Creston, Iowa, HS Students Wear KKK Hoods, Burn Cross On Viral Photo, Reportedly Get 9-Day Suspension

Several male students from a Creston, Iowa, high school were disciplined earlier in the week for posting a KKK-themed photo, where the students were wearing white hoods, burning a cross, and waving a Confederate flag. But was it enough for school officials to suspend the boys for only nine days and dismiss them from the football team, as reports are claiming?

According to NBC affiliate WHO TV, the photo began to spread on Snapchat on Wednesday morning, as five boys were shown wearing white hoods not unlike those worn by the Ku Klux Klan. The students appeared to be burning a cross, with the one on the extreme right waving a Confederate flag and another, on the extreme left, holding a rifle.

Creston Community High School administrators took immediate action after the photo was brought to their attention, and while officials have confirmed that the students who took part in the photo were disciplined, they did not release the names of the students, nor disclose the type of punishment they received.

“This picture does not represent (Creston Community High School), our school system or our community,” principal Bill Messerole said in a prepared statement.

“We are proud of how our students and staff conducted themselves today after the picture became public. It is of the utmost importance that our students feel safe and welcomed in our district.”

A report from the Creston News noted that the students who took part in the KKK-themed photo were members of the Creston/Orient-Macksburg football team. Creston Community High School assistant principal Jeff Bevins also confirmed that the students have been disciplined, but declined to provide further details.

While school officials have been cagey with regard to how they dealt with the Creston Community HS students, some details have emerged regarding the punishment the boys supposedly received. The Omaha World-Herald cited the accounts of several Creston townspeople in saying that the students were given nine-day suspensions. This was seen by some as a slap on the wrist, considering the racist implications of their stunt on Snapchat.

However, the Des Moines Register cited both Creston Community HS principal Messerole and Creston/Orient-Macksburg head football coach Brian Morrison, who confirmed that the students were all kicked off the football team. The team’s varsity quarterback, Kylan Smallwood, is part-African-American, and is one of four non-white players in a team now composed of 69 players following this week’s disciplinary actions.

A report from The Root also criticized the Creston Police Department for not acting on the KKK-referencing stunt, instead choosing not to investigate even if it was aware of the photo.

What do you think of the punishments reportedly dealt out against the Creston, Iowa, football players in the KKK-themed Snapchat photo? Do you think it was just right that they got suspended from school and dismissed from the football team, or do you feel that they got away with a slap on the wrist? Let us know in the comments section below.

[Featured Image by John Bazemore/AP Images]