When the UNC Young Democrats hosted a discussion Wednesday night on the recent tensions regarding Silent Sam, American studies professor Michelle Robinson did not mince her words.
“Silent Sam is a white person problem too,” Robinson said. “It is a problem that everyone has a stake in on this campus. It’s not simply being an ally, but taking responsibility for the kind of campus you want to be on.”
The discussion presented six panelists from the Chapel Hill community and was open to the public. Each panelist provided unique historic and current perspectives on the issues surrounding Silent Sam.
The call to action continued with Rabbi Melissa B. Simon, a senior Jewish educator at NC Hillel. She looked to those in attendance, primarily UNC students, as the most important part of enacting change.
“I think a lot of times we look back on historic moments and say, ‘Oh, if I was alive then, I would’ve done something,’” Simon said. “When we look back, it’s young people who make these changes. Don’t wonder one day what you would have done or said.”