Ole Miss English Department Calls For Removal Of Confederate Statue From Circle, Vitter On Record Calling Removal “Wrong”

Confederate Statue on the Ole Miss Campus.

Over 100 members of the English Department at the University of Mississippi, including students and professors, have penned a letter which was sent to Chancellor Jeffrey Vitter asking for the Confederate Statue on the Ole Miss campus to be moved from the Circle. The letter was written in response to the events in Charlottesville, which were centered around the removal of a Robert E. Lee statue in the downtown area.

“Confederate monuments are not only an affront to a large proportion of our population, but are also a rallying point for neo-Confederates, neo-Nazis, white nationalists, and the so-called alt-right. These monuments have never been about teaching or commemorating history, but were rather raised as tools of oppression against the African-American community and symbols of white supremacy. Monuments like these were purposefully placed in strategic locations — the statue of the Confederate soldier in the Lyceum Circle very clearly warns African Americans to stay off campus and continues to alienate many members of the UM community,” the letter reads.

Contextualization has been a hot button issue at Ole Miss over the past year, as the Chancellor’s Advisory Committee for Historical Context and Contextualization has named sites on campus set to be contextualized. The statue was one of the first sites to be altered with a plaque denoting what the statue stood for. Vitter told HottyToddy.com back in March that putting the statue in context was preferable to removing it.

“We left the Confederate statue, but we contextualized it, and I think that’s far preferable than removing it as some cities have done, which I think is wrong,” Vitter said.

In a letter to the Ole Miss community, Vitter discussed the statue’s place in Ole Miss’ identity moving forward.

“This historic statue is a reminder of the university’s divisive past. Today, the University of Mississippi draws from that past a continuing commitment to open its hallowed halls to all who seek truth, knowledge, and wisdom,” Vitter said.

Plaque placed on the statue in October 2016

The letter written by the English department requests that the statue be moved to what they feel to be a more appropriate place for it in the cemetery, away from a prominent area of campus.

“We urge you to take immediate action to relocate the monument to the Confederate cemetery on campus — another public place that is a much more appropriate resting place for a tribute to fallen soldiers. In doing so the University of Mississippi would stand among other colleges and universities in the South and nationwide that have in recent days either removed or declared their intention to remove, Confederate monuments from places of prominence on their campus to more appropriate sites,” the letter reads.

 Chancellor Vitter has yet to respond to the request, HottyToddy.com will update this story as more information becomes available.


Steven Gagliano is the managing editor of HottyToddy.com. He can be reached at steven.gagliano@hottytoddy.com

25 COMMENTS

  1. I guess these folks weren’t happy with just undermining the donations to the band. If Vitter caves and they move that statue, watch even more donors bail. This crap has to stop now

  2. When will this rewriting of history ever end. What Chancellor Vitter and the administration at OM have done is the right thing to do. Will people want to remove the memorials at Auschwitz? We need these contextualized statues to remind us, NEVER AGAIN. There are many who want to deny that the genocide of 6 million Jews and many others did not happen.

    Many want to remove the statues, yet hang on to hatred of white folks, some of whom may have had ancestors who owned slaves. No one can rewrite history. The next extreme measure would be to remove all traces of Confederate soldiers and commanders from history books. I am proud of Chancellor Vitter reaching the appropriate decision about this statue.

    Regarding reminding white racist extremists’ group and inciting them, people who have hatred in their hearts are not motivated by these statues. Just like taking a gun away from someone who is a potential murderer or terrorist. They will find another way to express hatred in their hearts.

    We all need to come together and show extremists in BOTH SIDES that we will not tolerate hatred of our fellow American citizens. God bless us all.

    • What decision. It says, “Vitter has yet to respond to the request.” Is there an update? The plaque doesn’t contextulaize it very well. It fails to mention that the “local soldiers” were Ole Miss students who dropped out and formed the 11th Mississippi Infantry. And they suffered 100% casualties. That’s not contextualizing it.

    • Your analogy is incorrect. Removing the statute is akin to Germany removing statutes that memorialize Hitler, not the Holocaust. Which what Germany has done. When will the students of OM wake up and realize that you are the laughing stock of this country as well as the rest of the world because of your misplaced fervent clinging to a wrong and delusional past.

  3. Certain few are trying to completely change Ole Miss an it needs to STOP! Done away with Colonel Reb, the State Flag and Hugh. The Ole Miss Rebels name I guess is next. It time that someone with authority at this school stood up an put the students in there place. That’s rite they are just students. They do not control the university. If they don’t like the Flag, Statue, Colonel Reb then go somewhere else an give there scholarship to someone that does like Ole Miss tradition. I’m a MS tax payer that pays for there schooling. So I say throw the ones out that protest it!

  4. Never thought I would say this but “thank you Chancellor Vitter”!! He is right … it would be wrong to move the statue.
    No more knee jerk reactions to the whining from the left. As one of the students who agreed with the choice for the rap singer at the recent concert said…. “if you don’t like rap music then you don’t have to go to the concert”, sooo if you don’t like statues and traditions on the Ole Miss campus go somewhere else to school.

  5. With donations down to all aspects of the university, you wonder if he has a choice but to leave it.

    I wonder if the donors will accept anything else. I have been a donor for 20+ years. If that statue goes, so do I

  6. What next, book burnings and tearing down antebellum buildings, because they were ” Built by slaves?” You can’t change or rewrite history. This is just another Bolshevik tactic I’m embarrassed to say I attended Ole Miss in 1984-86. Does anybody realize the “local soldiers” monument memorializes were Ole Miss Greys? The Ole Miss Greys, 11th Mississippi Infantry (teenage boys) suffered 100% casualties in that horrible war? It was nice knowing you, Ole Miss. Soon you won’t even be able to use that name. Fire Vitter!

  7. University alum and students need to ask themselves if they want a degree from an anachronism or from a respected university.

    Getting rid of all the monuments to sedition and racism is the way we get to the latter.

    All the t-shirt fans who pine for the confederacy need to find another school to root for – Liberty University is probably a good option, don’t know if they have a football team, but they seem like your kind of people.

  8. If we want to really get to a post racial campus, I think a reasonable argument can be made for removing the Confederate statue. Of course, that would also require the removal of the Merefith statue as well.

    The post racial door swings both ways.

  9. Someone needs to start a petition requiring they remain in place and be protected as historical monuments. The majority’s voice needs to be heard.

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