Local pastors group respond to controversy at high school football game

Pastors react to football flag

GRAND RAPIDS, MICH. - Forest Hills Central is a predominantly white school and Ottawa Hills is mostly black. Grand Rapids Association of Pastors has taken to the internet to express concern about what students are being taught regarding racism and inequality.

"Our community's truth is this: We have taught our children that racialized inequity is normal," a letter from the organization read.

More than 50 pastors backed the letter after this picture went viral. The superintendent for Forest Hills Central told us he was confident the students were not meaning to be racist, but said the students were not fully aware of how their actions could be interpreted.

The Grand Rapids Association of Pastors acknowledged and supports the apology made by the Forest Hills Superintendent as well as the statement issued by the superintendent for Grand Rapids Public Schools.

"As faith leaders in Grand Rapids -- a community which Forbes has deemed both the best place to raise a white family and the worst place to start a black business -- we stand with parents and students and educators and leaders who are serious about engaging in face-to-face community dialogue, not only about our history and our current experiences, but also about how to move towards a more peaceful, just, equitable and unified Grand Rapids." the letter continued.

"The OK conference commissioner said that following incidents during the previous basketball season combined with what transpired last week at this football game, the conference has decided to ban the chant U-S-A. He said some fans have changed the meaning of the acronym to something derogatory, which is why people are only allowed to use the chant directly after the national anthem.

For the whole statement, click here

(© 2016 WZZM)


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