Students at Slippery Rock University want something done after a Black History Month flyer posted on campus was defaced with racist and hateful rhetoric.
“They’re saying 52-percent of all abortions are Black babies,” junior Xavier Brown said of the defaced flyer found at the university’s Rhoads Hall. “It was just crazy, just everything disrespectful toward Black History Month.”
According to CBS Pittsburgh, the flier was promoting student-run programs celebrating Black History Month when they were defamed with messages like, “Pigs in a blanket, fry ’em in bacon,” and “What do we want? Dead cops! When do we want them … now!”
An image of a student holding a “black lives matter” sign was also changed to say “ALL lives matter.”
Student Mohamed Manfoud was among those angered by the rhetoric but said the Pennsylvania campus is no stranger to racial incidents like these.
“Every semester, like multiple times a semester, I’ll experience some sort of discrimination or racism towards me. Either because I’m black or because my name’s Mohamed,” he said.
Duy Nguyen, another SRU student, said all students want is “equal respect” from others in the campus community.
“I’m not white or black myself, but I feel like I still stand for something in this community,” he told CBS Pittsburgh.
On Thursday, university President Bill Behre penned a strongly worded letter condemning the actions of those responsible and said he stands with the students who’ve been affected.
“First is, oh my how are we going to help our students, particularly our students of color who are struggling at this point?” Behre said of the incident, adding that such behavior “has no place at Slippery Rock.”
After quoting author Edmond Burke saying, “The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good people to do nothing,” the president added that the university is “doing all it can” to identify the persons involved and will take “appropriate disciplinary sanctions.”
On Feb. 18, the university plans to host a community discussion on campus for students and community leaders.
“We must fight ignorance with education, discrimination with inclusion,” Behre wrote. “And so, we’ll continue to celebrate the great contributions African-Americans and other marginalized people have made throughout history. We will continue to offer films, speakers and other programs that can place our nation’s current struggles within thoughtful historical and social context. I sincerely hope that these efforts will wear away ignorance just as a stream cuts a gorge.”
Watch more in the video below.