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Zayn Malik and Sadiq Khan chosen to front Black History Month - Kent University student union faces backlash

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A university's students union has become a "national embarrassment" after it picked former One Direction singer Zayn Malik and Mayor of London Sadiq Khan as poster-boys for Black History Month.

Students at Kent University pointed out that that neither Malik nor Khan are black and are both from British Pakistani families.

Kent University Students Union are facing a huge backlash and the official UK organisers for Black History Month said they were "deeply disappointed" by the university.Kent University's Sadiq Khan poster

Kent University's Sadiq Khan poster

The student union at the university said they aimed to "empower" students through its Black History Month, where it chose six public figures to represent diversity, at a number of events throughout October.

Black History Month tweeted:

Deeply disappointed at @KentUnion's ill thought and misdirected Black History Month celebrations.

— Black History Month (@BhmUK) October 25, 2016

With Asian Heritage Month being observed by a growing number of countries in May, will Black icons be celebrated by Kent University then?

— Black History Month (@BhmUK) October 25, 2016

Khan was born in Tooting, south London after his parents migrated from Pakistan to Britain. Ex-1D heart-throb Malik was born in Bradford, West Yorkshire, in 1993 to Pakistani/English parents.

Despite the university's grovelling apology, students described the mistake as "an absolute non-apology" and a "national embarrassment".

Benjamin Smith wrote: "At this point Kent Union has become a national embarrassment. "From what I'm seeing, this post doesn't really cover the extent of the offense you've caused and comes across as a bit patronising.

Devante Wallace added: "It's not just about the image shared, it's the fact you have the audacity to try and bundle all non-white culture into black history month as if were not important enough to be represented individually. It's offensive to all ethnic groups."

Other names on the list include Dame Kelly Holmes, Sir Trevor McDonald, Shirley Bassey and Arthur Wharton, Britain's first black professional footballer.

Kent Union president Rory Murray apologised to students who were "upset, uncomfortable or offended".

He said: "I want to apologise on behalf of Kent Union to any individuals who were upset, uncomfortable or offended by the image shared.

"There was no intent for this to happen and I am very sorry to anybody who felt this way. "I also feel it is important to explain the context behind how this happened.

"As a students' union we are led by our members; over 2,000 volunteers who give up their time to run campaigns and events.

"This is through a wide range of activity be it sports clubs, societies, campaign groups, elected. "This is through a wide range of activity be it sports clubs, societies, campaign groups, elected officers and so forth.

"The Black History Month calendar of events was led and run by these students and supported by the organisation. The activity for the month was decided by open meetings attended by black and minority ethnic students.

"I hope that the passion ignited in many people in the last 12 hours will continue and that students will become further involved in leading our black and minority ethnic work."

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/education/2016/10/26/kent-university-faces-backlash-after-picking-zayn-malik-and-sadi/

Smh

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32 minutes ago, time_bomb said:

Ive always noticed with these uni student unions 'black' seems to just mean ethnic/non-white

its the uni students who've grown up not knowing the difference really

also the Brit-Asian kids who pretty much absorb black culture as their own

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3 hours ago, dub said:

its the uni students who've grown up not knowing the difference really

also the Brit-Asian kids who pretty much absorb black culture as their own

dont be fooled, they all know the difference, they were just trying to take the piss out of the perceived lack of black achievement in the UK imo. Don't let this slight go down as a "they didn't know any better type situation". None of them are stupid. 

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What appen to their afro Caribbean society?  Were they not involved?  

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Oh so i never went? 

ACS was full of mythical creatures? 

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3 hours ago, Grafter said:

What appen to their afro Caribbean society?  Were they not involved?  

Apparently they didn't ask even though Kent Uni ACS said they reached out for inclusion before hand.

Its the private school white boys trying to to run bants. I can imagine when they get a strong hold in the union, they can do things like this and get satisfaction from the fact that the situation has gone to the press. Its bants to them with no repercussions,

Funny I see the black twitter sheeple trying to blame asians for this lol

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2 hours ago, Platinum50 said:

Apparently they didn't ask even though Kent Uni ACS said they reached out for inclusion before hand.

Its the private school white boys trying to to run bants. I can imagine when they get a strong hold in the union, they can do things like this and get satisfaction from the fact that the situation has gone to the press. Its bants to them with no repercussions,

Funny I see the black twitter sheeple trying to blame asians for this lol

Union

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