Racist Frat Boy’s Parents Are Totally Sure He Is Not Racist In His Heart

Brody and Susan Pettit, the parents of Levi Pettit, one of the University of Oklahoma Students caught on film singing a racist chant, have taken out a whole entire web page with which to announce to the public that their precious darling, in spite of all appearances to the contrary, is not in fact a racist.

Said website states, in it’s entirety:

As parents of Levi, we love him and care for him deeply. He made a horrible mistake, and will live with the consequences forever. However, we also know the depth of our son’s character. He is a good boy, but what we saw in those videos is disgusting. While it may be difficult for those who only know Levi from the video to understand, we know his heart, and he is not a racist. We raised him to be loving and inclusive and we all remain surrounded by a diverse, close-knit group of friends.

We were as shocked and saddened by this news as anyone. Of course, we are sad for our son – but more importantly, we apologize to the community he has hurt. We would also like to apologize to the – entire African American community, University of Oklahoma student body and administration. Our family has the responsibility to apologize, and also to seek forgiveness and reconciliation. Our words will only go so far  – as a family, we commit to following our words with deeds.

To our friends and family, thank you for your kind comments and prayers. They are very comforting in this difficult time.

We ask that the media and public please respect our family’s privacy as we come together to heal and determine next steps.

I would just like to know. What the fuck is it with people going around saying or doing incredibly racist shit and then insisting they are not “racist in their hearts?” I mean, every time someone gets caught doing something dumb and racist, we end up having to hear all about how that’s not who they are “in their hearts.” Like with Paula Deen! And that Duck Dynasty person.

I will admit. I have always been incredibly confused when someone has stated anything along the lines of “He acts like an asshole, but deep down, he’s like a really good person.” This means nothing to me, because quite honestly–and maybe I am just not terribly deep–I am not sure what the difference is between acting like an asshole and being an asshole.

In light of this, I have a series of questions about this that I would love some help with, should anyone feel so generous as to assist me.

A) What does that even mean?

B) How am I to tell the difference between a fratboy who is “racist in his heart” singing about lynching black people and a fratboy who is not racist in his heart singing about lynching black people?

C) In this scenario, do I have psychic powers?

D) Say I’m not a cannibalistic serial killer in my heart, but I decide to kill and eat a bunch of people anyway. Am I guilty? What if, in my heart, I am not a heroin addict, but for some crazy reason I just keep shooting heroin all the time? Should I not bother to check into rehab?

E) Seriously, what kind of person who is not a racist person sings weird chants about lynching black people? How does that even happen in your life?

I mean… I feel as though I have lead a full and varied life, done some traveling, known and talked to lots of people–including, perhaps, some who were “racist in their hearts” because apparently there is no distinguishing behavior for that sort of thing. Yet, at no point have I ever been in a situation where someone was like “Hey! Let us all sing a song about lynching black people for daring to want to hang out with us, even though we are definitely not racist!” Were this to have occurred, I feel 1,100,137% confident that I would not join in. Because that’s fucking weird.

I can also promise you that were I to participate in such a chant, that my parents–who are, you know, not racists–would not take out a damn web page to tell the world what I lovely human I am deep on the inside. If they were to take out a website, it would probably definitely be to apologize for bringing me into this world and then publicly disowning me.

No one is born cruel, and no one is born kind. It is a person’s choice to be one way or another which defines them, not some intangible thing like “what is in their heart.” If you do mean things, you’re a mean person. If you do nice things, you’re a nice person. Otherwise, nothing means anything.

I mean, I could say “in my heart, I am a brilliant neurosurgeon.” You want me to start operating on your brain? Probably not!

I’m not saying this kid is a racist forever and cannot change. He can change by changing his behavior, as well as those things about himself that led him down this path to chanting about lynching black people on a bus. The great thing about judging people by their behavior and not “what’s in their heart” means that you believe they have the ability to change.

[Friends and Family of Levi Pettit]

[h/t Buzzfeed]