College takes small stand against terrible Halloween costumes, annoys Fox News

The University of Colorado Boulder issued a memo asking students to think twice before wearing offensive costumes

Published October 24, 2013 8:21PM (EDT)

         (<a href=''>Stuart Miles</a> via <a href=''>Shutterstock</a>)
(Stuart Miles via Shutterstock)

The University of Colorado Boulder this week sent out a very innocuous memo suggesting students "consider the impact your costume decision may have on others" and try to refrain from dressing up as racial, cultural or gender stereotype for Halloween this year.

It's a gently worded letter requesting students think twice before donning that "Sexy Indian Princess" costume because, as Dean of Students Christina Gonzales notes, "making the choice to dress up as someone from another culture, either with the intention of being humorous or without the intention of being disrespectful, can lead to inaccurate and hurtful portrayals of other peoples’ cultures in the [campus] community.”

There is no mention in the letter of consequences for noncompliance, just the recommendation that people try harder not to be racist, sexist or otherwise clueless this Halloween.

But here is what Fox News and the National Review think the letter said: FUN IS BANNED FOREVER AT COLLEGE. RIP FUN.

Because, presumably, college students can only have fun while they are being terrible?

"Finding a Halloween costume that doesn't terrify politically-correct college busybodies could be a challenge this year," whines Fox News in a piece that calls the letter a warning against the "dangers of donning a costume -- almost any costume." (Emphasis mine. Mental addition of dun, dun, dun, also mine.)

And, sure, some costumes are racist but "So bloody what?" says the National Review's Charles C. W. Cooke, prompting a stream of comments calling the university officials "fascists" for making a non-binding request of their students.

You can read the letter here:




By Katie McDonough

Katie McDonough is Salon's politics writer, focusing on gender, sexuality and reproductive justice. Follow her on Twitter @kmcdonovgh or email her at

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College College Students Fox News Halloween Racism Sexism