the long holiday weekend, members of the organization thought that it would be fun to put on an MLK Day party, where the theme was to “dress black.” Photos from the event made their way onto various social media, showing attendees dressed in basketball jerseys, throwing up gang signs and holding “watermelon” cups.
The images sparked a backlash among civil rights leaders, who called on the university to expel the fraternity and the students involved. According to the Republic, the frat had already been on probation for a November 2012 fight, when members confronted an African-American rival fraternity member and beat him up. The young man suffered a broken jaw, concussion and other scrapes.
Local civil rights activist the Rev. Jarret Maupin is pleased that the university has decided to drop the frat, but that condition only meets the first of three demands. He stands firm in the call to have the individual students expelled, as well, and for the university to create a “more accepting environment” for all students. The leaders have threatened to boycott university athletics and fund-raising campaigns until these demands are met.