Society and Culture

“Hood Pranks” Are Racist Attacks on the Community

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We are a self-conscious generation. We care way too much of what our peers think of us, which at times is all consuming. We crave likes on our Facebook pictures, strive for the most amount of retweets, and struggle to make our YouTube videos go viral. We seek approval so badly that we will go to great lengths just to get it; and we’re starting to cross the line. Personally, I see nothing wrong with executing a practical and thoughtful prank — what good is life if you can’t laugh, right? But there is a thin line with jokes and pranks, and a very thin line between a tasteful joke and a offensive joke. When you cross that line onto the offensive side, you’ll find it incredibly hard to come back from that.


A group of kids go to the “hood” and find strangers to pull pranks on and showcase them on YouTube: hood pranks. These “pranks” include pulling strangers’ pants up, approaching people with fake guns, pretending to steal people’s phones, and pretending to take pictures of people. The kids go to predominantly black neighborhoods because they know that these are the areas where people will react the harshest.

Of course these people are going to react with violence. They’re bitter, and how could they not be?They’ve been dealt the shittiest hand of cards of anyone in America. They’ve been ridiculed and they’ve been stepped on, and they carry a weight on their shoulders that we as outsiders can never understand. They are the minority of minorities. And these kids think it’s funny to exploit that, but it really isn’t. What some white people don’t seem to get is that we are done with being disrespected. You cannot go into a predominately black neighborhood, pick a fight, and not expect anything to happen. This isn’t the 17th century, we have a little bit more voice now.  And were going to use that voice.

We’re going to use that voice to tell you that these “pranks” need to stop. We’re going to use that voice to tell you that these “pranks” aren’t funny, they aren’t creative, and most importantly, they’re not actually pranks at all. They are intrusive and obscene acts that exploit black culture and they are useless in helping us progress as a society. I understand that we’re a conscious generation, and we feel the need to impress our peers; but there are lines. When we diminish a whole culture for the sake of some laughs, that is definitely crossing a line. And when you cross this line you completely deserve to get your ass kicked.

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Trevor Smith
Trevor Smith is a homegrown DMVer studying Journalism and Graphic Design at American University. Upon graduating he has hopes to work for the US State Department so that he can travel, learn, and make money at the same time. Contact Trevor at



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