Duluth’s image problem

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If there were competition to be Minnesota’s most racist city, Duluth would likely be a heavy favorite.

The area has certainly had more than its share of news stories about racial problems over the years.

The city, of course, was the home of the 1920 lynchings of three black circus workers.

In the last year or so, an anti-racism campaign in the city has focused more attention on uneasy relations in the city, and brought some of the racism out into the open.

A few weeks ago, someone hung an effigy of President Obama from a prominent Duluth electronic billboard.

And two years ago, some white University of Minnesota Duluth students ganged up on a black student via Facebook.

So it should come as little surprise that a racist video on YouTube has its roots in the city. It was, the UMD Statesman reports, produced by one current University of Minnesota Duluth student and one former student.

The two are shown in blackface — they say it was a facial — while making disparaging comments about African Americans.

The video has since been taken down and the students — Rachel Cooper and Jessica Heid — said they’re sorry for anyone it offends.

That would be everyone who’s not racist, ladies.

  • Real sad to see this,i saw the video bit.ly/T7Zfzn

  • Kal

    An apology is a start but the video has gone viral (as it should) and disciplinary action must be taken! As mentioned in this article these incidents continue occurring, so obviously the measures taken in previous cases have not been adequate in preventing and discouraging future incidents. There simply needs to be a zero tolerance policy for this kind of racist behavior. The responsibility of applying disciplinary action must be taken by the the University of Minnesota because not only are these videos extremely offensive they make students of color at UMD feel threatened and unsafe.

  • John P.

    My daughter and I were waiting our turn to pay at a Perkins in Duluth. Two old codgers in front of us. I wasn’t listening to them, but then one loudly says to the other “You know what the problem is with this town? TOO MANY JEWS!” The other guy nods in agreement.

    It’s only one incident. I don’t even know if they were locals, but when incidents start to pile up with news reports you start to wonder about the place. Maybe it’s not an image problem. Maybe it’s a racism problem.

  • Tomorrow at 3 p.m. CST, the radio show ON POINT on BlogTalkRadio will play the full audio of the shocking YouTube video. http://donny-allen.us/2012/11/23/ron-don-show-murder-death-racism-dont-minnesota-saturday-3-p-m/

  • John O.

    Typical Minnesota passive/aggressive behavior. I tend to agree with John P.

  • Glen

    Will they be punished? Or will the lesson be that you can dehumanize anybody that you want so long as you say “sorry” after you’re done getting your kicks.