Colorado State University has decided to defend a group of white students who posted a blackface photo with a caption that read, “Wakanda Forever”.
One student put the photo on blast after it was brought to his attention. Tay Anderson, who is running for Denver School Board At-Large, posted the blackface photo on Facebook with the caption,
“CSU Students wearing BLACK FACE! We should be outraged!!!!!!”
However, the school’s President Joyce McConnell is defending the students in an email sent to the Denver Post where she says they did not violate any school policies.
“Because of the long and ugly history of blackface in America, this photo has caused a great deal of pain to members of our community. We have heard from many of you — and we hear you. Moreover, we respect your voices. We know that images like this one — whether consciously racist or not — can perpetuate deliberate racism and create a climate that feels deeply hostile.”
While she admits the controversial photo contradicts the school’s “principles of community”, her solution is for campus leaders to help “educate” students about race, racial history and identity.
She also added,
“CSU is an educational institution committed to respecting every member of our community and to facilitating discussions that can promote honesty, learning, and healing. We are all here at CSU to learn, and we believe that this can be a powerful learning moment that leads to healing and reconciliation. We urge every member of our community to listen, and to hear, all the voices that make up this wonderful, diverse campus family so we can move forward together, stronger than ever.”
McConnell concluded the letter by adding, “We also affirm that personal social media accounts are not under our jurisdiction.”
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