Wearing costumes and waving objects to distract opposing teams’ players at sporting events isn’t uncommon.It’s probably been going on for the longest time.

But here we are in 2015, and you have to wonder what goes through the minds of some Holy Spirit HS students who were spectators at a recent basketball game with Atlantic City High School.

The students came dressed as monkeys and bananas with some kind of contraption in front of them, and taunted the ACHS players as they were making free throws.

As you can imagine, a ruckus ensued - where Holy Spirit students were labeled racist by some – and defended by others.

An official for Holy Spirit official conceded that the conduct violated league rules for sportsmanship but said that there would be no punishment meted out to the students who pulled the prank.

“According to Jay Connell, the school’s athletic director,

“I am not going to kick anyone out of school or whip anybody. All I can do is apologize, I can’t take it back,” “There is no punishment. The punishment is that it will be an event that will not happen again, and that is the punishment for Holy Spirit.”

He agreed with Atlantic City High School athletic director Anthony Nistico saying the performance by the students was taken from a similar one done at a recent Arizona State University basketball game, but those students did not wear monkey and banana costumes.

Nistico said,

“It was so offensive. We have Caucasian players, but our team is predominantly black. If you look at the film from the game, Holy Spirit’s starting five are African American.”

Ordinarily, I like to think incidents like this are blown out of proportion – that fans of one team or another will go to any lengths to razz or distract players from opposing teams.

However, in this, the year of our Lord 2015, it’s not hard to see how wearing monkey costumes and bananas in front of an opposing team consisting of mainly African American players is over the line.

Either that or do I not have a sense of humor.