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When a high school football player in Indiana snapped a photo with his friend and two cheerleaders, the internet became outraged when he shared the image to social media. Because one of the cheerleaders was black and the white football player posted the photo with a racial slur in the caption, he was quickly inundated with hate mail for his racist predilections. Cheerleaders from the Indianapolis Colts decided to do Western High School in Russiaville a favor to help promote a blood drive. So they stopped by to offer some support. But the students at the school didn’t have a kind word to say and instead blasted the black cheerleader because she is African American.
In the now viral picture that has embarrassed Western High School in Russiaville, Indiana, two Colts cheerleaders are flanked by two high school football players. Later in the day, the student standing next to Leanna, who is black, posted the image to Snapchat with the racial slur.
“Of course [another student’s name] put me next to the n*****,” the Western High School student wrote.
Because his followers and ex-friends were offended by the post, they shared the image to Twitter and Facebook where it went viral and made the high school student look ignorant and racist.
Now the principal of Russiaville’s Western High School, Rick Davis, has been forced to publish an apology on behalf of his racist student.
“We are so incredibly sorry to everyone who has been hurt by this message and this mistake that this student made. That student and everyone else associated with it, especially the cheerleader, is dealing with the fallout. It was actually a very positive, great celebration that unfortunately was tarnished by this one student’s actions. That is not who we are or what we represent. It’s an unexpected punch in the gut. How could one of our students do this?”
After the controversy, WXIN spoke to the victimized cheerleader. She has dealt with people like this student all her life and has her parents to thank for raising her to be a strong woman.
“There’s some hurt,” Leanna said, “but I really have to commend my parents for the way they raised me, they prepared me for this. Despite how people treat you, you’re to always treat others with kindness and love.”
Apparently the student issued an apology to Leanna. She has reportedly accepted his apology.
She added, “This is an act of ignorance and he’s a kid and he made a mistake and I don’t think it was personal. It was in my nature to just forgive him and pray for him and pray for everybody who was hurt by it.”
In the aftermath, her supports have mailed cards and letters of support. She hopes that other people can see why the student was wrong and learn to be better than he behaved.
“Find forgiveness and treat others the way you would want to be treated. Stop trying to fight hate with hate. Start trying to fight it with love,” she said.
What do you think about the student’s racist remark?
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