Some unidentified students from Grosse Pointe South High School in Michigan caused outrage over the weekend when they posted an online video of themselves making racist remarks about black people. The comments were not made on the school campus, but the school is stepping in (video below).
Principal Moussa Hamka sent an email to parents and teachers on June 1, notes Click On Detroit, that called the video "deplorable."
"Consistent with the Student Code of Conduct, we are making appropriate decisions regarding consequences for those involved, including student separations from school," Hamka added.
Melba Dearing, a student at the school, told the Detroit Free Press that the video showed the students talking about what they would do with black people if they were president in 2040:
One of the answers was they should send black people back to Africa. And they said the only states where African Americans could go would be Maine and North Dakota and … Idaho, but then one said, "Oh no, I like Idaho potatoes. Don't say that."
They looked like they were drunk, but that's no excuse. We just had an incident a few months ago, and we have all these things still happening. But I'm happy our principal addressed it.
Dearing's father, Jai-Lee Dearing, added: "I told her, when people act ignorant, you should bypass them. Focus on the people who respect you and don't look at all white people as mean or racist."
According to WXYZ, the principal's letter also said:
During the past 24 hours, several of our students have approached staff members and administrators indicating that this video, which has been circulated via social media, offended them and made them question the values we hold dear at South...
We will continue to demonstrate that the majority of our students and community members do not accept and will not tolerate such bigotry.
The principal did not mention that the students made the racist video off-campus or that offensive speech is protected by the First Amendment.
It's not clear what authority the school has when it comes to policing the off-campus speech of students.