A building on the University of Oklahoma campus in Norman, OK is photographed on September 18, 2010.
University of Oklahoma students are protesting a racist video that led to the shutdown of a fraternity on Monday.
Sigma Alpha Epsilon said Sunday night that an investigation had confirmed the contents of a video showing multiple white men and women chanting a racial slur against blacks. In the footage, a young white male in formal wear is seen leading a group on a bus in a chant: “There will never be a n****r SAE; You can hang them from a tree, but they’ll never sign with me."
The video, which remains on YouTube, was first posted online by a black student group at OU. It wasn't immediately clear how it was obtained.
(Editors' note: The following video contains offensive language.)
Oklahoma Fraternity Shut Down After Video Of... bởi katitrang
Hundreds of students gathered on campus Monday morning to march and protest the video, organizing under the hashtag: #NeverBeaNiggerInSAE — a direct reference to one of the lines in the chant.
— Unheard (@OU_Unheard) March 9, 2015
Dr. George Henderson, Norman's first African American homeowner in attendance at @OU_Unheard this morning. pic.twitter.com/OPVcHs98HC
— Bijan Hosseini (@BijanHosseini) March 9, 2015
Proud of OU students and the support shown by @OU_Athletics at the @OU_Unheard demonstration. pic.twitter.com/bESXIc4KOY
— Nicki Webber Moore (@nickimoore) March 9, 2015
Overnight, graffiti appeared on the fraternity's wall that read: "TEAR IT DOWN."
BREAKING: "TEAR IT DOWN" spray painted on #OU #SAE frat house after racist video surfaces #SAEHatesMe pic.twitter.com/3htcAU7W1Q
— Rusty Surette (@rustysurette) March 9, 2015
Speaking to a group of students on Monday morning, university President David Boren said the students who appeared in the video were "disgraceful" and had abused their right to free speech.
Students, meanwhile, urged each other to change their social media avatars to an image that states, "Not on OUr campus," where the "O" and "U" stands for the university's initials.
I urge everyone to make this your profile pic somewhere on social media pic.twitter.com/yTOFBGJN5w
— Hannah musselman (@Musselmandh) March 9, 2015
The fraternity's president, Brad Cohen, added on Twitter: "I know I speak for all when I say I'm disgusted and shocked by the video involving our @sae1856 chapter at Uof OK. They will be dealt with."
In a tweet to a local news station he added that they would be expelled from the fraternity and openly wondered if the university would take the same action.
Sigma Alpha Epsilon said in a statement that it was embarrassed by the unacceptable and "racist behavior" and that it did not represent "what Sigma Alpha Epsilon stands for."
We apologize for the unacceptable and racist behavior of the individuals in the video, and we are disgusted that any member would act in such a way. Furthermore, we are embarrassed by this video and offer our empathy not only to anyone outside the organization who is offended but also to our brothers who come from a wide range of backgrounds, cultures and ethnicities.This type of racist behavior will not be tolerated and is not consistent with the values and morals of our fraternity. We have more than 15,000 collegiate members across the nation, and this incident should not reflect on other brothers because this type of hateful action is not what Sigma Alpha Epsilon stands for. This is absolutely not who we are.
Sigma Alpha Epsilon was founded in 1856 at the University of Alabama in Tuscaloosa, according to its website. The university will hold a news conference at noon ET on Monday to address the fraternity's closure.
Tags: English, FRATERNITIES, RACISM, SAE, SIGMA ALPHA EPSILON, U.S., UNIVERSITY OF OKLAHOMA, WORLD, YOUTUBE