[Look] Black Excellence Haters: What Happened to Nyree Holmes for Wearing Kente Cloth at His Graduation Is Disgusting

[Look] Black Excellence Haters: What Happened to Nyree Holmes for Wearing Kente Cloth at His Graduation Is Disgusting

The merit scholar didn't deserve this treatment.

Published May 27, 2016

Nyree Holmes, an 18-year-old graduating high school senior, was removed from his Cosumnes Oak High School graduation after he refused to remove a kente cloth that he had worn along with his cap and gown as a tribute to his African heritage.

While the merit scholar was able to walk across the stage at the predominantly white school graduation, as he told it in his own words, he was greeted by police on the other side and escorted to the exit.

Holmes took to Twitter to share his story.

Holmes then spoke with the Atlanta Black Star to explain that wearing the cloth was important to him because as a "descendant of slaves, I have no firm connection to my roots in Africa."

“I wanted to wear my kente cloth as a representation of my pride in my ancestors, to display my cultural and religious heritage,” he said. “As my particular cloth was made by Christians in Ghana, where the kente cloth has been worn by royalty and during important ceremonies for hundreds if not thousands of years.” Adding, "If we are forced to wear the European cap and gowns [then] we should be able to wear the African kente cloth.”

His retelling of the story on Twitter has received both positive and negative responses. 

“I have received a lot of support and outrage from fellow minorities as well as white people, who see the infringement upon my freedom of expression as appalling and shocking,” he told the news source. “I have also heard of some rumblings within the school of objection as to how I responded on Twitter, especially my tweet that reached over ten-thousand people, explicitly stating, 'F*** Cosumnes Oaks High School.' ”

Holmes has since deleted that specific Tweet.

This is a just a small hiccup in Holmes' life plan, however. Next year he will be attending California State University to major in cinema arts "to achieve my dream of becoming an impactful film director.”

Just another example proving that while people can try, you can't keep Black excellence down.

Written by Evelyn Diaz

(Photo: Bounce/Getty Images)


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