A Florida teen created a poster -- that is being described as racist -- to ask his girlfriend to the prom, and now the school district may discipline him over the promposal.
Noah Crowley created a sign that said, "If I was black, I'd be picking cotton, but I'm white, so I'm picking u 4 prom," which caused outrage across the United States and beyond. Now, the Sarasota County school is reviewing the incident and deciding what action to take to ensure something like this never happens again, the Orlando Sentinel reported.
Originally sent through Snapchat, a screenshot of the offensive request went viral on Twitter, prompting extreme backlash throughout social media.
Earlier today, parents of Riverview High School students received a robocall from the school's acting principal Kathy Wilks, explaining that the school does not condone the message contained in the racist promposal or the subsequent comments made about the poster on social media. The school also offered guidance counselors for students who wished to further discuss the incident.
According to WFMY News 2, Crowley apologized by explaining he meant the poster as a joke, but he went too far with it. His girlfriend said yes despite the off-color nature of his promposal, and the two appear slated to attend the high school's prom, which is scheduled for May 5 at the Hyatt Regency Sarasota. Of course, the district may decide on a disciplinary action that bars Crowley from attending his senior prom after the investigation concludes.
Despite the teen's apology, many on social media didn't accept it. The school district explained it is working with local and national leaders, including the NAACP, in order to create a discussion on race for the entire district in hopes of preventing things like this in the future.
Unfortunately, this incident marks the second time in two years of a racist promposal like this. The first incident also occurred in Florida, as reported by WTSP 10. Last year, two south Florida female students ended up suspended after an "inside joke" directed towards to an heir of a cotton farm received a racist invitation to the prom.
Now celebrities such as singer Clay Aiken have weighed in on Twitter. Aiken expressed his wish that colleges that have accepted Crowley should drop him after this incident because he knew what he wrote on the sign is unacceptable and racist.
Editor's note: Representatives of the Crowley family reached out to the Inquisitr with a statement, including an apology Noah issued individually.
"I want to sincerely apologize if I have offended anyone with the picture going around. That was not my intention. Anyone who knows me or [name redacted] knows that that's not how we truly feel. It was a completely joke and it went too far. After reading the texts and Snapchat's I truly see how I have offended people and I'm sorry."
"While our son has apologized himself, on behalf of our family, we wish to also express our most sincere apologies for the terrible words used in his "promposal." We love our son dearly and know that he is a far better person than reflected in this reckless behavior. That said, as loving parents, we also feel compelled to share our own deep regret and serious concern about his actions.
After numerous familial conversations and lengthy discussions with Riverview High School administrators, we have jointly agreed that our son will not be attending any further school activities or functions, including the Prom or graduation ceremony.
As a family, we truly recognize this incident is a very difficult but important life lesson and pledge to do all we can to ensure that nothing like this ever happens again. Certainly, we hope that all of the people and communities who were hurt and offended will forgive our son and family."