Education

Student’s N-word video could cause boycott of Jordan High football, lacrosse games

Jordan High School students listen to Aminah Jenkins during a gun-control rally at the school in February. Jenkins is now speaking out against a student-athlete recorded on a video using the N-word and making a sexist remark.
Jordan High School students listen to Aminah Jenkins during a gun-control rally at the school in February. Jenkins is now speaking out against a student-athlete recorded on a video using the N-word and making a sexist remark.

A video containing a racial slur and being shared on social media has a Jordan High School athlete in hot water.

The student, a rising senior who plays football and lacrosse, repeats the N-word, makes a sexist remark and pledges support for President Donald Trump in the video he reportedly sent to a female student who shared it on social media.

He is joined by another student who does not speak in the portion of the video circulating on social media.

The video was not recorded during the school year, with school equipment or on school grounds, said Durham Public Schools spokesman Chip Sudderth. So, it was unclear Tuesday whether DPS can discipline the student.

But some students are demanding the student not be allowed to play football or lacrosse this year.

Aminah Jenkins, the student body president, said some Jordan students will protest and boycott football games if the student plays.

“People are pretty upset, and they want something to be done,” said Jenkins, who has known the student since elementary school. “Our main concern is not his political views, it’s his views toward women and his use of the N-word that’s the main concern. That’s what’s got people so upset.”

Jordan Principal Susan Taylor sent a robo call to parents Tuesday to notify them about the video, which she said does not “reflect the values of our faculty, staff, student body, community, or the impacted families.”

“When I was first made aware of the video, several actions took place and will continue,” Taylor said. “The actions were designed to investigate, address the behavior, plan for healing, and take steps to ensure that Jordan is a school in which all students are and feel welcome.”

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Taylor and DPS Director of Equity Affairs Kelvin Bullock will meet with student leaders before the start of school to talk about how the Jordan community can begin the healing process.

Jenkins, who is black, said the video has been particularly hurtful to students of color, but not surprising.

“We’ve know for years that stuff like this happens on and off campus, but no one ever talks about it in a manner that allows ups to move forward,” Jenkins said.

On Tuesday, several Jordan students used Twitter to share the video and to urge classmate to do the same.

The Jordan video has surfaced amid a national conversation about the high school tweets sent several years ago by several major league baseball players who used anti-gay and racial slurs.

Some supporters of the players have blamed the offensive tweets on youthful ignorance.

Jenkins, however, isn’t buying that excuse when it comes to the video recorded by her classmates.

“I’ve never awoken and marginalized and offended an entire group of people,” Jenkins said.

Greg Childress: 919-419-6645, @gchild6645
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