In a perversion of Colin Kaepernick's kneeling for the National Anthem to protest the killings of Black Americans by the police, a group of White students were caught kneeling at a homecoming dance to "protest" a Spanish-language song.
The Chicago students were captured by fellow student Elizabeth Pacheco on Instagram both making disparaging, racist remarks to Hispanic students and kneeling while the song was playing.
The gesture was widely condemned across the internet.
@davenewworld_2 Clearly these kids don’t know the impact musicians like Santana and Selena has had on music that they listen to today— Shelly (@Shelly) 1634016564.0
@davenewworld_2 it's because they don't know how to dance to it— TapeGod604 (@TapeGod604) 1634009448.0
@davenewworld_2 Nothing like a former all boys catholic school to show nothing in their culture has changed since i… https://t.co/7E888GPQFF— SophieStoned (@SophieStoned) 1634034418.0
@davenewworld_2 A lot of white boys kneeled and the hot girls danced on. A glimpse into what their futures will look like.— Vaxxed & Masked🇺🇸 ☠️Memento Mori Memento Vivere (@Vaxxed & Masked🇺🇸 ☠️Memento Mori Memento Vivere) 1634036383.0
The song the students were protesting was a Spanish cover of Billy Ray Cyrus's "Achy Breaky Heart."
"People immediately started booing and kneeling," said Pacheco to Patch.com.
"And everyone knows from the national anthem that kneeling means protesting — they were against the song."
"They started saying really disrespectful things about Mexicans and that's when I started to record."
@davenewworld_2 This song is terrible but not because of the language— dr. Ben (@dr. Ben) 1634058410.0
@davenewworld_2 So much for the “woke” generation, huh? 🙄— Tired of your bullshit (@Tired of your bullshit) 1634047392.0
@davenewworld_2 How to easily identify the ppl you’ll never associate with again….— LadyLovelyLumps (@LadyLovelyLumps) 1634010950.0
@davenewworld_2 All I see are people who don't know how to have a good time unless part of it includes ruining the… https://t.co/g8dDHE3sMz— Jimbo2011 (@Jimbo2011) 1634043434.0
Marist High School—the Chicago-area high school where the incident occurred—said they are "disheartened" by the incident.
"Marist's mission is to make Jesus known and loved. We respect and foster diversity, equity, and inclusion for all and want every student to succeed by feeling valued, seen, and connected."
But according to Marist students, this isn't the first time this has happened with the same group of people in their school. When Marist's kitchen staff began playing Spanish music in school, some White students booed.
Another used a fake, offensive Mexican accent, according to Maia Trevino, another student at the school.
@davenewworld_2 Someone needs to show these kids the videos of their parents getting drunk and dance to Spanish music in Cancun. 🤣— GovAbbottIsBadForTexas (@GovAbbottIsBadForTexas) 1634043635.0
@davenewworld_2 C’mon @MaristChicago, prepare these men & women to live in a diverse world.— Jim (@Jim) 1634015961.0
@davenewworld_2 When you forget you’re raised in The Americas. 🤦— Food Scorn (@Food Scorn) 1634010618.0
@davenewworld_2 I grew up not far from there - it’s been like that since the 90’s.— Roel Miranda (@Roel Miranda) 1634071395.0
@davenewworld_2 The US is doomed— Still Bemused #Justice4Noah 💙 (@Still Bemused #Justice4Noah 💙) 1634048742.0
The school also expelled two White girls in 2016 over racist text messages shared on social media.
Still, Pacheco says her aim is to "educate students on racism and discrimination" properly, in order to foster an acceptance of all cultures within the school.