ABILENE, Texas (Christian Examiner) – Several students from Abilene Christian University have been expelled from the school for mocking black people in a video posted to the social media website Snapchat.
The students are not named in the video or by the predominantly-white university, which is roughly two hours west of Fort Worth. The school also did not say how many students were expelled.
I cannot emphasize strongly enough that this kind of hurtful behavior has no place on our campus or on behalf of ACU. Whether on social media or in person, we must hold ourselves to high standards of accountability for what we publish or say.
In the video, first reported by the Daily Mail, a female student is shown in blackface and wearing a set of large, red lips. She then says, "I'm a strong black woman."
Other students can be heard laughing in the background. Then, a caption appears on the video:
"This is why black lives matter exists."
ACU responded to the video via Twitter almost immediately. On Nov. 14, President Phil Schubert said the school became aware of the "disturbing content."
"Harassment of any kind is not tolerated at our university, and action is being taken to minimize the spread of this senseless attempt to make fun of others," Schubert said via the statement.
Schubert said the school's anti-harassment coordinator and the dean of students met with the students in the video "and they are no longer students at ACU."
"I cannot emphasize strongly enough that this kind of hurtful behavior has no place on our campus or on behalf of ACU. Whether on social media or in person, we must hold ourselves to high standards of accountability for what we publish or say," Schubert wrote.
Schubert said he was deeply offended by the video and expressed sorrow that the university will now be associated with a representation he referred to as un-Christian.
"We must and can do better as we work together to build an inclusive, diverse campus community in which each person is respected and loved," Schubert concluded.
On the university's Facebook page, which did not address the video, several guest posts praised the university's handling of the situation. Only one alumnus said he was "disgusted" with his alma mater.