Alt-Right Members Are Attacking Bubba Wallace On Twitter After The FBI Decided That the Noose Found In His Stall Was Not A Hate Crime
Update June 24, 2020.
NASCAR driver Bubba Wallace acknowledged in a statement on Wednesday that the noose found in his garage has been dismissed as a hate crime by the FBI.
“It’s been an emotional few days. First off, I want to say how relieved I am that the investigation revealed that this wasn’t what we feared it was,” he wrote. “I want to thank my team, NASCAR and the FBI for acting swiftly and treating this as a real threat.I think we’ll gladly take a little embarrassment over what the alternatives could have been. Make no mistake, though some will try, this should not detract from the show of unity we had on Monday, and the progress we’ve made as a sport to be a more welcoming environment for all.”
In their investigation, the FBI concluded that the noose found in Wallace’s garage on Sunday had been there since at least last year.
U.S. Attorney Jay E. Town said in a statement on Tuesday that the investigation was done and no federal crime had been committed.
The National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing (NASCAR) the American auto racing organization confirmed in a statement on Monday that a noose had been found in Black driver Bubba Wallace’s garage at the Talladega Superspeedway in Lincoln, Alabama. The incident which occurred on Sunday comes at a time when the country remains stirred by the recent deaths of Black police victims like Breonna Taylor and George Floyd.
NASCAR confirmed that an investigation, in response to the incident, was launched on Sunday.
“Late this afternoon, NASCAR was made aware that a noose was found in the garage stall of the 43 team. We are angry and outraged, and cannot state strongly enough how seriously we take this heinous act,” NASCAR said in a statement. “As we have stated unequivocally, there is no place for racism in NASCAR, and this act only strengthens our resolve to make the sport open and welcoming to all.”
Wallace is the first full-time Black driver to race in the Cup Series in nearly 50 years.
Wallace, who is the only Black driver on the circuit, responded to the racist incident on social media.
“Today’s despicable act of racism and hatred leaves me incredibly saddened and serves as a painful reminder of how much further we have to go as a society and how persistent we must be in the fight against racism,” Wallace wrote. “Over the last several weeks, I have been overwhelmed by the support from people across the NASCAR industry, including other drivers and team members in the garage. Together, our sport has made a commitment to driving real change and championing a community that is accepting and welcoming of everyone. Nothing is more important and we will not be deterred by the reprehensible actions of those who seek to spread hate. As my mother told me today, ‘They are just trying to scare you.’ This will not break me, I will not give in, nor will I back down. I will continue to proudly stand for what I believe in.”
Earlier this month, Wallace spoked out in support of Black Lives Matter at NASCAR’s Cup Series race in Virginia.
During the race in Virginia, Wallace painted his car all black and featured the #BlackLivesMatter hashtag on its panels. The words “compassion, love, understanding” appeared on the car’s hood. He also spoke out against the use of the Confederate flag at NASCAR events. In response to his request for its removal, NASCAR removed the flag.
In response to the incident, LeBron James shared his solidarity with Wallace.
James called the situation “sickening” in a tweet on Twitter and urged Wallace to know that he is not standing alone as a Black athlete.
“Sickening! @BubbaWallace my brother! Know you don’t stand alone! I’m right here with you as well as every other athlete,” tweeted the NBA star. “I just want to continue to say how proud I am of you for continuing to take a stand for change here in America and sports! @NASCAR I salute you as well!”
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