Sigma Alpha Epsilon Wants to Sue OU for Calling Them ‘Racist’

How to Make Your Clients Less Sympathetic 101.

Image: Sigma Alpha Epsilon, SAE fraternity racist video on campus of Oklahoma University
Gone and hopefully forgotten. (Larry W. Smith/EPA)

It was one of the most execrable and cowardly things to be caught on tape in quite a while: rich frat boys chanting about people, a tree, and their fraternity Sigma Alpha Epsilon.

And although we suspect that the results of a “should these guys get their butts kicked” poll would be almost unanimous, some people will choose to generalize. What that video did could have devastated Oklahoma University had the powers-that-be not responded so swiftly.

So, what do they get for expelling those students and kicking the fraternity smooth off campus? A wheelbarrow full of pending litigation from SAE for calling it racist.

[Attorney Stephen] Jones told NewsChannel 4 [KOFR-Okla. City] the group is outraged over President Boren shutting down the fraternity house and branding all SAE members as racists and bigots.

Jones says the two students who were expelled because of the incident have apologized sincerely for their remarks, and now the incident is being exploited.

He said they lacked judgment in a social setting, but they should not be tarred and feathered as racists.

PR pros: Let’s put our expert hats on with this one and determine what’s wrong with this quote.

1. Exploited? Welcome to the world of social media. It’s called a news cycle, and it has no problem rolling over anyone and everyone.

2. Apologized? As if “I’m sorry” could ever be good enough for the egregious behavior seen on the video.

3. Tarred and feathered? Considering the circumstances and shameful history, could this guy seriously not come up with a better analogy?

Lastly, that’s Stephen Jones — as in, the same guy who defended Timothy McVeigh for his act of terrorism at the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City.

This guy isn’t a fan of Oklahoma, but he does have a talent for picking the world’s worst clients.