Confederate Statues Removed From NC College Campuses

Picture: Silent Sam, by John Wilson, is located on McCorkle Place at the UNC Chapel
Hill campus. (Picture by Sara D. David/Getty Images)
By Jahleen LeBeau

As a student sometimes it’s easy to get wrapped up in school work, extracurricular activities, and actually trying to have a social life. Between tight schedules we often look past what is happening around us, but it’s important not to turn your head so quickly. Events that take place may sometimes be a gateway to discovering your rights as a student and how to exercise them. For example take the recent protests happening at Duke and UNC Chapel Hill.

Due to the recent and unfortunately very tragic events that have taken place in Charlottesville the students of Duke and UNC Chapel Hill are using their own voices to raise concern upon the confederate statues that exist on their campuses. Multiple protests, sit-ins and even vandalism’s have occurred on the campuses in attempts to get these statues removed. After the Gen. Robert E Lee confederate statue was removed from in front of the Duke campus chapel (due to vandalism), students of UNC Chapel Hill are becoming more adamant about the Silent Sam statue being removed from their own campus grounds.

The protests at UNC Chapel Hill have gotten to such an intense point that the institutions President Margaret Spellings reached out to Gov. Roy Cooper. According to Rachel Chason of The Washington Post Spellings asked Cooper “for his help in addressing the ‘significant safety and security threats’”.  There have also been several articles written and coverage on the news keeping up with these acts. This goes to show that these students are being recognized not only by administrators, but other universities and public as well. Not only are students getting answers and recognition towards their cause but they are inspiring others while doing so.

So what does all of this mean for us as students? It goes to show that not only are we able to exercise our rights through our institute, but we are also able to voice out and make our opinions heard in order to push for change. Every school has codes or regulations that students are required to follow, but what often goes overlooked is that students still possess their constitutional rights. Meaning freedom of speech is still allowed to be exercised while inside a school institute, which is why students are allowed to express opinion through such protests and other events.

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