YPSILANTI (WWJ/AP) – Students at Eastern Michigan University are protesting after more anti-black graffiti was discovered on campus this week.
The protests include a sit-in early Wednesday at the EMU Student Center on the school’s Ypsilanti campus.
The university says the graffiti was discovered Monday spray-painted on the exterior of Ford Hall and was immediately removed. Similar graffiti was found in September.
Some students, like Bree McKee, say the racial threats on campus have been ongoing for years.
“I think it’s really frustrating that the racial slurs and incidents that go around the school are trying to be put away and pushed aside like they mean nothing,” McKee told WWJ’s Mike Campbell. “And I also think it’s unfair that the school is not secure enough. Because if they can’t find somebody who does racial slurs, that means they’re not up to par to find somebody who’s being sexually assaulted.”
Darius Simpson, who graduated in April, said he think the university needs to change their approach — having community forums to discuss the issue — and actually do something to make the false sense of security for black students on campus become a reality.
Bree McKee “I think it’s really frustrating that the racial slurs and incidents that go around the school are trying to be put away and pushed aside like they mean nothing,” she said. “And I also think it’s unfair that the school is not secure enough, because if they can’t find somebody who does racial slurs that means they’re not up to par to find somebody who’s being sexually assaulted.”
On Tuesday, school President Jim Smith announced the creation of the President’s Commission on Diversity and Inclusion. He says in a message to campus that the vandalism is “hateful” and says the school is working to foster respect, equity and inclusion.
The university has said that a reward for information about similar graffiti that appeared in late September has been doubled to $10,000 and applies to the latest incident as well. The earlier graffiti led to protests.
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