University of Richmond responds to students’ video showing swastikas on gingerbread house

Local News

RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — A professor from the University of Richmond is outraged after discovering a video on social media this week, which was recorded on campus, of students showing off a gingerbread house with swastikas on it.

The video, roughly ten seconds long, shows two students with a gingerbread house that has swastikas on it, along with “Juul” and “Hit or Miss” on it.  

The video was found by professor Eric Grollman on Snapchat. Grollman, who exclusively spoke with 8News on Wednesday, contacted the proper authorities at the university about what he saw in the video.

On Thursday, the University of Richmond released a message concerning the video. An investigation led the university to deem the students were involved in an inside joke, a term the students told the university, that went wrong when they decided to put on social media. 

“Instances of hate that’s casual, that’s seen as just casual now,” Grollman told 8News. “Just kind of casual racism and casual anti-Semitism. But the scary part is it’s not just a joke.”  

The video was tagged at the University of Richmond. 

After viewing the Snapchat post, the University of Richmond professor took action by reporting the incident to the university’s administration, campus police and the office of common ground. 

“Immediate reaction was just to let people know,” Grollman said. “So, that there is an investigation and that it’s dealt with.” 

Grollman says he wants students to learn from this situation and to speak up if they deal with a similar incident in the future.

“These symbols aren’t jokes. They represent hate in this country. It’s scary too but not surprising,” he said. 

The University of Richmond told 8News the administration investigated the incident. The university said the video was meant as a joke and the two students involved have apologized to those around them.

The university did not share whether or not the students involved will face disciplinary action, only that they are responding to the situation and that they are an inclusive community that supports students of all faiths and backgrounds and that the video goes against the university’s values.  

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