MURFREESBORO, Tenn. (WKRN) – The killing of nine victims at a historically black church in Charleston has led to the discussion of removing confederate symbols from public places.
Middle Tennessee State University’s Forrest Hall, an ROTC building on the Murfreesboro campus, is not an exception.
Many MTSU students think the name should be changed and have expressed concerns online with a new Facebook page. It was created Tuesday and already has nearly 600 likes.
The group held a meeting Friday to discuss the matter.
“That’s not OK, that’s not OK. I care about this campus. I care about these people and I’m not going to see this stay,” said Dalton Winfree, an MTSU Senior.
Joshua Liner, a graduate, feels the same. He still uses the library and said he felt it was important to come to the meeting, he even brought his son.
“It doesn’t represent me. It’s racist and you know this is not something that I want my kid thinking that we endorse,” said Liner.
Debate about the name had surfaced many times before. MTSU president Sidney McPhee issued a statement Tuesday saying in light of the “horrific killings in Charleston” it’s appropriate to revisit the matter.
An online petition has been created in favor of wanting to keep the name of the building, saying the history associated with it should be honored. An MTSU graduate against the name change, who does not want to be identified, was at the meeting to listen in. She signed the online petition and said her great grandfather fought in the Civil War and she thinks there is no reason to tie this to current events.
An MTSU spokesman said it’s too soon to tell what the next step will be. He said it will likely be a long process.