Levi Pettit, the 20-year-old former University of Oklahoma fraternity member caught on video singing a racist song with other chapter members, apologized Wednesday while being surrounded by Black clergymen and leaders at a Black church in Oklahoma.

“There are no excuses for my behavior. I never thought of myself as a racist. I never considered it a possibility,” Pettit told reporters. “But the bottom line is that the words that were said in that chant were mean, hateful and racist.

“I will be deeply sorry and deeply ashamed of what I’ve done for the rest of my life,” he said.

“I’m not here today to talk about where I learned the chant or how it was taught,” he said. “I’m here to apologize for what I did. The truth is that what was said in that chant is disgusting.”

Before making his apology, Pettit did what seems customary nowadays when a white person’s racist ways are exposed. He met with Black preachers. He said he did not realize how hurtful the words he was seen singing are to African-Americans. “I would do absolutely anything to take it back if I could,” he said.

The meeting was arranged by State Sen. Anastasia Pittman (D) and she said Pettit initially texted her to apologize. “This is just the beginning of a great conversation in our community,” she said.

Image Credit: AP/NBC News 

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