*Two white students at Oklahoma State University are under fire for wearing blackface in an Instagram post celebrating their first Martin Luther King Jr. Day at the school.
The photo shows four white girls posing in front of an OSU logo. Two of them have dark cream slathered on their face. The caption reads: “Celebrating our first MLK Day off school!!!!”
Oklahoma State’s African-American Association came across the pic and tweeted: “What a shame that some Cowboys have exposed such an ugly side of themselves. OSU, what are you going to do? @okstate.”
— OKstate Afro-Am (@OSU_Afro_Am) January 17, 2017
The tweet caught the attention of black students and alumni, who expressed support in pursuing a response from school officials.
The people who downplay and disregard racism are a part of the problem. When will you realize it’s not ok.
— Kayse (@KayseIlean) January 17, 2017
— Autumn (@Only_A_Chief) January 17, 2017
— Ebony Combs (@imEbony) January 18, 2017
The uproar also prompted some to come to the girls’ defense, arguing that the two in the face masks weren’t aware of the blackface issue and were simply photographing themselves in beauty masks.
“Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter”
I don’t have compassion for the uncompassionate pic.twitter.com/ypv3R4Kjnl
— Autumn (@Only_A_Chief) January 18, 2017
Soon, the university administration issued a response on Twitter condemning the actions of those students. According to the university, the photo was deleted from Instagram and the students are expected to discuss the matter with administration officials.
@OSU_Afro_Am OSU does not condone this insensitive behavior. We are meeting w/ students involved. The post has been deleted.
— Oklahoma State Univ. (@okstate) January 17, 2017