We know that racism still exists, but it doesn’t make viewing clips, messages and commentary that perpetuates discrimination any less shocking and sad. Yesterday, Brad Knudson, a White male and father took to YouTube in defense of his 14-year-old adopted Black daughter Dierdra, who was a victim of cyber-bullying and racist remarks directed at her.
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The specific incident that lead to YouTube occurred this past New Year’s Eve in their town of Prior Lake, MN. His daughter and her friend, who is White, were taking and sending selfies through the Snapchat app. While doing so, Dierdra was attacked by twin boys who sent her four Snapchats with racist and derogatory messages, including this stupid statement, “N—-r. You is a fat ass b—h. Yes you are.” In Knudson’s emotional video, you can feel how hurt he is for his family and the situation.
It was Dierdra’s friend that alerted Brad and Wendy of what happened, he promptly took action to getting in contact with the ignorant children’s parents. But his voicemails were ignored and when he tried to speak with them in person, no one answered the door. It was through the police he finally got to speak with the father, Deron Puro.
While we shouldn’t be shocked by Puro’s following statement, we still are. Instead of apologizing for the twins’ racist remarks, he stood with them on their island of hate speech. In the clip, Knudson paraphrased what he told was by the uncouth dad:
“He didn’t understand what was wrong with the video. ‘My kids don’t even know your daughter.’ [In which I thought], well that makes it double bad. You don’t even know my daughter? He then told me I was crazy. That’s what he did when he was a kid. And that him and his family make jokes at the house using this word all the time. What was the big deal.”
Unbelievable. This is how it starts. At home. These kids seeing their parents using the word “n—-r” as if it’s okay? No wonder they had he gall to spew the word as they pleased. The disgraceful parent then left two voicemails stating “Brad, tides have turned, huh?” and called Knudson a “n—-r lover,” a “fag” and “a loser.”
Knudson still tried to be a civilized person, but when he threatened to leak Puro’s personal information (you know, just to shake him up), Puro claimed “I don’t care,” completely owning his racism. Puro has since been discharged from his job as an independent contractor, but Fox 9 news of Minnesota hasn’t confirmed if it’s related to his racist behavior. Prior Lake High School is investigating to see if the bullying was an isolated incident.
This story is touching because Knudson was not complicit in defending his Black daughter to the fullest. In bravely speaking about it on YouTube, he’s also representative of the many blended families in the U.S. that have experienced what happened in to the him some manner. In Prior Lake specifically, the issue has opened the conversation of racism in their town as the Knudsons have received a lot of loving support both locally and online.
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