Twitter has become a ground zero for racist messages aimed at Black folks, especially in recent months. A high school golf coach in Cambridge, Wisconsin just stepped down after his Twitter fingers left a trail of racist tweets.
Brent Nottestad, who resigned as coach at Cambridge High School Thursday, posted a slew of posts punctuated by prejudice about NASCAR driver Darrell Wallace Jr., who is Black, on Wednesday. Wallace is the first African-American full-time driver at NASCAR’s top level since 1971 and is the only Black face behind the wheel in the auto racing association’s circuits.
Four disturbing tweets, removed from Twitter, were posted as Nottestad’s answer to Wallace having wrote that he is the one Black driver in NASCAR on the social media platform, the Cambridge News and Deerfield Independentreported.
“There is only 1 driver from an African American background at the top level of our sport… I am the 1. You’re not gonna stop hearing about ‘the black driver’ for years. Embrace it, accept it and enjoy the journey…” Wallace wrote on Wednesday.
Nottestad’s response proved that he can’t handle the truth.
“Hey @BubbaWallace. Please quit with, ‘I’m black’ bs. You’re terrible. There are 1423 more credible drivers to get that ride than you,” Nottestad wrote.
The tweet set off so many alarms for having mentioned “1423,” a number associated with the Alabama-based white supremacist group The Southern Brotherhood. Nottestad vehemently denied any awareness about the number’s significance in an expected move.
Another tweet referenced a photo of Wallace and a white NASCAR fan, with the caption, “Almost looks like going to the zoo.” Other tweets by the now-axed coach said Wallace “can’t drive himself out of an open wet paper bag” and was a “clown with zero ability.” And another message alluded to Wallace’s deceased grandmother, who was a NASCAR fan.
Wallace, however, brilliantly condemned the hate served up like a platter by Nottestad.
“Wow, I feel truly sorry for your kids,” the history-making driver wrote. “Again…to have so much hate towards somebody you’ve never met. Hope your kids grow up to be the exact opposite of a father you are…”
Nottestad later admitted his “horrible mistake,” he told The Associated Press. But no apology can erase the damage done by the now-fired coach, who proved that no amount of privilege gives anyone the right to express bigotry.
Officials at Cambridge High School have remained tight-lipped about the racist event except for releasing a brief statement that confirmed Nottestad’s resignation. But Wallace not remaining silent about Nottestad’s racist messages is what gives life to Black liberation.