Multiple high school students in Missouri allegedly posted a racist petition online last week calling for bringing back slavery in the United States. This has sparked an outrage among parents, officials and netizens prompting an investigation that may lead to suspensions or expulsion.
The incident happened at Park Hill High School in Kansas City. Students at the school said the petition called for the return of slavery with leaked screenshots showing accompanying comments like "I hate blacks" and "I love slavery, " WDAF reported.
Troubling Online Post
Officials from Park Hill School District have reportedly only said that there was a so-called "discipline incident", while other officials hinted at racism possibly being involved.
According to reports, parents were notified in an email of "unacceptable and racist statements that some students posted online during a school-related activity". However, there were no details that could clarify the nature of the said activity or any information about the "signatories" of the petition.
"We are outraged, hurt, and saddened that this occurred", Park Hill South Principal Kerrie Herren told students in a statement, according to The Kansas City Star. "This is not who we want to be at Park Hill South. Our differences make us stronger. We do not tolerate discrimination or harassment".
Parents Demand Accountability
Some parents within the school are reported to have demanded accountability. The district says it has set up listening sessions to hear from students and parents affected by the petition, reported The Daily Beast.
The Kansas City Star reported that about a dozen parents attended a meeting with Principal Ryan Stanley of LEAD Innovation Studio - another high school in the district. During the discussion of the matter, Stanley said it was "his understanding" that the vaguely described "racist" incident was indeed about the petition to reinstate slavery.
The district has roughly 11,700 students, Kirby said, 12.7 percent of whom are black. Some 66.1 percent of the district's students are white, according to the New York Post. The school made headlines last year when the principal demanded volleyball players remove shirts they were wearing in support of racial equity.
Social Media Outrage
One internet user wrote, "The parents of these students are either racists themselves or had an epic fail in their parenting duties!" Another said, "Permanent suspension for the ones that created it, and a year minimum (if not permanent) for anyone that signed it. We're where we are because the North handled the LOSER South with kid gloves after the CW. It's time that stopped."
"Remember what Neely Fuller has taught us. By the age of 15, children in the dominant society are to learn the ins and outs of white supremacy," tweeted another.
One user said, "If they want slavery back, how about this time, we let the white people be the slaves! Let's see how that goes over with them!"