Fort Collins students take stand against post-election hate speech in video

FORT COLLINS, Colo. – Students at a high school in Fort Collins are taking a stand after hearing racially-charged comments going around school in the wake of Tuesday’s General Election.

Students at Rocky Mountain High School made a video to talk about their concerns after the election. The video played for the entire school Friday in order to send a proactive message about tolerance and inclusion.

The students who made the video said it is about remembering who they are and who they aren’t.

“We have seen and heard many unkind and hurtful things being said and done in the halls of [RMHS]…We will not tolerate hateful language. We will not tolerate abusive behavior,” the students say in the video.

It’s bucking a trend seen at some schools nationally since Tuesday.

In Pennsylvania, students walked through the halls with Donald Trump signs, chanting “white power.” In a Michigan cafeteria, students shouted, “Build the wall!” at a group of Latino students.

Several other instances have been documented, including Nazi swastikas and white supremacist language being painted on various buildings across the country.

But RMHS Principal Craig Woodall says he’s getting in front of the issue by showing the student-made video.

“Just as a school, we’re a little unsettled. As a country we are unsettled, so how do we get back together as a country and promote who we are?” Woodall said Friday. “And I thought this was the best way to do it.”

At nearby Fossil Ridge High School, students take part in “Diversity Day.” One of their assignments on the day is to write down stereotypes on rice paper, which they then watch dissolve in water.

“I’ve noticed a lot of hate this week,” said Fossil Ridge student Donna Than. “It’s been a very judgmental week.”

Now, students at both schools hope to start the healing so they don’t make headlines because of hate.

“We have a culture that is about accepting people no matter where they come from – what kind of lifestyle they lead,” RMHS student Trè Garnett said.

Woodall says the school has only seen minor incidents of unkind comments being made – nothing like what has gone on at other schools across the country.

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