CHAPEL HILL – The controversy over recent proposals to house the ‘Silent Sam’ Confederate statue in a new $5.3 million building was put to rest late Friday when the UNC Board of Governors voted against the proposal.
The larger controversy over the statue itself will live on, however. Thankfully, the Board rejected the plan because it simply costs too much money, not because of threats of strikes from hypersensitive faculty and social justice activists.
The debate is still getting national attention, too, as covered here in the New York Post:
“University of North Carolina System Chairman Harry Smith said cost was a primary concern in turning down the proposal to move the statue known as “Silent Sam” into a new building on the outskirts of the Chapel Hill flagship campus. The statewide Board of Governors passed a resolution Friday to have several of its members work on a new plan that’s due in March.
Smith didn’t indicate where the statue could end up, but said he believes any move off campus would require changes to a strict state law on historical monuments.
“The $5.3 million dollars is, I think, pretty tough for a lot of us to swallow,” he told reporters. “We’re going to go back to the drawing board, in a team-like approach, and try to get it right.””
This was a prudent decision. Spending millions of dollars to protect a statue from Leftist mobs is not a good use of taxpayer money. The whole proposal misidentified the real problem: that these mobs have been given the green light to rage and destroy property because they feel offended. The fact that re-erected the statue remains a public safety concern is a testament to the fact that these mobs are the danger to public safety, not an inanimate hunk of metal.
Now school officials will go back to drawing board in order to comply with laws that require the statue remain until the legal process for removal or relocation continues. The UNC Board of Governors will try to come up with new plans, with some hoping their political clout will lead to the acceptance of off-campus locations despite laws preventing wholesale removals of historical monuments.
At least students will not be faced with teachers holding them hostage over their own political agendas for a while. A new deadline fora new plan is set for March 15. So get ready for a lot of social justice craziness as we approach that date. You what they say, ‘Beware the Ides of March.’