Another NASCAR driver has been caught using disparaging racial language on the internet. This time, occasional Xfinity Series driver Mike Wallace has been suspended indefinitely due to offensive posts or comments son social media. While it’s not clear what, exactly, resulted in the suspension, Wallace has a history of making or sharing racially disparaging Facebook content.
On April 12, 2020, NASCAR Cup Series driver Kyle Larson dropped the n-word during an unofficial one-off iRacing event at Monza. The next day, both his team, Chip Ganassi Racing, and NASCAR as a whole suspended Larson until further notice. He also lost his major sponsorships and has not competed in NASCAR since.
Wallace, who has driven the No. 0 JD Motorsports machine in three events this season for the first time since 2015, fell afoul of NASCAR’s Member Conduct Guidelines. Wallace violated Sections 12.1, 12.8, and 12.8.1.e, the latter of which reads as follows:
Member actions that could result in a fine and/or indefinite suspension, or termination:
Public statement and/or communication that criticizes, ridicules, or otherwise disparages another person based upon that person’s race, color, creed, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, marital status, religion, age, or handicapping condition.
While NASCAR did not identify the offending content, Wallace has a history of using or sharing racially disparaging language on Facebook. One post from Aug. 27, 2020 featured a photo of Kamala Harris with the following caption:
Can you believe this semi Black person is on TV saying blacks in America NEVER had the same opportunity as whites. ? Didn’t we have a black president for 8 years??
Two days later, he posted an image that read as follows:
White slaves were sold for centuries
All our ancestors took slaves, sold slaves, or were slaves
You’re not special
Black people owned and sold slaves. Asian people, native people and Middle Eastern people owned and sold slaves. EVERYONE’S ancestors participated in slavery, it wasn’t exclusive to white people. Stop trying to make people feel guilty for things they didn’t do.
Wallace could be reinstated after completing sensitivity training. However, considering his sparse return after a five year break, it is possible that he would not feel inclined to do so.
For any NASCAR drivers out there, it’s a fine time to remember that using disparaging language is firmly against NASCAR’s rules, no matter where you’re at. Just because it isn’t an official race doesn’t mean you won’t be suspended.