Three white high school students in Waverly, New York, performed a satirical “re-enactment” of Chris Brown’s infamous beating of his then-girlfriend Rihanna, in blackface, at a pep rally in front of students, parents, community leaders, and the media.
The act has decried as racist by former students of the high school, and some have questioned the judgment of the school administrators who allowed such a show to be performed. Their students were participating in a competition to be crowned “Mr. Waverly.”
According to CNN, former Waverly High School student Vlad Chituc said, “I think it’s unconscionable that such blatant racism has been tacitly approved two years in a row.”
“The administration should be creating an environment where minorities are welcome, not the butts of racist jokes that make light of domestic violence,” said Chituc.
Another former student, Hannah Van Wie-Desisti, said, “I used to be so proud of where I came from. Not so much now due to the recent incident. I found it unfathomable that the faculty would not only approve this idea for the skit in the first place, but allow it to go on during the pep rally. I honestly don’t believe that the students meant to offend, but were just ill informed of how offending their skit actually was. The staff should have stopped it before it even started. By acting like the skit was acceptable, they are teaching their students that racism is okay and that abuse is humorous.”
“The Waverly School District is committed to creating a positive atmosphere through our activities,” school district superintendent Joseph Yelich said in a statement. “I will be working with our building administrators, our staff and our students to examine our current activities and develop future activities consistent with our commitment.”