CORRECTION: An earlier version of this article incorrectly stated that a letter written by Black faculty has over 400 signatures. 400 faculty members did not sign the original statement by Black faculty, but over 400 faculty signed a statement in support of Black faculty. The story has been updated for clarification on the signatures. The Daily Tar Heel apologizes for this error.
More than 400 UNC faculty members have weighed in on the Silent Sam debate, signing a letter stating their support for 54 Black faculty who called for the statue’s permanent removal at the beginning of September.
“The undersigned 417 faculty of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, copied here, endorse and support the following position of (roughly) 60 Black faculty members of the University, regarding the disposition of the confederate statue that formerly stood on campus,” said the letter, addressed to the UNC Board of Governors, Board of Trustees, and President, as well as the general UNC community.
The original letter was signed by dozens of Black faculty members at UNC. It asks officials to permanently remove Silent Sam from UNC.
“We have witnessed a monument that represents white supremacy in both the past and present be venerated and protected at the same time that we have been asked to serve as examples of diversity and inclusion,” the letter reads. “That is a demoralizing burden.”