A 16-year-old student who “received racist text messages warning him to drop out of the Jersey City high school’s student government election sent the texts to himself,” as reported by NJ.com yesterday.
A black student who was running for president for the Student Council claimed to receive four racist text messages and “brought them to the attention of school officials who called in his father and police.” The texts called the student a “slave” and mentioned President Obama, saying in part, ”We will never make that mistake again. Drop out right now . . .”
The teen ended up being elected as Vice President of the Student Council, but is reportedly no longer attending the school. Why would someone do such a thing? Was it about getting elected? Was it to get attention?
At the time, the teen’s father told The Jersey Journal:
It is a predominantly white school and there may be a few sections of the school who are fearful of a new face trying to get in office.
Not so much. When racism is used as a tool, it diminishes actual racism.
The faux race incident comes after the internationally-reported racism that took place at Oberlin College was found to be at the hands of two Obama-supporting progressive teens who said that the anti-Islam fliers, display of a large Nazi flag, racist, homophobic, and anti-Semitic incidents were a “joke.”
It is not very funny, as people are charged with “felony hate crime” for much less. The most egregious aspect of the case is that the school officials, as well as the police, were aware of the perpetrators but allowed the news coverage to continue.
Cornell University law professor William Jacobson tracked the Oberlin story on Legal Insurrection.
School officials and local police knew the identity of the culprits, who were responsible for most if not all of such incidents on campus, yet remained silent as the campus reacted as if the incidents were real.
Police did not press charges and the college seemed to have the online speculation weighing heavily on their minds, as they said in a statement Friday that the racist incidents “generated speculation on some web sites regarding the motives of the alleged perpetrators.”
The statement continued:
These actions were real. The fear and disruption they caused in our community were real.
But the punishment is not real.
Oberlin College spokesman Scott Wargo said Friday that “both students (Dylan Bleier and Matt Alden, as revealed by Chuck Ross of the Daily Caller) are going through the school’s disciplinary system,” as reported at the Washington Post.
For those who want to have an “honest conversation” about race in America, manufactured racism and race hoaxes must be addressed and punished just as aggressively as “hate crimes.” It should also be noted that hate crimes, if they must exist, must be applied regardless of race. Justice must be blind in order to be truly just.
Follow Renee Nal on Twitter @ReneeNal and Facebook. Check out her news and political commentary on Tavern Keepers, Gather and the Examiner for news you won’t find in the mainstream media. Renee is also a guest blogger for the Shire Blog.