Flyers protesting Mothers’ bar

From Washington University's Senior Class Council

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  • Anon

    This topic is probably already done and over with which is why I am leaving my comment because I wanted to see where people stood. In reality, it is unfortunate that discrimination still occurs in this day and age, but for everyone who picked up a sign and starting protesting did you stop to think why clubs do have dress codes in place. I personally dress a certain way and yes prefer being around a crowd that has similar fashion. Now I am not saying, I want to be around people who dress exactly like me. There is an overlap in fashion, but I am talking about the extreme difference in fashion. To be so blunt I don’t want see pants below waist line where butts are showing. And by no means am I saying the six gentlemen was dress like this. Unfortunately, their are certain style of fashion that is unfitting to me and I don’t want to be around it.

    The question that needs to be ask is not whether these gentlemen were singled out, but did Mothers turn every single African American away from the door. I am neither black nor white, so I prefer a place with a mix crowd. In addition, I have worked in a nightclub for many of years, and though the club I worked at was no where near racist the club had to enforce a dress code to achieve a diverse crowd. A crowd that majority of people wanted to be around; whether that is combination of all race. In all honesty, a room full of Asians, Blacks, Hispanic, etc. excluding white are more susceptible to be judge as a Black club, Asian club and so on. When was the last time you ever heard of a club discriminated as a white club. It may be true the club has mostly Caucasian, but for most people it is not an issue. Once a club attracts a certain type of race outside of white, I think it is fair to say MOST individuals, not of that race would likely not go. Please realize I am saying most and not all people. As a final thought, I want to stress to everyone, I do believe their are clubs that blatantly discriminate, and these places need to get shut down. But seriously to jump the gun and start creating a national incident without knowing and researching all the facts seems very premature and quite irresponsible.

  • porsche

    To: D Street Dog and to anybody else who doesn’t think this act at the club wasn’t racism or anything related to: racism, discrimination, prejudice.
    First of all “D Street Dog” you said, “you don’t see why people make a big deal over a little issue?” And this so called little issue is 6 black males not being able to enter a bar because of the dress code or no baggy pants, but you see that other white males wearing exactly the same baggy pants were let in, excuse me but that looks like an act of discrimination.
    And if you look up discrimination the definition is:treatment or consideration of, or making a distinction in favor of or against, a person or thing based on the group, class, or category to which that person or thing belongs rather than on individual merit: racial and religious intolerance and discrimination.
    – In this case, please tell me how this was not an act of discrimination.
    And then you made a comment about if you made White entertainment television it would be racist but they can have Black entertainment televsion and its ok.
    Well about that, BET was made so that black, or even other minorities could have something to watch, then to remind themselves every time they turned on the T.V. it was a high percentage of just white people in the shows, in major roles, and maybe a minority person here or there in little roles as to being like the janitor. Black and other minorities felt discriminated against and BET was made. It was more like a statement showing being there is discrimination in shows as well.
    To make that short- BET was made so that Black or even minorites felt like they had a comfort zone in watching tv, and not reminded that there they are discriminated against even in tv.
    To me- you sound like you could somewhat be racist or prejudice of some level. By the way you put and say things. Or you really need to take a sociology class, or something so that you know what racial profiling , discrimination, and racist, and prejudice are before you say that this act at the club wasn’t any of that sort.
    Oh yeah- one more thing “D Street Dog” if that’s correct, if i assumed you were gang member or some sort of gang affiated person, that wears baggy pants because of you “D Street Dog” name is that racist or discrimination or racial profiling?
    Just wondering


  • kipp

    I’ve been boycotting, not just Mother’s, but the entire area for this exact same thing, for the past few years.

    It’s a lively strip. Most bars have no cover; reasonably priced beer; scores of women; bustling crowds until 5am; and are within a few steps of the greasiest, nastiest, most delicious after a long night of drinking pizza in Chicago. It can be a really good time…or, for black guys, me specifically, it can be the most disappointing and humiliating of times.

    After years of research, I can say with great confidence, that this “rule” started at Shenanigan’s, a bar a few doors down from Mother’s. I say this because when Shenanigan’s started enforcing the “No Negroes” loophole…I mean, no baggy pants rule, I could go to Mother’s and other bars with no problem. Then, over time, the places that didn’t have a problem with the skin…I’m mean, clothes…I was wearing became fewer and fewer. There are still a couple bars in the area that I never had a problem with…one as long as I had two forms of I.D.

    Every pair of jeans in my wardrobe turned out to be too baggy. Then, I tried a pair of expensive, deep-blue, perfectly fitted (slightly too tight for my comfort) jeans I received as gift. And, they worked. The next weekend, those jeans produced the same result. So, I dubbed them my “Shenanigan pants.” Time after time, these jeans worked; and every time I deviated I was denied.

    I’ve been at the door of this bar, being told that my pants were too baggy while white guys walk out the same door wearing cargos and flip-flops. It happened again with jogging suits…almost on cue. I was denied entry wearing khakis and a Bill Cosby sweater. Granted, though, the khakis were baggy, and I knew before hand that my “Shenanigan pants” would’ve done the trick. That said, this outfit would’ve gotten me into a black club with a dress code and a $20 cover…

    But, my boycott started in earnest on my birthday. I was with a fairly large group of siblings, cousins, and childhood friends–mostly, women–all looking to have a good time celebrating my birthday. I was looking forward to a great night, and to ensure that everything flowed smoothly, I wore my “Shenanigan pants,” a button up under a peacoat, and some nice casual shoes. When we got to the door, the bouncer informed me that my pants were too baggy. I was stunned. I turned to my best friend in disbelief, and asked him to tell the bouncer what I called those jeans, and he replied without a second thought, “the shenanigan pants.” THE SHENANIGAN PANTS!

    It wasn’t enough, though. When I mentioned to the bouncer that I had once been turned away in khakis, he replied that he would’ve NEVER turned anyone away in khakis. Needless to say, I was upset…slightly indignant…utterly embarassed…deeply disappointed…nearly as powerless as I’ve ever felt.

    The only other situations that compare have involved cops…but, not in this particular area. Really cool cops on that strip. I’ve only been pulled out of the bar while dancing, and patted down on the sidewalk once. I guess it helps, though…imagine if they’d arrested all the fall down drunk, unruly, bar brawl starting, general public menacing characters they encountered on a nightly basis. Why…our jails would be flooded with white people…

  • mkaijewett

    Street Dog, You sound really stupid. There ARE white entertainment networks. they are called ABC, NBC, CBS, FOX and the CW. Do you know why we have Black colleges? It’s because Black people were not allowed to attend white ones. After the Civil War the Freedman’s Bureau, a federal agency, established many of them and we established our own. Even though Black students can now attend predominately white colleges, they still face racism on campus. That’s why there’s still a need for Black colleges. As for the Black Expo and events of this type, we have the right to celebrate our culture, especially since it’s denigrated in the dominate culture of this country. Do you have a problem with the St. Patrick’s Day Parade, Columbus Day celebrations by Italians or Pulaski Day by the Polish? I doubt seriously if you would tell Jews to just forget about what happened in Germany and move on with their lives. They take every opportunity to remind people of what happened in the holocaust, but Black people are supposed to forget about slavery and racism.These young people are doing the right thing. Hit them in the pocket! They better stand up and fight back! Racism is alive and well and we will NOT forget about it and move on! Go research some real American history(“They Came Before Columbus,” “From Africa To The United StatesAnd Then…”) Quit trying to use a “street” name like you have some cred in the street. Your true colors are showing.

  • An Adult

    Still Anon and others,

    No one is saying everything is about racism or every act is racist. What people are saying that THIS INSTANCE is RACISM, an experiment was conducted in order to determine that this is not simply a case of dress code violation. MEANING: further information was gathered before anyone jumped to any racism conclusions.

    You are appealing to logic and facts that simply do not make any sense in light of the actual facts of the situation.

    Are you really offended that you can’t have a “White Expo: to celebrate White Heritage”??

    What would that even mean? Are you offended by Native American celebrations? What celebrations of Latino American Culture? Do Diwali or Lunar New Year offended you? Are you offended by the Womens Entertainment channel?

    I would guess of course not. But some how people are always offended if Black People have these things. Why is that?

  • Still Anonomyous

    Dear Cedric:

    “Most of the posts I have read that are “against” the efforts of the “6″ are based on mis-information and /or simply just a lack of knowledge about the event itself, blacks, and even civil law.”

    On the contrary. Our beliefs and our arguments are based on facts and knowledge that not everything is about racism. Nobody is saying that it WASN’T racism, merely that we’re not quite sure. I, for one, have a great extent of background on civil law and African Americans based on books, experience, African American friends and past love interests. We are not “against” anyone. Rather, we are FOR logic and facts before conclusions.

    If it is determined, after time has gone by, tempers have calmed, ALL evidence and stories have been collected, and the definitive conclusion is that it was, indeed, an act of racial discrimination then I think we can all accept that and agree that we feel very much for the young men who were denied entrance into the bar. However, we live in the United States, a country in which due process of law is highly respected. We need to protect the right to due process. If we don’t and we choose to “make an example” of this bar when we don’t have all the facts, what are we doing but disregarding this right? Not just for us, but for future generations?

  • Cedric

    “The 1st amendment guarantees freedom of speech, tradition often guarantees freedom of ignorance”.

    Reading the myriad of comments over the past week on the Chicago incident has affirmed my belief that we are still a long long way off from equality in this country. In the past most believed that racism and bigoted attitudes towards blacks was perpetuated by ignorant southern whites. Clearly many of these posts can truly dispell that theory. I mean this is WASHU the mid-west Ivy Leaguer right?

    Most of the posts I have read that are “against” the efforts of the “6” are based on mis-information and /or simply just a lack of knowledge about the event itself, blacks, and even civil law. While I would like to take a moment to educate, I will refrain because if the wealth of true information that already exists on all these issues still makes people write their divisive comments then the ignorance is obviously self imposed.

    I guess terms like liberal, and “post racial”, even at WASHU (the #12 national and #73 world college) are mere figments of the imagination. Perhaps WASHU needs to put on a 2009 version of “Ragtime” using it’s own campus as a setting.

  • Still Anonomyous

    Our sole goal is not to defend the bar. It is to shed light on the fact that there is another side to this story, one that is being ignored because it doesn’t fit with the popular “racism” viewpoint. The other side of the story includes a security tape which shows a few of the men becoming aggressive, verbally and physically, toward the manager of the bar. Everyone so badly wants this to be a clear-cut case of racial discrimination and the truth is that it isn’t clear-cut. There is nothing clear-cut about it. There are statements left to be made by the members of the bar, including the results of their internal investigation which is being conducted.

    Those of us who are opposing this, if you read every single comment, have never explicitly said that racial discrimination did not take place. Rather, we are warily asking questions, looking for more information, more evidence, and waiting to hear the other side of the story before we reach the same conclusion everyone else has automatically jumped to. We are being cautious because we do not want to diminish the real impact that racial discrimination has. It is a terrible thing this country has experienced. But we cannot immediately assume that just because it has happened in the past that it is always happening now. We live in a much different time than the slaves did, or even than Martin Luther King, Jr. and Rosa Parks did. Obviously. The President of the United States is black.

    We have to be so careful about throwing terms around and being so sure. For all we know, and we don’t, the manager of the bar is married to a beautiful black woman. We want the manager of the bar to use their ESP to know that our students couldn’t hurt a fly, but we refuse to give him the benefit of the doubt. How hypocritical are we?

    To D Street Dog:
    I will chime in on your comment briefly. There is an event every summer called the Indiana Black Expo, which has been “celebrating African American culture since 1971.” I couldn’t agree more that if there were an Indiana White Expo that everyone would be up in arms, saying they couldn’t believe the obvious racial discrimination, etc. I have attached a link in case you would like more information. IBE is a wonderful event which does celebrate African American heritage by inviting performers, speakers, and entertainers to share stories, etc. Tables are set up with displays for children and adults alike, in order to do everything from teach kids about fire safety, saying no to drugs, and how not to get kidnapped, to taking the blood pressures of the elderly. Anyone is welcome to this event, but in reality, it is usually only African Americans with a tiny handful of Caucasians mixed in. But if there were, as you pointed out, a “white” counterpart to this organization, I truly do believe that those who decided to establish said organization would immediately be sued and put on the political crucifix for it.

  • WashU Senior

    I’ll agree with what a couple people have said before. You have to realize that letting a single African-American into the bar doesn’t remove the racism from the whole situation. The fact remains that 6 African-American men were not allowed in, despite that they were actually dressed quite nicely, and they offered to go back to the hotel and change. As shown in the flier, when one of the white students put on the same jeans so that they were even baggier, he was allowed in no questions asked.

    It doesn’t even take much google searching to see that this is not at all an isolated incident. Review sites of Chicago bars and dining contain several reviews with people reporting similar situations. In each case the bouncers pulled reasons out of nowhere to refuse entrance to various people, but it’s no coincidence that each incident involved males of racial minorities.

    I don’t really see why people are trying to defend this bar so much. If you’re not personally tied to the bar, why would you be trying to defend it’s reputation? We wouldn’t be trying to damage their reputation this much if we didn’t truly believe that we witnessed a clear cut example of racial discrimination. Trying to prove otherwise, especially if you weren’t there, is quite foolish.

  • Justice Stamps

    That Guy and Still Anonymous….. sorry, but you sound foolish and most certainly you sound NON-AFRICAN AMERICAN. I say this because any African-American knows that African American women have ALWAYS been accepted more than African American men. ALWAYS! We are considered less threatening and always have been- during slavery, during Jim Crow and even now in politics. Your theory is flawed that there is no racism going on since there is ONE black person being shown in a picture in the bar. And, BTW, I live near Mother’s. It is no secret that they are not very welcoming to black men!!!!

  • I really have no idea why people need to make such a big deal out of a little issue. It wasn’t racism. Get over the fact you were born black and live your life. I’m white and you think that there have been times I haven’t been let into bars for dress code violations.

    However, when it happens to me I can’t cry to the ACLU can I? If I wanted to start White Entertainment Television would I be able to? No, it would be racist. Of course Black Entertainment Television is perfectly fine.

    Having institutions of higher learning that are known as black schools are acceptable. What would happen if someone founded a white school? Jesse Jackson would be banging on their door with Al Sharpton and any tax status they had would be pulled.

    Before you accuse people of racism, look and see who the real racists in the country are.

  • Patrick Seaworth

    “darkness cannot drive out darkness, only light can do that. hate can not drive out hate, only love can do that.” – mlk jr.


  • just wondering

    are we sure those pictures were taken at the bar? it looked like the photos from all of the other fliers were taken from facebook pictures. also, just because you allow in black women and disallow black men does not mean you’re not being discriminatory. women of any race or religion are generally accepted much more freely than men.

  • be logical

    @Still Anonymous:

    No, it isn’t logical. Discrimination isn’t logical. But when a group of several African-American men are turned away from a bar, there are a whole host of stereotypes that are being used to justify it that would not necessarily be applied to a single African American person, or even a group of African American women. It’s still discrimination.

    If someone makes a racist comment about one person but not another, is it still a racist comment? Yes. The same applies for acts like this.

  • Michelle

    I am a black woman myself and though I wasn’t there and am not in a place to judge for sure what happened, I have been in a number of situations such as this one and I can tell you for a fact that in cases like these, black men are discriminated against MUCH more than black women. Many (not all) people have this preconceived image of black males as being dangerous and belligerent and in general, people just don’t see women of any race or ethnicity as a threat. Also, bars and nightclubs tend to favor women in general when admitting people


    Black men have always been seen as a greater threat than Black women. You ever heard of the Anti-Lynching law? The Black man was being lynched and killed. Food for thought…

  • Still Anonomyous

    Thank you for pointing that out, That guy.

    This is the point that I have been trying to make all along, and that everyone has been ignoring. How can we *definitively* say that this was an instance of racial discrimination when there are clearly other people in the bar who are African American?

    I don’t think anyone has said that it clearly was NOT racial discrimination. What is being said is that there isn’t enough evidence to conclude that what happened WAS racial discrimination. There is a huge difference! The evidence that people are using to point out that this WAS discrimination is circumstantial at best, but I will say this time and time again, we cannot be sure. There is still reasonable doubt in some people’s minds, which is why some people are still saying that we don’t have all the facts.

    This photograph unmistakably shows an African American woman sitting at the bar behind the white guy who was admitted into the bar. This is clear cause for us to question whether the bouncers and managers are running a racist establishment. Why let some African Americans in and turn others away? It isn’t logical.

  • That guy

    Anyone else notice that there is a black woman in the background of the picture of the white guy in the “baggy pants policy?” poster on the right?

  • Jean h

    Shut down MOTHERS! shame on chicago for letting such an establishment operate; put money where your mouth is CHICAGO