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Texas A&M is conducting an investigation after students who were visiting the campus were harassed as students from the university shouted racial slurs and told them to “go back where you came from.”

About 60 students from Uplift Hampton Preparatory were touring the campus when a white woman wearing Confederate flag earrings came up to two of the black students in the group and asked them what they thought of her earrings. Then, a group of “white male and female students” began taunting the students “using the most well-known racial slur that’s directed toward African Americans,” according to state Sen. Royce West, D-Dallas.

A&M staffers called police, but the police said that the harassers were simply using their First Amendment rights of freedom of speech and expression. The incident is now under review.

A&M President Michael Young sent out a campus-wide email denouncing the incident.

“I deeply regret the pain and hurt feelings this incident caused these young students. Be assured that we take such allegations very seriously,” Young wrote.

“This troubling incident will be thoroughly investigated to the fullest extent possible and appropriate action will be taken,” the e-mail said.

West is also calling for action, saying that the taunting students should be “strongly disciplined, if not expelled.”

“I call on Texas A&M officials to drive their decision to a destination which says that the halls of higher education are open to any student who is willing to rise to the challenge of earning a college degree,” West said.

 

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