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Retired Jacksonville-area Navy captain apologizes after racial slurs aired on Facebook

Scott Bethmann has resigned from U.S. Naval Academy Alumni Association board

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – A retired Navy captain, who lives in Atlantic Beach, has resigned from the U.S. Naval Academy Alumni Association board after he accidentally broadcast a conversation he was having with his wife on Facebook, according to a statement from a family spokesperson.

News4Jax received a copy of the recording, which was live on Facebook for more than 30 minutes. Scott Bethmann and his wife, Nancy, were apparently discussing the Black Lives Matter movement while watching television, when they began using slurs and making other racially insensitive comments. Bethmann is heard using the N-word.

They appear to be discussing how some large companies are putting out statements that denounce racism.

“We support. We support. Every single company has put their word out,” Bethmann says in the video. “I’ve gotten an email about how, we’re supporting and we need to fix this problem. F*** you.”

In the video, he’s also heard saying: “The white m*****f*****s can’t say anything. That’s the point we’re making here, Nancy.”

In the recording, Bethmann's wife, Nancy, refers to the black community. The couple talks about women and minority groups who serve in the military.

“F****** Asians from China who love to steal all of our intellectual property,” she’s heard saying in the video.

The video appears to end when Bethmann begins reading comments on his phone.

“Somehow I clicked on to some live event," he’s heard saying. “What are they talking about?”

On Saturday, Bethmann’s Facebook page had been removed.

A statement released by the family’s spokesperson from Bethmann reads:

“There are no words that can appropriately express how mortified and apologetic my wife and I are about the insensitive things we said that were captured on social media. There is never a time when it is appropriate to use derogatory terms when speaking about our fellow man. I know that an apology from us rings hollow on many ears in our community, especially in the current environment. We intend on using this experience as an opportunity to grow, listen, learn, and reflect. We are deeply sorry for the impact our actions have had on the Naval Academy, my fellow servicemen and women, our former colleagues, friends, family, and the community as a whole. We are committed to educating ourselves more on the racial inequalities in this country and being better people.”

The Jacksonville chapter of the Naval Academy Alumni Association confirmed on Facebook that Bethmann had resigned from the board. Bethmann served as the chapter treasurer and national trustee.

The Association said the board was convening an emergency meeting Saturday to discuss moving forward.


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