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Those questions – which include "Why are black people so loud?," "Do black people hate America?" and "Why do black people always complain about segregation but always want their own TV stations?" – drew ire last week after a Twitter user shared screenshots of the survey.
"What's the purpose of asking these questions?" Twitter user Emily Farris, described in her profile as a political scientist, asked in a tweet Thursday.
Her post included a screenshot from a portion of the survey titled: "Things I have always wanted to know about Asians." One question asked respondents to rate how much they wanted to know, "Is your vision impaired by your eyelids?"
Critics quickly weighed in:
Others came to the university's defense:
The university also responded to critics' tweets:
Maria Dixon Hall, senior adviser to the provost for Cultural Intelligence Initiatives, said the survey was removed Thursday after it received a sharp increase in responses, possibly from non-SMU students.
"We're not taking it down because we're wrong; we're taking it down because it wasn't for everybody," she told the Dallas Morning News.
She told the newspaper that students anonymously submitted some of the questions, while others came from a board composed of faculty and students. The responses were meant to fuel discussion about race and diversity, she said.
"We can't say that we're shaping world-changers if we can't talk to the world," Dixon Hall told the newspaper.