Updated as of 1/11/2023 at 4:00 p.m. ET
The University of Missouri has decided not to punish a student following the circulation of a racist Snapchat posting she made promoting the murder of Black people with a racial slur, according to Kansas City Defender. The school said her comments were simply free speech and they had no grounds to discipline her for it.
Following the fatal shooting of four Black student athletes at University of Virginia, student Megan Miller sent a Snapchat reading, “If they would have killed 4 more n*ggers we would have had the whole week off.” Apparently, encouraging the killing of Black students calls for no repercussions.
“Upon review, the student’s racial slur was expressed in a direct message to her friend and was not communicated in a way that harassed any individual. In that context, the speech is protected by the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. Because we are a public institution, constrained by the First Amendment, OIE and OSAS concluded the university has no grounds to discipline the student who sent the message, even though it is diametrically opposed to our values.” – Mun Y. Choi, Ph.D., President at University of Missouri via The KC Defender.
The university’s response was disappointing to some but unsurprising to most.
In a world where social media is the main tool in evaluating the warning signs of a school shooter, how does “killing n*ggers” fall short of action? Exercising free speech isn’t really the problem - it’s what that speech implies which, in this case, is the mockery of a senseless slaying.
Previously, Vice Chair of Social Justice for the Missouri Student Association, Kaylyn Walker, told The Defender Black students tried to signal their school administrators about the incident through social media.
“-We went to Twitter to start tagging faculty because we could tell this wasn’t being taken as seriously as it should be. We were of course angry she said it, but even more outraged at how the administration is handling it,” said Walker.
Miller wasn’t quick enough to privatize her page before students collected screenshots of her smiling with dead animals, posing with Kyle Rittenhouse and of course her alarming bio: “unapologetically conservative, second amendment enthusiast, pro-life advocate.” Well… doesn’t this all make a little more sense now?
Read the response from Mizzou’s Legion of Black Collegians from KC Defender:
“The concerns of Black individuals continue to be ostracized, diminished, and downright neglected… Today’s decision, as blatantly wrong as it is, was easily predictable…The University of Missouri’s lack of action concerning this situation sends a clear message about who the university is intent on protecting… When there are tough calls to be made, the University of Missouri consistently chooses to align itself on the side of hate, and the response to this incident is merely another example.”
Sophomore University of Missouri student, Kaylyn Walker, who is a Senator with the Legion for Black Collegians, as well as the Vice Chair of Social Justice for the Missouri Students Association, told The Defender,
“Mizzou continues to protect its racist students day after day…They claim her statement wasn’t ‘directed’ at a student but it absolutely was directed towards the Black community and was very threatening speech.”