End the Slave-holding Legacy Of BYU’s Administration Building
This petition had 876 supporters
Currently Brigham Young University’s administration building is named after Abraham O. Smoot, a slave holder. Despite not being raised in a slaveholding home, and initially supporting Joseph Smith’s abolitionist sentiments, upon moving to Utah he made the decision to become a slaveholder. (This information is a matter of public record: https://books.google.com/books?id=IcDgDwAAQBAJ&q=Jerry#v=onepage&q=“property”%20of%20the%20deceased&f=false
Everyday BYU students of many races walk through the doors of this building—a building named for a man who may have willingly enslaved some of them. In his recent statements addressing the deaths of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and Ahmaud Arbery, BYU President Kevin J. Worthen stated, “BYU stands firmly against racism and violence in any form and is committed to promoting a culture of safety, kindness, respect and love.” He also said, “We know there is work to do, on campus and throughout the nation, for us to better come together, to address injustice and to truly love one another. It will take sustained effort from all of us to make things better. We remain committed to doing that.” For these aspirations to be credible, we must change the name of the building housing the University’s highest officers. It cannot continue to bear the name of a man who held slaves, some of whom were near the age of the students on campus.
Demonstrate your support for this cause by signing this petition to encourage the University to rename the administration building for someone who reflects the respect a university must have for all its students.
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