Earlier this month, a photo showing four Colorado State University, Fort Collins, students in blackface began circulating on social media.
CSU officials issued a statement Sept. 10 denouncing the post, the Fort Collins Coloradoan reported at the time. Officials also said the university could not punish the students, because they had a constitutional right to free speech.
But some students declared that response inadequate, according to media reports.
University President Joyce McConnell announced the university would create a new Race, Bias and Equity initiative in a speech Sept. 19. Several hundred students protesting racial bias marched in front of the stage during the address.
Adding to the turmoil, a swastika was discovered a few hours later on a university apartment building.
The blackface incident at CSU comes at an especially troubled time — CBI statistics show that the majority of hate crimes reported in Colorado in 2018, 112 out of 172 victims, were motivated by race, ethnicity or ancestry, with the majority of those alleged crimes comitted against black people.