The last name of Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump apparently has been turned into a racial insult for some people.
High school students in Des Moines, Iowa, this week chanted "Trump! Trump!" after a boys' basketball game. The chanters were from Dallas Center-Grimes High, which has a largely white population. Their school's team had just lost to Perry High School, which has a more diverse student population.
Trump has made derogatory comments about illegal immigrants and has pledged to build a wall along the entire U.S.-Mexico border if he is elected.
Perry student Kevin Lopez noted in a letter to the Perry Chief newspaper that the billionaire's name has been chanted at the team three other times this season.
“It is a chant said to intimidate and discriminate our Latino/Hispanic students and it is a chant that is fueled by racism,” Lopez wrote.
"Perry has been a racial target for many towns for a long time now, and now I am tackling this problem. I urge that you stay alert to chants like 'Trump' or 'Mini-Mexico' and that you please take action. We know racism is alive and well, but we refuse to undergo discrimination at Iowa high school athletic events."
Dallas Center-Grimes athletic director Steve Watson said about a dozen students chanted Trump's name three or four times. He said privacy policies don't allow him to disclose whether those students were disciplined.
“One of our administrators knew right away that it would be offensive because Perry has a high minority population,” Watson said.
Perry Coach Ned Menke said several of his players did take offense to the chant.
“When you find out about it, your initial reaction was kind of disbelief," he said. "Like, 'Really? That just happened?' "
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