Officials from a school district in Utah are investigating a video in which five white teenagers from Weber High School laugh and shout "Fuck n*****s". The students reportedly made the video last year during fall break, and one posted it recently on their social media account with the comment "serggin cuff." The students used a rewind feature on the video app, which turned the gibberish phrase into the racial slur.
*Warning: video contains strong language and a racial slur*
Lane Findlay, a spokesperson for the school district, identified the girls as seniors and juniors, three of whom are cheerleaders. Findlay said officials were "shocked by the conduct of these students and the content of the video," and noted the students were asked not to come to school Tuesday while the district conducted their investigation. Findlay, who interviewed three of the five students, says they claim they were "playing around saying gibberish words" and accidentally produced the racial slur.
Findlay went on to say:
Racism, whether intentional or not, has no place in our schools or society. There is no excuse for these girls' action. With that being said, neither should there be justification for threats toward them and their families. Hatred only breeds more hatred. These are teenagers who made a big mistake, and they will be held accountable. Please be patient and reasonable as we deal with the situation.
Findlay added the girls he's spoken to "have all been very remorseful and apologetic for their actions."
While the video was not recorded on school grounds, Findlay stressed "appropriate disciplinary action will be taken if the students involved are found to have violated the school’s code of conduct."
Jeanetta Williams, President of the NAACP's local Idaho-Utah-Nevada chapter, spoke to the Associated Press and called the video appalling.
They knew what they were doing it. They did it, and they posted it. If they had any type of concerns about other people's feelings or about what other people would think they wouldn't have been laughing.
Williams is asking the school district to suspend the cheerleaders from the team and discipline the other students. "A strong lesson needs to be sent to them," she said. "It seems like our work is never done."