The University of Maryland decided to pursue a course of “restorative justice rather than legal justice” against a student who sent his fraternity brothers a racist and misogynistic email, according to the Huffington Post.
University of Maryland President Wallace D. Loh announced that decision following an investigation of a student, and Kappa Sigma Fraternity member, who reportedly sent the email in January 2014.
According to the Huffington Post, the email surfaced sometime last month, while the nation was still processing the release of a University of Oklahoma fraternity member’s video showing white students singing a racist chant.
“Don’t invite any n—ger gals or curry monsters or slanted eye chinks, unless they’re hot,” the email, which was sent to six frat brothers, read, according to Yahoo News. “Ziggy you’re [sic] girl can come she’s cool. Remember my n—gas, erect, assert, and insert, and above all else, f—k consent.” Once the email came to light, it quickly went viral.
The white student also discusses his plans to get drunk and have nonconsensual sex during recruitment week.
According to Loh’s statement, the investigators said the private email was indeed reprehensible but didn’t violate university policies and is protected by the First Amendment. “Following consultation with the university’s general counsel, I accepted the conclusions of this independent investigation that was carried out in accordance with due process,” he said.
Loh met with the student and his parents, and according to the Huffington Post, the student expressed regret for the harm his email caused. He also offered to undergo diversity training and to perform community service. By mutual consent, the student agreed to leave the campus this semester.
Many of the university’s students and parents were shocked at what they say is a weak response to racism and talk of rape, the Washington Post reports. But Loh said it’s important to protect even hateful speech.
By contrast, the University of Oklahoma took a different approach from the University of Maryland’s and wasted no time expelling two students who appeared to lead a racist chant.