Penn State defensive end Antonio Shelton tweeted a fan letter sent to a teammate on Monday, asking his followers to “explain to me how this isn’t racist.”
The letter comes from a fan who describes himself and his wife as “older” graduates of Penn State and calls for an implementation of a dress code, while lambasting a player’s “awful hair.”
The letter was addressed to “Jonathan,” and was presumably sent to junior safety Jonathan Sutherland, who has long dreadlocks that flow from the back of his helmet.
‘Dreadlocks look disgusting’
One of my teammates got this. Explain to me how this isn’t racist. pic.twitter.com/Qms1F6DEEP
— Antonio Shelton (@_groovy55) October 7, 2019
The letter, which pines for the glory days of “clean cut young men and women” goes into a scathing criticism of dreadlocks, tattoos and end zone celebrations.
From the letter:
Watching the Idaho game on TV we couldn’t help but notice your — well — awful hair. Surely there must be mirrors in the locker room! Don’t you have parents or girlfriend who’ve told you those shoulder length dreadlocks look disgusting and are certainly not attractive. (sic)
We congratulate you on your game against Pitt but you need to remember you represent all Penn Staters both current and those alumni from years past. We would welcome the reappearance of dress codes for athletes.
You will certainly be playing ‘on Sunday’ in the future but we have stopped watching the NFL due to the disgusting tattoos, awful hair and immature antics in the end zone. Players should act as though they’ve ‘been there before’. (sic)
Sutherland did not address the letter on his own Twitter page.
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