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Rouses owner among those under fire on social media after riot at US Capitol

6 months 3 weeks 20 hours ago Thursday, January 07 2021 Jan 7, 2021 January 07, 2021 1:59 PM January 07, 2021 in News
Source: WBRZ

BATON ROUGE - Businesses and schools in Baton Rouge are addressing their employees and students' remarks on social media regarding the events that took place at the US Capitol Wednesday.

Rouses Supermarket is facing backlash and calls for a boycott online after one of its owners was photographed at a pro-Trump protest that turned into a riot at the U.S. Capitol building.

A photo circulating on social media shows co-owner Donald Rouse Sr. at the protest Wednesday. The picture, originally posted by former Rouses HR Director Steve Galtier, shows Rouse and Galtier side-by-side among the crowd in Washington, D.C..

Rouse released a statement Thursday saying he "left before the violence began." However, the photo had already prompted a swelling negative response on social media, with several viral tweets calling for people to boycott the store.

You can read Rouse's full statement below.

I attended the rally yesterday as a supporter of the president and to be in our nation’s capital at the close of his presidency. I left before the violence began and was shocked and saddened to see it unfold on TV. I condemn the actions of those who unlawfully entered and damaged our hallowed institutions and threatened our public servants. Violence and destruction do not represent our country’s values, or the values of Rouses.

Though I am no longer involved in the day-to-day operations of Rouses, that’s my family’s name on the building and my actions reflect on my family, Rouses and this community I love so dearly. I’m horrified by the violence and destruction we saw yesterday and the pain it has caused so many. Our country desperately needs to come together to heal, and I will do everything I can to be a part of that process. - Donald Rouse, Sr.

LSU lab school, or U High, also addressed comments shared between students that were later shared on social media that were "hurtful and derogatory" to members of the African American community.

The school released a statement Thursday calling the events that took place at the Capitol "unsettling" and "shocking," in addition to addressing the disturbing comments made by students about the incident.

One student took to Twitter, posting screenshots of a group message among classmates who were discussing the events at the Capitol, stating that she was "highly offended."

The lab school says it will continue to investigate the matter fully and disciplinary action will be taken where warranted in compliance with the school's student handbook.

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