EASTLAKE, Ohio—An estimated 300 students attending a high school football game in Eastlake, Ohio, on Thursday repeatedly shouted an anti-gay slur as part of a chant intended to insult the opposing team.
Heather Ike, a North Lake High School student, filmed the video of her classmates’ anti-gay rally cries and posted the footage on YouTube, where it has gained some attention in the wake of a nationwide string of tragedies resulting from anti-gay bullying and violence.
“I sat there for a little bit thinking it would stop, and it happened again, and it happened three times,” Ike said. She left the game, disturbed, after witnessing the chant.
North High School Principal Jennifer Chauby said the school does not tolerate anti-gay or any other forms of abuse and that she and officials stopped the insulting outcries when they became aware of them.
“We did put a stop to it as soon as we heard them chanting it, and it’s totally unacceptable and they know we don’t condone that type of behavior,” Chauby said.
Chauby has identified some of the students in Ike’s video but said there were too many people involved to suspend them all. Instead, she’s going to talk to the school about addressing anti-gay and other forms of bullying as a whole.
“I do announcements all the time on the [public address system], and I always, we always talk to the kids about appropriate behavior and what’s expected of our students. It’s got to stop.”