‘We are done. I wont be coming to your graduation. Nor will I pay for your college.’ – Anna’s father told her that she was ‘dead’ to him after she attended prom with a black student. (Photos © Phillip Freeman and Anna Hayes/via Twitter/Reg)
High school seniors Phillip Freeman and Anna Hayes, from Lake Village, Ark., attended their school prom last week.
Although the two good friends had a fantastic time, Anna’s father didn’t approve of her attending with a black student, and subsequently went on a racist tirade after seeing social media photos of the event. “We are done. I wont be coming to your graduation. Nor will I pay for your college. Go live with the n***ers,” he begins in a text message.
“I went to prom with a black guy so that’s a problem? Racist much,” Anna responded.
“Yes I am,” he admitted. “Your dead to me.”
The verbal abuse gets worse and he even refers to Anna’s black friend as “subhuman.”
Wow. Right here in good ole Arkansas 🤦🏽♂️ pic.twitter.com/kLqwvMaLIy
— Reg (@Og__Regg) May 2, 2017
In an interview with BuzzFeed News, Anna said that she and her father haven’t had much of a relationship since her early teens when she moved in with her mom. Her parents divorced when she was younger, and she remembers her father being “openly racist” around her when growing up. Anna’s half-sister on her mother’s side is biracial so she finds her father’s views incredibly painful.
“He has told me that if I ever dated a black guy that I will and would be dead to him,” she told BuzzFeed. “I stood my ground for what I believe in. He has called me several horrible things before.”
She described feeling incredibly sad after seeing the messages and shared them with Phillip, who subsequently posted them on Facebook. The photos have since gone viral, with many reacting in disgust at her father’s reaction:
” I cannot believe someone would cut off there own daughter just bc they went to prom with a person of different race,” one woman commented. “This really upsets me.”
“People tend not to see racism actually exist until it affects them, hence all the ‘I can’t believe we’re still going through this’ post.”
“I have legitimately never heard someone, outside of a documentary, refer to a different race as subhuman. #heartbroken”
— Taylor Newman (@Tatertott_) May 2, 2017
— MDR (@ChaseEnCash) May 3, 2017
— Asha Manning (@naturalbeau__) May 3, 2017
— Sami Nolene (@SassyNole) May 3, 2017
@Og__Regg It’s 2017 now. C’mon let that girl be happy if that’s what she wants. It’s past time for all of this fr
— Adam Cooper (@MyTwins_Keeper) May 2, 2017
In a Twitter note, Anna requested that people not contact her father’s current or ex-wife. She stated that the whole point of her post was to show that sadly, in 2017, racism is still around — but hopefully people will see these messages and have a change of heart.
— Anna (@anna_m_hayes) May 2, 2017