A group of black football players at University of Missouri are making a bold move. They’ve decided to go on strike from playing football until the President of the University of Missouri System steps down. Why? Find out inside….
United we stand, divided we fall.
A group of black football players from the University of Missouri are making a statement. A big one. The group of 32 football players (and many others) are calling for the removal of University of Missouri System President Tim Wolfe because of his lack of response to many racist and anti Semitic acts on campus.
These guys are taking an honorable stand. The men photographed in the picture say they will NOT be playing in any football games until he is removed. Mizzou is a HUGE football school and for anybody to NOT play in any SEC game...it's a huge deal. Their last game was Thursday against Mississippi State where they lost, 31-13.
Well the guys won’t be worried about winning or losing any games if some type of compromise isn’t worked out before next Saturday’s game against the BYU Cougars in Kansas City.
The football players' strike announcement came last night on Twitter through Missouri's Legion of Black Collegians. The tweet reads:
So what brought all of this about? Well…many incidents. Racists and anti-Semtic incidents to be exact. One graduate student, Jonathan Butler, started a hunger strike on Monday and now the football players have joined in solidarity. Here’s the breakdown of situations that have happened on campus that have students in an uproar:
Racial tension has been brewing at Missouri's campus in Columbia since September, when Payton Head, the Missouri Students Association president and an African-American, said he was racially abused while walking. Students protested when it took nearly a week for the university chancellor to address the incident.
Then in October, a student yelled the N-word at members of the Legion of Black Collegians in a campus plaza while they were rehearsing for a play. And later that month, someone smeared a swastika with their own feces on a bathroom wall in a new residence hall.
The university downplayed the incident, and more backlash toward administrators ensued -- with Wolfe enduring the most. Wolfe met with Butler and student groups on Friday to discuss the university's handling of racial harassment cases.
Jonathan Butler, a Missouri grad student, began a hunger strike against Wolfe on Monday, saying Wolfe has failed to respond to student concerns. A change.org petition to remove Wolfe from office has over 2,000 supporters.
Now, the Tigers football team is involved.
So you see, it's not just the football players, it's tons of students on campus taking this stand. The students' call for social action has led to protests, hunger strikes, and more:
— Alecia (@AleciaMcLean) November 5, 2015
— Daniela Sirtori-C. (@dlsirtori) November 5, 2015
Notes placed on the Thomas Jefferson statue describe Jefferson as a "rapist," "racist," "murderer," and more. pic.twitter.com/VQVf8yHgOG
— KCOU News (@kcounews) October 7, 2015
The chancellor of Mizzou system R. Bowen Loftin was recently contacted by 36 student organizations to publicly denounce recent anti-Semitic activity on campus to no avail.
On Friday, Tim Wolfe issued a statement apologizing to the students after meeting with Jonathan Butler. In a statement he said,
“Racism does exist at our university, and it is unacceptable,” Wolfe said in a statement. “It is a long-standing, systemic problem which daily affects our family of students, faculty and staff. I am sorry this is the case.”
Following his statement, Missouri released a statement on Saturday saying,
"The department of athletics is aware of the declarations made tonight by many of our student-athletes," it said. "We all must come together with leaders from across our campus to tackle these challenging issues and we support our student-athletes right to do so."
And we'll just leave this here….
Let's also acknowledge that #ConcernedStudent1950 was spearheaded by the minds of Black women at Mizzou. Their voices have led the way
— Aaron Allen (@AaronAllenMU) November 8, 2015
We applaud these students for using their influence to take a stand against racial and social injustices on their campus.