Last week, controversy plagued the University of Oklahoma after one student was kicked out of her sorority for an offensive video. The woman filmed her friend as she applied blackface and appeared to use racial slurs, and the footage soon spread online after it was posted to Snapchat. The sorority member who filmed the incident laughed throughout the video, leading to widespread condemnation from her fellow students, sorority members and the university administration.
“The woman who participated in, filmed and posted the video is no longer a member of our organization,” Tri Delta chapter president London Moore said in a statement, adding that they condemn "the racist, offensive and disgraceful conduct of the two women involved in the video."
“We expect all of our students, staff and faculty to respect the diversity and cultural backgrounds of others," The school’s president, James Gallogly stated. “While students have the freedom of expression, the negative impact of such conduct cannot be underestimated.”
Both women involved have since left the campus, after being denounced by many working at the university, though they did offer to apologise for their regretful actions. But that's not the end of the incidents occurring on the campus, as police are now on the look-out for a man who was spotted walking around in blackface on Wednesday.
Due to the fact that this has happened just days after the two female students were criticised for doing the same, many believe this may be a direct response, as well as a sign there may be a larger problem to deal with at the university. Students and other protesters recently confronted the university president at a rally, demanding tougher action against racism at the school.
In addition to them, several others shared clips and photos of the man, who appeared to be wearing an 'anti-PC' shirt. The T-shirt bears the name of Tommy Sotomayor, a controversial YouTuber who the Huffington Post described as making "shocking accusations about black women, young gay men, and the black community."
“We just don’t know how to stop doing blackface around The University of Oklahoma,” another Twitter user added.
Officials from the university issued an alert on Wednesday afternoon, revealing to students that they are currently “working to ensure all on campus are safe”. They confirmed that “the individual has not been located by OUPD and we have no information on whether he is a student.”
Additionally, the Black Student Association at the university offered "safe spaces" for any students who want to talk about what's happening and "come together as a community to strategize and come up with a viable plan of solutions".
"We have a lot of outside agitators who come when they see an opportunity to create division, and it creates this narrative that this is a racially inhospitable, intolerant community," associate professor of African-American studies Karlos K. Hill said. "I can tell you, as one of the most prominent black people on campus, that has not been my experience."
In response to these recent events, as well as previous racist incidents at the school, many students took part in a 'Better Together' march to spread a positive message across the company.
An investigation into the individual spotted on campus, student or otherwise, is ongoing.