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White Ref Forces Black HS Wrestler to Cut His Dreadlocks to Compete

A White referee gave a Black high school wrestler in New Jersey one of two options: cut your dreads or forfeit your match.

White Ref Forces Black HS Wrestler to Cut His Dreadlocks to Compete, High School Wrestler Returns to Competition After Dreadlocks Were Cut. Lawyer: Wrestler Forced to Cut Dreadlocks Still Targeted Because of Hair
Photo Credit: Mike Frankel Twitter Account

Andrew Johnson, a Black wrestler at Buena Regional High School in New Jersey, was instructed by Alan Maloney, a White referee, to cut his dreadlocks or forfeit a match.

The incident was caught on video and uploaded to Twitter by Mike Frankel, the sports director of SNJ Today News.

“A referee wouldn’t allow Andrew Johnson of Buena @brhschiefs to wrestle with a cover over his dreadlocks.”

Frankel tweeted, “It was either an impromptu haircut, or forfeit. Johnson chose the haircut, then won by sudden victory in OT to help spark Buena to a win.”

In the clip, Johnson can be seen reluctantly having his dreads cut off while being supported by a number of his teammates.

There has been an increase in the awareness of how Black people experience racism over the presence of their natural hair.  In August, a father became emotional after his 6-year-old son was denied entry into a Florida school because of his dreads.

Watch the video of the Buena Regional High School incident below.

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