As the first family prepares to end their two-term stay at the White House and President-elect Donald Trump is set to take over, it seems racists are coming at the Obamas more brazenly than ever.
Following a recent string of people making headlines for posting racist views on social media, a social studies teacher at West Virginia’s Huntington High School has been suspended with pay for her bigoted Twitter rants against the Obamas, Muslims, and Black Lives Matter, The Root reports.
Using the handle “pigpen63,” Mary Durstein posted several racially-charged tweets within the last year. She has since deleted her account.
School officials were reportedly made aware of the tweets once students and community members began sending in screenshots from her profile.
On July 18, 2015, Durstein wrote, “#cashinIn #WakeUpAmerica #viewcrew Who cares if we offend Muslims at least they keep their heads on tact. They’re the enemy!”
If that wasn’t cringe-worthy enough, just last Thursday Durstein wrote, “This could have been Obama’s children” in response to a tweet about the four black suspects in the horrific Chicago torture incident.
“The tweets that you have seen — those are things that we do not adhere to,” Cabell County Superintendent Bill Smith told local reporters. “We believe that all children are welcome here — all adults as well — in Cabell County schools. We want to make sure that is clear to our students and clear to the employees that work for us.
“We expect the same conduct on social media that we do in the classroom,” Smith continued. “We don’t want to deny teachers the access they can have to the internet or Facebook and all the other stuff they want to have, but they need to be cognizant of who they are speaking to. And when what they say interferes with the educational process, it becomes a problem.”
Jedd Flowers, director of communications for Cabell County Schools, said that Durstein will meet with the superintendent to discuss her actions from this point on. She has reportedly requested to have representation at the hearing, but the date has not been set as of yet.
While it seems the most reasonable action is to take Durstein out of the classroom and keep her far away from children, any disciplinary steps must be approved by the county board of education.
Although the school system has a code of conduct that they expect teachers to abide by, Flowers said they are looking into whether Durstein actually violated any of their policies.
While her remarks were certainly a slap in the face to the parents and students that trust her to uphold inclusive values, they were made on her own private social media account.
We can only hope that she sees some consequences for her actions and this issue doesn’t get swept under the rug.
Banner Photo Credit: Wikimedia Commons, Pete Souza