Southeast MO State president: Study on offensive tweets unfair to university

Published: May. 26, 2016 at 7:00 PM CDT
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CAPE GIRARDEAU, MO (KFVS) - The president of Southeast Missouri State University has released a statement on a recent study saying the university is number 1 in the nation for offensive language.

Southeast Missouri State University was recently named by in a study analyzing derogatory and racist language used in tweets as being home to some of the most offensive language in the country.

University President Carlos Vargas says the university has made numerous attempts to contact those involved in conducting this study, to no avail.

Vargas went on to say that based on the parameters of the study, the university was unfairly placed as the epicenter of the offensive tweets:

The study purportedly reviewed Tweets within a three-mile radius of the campus, which in the case of Southeast Missouri State University would cover the entire city of Cape Girardeau.  While the population of Cape Girardeau is 38,000, it is a medical and retail hub with more than 100,000 visitors to the community daily.  The Tweets referred to in the study could be attributed to anyone visiting the community as opposed to specifically the students enrolled on the campus of Southeast Missouri State University.

President Vargas also went on to say that the university actively works to maintain diversity on campus.

While no place in society is immune to derogatory speech, we take intolerance, racism and sexism very seriously on our campus. Hate speech and bigotry are in no way tolerated at Southeast Missouri State University. Southeast has made enormous strides in the past in strengthening diversity education on the campus and bolstering a diverse, respectful, and welcoming campus climate with a number of diversity initiatives.

The statement goes on to say the university is working to correct the record. As of May 26, the article had been deleted from the website.

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