Columbia University has finished its investigation into its wrestling team, some members of which have for years maintained a texting group in which racist, sexist and homophobic comments were regularly shared. The university said that the team couldn't compete while the inquiry was going on. Now that the inquiry is complete, the university has said that some team members -- those most involved -- will be suspended from the team for the rest of the 2016-17 academic year. Some other wrestlers will be suspended only until the start of the spring semester. Others, who were not involved, have been cleared to compete now.
A statement explained, "We recognize that free speech is a core value both of the university community and of our nation. Our students and faculty have the right to express themselves and their views, whether through their public or private communications. However, the group text messages that have been brought to light do not meet the standard of behavior we expect from our student-athletes at Columbia. Prior to the start of each competition season, Columbia Athletics shares with its teams a code of conduct, outlining our expectations for individual and team behavior. The messages are appalling and violate team guidelines."
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