In the wake of Donald Trump’s shocking election to the U.S. presidency Tuesday, deplorable acts of racism and intimidation by his supporters have appeared in schools and communities across the country.
The latest incident comes out of the University of Pennsylvania where the names of several African-American freshman were reportedly put on a “n-gger lynching” list on the popular social media app GroupMe.
UPenn freshman and track star Calvary Rogers discovered the racist social media group and immediately reported it to the university’s Vice Provost. Rogers detailed his concerns over the situation in a Facebook post Friday.
“I refuse to let this become my reality,” the star runner posted an hour later.
According to Philly.com, the first message in the app — which is popular among college students — was sent around 10 a.m. and read, “Sup n-ggers.” It was sent from someone under the alias “Daddy Trump.”
The calendar feature in the app had also scheduled several “n-gger lynchings,” as subsequent messages named at least 161 targeted students. An message sent in the app even featured images of lynchings with the caption “I Love America.”
“This is not an isolated incident, this is a reaction to the candidate that won,” said UPenn student Tunmise Fawole in reference to president-elect Trump. Another student, 22-year-old Brittany Brown, also said Trump’s divisive language is “rippling through the country.”
Atlanta Black Star reached out to the University of Pennsylvania for comment and was told school officials were made aware of the disturbing situation and working to investigate it. Shortly afterward, the university released a statement via Twitter concerning the incident.
A statement from Penn on the current events on campus. pic.twitter.com/CALK7OERup
— Penn (@Penn) November 11, 2016
News of the incident has since picked up steam on social media, with users voicing support for the young Black students.
Others had some not so nice words for the bigoted perpetrators.
— Sylvia (@Tellall2012) November 11, 2016
White students at University of Pennsylvania are adding black student to a lynching group in plans to kill, Rt this. Time to stop being nice pic.twitter.com/QgbRP43ye4
— The Real Destiny M. (@sweet_novacanee) November 11, 2016
The University of Pennsylvania released an official statement Friday afternoon:
“We are absolutely appalled that earlier today Black freshman students at Penn were added to a racist GroupMe account that appears to be based in Oklahoma. The account itself is totally repugnant: it contains violent, racist and thoroughly disgusting images and messages. This is simply deplorable. Our police and information security staff are trying to locate the exact source and to determine if any steps can be taken to block the account. Staff in the Office of Vice Provost for University Life are working nonstop with us and our students to determine exactly who has been targeted and how many, and we are doing everything in our power to provide the necessary support and will continue to do so. The University is also taking every step possible to address both the source of the racist material and the impact it has had on Black students ocampus.”
To read the university’s full statement, click here.