MANHATTAN, Kan. (WIBW) – Kansas State is launching an “immediate review of the university’s options” after a tweet by a student making light of the death of George Floyd.
Jaden McNiel, whose Twitter bio identifies him as the president and founder of “America First Students,” wrote: “Congratulations to George Floyd on being drug free for an entire month!”
As a result, as of 11:00 a.m. Friday, “K-State” is trending nationally on Twitter.
George Floyd was killed in police custody May 25 in Minneapolis after a then-officer pressed his knee on Floyd’s neck for eight minutes and 46 seconds. The ex-officer, Derek Chauvin, has since been fired, arrested, and charged with second-degree murder. The three other officers who were there — J Alexander Kueng, Thomas Lane and Tou Thao — were also fired and face charges of aiding and abetting murder.
K-State released a statement Friday announcing their internal review.
“These divisive statements do not represent for the values of our university. We condemn racism and bigotry in all its forms,” the school wrote on Twitter. “Black Lives Matter at Kansas State University and we will continue to fight for social justice.”
Athletics director Gene Taylor called the tweet “disgusting and totally inappropriate.”
“Recent tweets from a K-State student downplaying the Black Lives Matter effort and the tragic and senseless death of George Floyd are disgusting and totally inappropriate and not reflective of who we are as a University or our Athletic Department,”Taylor wrote.
Several K-State football players quoted the tweet, asking for McNeil to be removed from the school.
“(I) refuse to play for a program that tolerates ignorance such as this,” defensive back Tee Denson wrote.
“And he go to kstate ?? Naw sum gotta change now fr. @KState y’all need to do something,” wide receiver Joshua Youngblood wrote.
Meanwhile, head football coach Chris Klieman tweeted in support of his players.
“Our program and our coaches will continue to be part of the solution when it comes to racial injustice,” Klieman wrote. “I love our players and they know I have their backs.”
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