Univ. of Florida apologizes for White staffer ‘aggressively’ pushing Black grads off stage

Thanks, but who is this usher?

It appears that #GraduatingWhileBlack has now been added to the list of trivial crimes that white people think warrants harassment. The University of Florida is under heightened scrutiny after an usher aggressively shoved and manhandled several Black students during a graduation ceremony on Saturday.

The irritated white usher repeatedly pushed and grabbed students attempting to stroll, (a dance significant to Black fraternities), while crossing the stage. For whatever reason the university employee didn’t appreciate the celebratory nature of this innocent dance and took it upon himself to nip it whenever it happened.

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In videos of the ceremony that surfaced on social media, the man can be seen actually yanking at students after they receive their diploma.

Not surprisingly, the students and their families found the display upsetting.

It was also noted by spectators that of the approximately 5,000 students who participated in the ceremony, the usher’s behavior seemed to exclusively target Black students.

“It was definitely contingent on your race,” graduate Nafeesah Attah told Good Morning America. “Other white students who were dancing were not perceived as a threat.”

University of Florida President W. Kent Fuchs apologized for the incident. “I personally apologize, and am reaching out to the students involved,” he tweeted.

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“The practice has been halted for all future ceremonies, and we will work to make sure all graduating students know we are proud of their achievements and celebrate with them their graduation,” said Fuchs.

Several users on Twitter responded to the apology asking why the university didn’t react sooner to students being forcibly pulled off stage.

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Apologetic tweets aside, the usher in question still remains unidentified, and there has been no word yet on if he will be disciplined for his actions.

“I was definitely disappointed they took that moment from me because I can only get my bachelors once,” confessed Attah.

Check out a clip from the event below.

 

 

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