Jokes about Dead Gorilla Harambe could be a Title IX Violation, says UMass-Amherst RAs

, Spencer Irvine, Leave a comment

This is getting out of hand, isn’t it? Inappropriate jokes about a social media meme (a commonly-understood joke or photo among young people) can violate Title IX?!

These jokes “are not only derogatory but also micro-aggressions,” two RAs wrote in a letter to the UMass-Amherst students who live on their floor. Failure to desist could even be a violation of Title IX, they suggested.

You’re probably wondering what’s going on here. Some background: Post-death, Harambe has become a popular internet meme. “Harambe died for our sins,” is one. “Harambe the Gorllia Mauled By Cecil the Lion in Animal Heaven” is another. Some people even included Harambe on a list of celebrities we lost in 2016, like Prince and David Bowie. Don’t feel bad if you don’t get the joke—Socialist Party presidential candidate Jill Stein was confused, too.

Photo by Mark Dumont