A teenager said she was harassed at Howard University Saturday, after she and a friend visited the campus of the historically black university wearing “Make America Great Again” hats.
The white high school student posted a photo of herself wearing a shirt splashed with an image of President Donald J. Trump across the front, as her high school classmates from Pennsylvania walked to the campus cafeteria for lunch.
“Walking to the cafe, a man said, ‘f*** y’all to me,’” Allie Vanndee, 16, said on Twitter Saturday. “We were harassed continuously. The students took videos and pictures of us saying WE were being ‘disrespectful,’ and that ‘us being Caucasian, we should have known better.’”
The teen said a Howard student snatched her classmate’s red Trump hat, an item eventually retrieved by a high school supervisor on the trip. The student’s Twitter post has been re-tweeted more than 2,600 times, drawing both support and vitriol from users on the social media website.
In a lengthy post of its own, Howard University issued 10 tweets addressing the conduct at the center of the controversy, while stopping short of censuring the alleged behavior of the university students.
“Though this is an institution where freedom of thought, choice, and expression are ever-present, we will never compromise our values or allow others to convince us to do so,” the school wrote. “We will remain committed to truth and service and boldly affirm who we are and what we stand for.”
Reached for comment Tuesday, Vanndee said she wished to prevent the situation from escalating further.
“Things are getting a little bit out of hand,” she wrote in a Twitter direct message. “I wish I could take interviews and answer questions, but again, things are getting very bad.”