Our View | King should not be punished for youthful internet actions

Should Carson King be judged for his past actions as a teenager? We don’t think so. 

This all started when College Gameday came to Ames, Iowa for the Cy-Hawk football game between the Iowa Hawkeyes and the Iowa State Cyclones. During the show, Carson King is shown holding a sign saying, “Busch Light Supply Needs Replenished, Venmo Carson-King-25.” 

Next thing he knew, people were donating money from around the country. As soon as the donations got to $600, he and his family decided to donate the money to the University of Iowa Stead Family Children’s Hospital. 

Once Busch and Venmo heard about the donations, they decided to match King’s donation. 

Next thing he knew, he had $1 million raised. In fact, by the deadline he had set for the fundraising at the end of September, the totals had grown to nearly $3 million. The Governor of Iowa, Kim Reynolds gave King his own day on Sept. 28 in honor of what he did, and the Iowa Hawkeyes honored the efforts of this Cyclone by inviting him to the home game last weekend and giving him a collective crowd cheer. King plans to return to Iowa City for the home game with Penn State and present the check to the Children’s Hospital.

But all this heroism took a tailspin into dark clouds when the Des Moines Register decided to do a profile of King. After digging into his past, the reporter exposed some racist comments that King made on Twitter when he was 16 years old. One compared black mothers to gorillas and another made light of black people killed in the Holocaust. 

Instead of the backlash going to King, it went to the reporter and the Register for publishing the article. 

We don’t believe that King should be judged by his past actions as a teenager because everyone has been a teenager once and done things that we aren’t proud of. In the world we live in now, it is easy for our pasts to catch up with us due to social media. If anything, King’s horribly misguided youthful tweets should serve as a lesson, but we believe we should also pay attention to how the person has changed and if they have learned from their past. Before the story came out, King made a statement apologizing for his tweets in the past. 

It is clear that King has changed from the 16-year-old teen who made that racist tweet to the 24-year-old man who donated over $1 million dollars to a Children’s Hospital. 

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