Black students at the University of Missouri increased pressure on the school’s president, Tim Wolfe, to step down over his handling of campus racism.
On Saturday night, a group of black athletes said they will stop playing football until Wolfe resigns, ESPN reports.
“The athletes of color on the University of Missouri football team truly believe ‘Injustice Anywhere is a threat to Justice Everywhere,’” a tweeted announcement stated. “We will no longer participate in any football related activities until President Tim Wolfe resigns or is removed due to his negligence toward marginalized students’ experiences. WE ARE UNITED!!!!!”
This stems from a series of reported racist incidents on campus, including racial slurs hurled at the Missouri Students Association president, who is black, and at members of the Legion of Black Collegians. In another incident, someone reportedly smeared a swastika with human feces on a bathroom wall in a dorm.
According to ESPN, school officials released this statement: “The department of athletics is aware of the declarations made tonight by many of our student-athletes. 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.”
This comes on the heels of a hunger strike by student activist Jonathan Butler, which he began Oct. 26. The graduate student said that he’s protesting “a slew of racist, sexist, homophobic, etc., incidents that have dynamically disrupted the learning experience” at MU.
Wolfe met with Butler on Friday. After the meeting, the university’s president acknowledged that racism exists on the Columbia campus and apologized for his mishandling of the situation, according to the Kansas City Star.