In 1977 I was a proud graduate of Arizona State University with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Wildlife Biology. Like most college alums I have eagerly followed ASU’s sports teams and rooted for them no matter what kind of a season they were having.
In 1997 I first became ashamed of my alma mater when they became the home of anthropologist Don Johanson and his Institute of Human Origins. Johanson became famous with the discovery of the Lucy fossil.
Why was I ashamed of him being at ASU? Because he falsified his findings and no one has had the courage to call him on it publicly. On a three part series called In Search of Human Origins, one of the episodes was dedicated to Johanson and his discovery of Lucy.
Johanson postulated that Lucy had died along a shallow lake and some animal had walked on her body in the water, breaking her hip bones. Then they healed and fused together is such a manner as to make it appear that she walked on all fours like most primates. He stated that the hip he found was too anatomically perfect to be that of an upright walking humanoid. So he made a replica of the hip bone and took it to a forensic specialist who used a Dremel-like tool to cut it apart at all of the fissures and fracture marks.
He then rebuilt the hip into the shape needed for upright walking. The newly constructed hip had holes in it that were large enough to put your finger through, but now Johanson had the hip he needed to prove his theory. There were other questionable aspects about Johanson’s actual discovery of the fossils that cause me to further doubt the validity of Johanson’s infamous find.
After being ashamed of the academic programs at ASU, because of their embracing of Johanson, I was still a proud supporter of ASU sports, especially football, baseball and basketball. However, I’m now starting to have doubts about being a proud supporter of the ASU sports programs after their asinine reaction to some whining racist complainer.
This past week, ASU officials strongly asked students to refrain from any face painting for the upcoming football game with Stanford. Why did they make the request? Supposedly, it’s being called politically incorrect.
The hubbub stemmed from a September promotion held by the university called the ‘blackout.’ Fans were encouraged to wear black to a football game to match the black alternate uniforms that the Sun Devil football team would be wearing. Some students decided to paint their faces black to go with their black clothes. Some blacks complained that the black face paintings were racially insensitive and the university responded with the knee jerk reaction of trying to ban all face painting of any color. They are using the excuse that it is politically incorrect to paint one’s face any color.
This only tells me that some people go out of their way to create racial issues when there weren’t any to begin with. There are no reports that any of the students that painted their faces black were doing so because of racial issues. They were simply going with the spirit of the school’s ‘blackout’ promotion.
If painting one’s face black is politically incorrect, then why isn’t wearing black clothes or wearing a black football uniform incorrect? Doesn’t this make anything black racist and politically incorrect? What’s next? Banning everything using the color black? Will we also have to ban everything that is red because it could offend American Indians or everything yellow because of the racial intonations towards Orientals? Where does it stop?