Rename Buildings with a Racist History on the University of Alabama Campus
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The capstone creed states, "As a member of The University of Alabama community, I will pursue knowledge; act with fairness, integrity and respect; promote equity and inclusion; foster individual and civic responsibility; and strive for excellence in all I do." Every year when freshmen step on campus, they pledge to uphold the Capstone Creed during their time on campus. However, it is incredibly hypocritical to have students promise to "promote equity and inclusion" when there are buildings on our campus named after KKK leaders, and slave owners.
The University of Alabama's Department of English is housed in Morgan Hall, which is named after John Tyler Morgan. Morgan was a slave holder, and was a proponent of Jim Crow laws, states rights and racial segregation. He was also a Grand Dragon in the Ku Klux Klan, and used his legislative power to promote racist policies and practices. He was a strong advocate for sending African-Americans out of the United States and into Hawaii, the Philippines, or Cuba. He also actively tried to repeal the Fifteenth Amendment to the Constitution.
The University of Alabama's Honor College is housed in Nott Hall, named after Josiah Nott. Nott was a slave owner, and used his scientific reputation to defend the institution of enslavement. Nott claimed that "the negro achieves his greatest perfection, physical and moral, and also greatest longevity, in a state of slavery." Nott wrote extensively about polygenesis and argues that other races (specifically African-American) were meant to and would be inferior to white people.
The University of Alabama's Department of Education is housed in Bibb Graves Hall, named after David Bibb Graves. Bibb Graves was the chapter president of the Montgomery chapter of the Ku Klux Klan.
The University of Alabama's Undergraduate International Admissions Center, The Capstone International Center, Language Resource Center and The Department of Modern Languages and Classics are housed in B.B. Comer Hall. Comer is most known for his education reform, though it was only for white people with. It is known that he improved education for white people by using funds derived form the slave labor of African Americans. Comer was also a slave owner.
The University of Alabama's Department of Religious Studies and Department of Gender and Race Studies are housed in Manly Hall, named after Basil Manly. Manly was the second President of The University of Alabama and was also a plantation owner, slave owner and pro-slavery lobbyist. Manly had his own slaves while he was on campus, and believed that slaves were a God-given right.
The University of Alabama has been in the media multiple times for racist things happening on our campus. Each time a general statement is released saying something along the lines of "We do not condone this behavior on our campus." However, that is hypocritical when UA has no issue with buildings on our campus being named after slave owners and KKK members. It's time for a change.
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