Grissom-Huntsville Football Game Postponed Due to Violent, Racially Motivated Posts
One of the posts included a photo of former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin kneeling on the neck of George Floyd.
A rivalry football game between two Alabama high schools has been postponed after violent and racially motivated posts were shared on social media.
In a letter sent to parents Wednesday, Huntsville City Schools Superintendent Christie Finley said postponing the game between Huntsville High School and Grissom High School was “disappointing news,” but “the truly disappointing news is the reason why this decision was necessary.” She said the posts “turned racially motivated and violent images into ‘rivalry material.’”
The Alabama Political Reporter obtained the posts circulated by students, one of which contained an image of former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin kneeling on the neck of George Floyd. Chauvin was labeled as Huntsville and Floyd was labeled as Grissom.
Another post reportedly contained an image of musicians Chris Brown and Rihanna with Brown labeled as Huntsville and Rihanna labeled as Grissom. The former couple made headlines back in 2009 when Brown attacked Rihanna, leaving her with a busted lip, black eye and bruising on her face.
There were also screenshots of students’ replies to the memes, which included threats of violence.
“The students involved in this incident trivialized racism and violence,” Finley said in the letter. “Huntsville City Schools does not tolerate or condone racism or violence, and, frankly, I expect better of our students.”
The letter went on to say the game has been moved from Sept. 4 to Sept. 24 to allow for tensions to cool and to make it a teachable moment, according to WAAY. It also gives the school time to take extra precautions, like hiring additional security for the game.
“In anticipation of our students returning to campus on September 21st, teachers at Huntsville and Grissom will continue conversations surrounding respect, equity, diversity, and inclusion as part of their remote lessons,” Finley wrote. “These lessons will continue throughout the month of September as students transition from remote to in-person learning.”
Finley also said involved students would be punished accordingly.