Race relations in this country have improved, but they are not optimal, making an incident where white students tied a noose around a black student’s neck even more poignant. The Mississippi NAACP investigated the situation that erupted at a school in Mississippi and found out that a young black student was indeed yanked by white classmates.
The report said that the young man was attacked by four white students who ultimately yanked him backwards. The incident took place in the school’s locker room. The students were on the school’s football team, and they were at practice. Apparently, this attack took place during a break.
One thing that most Americans accept is that football is a very inclusive sport, but this incident certain besmirch’s the spirit of the sport. This is something that President Derrick Johnson seems to understand. He is asking for the federal investigators to look at the situation with the right eyes. Johnson does not want investigators to look at the incident as a minor crime because it is not. President Derrick is asking investigators to treat the incident as a racial hate crime.
Johnson is convinced that treating the incident with the right amount of gravitas would help students feel safer at school. He does not want a problem like this to be swept under the rug. It seems that Johnson is attempting to make an example out of these four boys to send a clear message to the school, community, and nation.
Many in the community feel this message is vital, especially with some of the recent policies in the state of Mississippi. A concerned mother of one the kids that attends the school is attributing the incident to the fact that Mississippi allows the Confederate flag to be featured in the state’s flag. The mother mentioned that students can bring the Confederate flag to school. This might encourage attacks like this.
The school has kicked one of the students involved off of the football team, but there is no word on the status of the remaining three attackers. The names of the students involved in the incident have been kept from the public for safety reasons.
There have been no criminal action taken against the kids involved. The actions could be taken by either the school district or the Sheriff’s Police Department. Captain Ray Boggs, from the Stone County Sheriff’s Department said this is perhaps one of the hardest cases he has dealt with. Boggs said that he has never encountered a similar case from a high school before.
The boy’s mother has not filed a police report or attempted to take any legal actions against the bullies. The mother has not done this because she believes one of the kid’s father used to be on the police force. Sherrif Boggs has denied this connection, and he assures that his department is impartial and is only there to seek truth and justice. Still, he did not shy away from warning the boy’s mother that filing criminal charges might make some of other students in the school turn against her son.
Inita Owen, who is the superintendent of education for Stone County schools, has not said anything about the situation. The NAACP is up in arms about the situation. The group is worried about the message that the school and the superintendent is sending to the community. The NAACP believes that failing to punish these unspeakable actions tells others that the law is weak and indifferent regarding racial hate crimes.
Hopefully, something is done regarding the situation and that justice is brought to those that deserve it.