UNC's first day of class has ended with a protest in front of Silent Sam. While university officials have known about a planned rally since Monday, the cause behind the rally was unclear in a message to the campus community.
Debates surrounding the removal of Silent Sam have been defined by a 2015 law which prohibits state-owned monuments from being taken down. However, Governor Roy Cooper wrote a letter to UNC-system president Margaret Spellings on Monday giving permission to remove the statue, citing a loophole in the law. UNC has declined that permission, stating that the situation Cooper described which would circumvent the law is not the case at Silent Sam.
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