St. John’s fired a repugnant racist assistant fencing coach, Boris Vaksman, after he said “Lincoln made a mistake” by freeing slaves in a Zoom call.
“The most trouble coming from where? From black people because they don’t want to work,” Vaksman can be seen saying in the video. “They steal, they kill, they drugs, everything comes from them. The majority, the majority.
“I think, what’s his name, Lincoln, made a mistake.”
Video of Vaksman’s bigoted comments, made during a call with a youth group, was posted to Instagram anonymously on Wednesday.
“As soon as the recording was brought to our attention the matter was immediately investigated and the individual was terminated by the University. The racist comments expressed are completely unacceptable and a rejection of everything that the University stands for,” Director of Athletics Mike Cragg said in a Twitter statement.
Vaksman, who is from Ukraine, had been a coach at St. John’s since 2006 and served as a United States Fencing referee.
The USA Fencing organization said it is “disgusted” by Vaksman’s statements.
Vaksman’s comments are “racist, offensive and have no place in the USA Fencing community or in society as a whole. USA Fencing stands with our black athletes and all underrepresented minorities within the fencing family and will conduct an immediate investigation,” the organization’s statement said.
St. John’s quickly removed Vaksman’s profile from it’s fencing website.
Although fencing is considered a predominantly white sport, St. John’s most recent men’s team includes several people of color, including three black athletes.