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Freshman admits to racial incident with KSA members

Published: Monday, April 27, 2009

Updated: Saturday, May 2, 2009 16:05


Freshman Daniel Foster admitted on Friday to making racial slurs toward, threatening to kill and spitting at a group of Korean students, as part of an apology in the framework of an agreement between him and the 13 members of the Korean Students Association (KSA) whom he accosted during the early-morning hours of April 9.

Foster and the KSA members reached the agreement over the past week outside of university channels, although Dean of Student Affairs Bruce Reitman largely accepted the terms of the deal.

Click here to view a PDF of the agreement.

As part of the agreement, Foster, who is white, said he would request that the university suspend him for next semester and he would write a signed apology that he would "cause to be published" in the Daily, not join a fraternity as an undergraduate at Tufts, attend Alcoholics Anonymous sessions and "anti-bias/anti-hate" courses, and enter into and receive treatment from a therapist or mental health counselor.

Click here to view a PDF of Foster's apology.

"Mr. Foster wishes to make amends to the extent which is possible for his inappropriate, offensive, and hurtful behavior, and all parties wish to resolve this matter without litigation or other proceedings," reads the agreement, which Foster and the KSA members signed on Friday.

The agreement comes after a fight broke out between Foster and some of the 13 KSA members shortly before 2 a.m. on April 9, as the Korean students practiced for a culture show in the Lewis Hall main lounge. KSA members initially alleged that Foster uttered racial slurs, made threats and spat at them members after the violence ended.

Foster said in a statement later that day, though, that he shouted obscenities and that a Korean student first pushed him. Until Friday's agreement, Foster had not publicly admitted to making racial slurs toward, spitting at or threatening to kill the students. And Reitman said that Foster also admitted drinking before the incident; Foster is underage.

The agreement and Foster's apology did not mention the fight, however. Instead, "[a]dvocates for the two sides said that all of the students wished to dismiss their previous statements about any physical altercation," Reitman said in his statement; he told the Daily yesterday that the university counsel had questioned the parties about this aspect after noticing its omission from the document.

As part of the agreement, both sides said they would not take further action, unless the document's stipulations were breached.

In his statement, Reitman also said that the university would accept the deal as long as Foster also completes an anger-management program and, upon completion of his suspension, satisfies the Office of the Dean of Student Affairs "that he has learned from this experience and will contribute positively to the community."

Reitman said his office respected the outcome of the parties' deliberations, even though they occurred outside of university channels, as "such efforts are often more meaningful than those reached in fact-finding hearings."

His office was thus reluctant to diverge from Foster's and the KSA members' decision, he said, but still decided that more had to be done.

"[G]iven the seriousness of the behavior to which the one student has admitted, I do not feel that his automatic return to the university community after the suspension is appropriate," Reitman said in the statement.

Outgoing KSA Co-President Tom Moon, one of the 13 KSA members who signed the agreement, said that Foster first met with and admitted guilt to the KSA members on Thursday. At first, Moon said, the Korean students were not sure if Foster was sincere. TThe freshman said he sobbed the night of the incident, according to Moon.

"We thought that yes, we thought that he could be sorry for what happened … but he didn't understand the extent of what he did and how it affected the people," Moon said, adding that the KSA members asked Foster why he portrayed himself as a victim in his original statement to the Daily.

"I'm just relieved that it's all over now, because now I can finally get back to studying for finals," Moon said. "I think that what happened was the right outcome. I think that he should go to classes, he should have some disciplinary mark to show what he did, to show how much he affected our community."

On the morning of April 9, Foster approached the students and mocked a dance five of them were practicing; tensions rose and the KSA members asked Foster to leave.

A short scuffle broke out, and both sides told the Daily later that day that the other had started it. Foster said on April 16 that he received injuries to his elbows, one shoulder, an area behind his ear, his neck and one of his knees. At least one KSA member's shirt was ripped, and one's face was scratched. Both parties have said the other side started the scuffle.

In his apology, Foster admitted to bothering members of the KSA who were practicing a dance in the main lounge of Lewis Hall and spitting at the KSA members.

He also admitted that he called the KSA members "‘chinks,' told them to ‘go back to China,' told them that I would ‘get them,' said ‘I am going to kill you all,' and probably other words that I do not remember.

"My guilt and shame have been eating me away inside," Foster said in the written apology, which appears in today's Daily on page 20. "I am genuinely sorry for the pain I have caused not only to the people directly involved in the incident, but for every one [sic] else who was affected by the words I said that night."

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same ole, same ole, why are minorities surprised?
Sun May 3 2009 01:11
Who's saying make Tufts 100% Asian? Who's saying that blacks should only be in the NBA? I'm 1/4 black and I agree (thank god I never accepted the offer from Tufts). The brightest students should get in, just like Texas Western proved the best players should play. So I guess being a legacy student gives one personality while having good SATs, GPA, extra-currics, etc. makes one a dud? I suppose as long as one has "personality," good reading skills are not required, just some yelling. Hell, I'm waiting for a GO BACK TO YOUR COUNTRY! Dude, stop with the yelling and chill. I'm know you're not accustomed to people not bowing down to your privileged rear, but get over it.

Props to the person who made the great NBA analogy!

Your name
Sat May 2 2009 22:29
Why all the newly deleted comments? Some of them were actually substantive.
Sick of stupid people!
Sat May 2 2009 22:14
"It's not about the demographics of the general population. By your reasoning, why isn't the NBA majority white? Because Larry Bird caliber players only come around once every 50 years while Magic Johnsons come around every couple years. The fact remains that the best qualified students should be admitted to a university that aspires for greatness. Why is it that the average Asian admit to most universities have significantly better scores in almost every metric than whites, blacks, and Latinos? For years and to this day the rationale for this policy, and the knock against Asians, has been that they're too one-dimensional. That's when SATs and applications started weighing essays and subjective metrics more heavily. I wonder who this will favor? Those whose families have grown up in this culture for generations or those which have recently immigrated here? This was only fixed when schools such at Berkeley removed this glass ceiling, causing other universities to slowly follow. Still, there are derogatory statements by whites such as University of Caucasians Lost in Asians, as if it's our right for a university's student body to have the same percentage as the general population or it's unnatural. For years, why were Jews kept at 10% of the student body and now Asians also? Why is it now at 20% for these groups at most schools? If you remove this bias and accept students based solely on their academic qualities, universities have demonstrated that Jews and Asians combined will naturally form the majority of a student body. Check out the Ivies that have done so. Do you honestly think MIT would be what it is if it kept Asians and Jews at 20% combined? Julliard? Even Kentucky basketball and MLB realized that they needed to incorporate blacks to be the best. Tufts is still stuck in the 50s and the comments by some vocal students and alums on here reflect this backwardness."

(I've read some ignorant crap on this site but this takes the cake)

OH WISE ONE PLEASE TELL US HOW TO RUN OUR SCHOOLS SO THAT WE MAY ACCEPT ONLY BRAINY TWITS WITH NO PERSONALITIES, LEAVE THE BLACKS AND HISPANICS TO THE NBA AND NFL (because apparently to you that's all they can do), AND LEAVE THE WHITES WHO DIDN'T SCORE AS WELL ON SATS (as if that measures anything but how well you take a test) TO WORKING JOBS AT THE LOCAL SUPERMARKETS. OH WISE ONE, PLEASE SHED YOUR KNOWLEDGE ON US POOR NITWITS.

GUESS WHAT? THIS IS AMERICA! A PROVERBIAL MELTING POT IT IS! COLLEGES ACCEPT STUDENTS WHO CAN DO THE WORK. BOOHOO ONLY 20% OF THE STUDENTS AT TUFTS ARE ASIAN. CRY ME A RIVER THAT MOST ARE WHITE. LOOK AT THE FREAKING POPULATION CENSUS. THIS COUNTRY HAS IN ORDER OF POPULAATION WHITES, THEN BLACKS, THEN HISPANICS, THEN ASIANS!! YOU MAKE UP 5% OF AMERICA, YET YOU WANT TO MAKE UP 100% OF UNIVERSITIES. THAT WOULD MEAN THE ADMISSIONS POLICY WOULD BECOME "ACCEPT ASIANS ONLY"--THAT IS NOT ONLY RACIST, BUT NOT GONNA HAPPEN ANYTIME SOON.

Are you kidding?
Sat May 2 2009 22:01
"i agree with the last poster. no one questions why so few asians go to tufts, ill tell you why. its because of the racist environment at the school. compare our numbers here with other schools. its obvious its racism holding us back. only asians suffer such severe discrimination at tufts. i hope the other students realize when they complain about their finals we not only have to take the same ones but have to live in constant state of fear at tufts with racist incidents like dan fosters"

I read this and laughed. You were obviously joking. Only 20%?? Only 20%? I'm sorry but you make up like what--4% of the country??? 20% is alot. There are more AA in America than Asian Americans, therefore based on your argument, more AA should be here than you. Right--I forgot...Tufts is racist, right! If you're serious, you are one deluded idiot.

Your name
Sat May 2 2009 21:03
If Tufts ran a NBA team the same way they admit students, it would have 8 undersized white guards from Duke, 1 tall white stiff from UNC too slow for the league, 1 token black player from Princeton, 1 high school player from China, and 1 token gay guy from England. If the Asian dude missed a shot, the 9 white guys who tell him to go back to Japan.
Your name
Sat May 2 2009 20:29
The previous poster is wrong.

Higher GPAs mean that they're discriminated against? My goodness, everything is discrimination these days.

And then he throws in a jab about how much he hates America. Damn.

Your name
Sat May 2 2009 19:05
What does mining gold and even basketball have to do with a research institutions primary mission? Yes, if Tufts ran an NBA team, you would be worried about the best basketball players getting on the floor. The fact remains that there is a glass ceiling for Asians. As an Anglo, I can agree with the poster. How else do you explain higher average GPAs and SAT scores for Asians? In addition to jews, this was the case for women before them. it doesn't really matter anyway as the brightest have rarely made Tufts a first choice and soon enough no school in the US will entice the brightest in the world to come here. Then the US will join Great Britain as a has been empire.
Your name
Sat May 2 2009 18:40
Caecus per Beneficium
Your name
Sat May 2 2009 18:37
Caecus per beneficium
Your name
Sat May 2 2009 18:30
?
Your name
Sat May 2 2009 18:30
Caecus per Beneficium
Your name
Sat May 2 2009 17:45
Tufts' motto should not be Pax et Lux, but Blinded by Privilege. Now if someone could just translate that into Latin, it would be PERFECT.
Your name
Sat May 2 2009 16:04
"I don't think Tufts has an exorbitant amount of these fools - maybe more than average, but what do you expect when you have a relatively large number of privileged, sheltered kids who grew up in very monolithic cultures - overwhelmingly rich, suburban, and white-bread?"

You just stereotyped. Good job, hypocrite.

Your name
Sat May 2 2009 15:07
None of those three comments you quoted talk about Dan Foster. They're criticizing the KSA and its absurd reaction to this whole kerfuffle, as well as the ridiculous talk about the Tufts community's supposed "racism."
Your name
Sat May 2 2009 14:34
"i have lost all respect i might have had for the KSA as a result of their reaction to this incident. ridiculous. always so quick to play the victims!

The asian community at tufts is NOT discriminated against. they are one of the most clique-ey groups on campus! I remember hanging out with asians briefly at the beginning of freshman year becaue my roommate was asian, and always being made to feel uncomfortable because i was the 'white girl'. Maybe the community would understand you better or whatever if you branched out a bit.

can someone defending the KSA's position give ONE instance of the tufts administration discriminating against them?? "

- I'm a korean highschooler studying in the states and i do admit some asian groups are very cliquey
However, i think YOUR comment is absolutely RIDICULOUS
I do not understand what made you think that Daniel Foster is a victim.
Korean students were called chinks, threatened to death, physically harmed and spat on their faces..
Do they deserve this since they are so "cliquey"?
Or let me see.. Does ANYBODY deserve this including yourself?
Saying that you are dissapointed because KSA "over sensitively " reacted to "nothing" seems little ignorant for me.

I mean i truly appreiciate Foster admitting his actions and apologizing to ppl.
However, he did something wrong and he should not be called as a victim.

Your name
Sat May 2 2009 13:11
Soooo... you're disappointed that Tufts isn't 100% Asian and Jewish, as that would be a sign of a truly neutral admissions policy? Whahuh? Might we be allowed to admit black people, then, to have a competitive basketball program and some dwarves so that we might mine the gold that is deep below South Hall?
Your name
Sat May 2 2009 13:07
That last post has got to be trolling. Come on!
Your name
Sat May 2 2009 12:22
"Also, as a Tufts alum I am offended by the insinuation that Tufts is a racist school based on the fact that "only" 20 percent of the student body is Asian. Based on a 2006 census, only 4% of the country is Asian, and I fail to recognize how having a representation 5 times that of the general population could be construed as discrimination. I'm not sure what annoys me more, the contention that Tufts is racist, or that someone ignorant enough to make that argument actually attends my alma mater."

It's not about the demographics of the general population. By your reasoning, why isn't the NBA majority white? Because Larry Bird caliber players only come around once every 50 years while Magic Johnsons come around every couple years. The fact remains that the best qualified students should be admitted to a university that aspires for greatness. Why is it that the average Asian admit to most universities have significantly better scores in almost every metric than whites, blacks, and Latinos? For years and to this day the rationale for this policy, and the knock against Asians, has been that they're too one-dimensional. That's when SATs and applications started weighing essays and subjective metrics more heavily. I wonder who this will favor? Those whose families have grown up in this culture for generations or those which have recently immigrated here? This was only fixed when schools such at Berkeley removed this glass ceiling, causing other universities to slowly follow. Still, there are derogatory statements by whites such as University of Caucasians Lost in Asians, as if it's our right for a university's student body to have the same percentage as the general population or it's unnatural. For years, why were Jews kept at 10% of the student body and now Asians also? Why is it now at 20% for these groups at most schools? If you remove this bias and accept students based solely on their academic qualities, universities have demonstrated that Jews and Asians combined will naturally form the majority of a student body. Check out the Ivies that have done so. Do you honestly think MIT would be what it is if it kept Asians and Jews at 20% combined? Julliard? Even Kentucky basketball and MLB realized that they needed to incorporate blacks to be the best. Tufts is still stuck in the 50s and the comments by some vocal students and alums on here reflect this backwardness.

Your name
Sat May 2 2009 11:10
bordering on white supremacy? clearly if you think a collection of alumni and students, minorities and whites, from a collection of different backgrounds, that are agreeing that this was an overreaction simply because they disagree with you you're in fact the one that's been sheltered. people are not condoning racism, they are simply stating the facts. if anything im pretty sure that the ones in favor of the decision are the same one or two morons (probably from the KSA) cause most kids and alumni alike are outraged that their school's name would be smeared by attention-seeking students that want nothing but sympathy. sheltered indeed
Your name
Sat May 2 2009 10:45
"i'm suprisded that there are this many racists in a university like tufts. i'm just too shocked after reading the comments here. i'm not from tufts community so i'm sure i don't know all about this incident, but from what i read, it seems like a serious hate crime occured (regardless of the fact that white freashmen was drunken) and there are other students defending him? shame, shame on tufts."

There are a couple factors at play here. First, I suspect that many of the immature, idiotic posts on here bordering on white-supremacy smack talk is from the same small group, maybe even one or two people. This leads to the next factor. Is it that surprising to get a small group of these idiots? I don't think Tufts has an exorbitant amount of these fools - maybe more than average, but what do you expect when you have a relatively large number of privileged, sheltered kids who grew up in very monolithic cultures - overwhelmingly rich, suburban, and white-bread? Even from this group, the vast majority are wonderful people who will use their time in college to expand their horizons. A select few will continue to close their minds and trot around like they rule the world because daddy-o had a modicum of success, which they mistake to be their success in life and a reflection of their status. When this this small group's privileged entitled worldview gets challenged, that's when we have the tantrums that we see here. For his sake, I truly hope that Mr. Foster uses the upcoming months to reflect on his worldview and use the potential Tufts saw in him to become a positive influence on society.

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