NORMAN, Okla. (MEDIA GENERAL) – “As far as I’m concerned, it won’t be back. At least, not while I’m president of the university,” said David Boren, University of Oklahoma president about the Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity caught espousing racist remarks on video.
The president held a news conference midday on Monday after the video surfaced over the weekend. The video shows several people chanting a racial slur and indicating blacks would never be admitted to the fraternity. The chant also references lynching.
“These people do not deserve to be called Sooners,” Boren said Monday. He said they have tarnished the university. The national fraternity released a statement Sunday saying it was “embarrassed” by the “unacceptable and racist” behavior. It also announced it was closing the OU chapter.
Boren said Monday all the men in the SAE house have until Tuesday at midnight to get their belongings and get out.
“I hope they think long and hard about how words can injure and hurt other people. This is not who we are and we won’t tolerate it, not for one minute, from anybody,” Boren said.
Boren went on to say individual investigations are underway. If leaders and organizers of the racist chant can be identified, students could be expelled. He said the student code prevents discrimination of any kind and does not allow anyone to create a hostile learning environment for other students.
Boren thanked the students who brought the video to light, OU Unheard posted the link. They are a black student group on campus.
“I’m proud of the fact that they’ve helped expose this activity so we can know about it, and take action. It’s heartbreaking,” Boren said.
(The Associated Press contributed to this story)