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Frat Guy Yells To USC Student Body President: 'You Indian Piece Of Sh*t'

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A USC student body president spoke up after racist remarks were hurled at her (Photo by Doran via the LAist Featured Photos pool on Flickr)
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The Indian-born USC student body president is bringing attention to the racism at her college after she says a frat guy yelled at her, "You Indian piece of shit" before hurling a drink at her.

Rini Sampath, 21, posted her account of what happened on Facebook on Sunday morning:

Last night, as I was walking back from my friend's apartment, a student screamed out at me through the window of his fraternity house, "You Indian piece of shit!" before hurling his drink at my friends and me. Once his fraternity brothers realized it was me, they began to apologize. This stung even more. Today, as I try to unpack these events, I couldn't quite figure out why their after-the-fact apologies deepened the wound. But one of my friends explained it to me the best this morning: "Because now you know, the first thing they see you as is subhuman." And that's the first thing some students on our campus see when they look at anyone who looks like me.

The post has already garnered nearly 1,000 shares. Other students and university officials reached out to her to show her their support. USC Dean of Religious Life Varun Soni told the Washington Post that they have a zero tolerance policy for these acts, and that she should file a formal complaint with the school. Even the guy who hurled the racial epithet at her, whom she hasn't identified, apologized.

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"I appreciate it, but hope it becomes a learning experience," Sampath told The Washington Post. "Apologies don't fix these deep wounds. … [the slur] was a verbal assault on my identity — on who I am as a person."

Sampath said in her Facebook post, "This was the same fraternity that kicked out a peer of mine from their tailgate after calling him a 'fag.' That's sickening."

She added that she was in a "state of shock," and explained how these racist words deeply affected her:

"You Indian piece of shit" is the type of language attackers have used before brutally murdering someone. Just look at Inderjit Singh Mukker. "You Indian piece of shit" are words used to humiliate someone for who they are. "You Indian piece of shit" continues to ring so loudly in my ears I still can't shake it from me. Whether racism or sexism or homophobia or transphobia happens on the internet, or behind closed doors, or in a small group setting, or as "just a joke," it's not okay. It's never okay.

Sampath moved from India to the U.S. when she was 6, and experienced racism in Arizona when she was just a young child. "I had self-esteem issues because I was an immigrant," she told The Washington Post. "I was struggling to learn English and I was struggling with what I looked like, in a sea of kids who didn't look like me."