Racial tensions have run high since the latest string of police officers and white supremacist vigilantes murdering unarmed black people. An even more ominous sign of the times has been the crop of black men found hanging from trees. The reality of all this no doubt played a role in the uproar over a noose found in black NASCAR star Bubba Wallace's garage. While the FBI investigated the situation, many NASCAR drivers showed their solidarity with Wallace and speaking out against bigotry and racism.
However, the FBI has since determined that Wallace was not targeted in a federal hate crime. The Bureau's investigation found the noose had been in the garage since October 2019 and was used as a "pull rope" for the garage door. NASCAR said in a statement on Tuesday,
"The FBI has completed its investigation at Talladega Superspeedway and determined that Bubba Wallace was not the target of a hate crime. The FBI report concludes, and photographic evidence confirms, that the garage door pull rope fashioned like a noose had been positioned there since as early as last fall. This was obviously well before the 43 team's arrival and garage assignment. We appreciate the FBI's quick and thorough investigation and are thankful to learn that this was not an intentional, racist act against Bubba. We remain steadfast in our commitment to providing a welcoming and inclusive environment for all who love racing."