Students protest African American Studies chair

Members of Temple’s African American Studies Department held a rally in front of the Bell Tower today in protest of the appointment of Jayne Drake, a white woman, as chairwoman of the department.

The rally, which was held between 4 p.m. and 5 p.m., featured undergraduate and graduate student speakers, as well as many speakers from the North Philadelphia community.

“We just hope to put pressure on the university so that they can have more respect for minority studies, and that’s all disciplines, africana studies, asian studies, women’s studies, queer studies,” said Sabrina Sample, a political science major who is minoring in African American studies.

One protester at the event stood in silence, waving two large Pan-African flags, one sign held by a protester read “save black studies.”

Ronald Amour, a local community activist, spoke at the event and helped introduce several of the other speakers. Amour complemented the crowd that had gathered in from of the tower, saying that the diversity of the students assembled showed solidarity with the people in the African American studies department.

The crowd was openly critical of Teresa Soufas, Dean of the College of Liberal Arts, for appointing Drake to the head of the African American studies department. They called for Molefi Asante, the former chairperson and current professor in the department, to be given the appointment as the popular decision among the departments students.

The crowds repeatedly broke out in chants of “We want Asante,” and “Soufas must go.” Several speakers at the event, which was open mic, accused Soufas of being a “racist,” and irresponsive to the needs and wishes of the professors and students in the department.

Craig: Harlem Shake symbolizes a powerful revolution

“Do you hear the people sing? Singing the songs of angry men!” – Les Miserables

A revolution starts with a spark, a small flame to ignite a peoples with a common goal. In this case, a Facebook event is all that was needed to round hundreds of inspired young adults to sacrifice their Friday afternoons for a common cause: dance.

Temple Students gathered around the Bell Tower this afternoon to recreate the famous Harlem Shake videos, creating a sea of costumes and fist pumping that clearly said, “We’re mad as hell, and we’re not going to take it anymore!”

Yet to what oppressive force can we attribute this phenomenon? With so much going on, it’s clear these Youtube pioneers were making a statement about something.

What about President Obama and his policies?

“Absolutely,” said sophomore Harmon Sachse, “Obama is directly related to this.”

Could this be in response to the recent debate surrounding immigration?

“I think it says nothing at all about immigration,” said junior Joseph McGovern, “I think everyone who’s here was already in the United States.”

Maybe this video will be a defiant rejection of corporate culture. A Temple student, who to protect his identity decided to go simply by “Tim,” commented on this possibility.

“Um,” said Tim, “I don’t know. Maybe it’s about like overplayed pop music that’s exploited by record companies.”

Although the direction of this movement is not clear, we can say for sure that it is a bold expression of our Wayne and Garth given right to party on.

Daniel Craig can be reached at

Sorority pledges announced on steps of Bell Tower

Sorority rushes became pledges tonight after officially receiving their bids during an event held in front of the Bell Tower.

Hundreds of sisters, clad in the pinks, blues, and greens representing their respective sororities crowded in front of the Bell Tower while the pledges, who had been informed whether they received a bid earlier in the afternoon, lined up on the steps of Paley Library dressed mostly in sweatshirts.

As their names were announced through a megaphone above cheering crowds, the new pledges were led around the back of the Bell Tower and onto the steps where they presented their lettered T-shirts before rushing into the awaiting arms of the sisters of their sororities.

Afterwards, each sorority held a different event where pledges were told of the next steps in the process to become sisters.

It’s Monday — Time to Party

Posters have been taped on the sidewalk around the Bell Tower and Student Center for Rover: a traveling dance party.

This event occurs Monday nights from 10 p.m. to 2 a.m. at a different location each week. To add to the bizarre fun, to enter you must know the secret password for the event.

DJ Royale, DJ Lee Jones and MC Tom Charles are bringing their blend of musical genres for the hottest dance party every Monday for young adults.

Tonight the party is at Walnut Room, 1709 Walnut St., and the password: “Miss Piggy is the original Lady Gaga.”

For more information on locations and the night’s secret password go to

Troy Davis executed after Supreme Court denies stay

Troy Davis, a 42-year-old man convicted of murdering a police officer in Savannah, Ga. was executed by lethal injection at 11:08 p.m. tonight.

In 1991, Davis was convicted of the 1989 murder of officer Mark MacPhail.

Davis escaped three executions before, but was denied clemency shortly before his execution.

On Friday, Sept. 15, students from Temple rallied at the Bell Tower against the execution.

Many prominent organizations and public figures have claimed Davis’ innocence throughout the past 20 years, rallying in his defense until the end.

Davis reportedly maintained his innocence tonight, telling MacPhail’s family members that were present at the execution that he did not commit the crime he was convicted of.

At the ‘crotch of campus,’ the Bell Tower could be a wind turbine

Check out Lauren Gruber’s take on why the Bell Tower is “that erect ugly phallus sitting in the crotch of campus,” and how it could power up to 400 homes if it were used as a wind turbine rather than a fake bell-chiming slab of concrete.

Gruber’s case that it would make campus more sustainable and save Temple money could perk the ears of President Ann Weaver Hart and her “commitment to sustainability.”