US student expelled over racist remarks and posting video pretending to run over Black Lives Matter protesters
- Maxwell Lawrence, an incoming sophomore at Purdue University, was expelled after he sent racist remarks in group chats and posted a video pretending to run over Black Lives Matter protesters.
- Purdue University President Mitch Daniels announced the "immediate expulsion" of Lawrence on Tuesday, calling Lawrence's conduct "completely and utterly unacceptable by a member of the Purdue community and cited the danger Lawrence poses to public safety."
- The Exponent, the university's independent student newspaper, first reported Lawrence's social media posts last Friday.
- When Lawrence's remarks and posts first came to light last Friday, a Purdue spokesperson initially told The Exponent that the university was not yet looking to punish his comments and videos, citing freedom of expression.
- For more stories, go to Business Insider's home page.
A Purdue underclassman was expelled Tuesday after using racist slurs in a group chat and posting a TikTok video mimicking the action of running over Black Lives Matter protesters, according to a university press release.
The student was identified as Maxwell Lawrence, an incoming sophomore at the university's College of Agriculture.
The Exponent, Purdue's student newspaper, first reported that Lawrence posted racist images and messages in group chats on Instagram. In one instance, Lawrence sent an image of Hitler's face with the words, "How can you tell if a Black man is well hung? You can't fit your fingers between the rope and his neck."
In a group chat titled "ACAB," which stands for "all cops are bastards," Lawrence responded to a message related to the group name, writing, "If all cops are bad then that just means all black people are [n-word]," The Exponent reported.
The former student also posted a TikTok video pretending to run over Black Lives Matter protesters, with the caption, "Driving to your fishing spot and the protesters try blocking the road." The video was posted on Twitter, which has since been liked and shared more than 1,000 times. Lawrence's account, which was under the username "hoosierdaddy23," was no longer active as of Tuesday.
Purdue University student Maxwell Lawrence, a member of the Purdue Bass Fishing Team (hoosierdaddy23) on TikTik making videos in which he pretends to run over BLM protestors.
Purdue Office of the Dean of Students:
Purdue University President Mitch Daniels announced the "immediate expulsion" of Lawrence in a statement Tuesday. Daniels said that "in addition to being racist and despicable, repeated statements posted on social media by Lawrence appear plainly intended to incite others and therefore create a risk of public safety issues in the current environment."
When Lawrence's remarks and posts first came to light last Friday, a Purdue spokesperson initially told The Exponent that the university was not yet looking to punish his comments and videos.
"While the views expressed are obviously highly inconsistent with the values and principles we believe in at Purdue, we also are committed to freedom of expression and do not control what people post on their personal accounts, nor can we punish their speech, no matter how offensive or vile," the spokesperson told The Exponent last week.
"Bigotry, racism, and hate are the antitheses of what Purdue University stands for and are not welcome here," according to the spokesperson.
In the university president's Tuesday statement, Daniels said he decided to take this "summary action" in light of Lawrence's "complete and utterly unacceptable" conduct.
"While some University officials had concluded the statements were protected speech under the First Amendment and University policy," the press release stated, "President Daniels decided instead to take this summary action, calling Lawrence's conduct completely and utterly unacceptable by a member of the Purdue community and cited the danger Lawrence poses to public safety."
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