Silent Sam No Longer Stands, But …Breaking News
tags: University of North Carolina, Confederate Monuments, Silent Sam
● UNC’s Moment to Lead — or Not By Angus Johnston
One of the most hotly debated issues on Tuesday was how the university and its police officers handled the event.
In its initial statement on Monday night, the university adopted a relatively flat tone, saying that “we are investigating the vandalism and assessing the full extent of the damage.”
A statement on Tuesday from Margaret Spellings, the UNC system’s president, and Harry Smith, chair of the Board of Governors, was more strongly worded. They vowed to pursue a criminal investigation into the statue’s removal.
“The actions last evening were unacceptable, dangerous and incomprehensible,” the statement read. “We are a nation of laws — and mob rule and the intentional destruction of public property will not be tolerated.”
On Monday night, though, the response of campus law enforcement wasn’t as forceful as that language might indicate. Officers didn’t step in to disperse the protesters. There were a few tussles between officers and demonstrators, and one attendee said the police acted aggressively at times, but only one arrest was made.
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