OU Students, Faculty React To Third Blackface Incident Of 2019
NORMAN, Oklahoma - University of Oklahoma students and staff, including new Interim President Joe Harroz, sent letters denouncing a new incident of blackface on campus.
The alleged blackface happened over the weekend on the private Instagram story of a campus freshman with the caption “another day, another case.” The incident is the third blackface incident on campus this year.
The picture was released by the student group, the Black Emergency Response Team. In a letter, members of BERT said while they did not have full information about the picture they said in part "We are certain that our community is exhausted by such incidents of hate and ignorance."
OU's interim president Joe Harroz also sent a letter to faculty and staff denouncing the photo.
"We are profoundly clear that OU is a place where racism is not welcome; where love and tolerance define us..."
The student in the mask told the campus paper, the OU Daily, the photo was taken out of context and was not racially motivated.
"I did not post the picture with any intention of 'black face' as (they're) claiming I am. I feel as if I'm being framed as racist and I am not."
This incident comes as the University is attempting to rebrand it's diversity mission on campus to be more inclusive. Harroz called it a top priority at the last regents meeting saying the new inclusivity campaign would be under the name #weare, meant to define OU by university values.