A black high school teacher in Virginia has filed a lawsuit against a white student who brought a “racist fruit” to class. For months, the white student left a banana outside of the Black teacher’s classroom.

It was an affront for Joel Mungo, a veteran educator, to see the banana in front of his classroom door starting in October 2021 – and it didn’t take long for him to deduce that the individual who was behind the prank had racial motives with the yellow fruit.

“Someone left a banana at my door. The banana was perfectly placed in the doorway,” Mungo said.

The banana initially passed Mungo by. However, it gradually became a common occurrence, with at least one banana appearing in front of the Black teacher’s classroom every month. When Mungo had to relocate the “racist” fruit six times in a row, he grew irritated and decided to do something about it rather than just fume alone.

“It was clearly a deliberate act,” Mungo stated. He became so upset by the racist assault that he was compelled to take time off work to unwind and recuperate.

“It’s 2022. Just to have some type of hate crime is absolutely ridiculous. I was sickened,” he stated.

Mungo is no stranger to racial prejudice as one of the few Black instructors at a mostly white Virginia institution. He’s faced being a racial minority since starting his teaching career there – but until the banana incident, he felt like he belonged in the school’s close-knit group.

The banana was branded a racial threat since whites have used bananas to imply that Blacks are like apes or other primates for a long time. Bananas are popular among chimpanzees, monkeys, and other similar creatures – thus the accused racist student wanted to deliver a comparable message to Mungo in order to make the instructor feel inferior because he was born with melanin in his skin.

Mungo requested that school officials investigate the matter. They obtained classroom footage showing one of Mungo’s white 10th-graders carrying a banana to his classroom door.

When confronted, the student denied everything, claiming that it wasn’t him who left a banana behind every few weeks.

While the white boy was observed on camera, he falsely denied involvement to his teacher.

“I gave the student a chance to come clean. I asked him, “Hey did you do this?” He said, “No”, he played dumb, “No idea what you’re talking about.” So I said, “OK, go down to the assistant principal.” I’m the only Black teacher he has. He has six other teachers. No other teachers were involved,” Mungo said to WAVY 10.

The white student was eventually suspended for two days as a result of the stunt – and his parents became “irate.”

Mungo is now suing the racist student, and it’s possible he’ll add the school to his list of targets.

The school failed Mungo in dealing with the racist assault, says attorney Ali Shahrestani, Esq. According to him: “The school should have handled it much differently than they did.”

“‘It sends a terrible message to other students, teachers, and the community when a student gets a slap on the wrist like this for such a disgusting series of alleged actions against a teacher. The fact that the student’s parents allegedly had the audacity to be upset by a two-day suspension might reflect the lack of sincerity of their initial alleged apology on his behalf,” Shahrestani stated.