The University of Central Florida (UCF) over the weekend demonstrated the pitfalls of failing to teach history.
UCF’s sports program was forced to apologize for a social media post that distastefully referred to the slaughter of four students at Kent State University in 1970.
According to Breitbart News, the controversy erupted as the Knights were walloping Kent State last week in the opening game of the college football season.
With UCF ahead 56-6, largely because of the passing of quarterback John Rhys Plumlee, the official account of UCF’s football team on X, the social media platform formerly known as Twitter, posted a photo of their star with the caption “SOMEONE CALL THE NATIONAL GUARD.”
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As Breitbart explained, the post intended to reference former NFL star Shannon Sharpe’s sideline moment in 1996. Sharpe, who played tight end for the Denver Broncos, grabbed a phone and mockingly told someone on the other end that they needed to call the president and the National Guard because the Broncos were “killing the [New England] Patriots.” Denver won that game 34-8.
But since UCF was playing Kent State, the post was seen as an awful reference to May 1970 when Ohio National Guard troops opened fire on an anti-Vietnam war demonstration. Those troops killed four students and wounded nine more.
In a statement, according to Breitbart, UCF said, “As soon as our staff was made aware of the unintended reference to the unfortunate event that took place at Kent State in 1970, the post was removed. It was addressed with our staff immediately, and updated protocols have been put in place to avoid a situation like this in the future.”
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Breitbart also noted that UCF’s Athletics Director Terry Mohajir apologized to Kent State’s Athletics Director Randale Richmond.
While the post was deleted, Zac Jackson, who covers the Cleveland Browns for The Athletic, saved a screenshot.
One response came from professional gambling analyst Bill Speros, who posted, “Gotta believe the UCF social media intern has no idea what happened at Kent State 53 years ago But I am sure they are well versed in diversity and climate change. Lesson learned.
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