In today’s episode of ‘Was This Racism?’ a Black family is accusing a Missouri water park of racism after the park canceled a party for two Black teens after the family had paid to have it hosted there.
From Black Enterprise:
Chris Evans, the father of two popular teenage YouTubers, is upset after paying $2,000 last month to host a large birthday party at Summit Waves water park in Lee’s Summit, Missouri, only to have pool managers turn them away on Saturday, Fox News reported.
Evans and his wife, LeyShon, rented out the park for their 15-year-old son, Noah, and 17-year-old son, Isaiah. A video shows a police officer and park official standing at the park’s gates preventing the large group from entering. Evans asks if the group is making them uncomfortable.
The female park employee shook her head and said “no,” in the short clip.
OK, so before we just decide this was an act of racism, let’s hear what park officials had to say.
Summit Waves administrator Joe Snook said in a statement that it canceled the party because it “became aware of social media posts advertising the event,” which is a weird excuse in an era when everyone posts everything on social media. I mean, if the park is saying it won’t host a party if it’s advertised on the internet then, bro, y’all just ain’t hosting parties. Can you imagine if someone dug into things and found this park had hosted plenty of parties for white teens that were also advertised on social media?
But whatever—I’ll let the man finish.
“This raised serious concerns about the safety of party guests and the possibility the event would grow beyond the capacity of staff, “Snook continued. “After multiple attempts to reach the renter in advance of the event to discuss safety concerns, a connection was not made until the hours leading up to the event. At that point, the only recourse was to cancel the event. Despite the cancellation, approximately 500 teens arrived in the Summit Waves parking lot. Lee’s Summit Parks and Recreation is committed to ensuring the safety of all patrons and will continue to work with the renter.”
So, yeah—I could see how it looks like a large crowd of Black people showed up and park personnel just got nervous. With all these stories popping up about amusement park employees ignoring Black children, it’s understandable that this didn’t sit right with the family. Still, if it’s true that the park tried to get in touch with the parents to discuss security concerns and the parents weren’t responding, it’s possible park officials just decided to nix the whole thing out of safety concerns.
Either way, the Evans family isn’t buying it and they have retained an attorney, so we can expect to hear about a lawsuit being filed in the future.
So, what do y’all think? Was this a racist incident, or nah?
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