The U.S. Air Force announced Tuesday that the racial slurs written on five black cadets’ dorm doors at the Air Force Academy Prep School were actually written by one of the alleged victims, and that the cadet who wrote the slurs is no longer at the prep school.
An Air Force spokesman did not say if the student withdrew or was expelled, due to privacy laws, according to a report.
The Air Force Academy said: “We can confirm that one of the cadet candidates who was allegedly targeted by racist remarks written outside of their dorm room was actually responsible for the act. The individual admitted responsibility and this was validated by the investigation,” according to the report.
“Racism has no place at the academy, in any shape or form,” the Air Force Academy said.
The September incident sparked national attention, especially in light of current events. And, the academy’s superintendent came out and gave a stern speech saying that racism would not be tolerated.
Five black cadet candidates at the U.S. Air Force Academy Preparatory School found racial slurs written on dormitory message boards on their doors, which led to the investigation and school officials denouncing racism.
According to the Air Force Times, a mother of one of the allege victims posted a photo on Facebook of one of the messages, which read: “go home n****r.”
“If you’re outraged by those words, then you’re in the right place,” said Lt. Gen. Jay Silveria, the Academy’s Superintendent. “That kind of behavior has no place at the Prep School, has no place at USAFA and has no place in the United States Air Force.”
“If you can’t treat someone from another race or different color skin with dignity and respect, then you need to get out,” he added. “If you can’t treat someone with dignity and respect, then get out.”
Silveria mentioned current events in the United States that have sparked intense discussion, including the Charlottesville riot and the NFL protests. He noted that a recent forum hosted by the Dean of Faculty at the Academy on the Charlottesville riot facilitated a great discussion.
“We received outstanding feedback from that session on Charlottesville,” he said.
“What we should have is a civil discourse and talk about these issues,” Silveria said, rather than write racial slurs on someone’s door. “That’s a better idea.”
Silveria went on to talk about the importance of diversity.
“It’s the power that we come from all walks of life, that we come from all parts of this country, that we come from all races, that we come from all backgrounds, gender, all make-up, all upbringing,” he said. “The power of that diversity comes together and makes us that much more powerful.”
One of the alleged victim’s fathers had said that the cadet who wrote the message is the actual victim in the situation.
“The real victim here is that individual [who wrote the slurs], because that individual is going to lose a promising career in the military,” he said. “That individual is going to go home disgraced. Him or her is the real victim, because they were raised with that kind of vitriol and that kind of hate. My son is not a victim, I don’t view him as a victim.”
This was the superintendent’s September speech: