The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill was at the center of an act of vandalism when a Confederate statue was tagged with graffiti over the holiday weekend, WRAL reports.
The university’s “Silent Sam” statue was covered with the words “murderer,” “KKK” and “Black Lives Matter,” the site writes. The exact time of the tagging is unknown, but administrators were made aware of the incident Sunday.
The statue was created in 1913 to honor the 321 alumni who were part of the Confederate Army and died in the Civil War. The defacing of “Silent Sam” adds to the list of Confederate statues tagged across the South, after many demanded that lawmakers discuss the presence of Confederate symbols and the accompanying flag on state grounds.
Rick White, the school’s associate vice-chancellor of Communications and Public Affairs, says the current battle over the Confederate flag is an important topic, but damaging school property won’t help the cause.
“We understand that the issue of race and place is both emotional and, for many, painful. Carolina is working hard to ensure we have a thoughtful, respectful and inclusive dialogue on the issue,” he said. “The extensive discussions with the Carolina community this past year by the Board of Trustees and University leadership, and the work we will be doing to contextualize the history of our campus is a big part of advancing those conversations. We welcome all points of view, but damaging or defacing statues is not the way to go about it.”
Some students disagreed, claiming letters and demands on various social topics at the university often go unanswered.
“We send emails and we write letters, and sometimes those emails are ignored and sometimes those letters aren’t opened,” Ishmael Bishop said. “This is a statement. This is one way to do it. Property can be cleaned. I agree black lives do matter. I am excited that there are students or community members who feel the same way I do, that Confederate monuments on our campus (are) offensive.”
The statue has been covered to hide the tagging.
SOURCE: WRAL | VIDEO CREDIT: NDN