GOP rep applauds Ole Miss counter protesters who taunted Black woman

Just In News | The Hill 

Pro-Palestine demonstrations at the University of Mississippi were overtaken with counter protesters Thursday, resulting in a viral clip of white students taunting a Black student. The video was shared online and applauded by a Republican lawmaker.

“Ole Miss taking care of business,” Rep. Mike Collins (R-Ga.) posted on social media platform X.

The video has received sharp criticism for the students’ racist actions. Collins has also been criticized for endorsing the racist actions in the video.

The Hill has reached out to Collins’ team, asking for an explanation of what he meant when he posted the video.

In the clip, a white student appears to make monkey noises and gestures at a Black female graduate student.

The woman, standing alone and filming, was being escorted backwards by police while a crowd of white students cheered, clapped, yelled and flipped her off. The camera pans to the man who imitated a monkey howl and jumping up and down.

“Students were calling for an end to genocide. They were met with racism,” James M. Thomas, a sociology professor at the university posted on X.

Other videos posted online show the larger crowd, about 200 people, surrounding the protesters and shouting. Counter protesters sung “The Star-Spangled Banner” to drown out pro-Palestinian protesters’ chants, who were calling on Israel to “Stop the Genocide” and for the U.S. to stop supplying weapons in the war.

About 76 percent of the university’s students were white and about 11 percent Black, during the 2022-23 school year, according to The Associated Press.

University of Mississippi Chancellor Glenn Boyce said the school was aware that “some statements made were offensive, hurtful, and unacceptable, including actions that conveyed hostility and racist overtones.”

Boyce said the school has opened a student conduct investigation into one student, but couldn’t name who under privacy laws. He said some individuals acted in ways that conflict with university values.

“While we are a modern university with a vibrant community of more than 25,000 people, it is important to acknowledge our challenging history, and incidents like this can set us back,” he wrote in an email to the campus community. “it is one reason why we do not take this lightly and cannot let the unacceptable behavior of a few speak for our institution or define us.”

Republican Gov. Tate Reeves also posted a video from the protest, saying it warms his heart and he loves Mississippi.

The counter protesters, seen holding a Trump 2024 flag, were also praised by former President Trump, who released a campaign ad that highlighted a clip from the Mississippi protest. The ad included clips from the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill, where students have also gone viral for holding up the American flag after protesters tried to take it down.

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