For nearly 40 years, graduates from the St. Martinville, La., Senior High School Class of 1973 have been holding racially segregated class reunions.
But this year, ABC affiliate KATC reports that the graduates decided to change that tradition, making the reunion a non-segregated affair.
However, a letter announcing the change included an after party for "white graduates only."
Michael Kreamer, who is the principal of the Louisiana school, said he found the letter distressing.
"I'm just a little disappointed that something like this comes up," he told KATC. "I don't think that it looks good for the school, but again as I said it has nothing to do with St. Martinville Senior High. So I hope people don't take that the wrong way."
According to Yahoo! News, a reception is going to be held at the school at the end of September, followed by the homecoming football game. The letter notes that "all graduates are welcome to attend" those events.
After the game, however, "white graduates only" have been invited to gather at a classmate's home. Invitees are encouraged to bring a "food dish to share."
Liza Chance, one of the organizers of the event, told KATC that she was bewildered by this backward step.
"This is just a start it's a beginning, it needs to go forward. I don't understand why this went the way it did," she said.
After the letter made headlines this week, people took to social media platforms like Facebook to express their displeasure.
"'We've been doing this for the last 30 years,' totally excuses three decades of discrimination and the burden of inequality. I'm glad that they found a way to fix this terrible indiscretion in 2012 and finally decide to integrate like it's 1960, or was that the mistake? I can't think of an intelligent person I know who would ever think it was okay to write or plan anything exclusively for 'White People,'" commented one man from Lafayette, La.
This is not the first "white only" event that has caused a furor in recent months.
According to a July report by the Huffington Post, Pastor William J. Collier and his Church of God's Chosen were planning on holding a "white only" Christian conference in Alabama.
"We don't have the facilities to accommodate other people. We haven't got any invitations to black, Muslim events. Of course we are not invited to Jewish events and stuff," Collier said in way of explanation.
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