WHAT’S BEING CLAIMED:
- An investigation is underway following the discovery of a noose at the carport of driver Bubba Wallace.
- The NASCAR series has recently implemented the ban against the use of Confederate flags in all its events.
- NASCAR expressed disgust with the incident, saying there is no place for racism in the organization.
On Monday, Federal investigators confirmed they are probing the discovery of a noose in the garage of Talladega Superspeedway driver Bubba Wallace.
Wallace is the only Black NASCAR full-time driver who pursues the stock car series to prohibit the Confederate flag at its race venues this month.
U.S. Attorney Jay Town said both the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division and FBI were studying the situation, adding that a such action is an act of cowardice.
The stock car series has always swayed away from the flag issues for many years to avoid the risk of estranging a specific group from its fan base.
With Wallace’s assertion, the group implemented the ban as the nation faces social conflict mainly due to the killing of George Floyd, an African-American man who died while under arrest by Minneapolis officers.
NASCAR has not detailed how it will enforce the restriction, and the run this week at Talladega, at the South’s center, gave the league its most challenging test in a first leg.
Disappointed fans waving Confederate flags drove past Alabama race track’s main entrance before Sunday’s race. At the same time, a plane hovered above the track carrying a banner calling for the defunding of NASCAR.
A few hours after the race was suspended due to rain, NASCAR confirmed the noose had been discovered. The authorities vowed to do everything necessary to determine who did the act and take them out from the association.
NASCAR said in a statement that they are angry with what they call an atrocious act, stressing that there is no place for discrimination in the organization.
Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey expressed his shock and disappointment over the act committed against Wallace, who is also an Alabama native.
Seven-time NASCAR champion Richard Petty and owner of Wallace’s No. 43 racer is to proceed Talladega to show support to his driver. Petty has not gone to any race amidst the COVID-19 outbreak.
Petty, who was also known as “The King,” reiterated that discrimination has no place in society, noting that the act does not represent the whole of NASCAR, and he will stand with Wallace all the time.
On Monday afternoon, retired four-time champion Jeff Gordon said the act was cowardice, and Ryan Blaney, a close friend of Wallace, posted a message of support to him through Twitter.
NASCAR driver Michael McDowell, meanwhile, said the act was heartbreaking and disgusting at the same time.
It was only on Sunday that the 26-year-old Wallace posted a statement through social media. He said he was saddened by the act of racism, noting that the nation has a long way to go in addressing the problem.