USC Co-ed suspended for racial slur
COLUMBIA — A University of South Carolina co-ed has been suspended due to a racial slur she wrote on a markerboard in one of the courses.
The photo, which appears to be taken from Snapchat and posted on several social media sites, shows a list of reasons why “USC’s WiFi blows.” On the top of that list is the N-word.
“I was really angry,” said Grace Steptoe, a USC Beaufort student. “I think it’s a horrible representation of the school. It’s not even a funny joke, so I don’t even understand why she would do that. I have actually had a lot of people try to say, oh, freedom of speech and everything like that, but it’s offensive, and it looked like it was on a board in a classroom, which is completely inappropriate.”
Harris Pastides, the president of the university, did not identify the student, but outside reports say the suspended co-ed name is Gracie Tifton, who is getting threats on and off social media. The South Carolina Law Enforcement Division (SLED), the FBI, USC Campus Police, Richland County Sheriff’s Department and Columbia Police Office are investigating the threats.
“The unfortunate and disappointing act of a student in a study room has challenged the Carolina community to reflect on our values and tell the world what we believe,” said President Pastides in a statement. “Respect for all is at the heart of the Carolinian Creed, the code by which we agree to abide. Racist and uncivil rhetoric have no place at the University of South Carolina.”
She could also face expulsion.
This is the at least the sixth of at least seven incidents of college racism in the past 35 days. Last month Oklahoma and Pennsylvania State shuttered fraternities, while North Carolina State suspended one – all for racism (and in N.C. State’s case, also for sexism). Early Sunday morning, Kentucky basketball player Andrew Harrison said a racial slur under his breath during a post-game news conference after Wisconsin denied the basketball world of a perfect team in 2015, which led to rioting and looting by Kentucky students while the news conference was ongoing.
African-American students at the USC correctly said it: this is the latest example that there’s more work to be done and that we don’t live in a post-racial society.