Every time there's a racial incident or conflict everyone weighs in without knowing what really happened. Each incident serves as a litmus test or a Rorschach test or a loyalty test, or some kind of a test, with everyone reverting to their default positions within seconds of learning about the situation in question.
Lots of noise gets generated fast. Which must be why no one, as far as I can tell, has noted the literary irony at the heart of the most recent flap -- which is that the name of the University of Missouri president who was just forced to resign, Tim Wolfe, is just one small vowel away from that of Tom Wolfe, the influential writer who became famous by satirizing racial conflicts and liberal politics of the exact sort we see playing out in Columbia. Charles Dickens himself couldn't have invented a name so apt.