NAACP's Reaction To OU Video: Cocky, Arrogant Racism Is Alive And Well
OKLAHOMA CITY - The now viral SAE video and the racist chant created a firestorm, and the NAACP reacted to it. Local leaders spoke out about the actions of a handful of students that are having a very widespread effect.
“There used to be a day and a time where we talked about the hangman's noose,” Oklahoma State Conference NAACP President Anthony R. Douglas said. “Be out of town by sundown. So when we have our students act this way and then put this thing up publicly…what can we say?”
Leaders in the black community said they don't think enough has been said and are hoping this video will open up discussion about a topic that isn't always easy to confront.
“Bigotry, cocky, arrogant racism is alive and well,” Oklahoma City NAACP President Garland Pruitt said. “So we got problems.”
Pruitt said he believes this isn't an isolated incident and is just one that was caught on video and shared publicly.
“We've come too far. We've fought too long. We've fought too hard to allow you to belittle us, to talk down to us. We've had people who've hung, bled and died for the few things that we do have,” Pruitt said.
OU President David Boren addressed the public stating the actions of the students in the video are not acceptable, and there is not and won't be a place for it.
“There is zero tolerance for this type of racist bigotry behavior,” Boren said. “That's something we're going to have to learn I think throughout the whole country, and we're going through the process right here.”
That process is a sensitive one. Retaliation videos have already surfaced online including one targeting the fraternity.
“I think that is trouble,” Douglas said. “We're not condoning any violence.”
Governor Fallin released a statement saying, "The racist words chanted by the students in this video do not represent OU values or Oklahoma values. As the outrage among Oklahomans has demonstrated, we are a state that does not tolerate that kind of disrespectful behavior."
Monday evening, the national office of Tri Delta released the following statement regarding the video:
"We are deeply disappointed by the conduct of the students involved in the incident at The University of Oklahoma. Tri Delta expects its members to uphold the highest responsibilities of college women. The behavior documented in the video is deplorable and is in no way consistent with Tri Delta's ideals and core values. We are cooperating fully with our partners at the university as they investigate this matter."
Also Monday evening, the OU chapter of Tri Delta released a statement:
"The women of the Theta Gamma chapter of Delta Delta Delta fully support the actions taken by the administration of the University of Oklahoma in response to the incident involving Sigma Alpha Epsilon. The statement made by the national office of Delta Delta Delta was made in support of the university's actions. However, the Theta Gamma chapter is not under investigation by the university, nor have any chapter members been identified within the videos released. The women of Theta Gamma firmly believe in equal opportunity for all. We believe that the university is a place where tolerance and mutual respect should carry the day and where bigotry and intolerance should be left as historical reminders of how far we have come."