I've got a bad feeling about this.
The party, organized by the Princeton class of 2012, carried a Star Wars theme of "Revenge of the 5th" and was going to feature participants wearing Star Wars costumes. Party organizers, however, sent out an email over the past few days, informing everyone that Stormtrooper costumes would be banned from the event, because it might remind folks of the Nazi stormtroopers of World War II. The incident was originally reported by HeatSt.com.
PJMedia.com provides details of the email sent out by organizers that banned the Stormtrooper costumes.
"A few of our classmates reached out expressing concerns over our choice to use Stormtroopers as our costume inspiration," the email said. "We have since been informed of the origin of this word and its connections to early- to mid-20th century Germany. This is something neither we nor anyone on your Reunion Committee was aware of, but something we take very seriously. Tonight we made the unanimous decision to remove these costumes." This was a veiled reference to the Nazi Sturmabteilung, the National Socialist storm troops originally used to protect party meetings and later used as a paramilitary wing. The formation of "storm troops" actually traces back to World War I, as StarWars.com pointed out.Besides the obvious insanity of such a ban, we should consider another aspect of this controversy. How did a group of adults manage to earn degrees from Princeton University WITHOUT knowing about the existence and background story of Nazi stormtroopers? Even if you are not a Star Wars fan, a Princeton graduate should possess some of the basic knowledge of World War II.
The fact that they were totally blindsided by the parallel is amazing. Even with the obvious inspiration of Nazis in the creation of the Stormtroopers of Star Wars, the inability of Princeton graduates to see it in context is troubling.