Lily Saxton is the woman who appeared in a racist video alongside Riley Grisar, the former chapter leader of Turning Point USA at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. In the video, which was reportedly taken in 2015 or 2016, Grisar flashes what appears to be the white power symbol; he and Saxton say a number of racist slurs.
In the video, which you can see below, Grisar says “White power!” verbatim, and Saxton can be seen saying “f*ck the [n-word].”
Turning Point USA has since released a statement condemning the actions within the video, though it does not address whether Saxton, too, was affiliated with the organization, or whether it was only Grisar. The statement reads,
“As soon as the video in question came to the attention of Turning Point USA staff, we swiftly and permanently removed the student from any current or future involvement with our organization. HIs comments were abhorrent, un-American and disqualifying. We’d also like to commend the decisive action taken by the UNLV chapter leadership that acted quickly to remove the student from their chapter membership and involvement. As any large organization should, TPUSA has a zero-tolerance policy for hate, no matter the medium or how dated the act or comment, and we hold our tens of thousands of students to the highest of standards.”
Here’s what you need to know:
1. Saxton Appeared Alongside Grisar in a Video Where They Say Racist Slurs
The video above contains graphic statements pertaining to racial violence and support of white supremacy. In the video, which appears to have been taken on Snapchat, Grisar and Saxton are together on a bed. Grisar says, “I love these guys.” Saxton then says, “Yes, this is my f*cking dude. We’re gonna run the country.” Grisar then throws up what is commonly attributed to be the white power sign and says, “White power.” Saxton also throws up the sign and says, “White power. F*ck the [n-word].” An off camera person repeats, “White Power,” as she repeats, “White power” and again, f*ck the [n-word].”
Though the video appears to have been taken several years ago, it surfaced on the Twitter account “It’s Going Down” and has since been viewed over 300,000 times. Grisar was immediately identified as the man in the video, but Saxton was only identified after several classmates spoke out against her, confirming her identity.
Turning Point USA has since denounced Grisar’s actions, confirming that he is now longer affiliated with the organization. However, Saxton has yet to receive any public acknowledgement from Turning Point or from the school she attends.
2. Saxton Is Now a College Student at Concordia College
Saxton attends Concordia College in Minnesota, according to DailyMail. Many have since tweeted at Concordia College to see if the school plans to respond to the video. The college has yet to make a public statement.
Saxton’s Twitter account was previously under the handle “@Lily_Saxton,” but the account has since been deactivated. However, many of the videos that she took online while she was a student at Lutheran Faith Conservatory of the Fine Arts are still available, as can be seen above.
Prior to deleting her Snapchat on Friday, Saxton released an apparent statement about her actions, which read,
There is a video of me from a couple of years ago. I was drunk and said things I do not believe in. I was forced to say/do things I did not want. I have lost many people in my life that I have loved.
That person in the video is not who I am. I do not believe any of those things. Ever since that night my life has been affected. I pray for forgiveness everyday. I will never forgive myself and I don’t expect you to forgive me.
I was young and stupid.
I truly believe everyone was made in the holy beautiful image of God. I know I am not perfect and this will not change any minds. But know that I live in regret for this. For over a year now I have been harassed and sent many threats and it has affected my life deeply.
I have deleted all social media and [am] going home soon to get the help i need.
3. Videos of Saxton’s Time in High School Are Still Available on YouTube
Above, you can see videos of Saxton dancing. She is apparently an art major at Concordia College. Saxton also gave a small interview in 2016 to The Crusader Chronicle, the high school newspaper. The article noted that Saxton was then a member of the varsity dance team, and she explained that she’d decided not to attend the Life Is Beautiful music festival, which takes place in Las Vegas.
Saxton said, “I was thinking about going [to Life is Beautiful] after the game, but I decided that my school is so important to me that I’m not going to.”
4. Grisar Has Previously Encountered Controversy When He Held a ‘Build the Wall’ Rally on Campus, May 1
On May 1, Grisar led a “build the wall” rally on the UNLV campus, which then led to a protest against the rally in question.
To Campus Reform, Grisar said the group was “hostile” and that he feared for his safety, explaining,
“We had the booth out for like two hours, and it was just after noon when it got a lot more hostile. Instead of just having one or two people come up, we started having a crowd approaching 100 people surrounding us. There was chanting, taunting…and I could see that it was looking like a lot of guys were going to get very hostile on the other side…They had groups of four or five coming up on some of our people just yelling at them, degrading them…”
5. Twitter Users Are Calling for Saxton & Grisar to Face Some Sort of Responsibility For Their Actions
Following the spread of the viral video, many people have called for a need for accountability from both Saxton and Grisar. Grisar appears to have lost his affiliation with Turning Point, but neither college that Saxton and Grisar attend have yet to acknowledge the video.
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