On Sunday, September 16, Onalaska Independent School District Superintendent Lynn Redden posted a blatantly racist comment on social media, saying "you can't count on a black quarterback" for "precision decision making," making reference to the end of the Houston Texans NFL game in which quarterback Deshaun Watson failed to throw for a potentially game-winning touchdown as time expired.
After saying he regretted his post, school superintendent Lynn Redden defended the post by questioning the decision… https://t.co/INbm69JAMy— Eric Macramalla (@Eric Macramalla)1537288602.0
Redden claims he posted the statement in error, thinking he was sending a private direct message. This is a strange defense, considering the sentiment is no less racist in private.
@BSO More of a reason for you to GOOOOO!! This isn’t your first time, you just got caught!— Victoria1973 (@Victoria1973)1537332008.0
@BSO yes, he didn't want to broadcast his racism to the world. oh well, too late. No time for people like him. Cert… https://t.co/cBTQX1Bbn5— IslandNucklehead (@IslandNucklehead)1537381864.0
On late Tuesday, September 18th, the Onalaska School District, located about 75 miles north of greater Houston, announced they would call a special meeting on Saturday the 22nd to discuss the future of Redden's contract.
@Chron_MattYoung @HoustonChron Fire him someone of that authority and ranking should not be allowed to be in leader… https://t.co/ZfVAX6lUvk— Cbtaylo (@Cbtaylo)1537365368.0
The district also released this statement to the Houston Chronicle:
Onalaska ISD regrets that an inappropriate comment has been attributed to the district's superintendent. The OISD does not condone negative comments or actions against any race. The district values every individual and therefore the district will take the appropriate measures to address the situation expeditiously and completely.
@EricOnSportsLaw Thank you for writing on this and exposing racism, esp in the education system. I truly hope there are repercussions here.— OilonIce (@OilonIce)1537291207.0
Though Redden has now deleted the post, he did tell the Chronicle that "he based the comment on the 'limited success' of black quarterbacks in the NFL."
@EricOnSportsLaw @TheValuesVoter Russell. Wilson.— Ruth Laura Edlund (@Ruth Laura Edlund)1537409311.0
Bill O'Brien, the Texans' head coach, personally called out Redden's beliefs:
Bill O'Brien blasts racist comments made by Onalaska ISD superintendent Lynn Redden about @deshaunwatson: https://t.co/Y4PC9NJRBr— Mark Berman (@Mark Berman)1537373097.0
@MarkBermanFox26 @deshaunwatson Way to have your guy’s back! It’s a shame O’Brien even has to address this.— J.J. Hardy SHK Sports/Culture (@J.J. Hardy SHK Sports/Culture)1537375041.0
@MarkBermanFox26 @deshaunwatson You tell 'em coach! Special young men like @deshaunwatson are rare. He is loved and… https://t.co/1JE7ZaQKCX— Mechelle Baker (@Mechelle Baker)1537376697.0
Twitter was united in its disdain for Redden and his racist ideas:
@BSO People show you who they really are when they think there is no consequences or no one listening.— Grant Eloi (@Grant Eloi)1537381364.0
@RacistOTW He doesn’t regret being a racist just that he was found out— K Kins (@K Kins)1537379526.0
Onalaska ISD Superintendent Lynn Redden is sorry he said it, but not sorry he believes it. Texas, we can do better;… https://t.co/F1DYECISah— Helen (@Helen)1537281801.0
@Chron_MattYoung @HoustonChron He’s in charge of the education countless children and this is how he thinks - horrifying— MsKadyCee🤸♀️ (@MsKadyCee🤸♀️)1537391139.0
@Chron_MattYoung @HoustonChron The only discussion should be on how quickly they can fire him. Absolutely disgustin… https://t.co/uUZJABgzbN— Chris (@Chris)1537383220.0
@Chron_MattYoung @HoustonChron His racist should not be part of any kid learning environment. They can do better. Let him go!— Woodrow Lee (@Woodrow Lee)1537390012.0
Meanwhile, when asked about Redden's comments, Watson decided to take the high road.
Deshaun Watson taking the high road (I wouldn’t expect anything else from him) while being asked about a racist com… https://t.co/dF1UtOpMsx— James Palmer (@James Palmer)1537375340.0
In the face of hatred and bigotry, the truly great show us a better way to live.