Social media posts reveal racially hostile environment at local school, students say

Tensions flated over Pompano Beach High School students’ recent racial comments on social media.

Some parents said they were outraged after they reported the hate speech and the school administrators failed to act.

In a public post on Instagram, a student threatened to use the N-word if anyone offended her with “cracker,” a derogatory word used to offend poor whites who live in the South. 

“I’m sorry but the black people at my school are trash like you think everything you do is better than us and there are so ignorant and annoying,” a teenage girl wrote. 

Another student echoed the sentiment: “Why do black people feel that we white people owe them something? It wasn’t our generation who made their ancestors slaves.” 

Some parents and students said these two social media posts and others are symptomatic of the escalating racial conflict at the school. Some of the students say that the hate speech has already resulted in violence and vandalism. 

There is no hate speech exception in the First Amendment, which protects freedom of speech. Zanita E. Fenton, a constitutional law professor at the University of Miami, said education could help students be more empathetic and promote conflict resolution. 

“It ought  to be the highest as the most promising means to undermine conflict, including that perceptively race based,” Fenton said.  

Pompano Beach High School student Annastasiya Riley said she graduates this summer with an education on “racial cliques” and “social media wars.”

She said during her years at the school she was upset when she saw neo-Nazi symbols spray painted on the wall and a mention of “Black Lives Matter” on a mural painted over.   

“This is a school full of hatred,” Riley said. She added that over the years the complaints on the matter were often “swept under the rug.”

Jada Howden and Paris Colbert still have a year before they graduate, but they would like to see school administrators hold a forum to address the problem before the school years ends on Thursday.

Other students and parents, including a Broward County Sheriff’s Office employee, have contacted school administrators and school district employees. None of them have received an official response. Kamryn James, a 9th-grader who said she is already fed up, decided to confront one of the culprits.

The teenage girl responded with a threat in a private message on Instagram:  “Ok, [N-word] watch out … you lame [expletive].” Now Kamryn said she has to watch her back. 

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Local 10 News’ Andrea Torres contributed to this report. 

 

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Social media posts reveal racially hostile environment at local school, students say

Tensions flated over Pompano Beach High School students’ recent racial comments on social media.

Some parents said they were outraged after they reported the hate speech and the school administrators failed to act.

In a public post on Instagram, a student threatened to use the N-word if anyone offended her with “cracker,” a derogatory word used to offend poor whites who live in the South. 

“I’m sorry but the black people at my school are trash like you think everything you do is better than us and there are so ignorant and annoying,” a teenage girl wrote. 

Another student echoed the sentiment: “Why do black people feel that we white people owe them something? It wasn’t our generation who made their ancestors slaves.” 

Some parents and students said these two social media posts and others are symptomatic of the escalating racial conflict at the school. Some of the students say that the hate speech has already resulted in violence and vandalism. 

There is no hate speech exception in the First Amendment, which protects freedom of speech. Zanita E. Fenton, a constitutional law professor at the University of Miami, said education could help students be more empathetic and promote conflict resolution. 

“It ought  to be the highest as the most promising means to undermine conflict, including that perceptively race based,” Fenton said.  

Pompano Beach High School student Annastasiya Riley said she graduates this summer with an education on “racial cliques” and “social media wars.”

She said during her years at the school she was upset when she saw neo-Nazi symbols spray painted on the wall and a mention of “Black Lives Matter” on a mural painted over.   

“This is a school full of hatred,” Riley said. She added that over the years the complaints on the matter were often “swept under the rug.”

Jada Howden and Paris Colbert still have a year before they graduate, but they would like to see school administrators hold a forum to address the problem before the school years ends on Thursday.

Other students and parents, including a Broward County Sheriff’s Office employee, have contacted school administrators and school district employees. None of them have received an official response. Kamryn James, a 9th-grader who said she is already fed up, decided to confront one of the culprits.

The teenage girl responded with a threat in a private message on Instagram:  “Ok, [N-word] watch out … you lame [expletive].” Now Kamryn said she has to watch her back. 

>

Local 10 News’ Andrea Torres contributed to this report. 

 

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Horrified diners hid from attacker with ‘massive knife’

Panic spread quickly inside the crowded café.

Someone sprinted through the doors with a dire warning: “There is a man with a knife up there, and he’s coming this way.”

“Everyone ran to the back of the restaurant and crouched down, trying to hide themselves from view,” witness Elsbeth Smedley told CNN.

Smedley was among the crowd taking shelter inside Elliot’s, a café just a few blocks south of London Bridge.

A man with a “massive knife” charged into the restaurant, Smedley said. And some people weren’t able to escape.

His target: a waitress hiding behind a partition.

“He stabbed her in the neck,” Smedley said. “He stabbed another man in the back, and then he ran out of the restaurant.”

Some inside the restaurant thought there might have been another man armed with a knife, too, Smedley said, but it was too chaotic to see clearly.

The stabbing rampage was part of a terror attack Saturday night. A few blocks away, a van mowed down pedestrians on London Bridge.

Seven people were killed and 48 others wounded, police said. The three attackers were shot dead.

As authorities work to piece together what happened, witness accounts paint a harrowing picture of the panic that spread across the popular Borough Market pub and restaurant neighborhood.

‘Everyone kept down’

Simon Thompson said he saw chaos near the main entrance to the market.

“People started running and shouting,” he said. “It’s a bit of a blur, but I saw people on the floor. A taxi driver began screaming for people to run, and everyone did.”

Video from inside a nearby bar shows people flattening themselves on the ground as police shout at them to take cover — fast.

“They told us to remain on the floor, but to stay calm,” said Paul Connell, who was having drinks with friends at Katzenjammers bar when officers rushed in.

Down the street, the owner of Applebee’s Fish Market scrambled to pull down metal shutters at the front to protect people inside his restaurant.

“About five minutes later, there were gunshots everywhere,” Jack Applebee told CNN.

Outside, Applebee said, one of his colleagues had spotted men wearing what he feared were suicide vests.

For 90 minutes, everyone huddled upstairs. Gunshots erupted six or seven times, he said.

“Everyone kept down. Just sort of — just trying to keep everyone okay,” he said. “It was just crazy.”

A witness photo taken on the street near his restaurant showed what appeared to be two suspects on the ground.

‘The van was aiming at the people’

One thought ran through Mark Roberts’ mind as he watched a car plow into pedestrians on London Bridge Saturday night.

“Which direction should I run?”

Roberts froze as he saw a van swerve into oncoming lanes and strike a crowd of people at the iconic site. One person, he said, flew 20 feet in the air.

“It looked to me that the van was aiming at the people,” he said.

Police and emergency vehicles rushed to the scene.

“I heard a boom behind me,” said Brad Myers, who was underneath the bridge snapping photos.

Myers said he saw a white vehicle slam into the guard rail, then plow into a group of pedestrians he’d been standing alongside only a few minutes earlier.

As the horrifying scene unfolded, Myers said he saw one person’s desperate attempt to escape the attack.

Someone jumped off the bridge, he said, and into the water below.

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London Police call bridge and market attacks ‘terrorist incidents’

(CNN) — London’s Metropolitan Police say the incidents Saturday night at London Bridge and the Borough Market have been declared “terrorist incidents.”

The police also say the incident at Vauxhall was a stabbing not connected to the bridge and market incidents.

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