Harvard University rescinded their offer to Kyle Kashuv, a Parkland school shooting survivor who became a pro-gun conservative media darling, after racist messages he sent to classmates were uncovered.
Kashuv tweeted on Monday that the university had rescinded its admission offer after screenshots of racist messages he sent as a 16-year-old student months before the shooting were published online.
Kashuv broke from other classmates who called for gun control after surviving the mass shooting that killed 17 people and injured 17 others and became a popular conservative Second Amendment activist. Kashuv met President Trump and appeared on Fox News and other conservative outlets.
In May, a former Parkland student shared messages that he posted online in Skype chats and in Google Docs.
The messages showed Kashuv write the N-word repeatedly along with other offensive messages.
“I honestly think, yeah, he’s racist against black people,” the student who shared his messages told HuffPost.
Kashuv issued a statement saying he was embarrassed by the comments he had written less than two years earlier and vowed to “do better.”
“We were 16-year-olds making idiotic comments, using callous and inflammatory language in an effort to be as extreme and shocking as possible,” Kashuv said.
Harvard pulls acceptance over racist messages:
Kashuv wrote on Twitter Monday that Harvard rescinded their admissions offer after the racist messages were reported.
“My peers used the opportunity to attack me, and my life was once again reduced to a headline,” he wrote. “It sent me into one of the darkest spirals of my life.”
He wrote that his “former peers” and “political opponents” contacted the university to urge them to rescind his admission.
Kashuv said he responded by sending a “full explanation” and “apology” to Harvard and reached out to the Office of Diversity and Inclusion to “seek guidance on how to right this wrong and work with them once I was on campus.”
Harvard responded by rescinding his offer and declining to meet in person, he wrote.
“Harvard deciding that someone can’t grow, especially after a life-altering event like the shooting, is deeply concerning,” he wrote. “If any institution should understand growth, it’s Harvard, which is looked to as the pinnacle of higher education despite its checkered past.”
“So what now? I’m figuring it out,” he concluded. “I had given up huge scholarships in order to go to Harvard, and the deadline for accepting other college offers has ended. I’m exploring all options at the moment.”
Social media reactions were predictably split between conservatives and liberals.