Nigel Hayes Calls Out Racial Discrimination at Wisconsin
At the last Wisconsin home game, an image shocked the university with a man wearing a Barack Obama mask with a noose tied around its neck while the other man wore a Donald Trump mask. It was disgusting and appalling. Wisconsin took swift action releasing statement after statement, and it seemed Monday they had put it to rest with the plea to make things better, revoking season tickets and taking further steps to avoid this happening again. Still, Wisconsin Badgers basketball star Nigel Hayes released a statement of his own firing comments off about racial discrimination on campus. It was retweeted by countless Badger athletes.
The call for action is an interesting one. Wisconsin’s brass from the athletic director to the chancellor made plans for something like this to never happen again. They are working with community leaders and relying on their own resources to fix problems, yet action is still needed according to Hayes and the other Badgers athletes? There seems to be a disconnect, whether it’s from Hayes’ side of things, or the university. It’s hard to believe Wisconsin didn’t lean on Hayes when it came to proper action and how to avoid it again. He’s a leader on and off the court and feels passionately about racial injustice. Hayes didn’t at least have somewhat of a say here?
Wisconsin’s issues with racism is a growing trend. If you do a quick Google search, articles fill up the page from this year with issues regarding race. How did this happen? The university had always been known as a leader in diversity and progressive, next-level thinking. The question remains how can this be fixed? Does Wisconsin need to take a firmer stance against reports towards racism? At some point, Wisconsin needs to find that middle ground where everyone is respected yet no one really knows how to get there. For Wisconsin’s sake, they need to get there soon. It feels like this is boiling over the pot and not calming down in the near future. We all remembered what happened at Missouri, and I’m afraid if this continues, we could be looking at the latest version.
More than ever before, Wisconsin needs to come together and unite as one.