Tanya Somanader looks at the "Wigger Day" lawsuit:
For homecoming in 2009, the student council at Red Wing High School in Red Wing, Minnesota decided to go with a “tropical theme” for the dance. Instead, 60 students at the “predominantly white school” attended homecoming dressed for “Wigger Wednesday,” wearing costumes that “from their perspective” looked “black.” These included “oversized sports Jerseys, low-slung pants, baseball hats cocked to the side, and ‘doo rags’ on their heads.” The term “Wigger” is a pejorative slang term for a white person who mimics mannerisms, language, fashions, and stereotypes associated with black culture. It is “a portmanteau of either wannabee or white and nigger” and, here, is demeaning of African-Americans by mocking what the students interpreted to be their culture.
By allowing a class to celebrate “Wigger” — or alternatively known there as “Wangsta” — Day, the high school has earned its very own federal class action lawsuit. Former Red Wing High School student Quera Pruitt, an African-American, filed the suit in Minnesota on behalf of an unnamed class of “all students who experienced discrimination as a result of Wigger Day” — a class that may include more than 40 people. The school principal and school district superintendent, however, still “den[y] the allegations that it has created a racially hostile environment.”
The "wigger" is an inherently racist concept, but it's not really directed at black people. It's meant to mock white people who choose to associate themselves with black people and black culture, and it assumes that both are inherently inferior to the whiteness the so-called wigger has inherited and foolishly disregarded. But the subtext of the epithet is that while "niggers" can't help it, the "wiggers" can ultimately be "saved."
Naturally, Somanader notes, school officials don't think endorsing this worldview constitutes a "racially hostile environment." Because there are no racists in America.
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