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Snack Attack

Oh how quickly Columbia’s wheels of justice turn. A little less than 48 hours ago, I posted on the Bwog a pictures of a bizarre little homemade cracker packet I found.

Then came the increasingly frantic emails from the Class Deans and Public Security to the Blue & White’s editor-in-chief, Avi. By last night, the emails got back to me. We were told by the Administration that “the photographer [that’s me!] will be in contact with Public Safety by first thing tomorrow morning.” Will do.

Or will try to do. I called Ken Finnegan, Public Safety’s Director of Investigations and Technology, like he asked. Answering machine. Then I stopped by. Not in. Then I called again. Made some bread pudding. Called again.

Then I got an email from Dean Colombo claiming I have alleged a bias incident. Patted myself on back for fighting the good fight. Checked on bread pudding.

Anyway, Ken, if you’re reading this, CALL ME.

Update: Eyewitness account filed with the proper authorities. Best of luck, Ken, with the investigation. I know you’ll leave no crumb unturned.

-Bethany Milton, Bwog Co-Editor

Email from Dean Colombo after the jump.

Dear Student,

The Dean of Student Affairs office noticed a photo posted on a blog operated by the student publication, the Blue and White, that alleges a bias incident took place on Columbia’s campus. Public Safety has been notified and is conducting an investigation. At this point, we are not able to independently confirm this incident.

As always, our colleagues are aware of this situation and available to you. If you have any knowledge of this incident or if you have any concerns, you may contact Ken Finnegan in the Office of Public Safety directly at 212-854-4670 or

Any students in need of support at this time are encouraged to contact their class deans, the Office of Residential Programs, the Office of Multicultural Affairs and the Office of the University Chaplain for support.

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  • sigh says:

    @sigh Oh SHOCC, what have you done?

    1. YidChick says:

      @YidChick Fucking mother fucking fuckers. Probably took a class from Mossad and DeGenova the same semester. This sucks. I’m so ashamed of our grand Ivy League School. Fellow Jews UNITE!!

      1. reason says:

        @reason calm down, this cracker is not the harbinger of the holocaust, and neither is mossad (despite what those who would like to silence academic discourse and denigrate our university would like you to think)

      2. ShaygetsDude says:

        @ShaygetsDude Yeah, I really think that this patently anti-Semitic cracker is evidence that the liberal conspiracy at Columbia is secretly planning to round up and exterminate the Jewish community here. We Jews need to band together, because Lord knows we don’t have enough privilege already!

  • lawman says:

    @lawman what is a bias incident? how long can this campus be run on the basis of arbitrarily identified and defined “crimes”? we’re living outside the rule of law.

  • SHOCC'ed says:

    @SHOCC'ed I hope they stop those creepy farks that stand outside Lerner handing out “COME SEE ISRAEL” propaganda to everyone that looks even slightly Jewish. To me, that’s a “bias” crime.

    SHOCC — get on it!

  • oh says:

    @oh I think we need another office of multicultural affairs, since only one doesn’t seem to be doing the trick.

  • : - ( says:

    @: - ( Man, with all these hate crimes this year, the constant outrage i must feel has left me at the point of exhaustion. I hardly have any energy left to feel outrage at this one.

  • methinks says:

    @methinks SHOCC probably planted this as proof that their agenda is absolutely necessary.

  • Getting so tired says:

    @Getting so tired of these e-mails that end in “if anyone needs support at this time…” Clearly Colombo has to say that but does he honestly think the cracker incident is going to drive anyone into therapy?

    1. Paul says:

      @Paul Never underestimate New York!

  • nomnd says:

    @nomnd I’m there with ya. I’ve been overcome by all this outrage that I’ve been told that I feel about these heinous events. They tell me that I’m horrified, that I’m shocked, that I am encountering bias at every turn. I guess that when they tell me to protest I’ll do that too.

  • I don't know... says:

    @I don't know... I’m pretty traumatized by the whole thing.

  • come on, y'all says:

    @come on, y'all i mean, i agree that there’s not good language to talk about minor idiocy, but swastikas are never never never cool.

    1. Agreed says:

      @Agreed Of course. But there seems to be an attitude that suggests that deep below the surface, on a priviliged, ultra-liberal campus, seventy percent of us are neo-Nazis. We don’t *need* to be told that swastikas are bad, in a seminar or otherwise. We’re smart like that, except two or three dudes who keep doing dumb shit.

    2. markeros says:

      @markeros Swastikas are sometimes cool. Like when they’re on puppies or kittens.

      No, wait. That’s “cute”.

      Yeah, you’re right. Swastikas are never cool.

  • well I say says:

    @well I say Bread pudding for all!

    Can I get an amen?

  • McFister says:

    @McFister I need testicular support, think a Dean can help me?

  • yeahhh says:

    @yeahhh but i think this is different from personal insults being written on someone’s door. i mean, if someone wrote racist, homophobic shit on my door because of my student activities, i’d want to know what columbia was going to do about it, too

  • the empire will always strike back! says:

    @the empire will always strike back! But it’s not a swastika, it’s a backwards swastika, which actually represents Buddhism. Oh SHOCC, what have you done, making our campus police think that incidents which actually promote cultural diversity are in fact hate crimes. :'(

    1. mk says:

      @mk i think the swastikas, in addition to “BM,” which is the acronym of the British Movement, a British neo-nazi group, merit attention. the term “bias incident” may not be satisfying, but it is a far less loaded term than “hate crime.” i really fail to see any logic behind the question “Oh SHOCC, what have you done?” the administration rapidly targeting offensive items left on campus hardly seems to merit derision. if what shocc has “done” has been to increase response time, then, well, that’s good.

  • McFister says:

    @McFister Smoking (agree) or Swastikas (disagree) are cool

  • confused says:

    @confused Is this real?????

    Looks like someone trying to be an asshole and undermine the work SHOCC is trying to do…

    I am so confused.

  • Josh says:

    @Josh Having run across the official email in response to this one, I was kind of stupefied by the term “bias incident.” It would seem more like a “threatening bigotry incident,” in which bias is kind of presumed, with about the same level of hedging as calling a bout of terminal cancer “a condition involving not feeling so good.”

    Let’s hope that the administrational response doesn’t continue along its traditionally spin-laden trajectory on this one, nor that the student response sees this as further confirmation that we need more ethnic studies majors.

    The only way that this won’t happen again is if whoever did this is swiftly made an example of by the administration.

    Wishful thinking, perhaps.

  • McFister says:

    @McFister Josh, quit smoking crack.

  • Katelyn says:

    @Katelyn Isn’t “bias incident,” regardless of whether or not it is adequately loaded with reactive vim, inapproprately named? Would not the act of fashioning and then distributing a potentially racially malevolent Buddhist/Neo-Nazi snack pack be more correctly named “racism incident” or “bigotry incident?”

  • confused by yidchick says:

    @confused by yidchick So this bigot “probably” took a class that is critical of Israel? Sure.

  • Hee says:

    @Hee Yeah, because people critical of our own government obviously spend their free time flag-burning. Makes total sense.

  • quiqui says:

    @quiqui What I am really interested in is whether SHOCC will appropriate this as another hate incident, and then, far more potentially interesting, will they try to incorporate the Jewish consituency at Columbia in their campaign? I can’t really fathom that the two groups will be able to work together in any possible meaningful way, considering their vastly differing views on major subjects (Israel and Palestine, of course). I’m very, very interested to see what happens. If SHOCC wants to maintain legitimacy, it has got to make a statement about this crazy matzoh nazi packet, but at the same time, I do not at all see any possible way that the shocc leftists can reach out to the general jewish community at columbia.

    1. re: quiqui says:

      @re: quiqui i don’ think SHOCC needs to incorporate this.

      this, as almost everyone here seems to agree, is just some weird crazy shit. most of shocc’s complaints have to do with personal attacks on people. i don’t think it delegitimates SHOCC (or any of us) to ignore this one. Someone being called a “fag” and having bottles thrown at them is less cool.

  • noname says:

    @noname um, what’s in the packet and do the “crackers” rubberbanded to the outside have multiple connotations?

    1. inspectuer says:

      @inspectuer does anyone know where the packet is now? did security throw it out? is it being probed by colombo with a 3-meter long stick? sitting on bollinger’s desk?

  • college student says:

    @college student I know they have to say it, but is anyone really “in need of support” because of this incident? I feel that someone who needs support after seeing a plate with crackers should probably not be living in a place with, say, other people.

    Anyway, any word on whether there are crackers inside (look at the top right corner, looks like there are) and if so, whether or not people at them? If I had found these, my response would be to ignore the swastika and just accept them for what they were: free crackers. Also eating the crackers would confirm whether or not they were matzah (though they don’t look like it)

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