USC Holds #NotOnOurCampus Unity Rally Against Racism
Columbia, SC (WOLO)– Tuesday, the Carolina community came together to take a united stand against racism. Students and staff of USC were very interested in what President Harris Pastides had to say in response to some racist fliers that were put up around campus last month, but today, they are asking why it took the university so long to have a collective response.
“What I was thinking before this rally was, it’s about time. We’ll get a mass email about athletes or a discount on Carolina clothing. But why was there not a mass email about this happening or this event?”Nathalie Watson, a senior at USC said.
“I feel like this is a necessary conversation, but I did want it to be sooner,” Tatiana Reyes said, a junior at USC. Pastides and student leaders gave a very clear message: that racism will not be here on their campus.
“And what better way to tell them that we’re standing up with them, not behind them, but side by side with them. And we’re going to stand tall together,” Pastides said. The university held a town hall almost immediately after the fliers were found, and while many students applaud the remarks of the president, they said they are looking forward to the next steps.
“But there definitely has to be more. It just can’t be like we held an event, good start, good job. No, there has to be more,” Watson said.
“I feel like this is just the beginning. There’s more to come, but I’m happy we can all solidify as Carolinians on this campus,” James Scott, a USC Sophomore, said.
“Honestly, it broke my heart. It made me sick to think there are things that I learned in history books, that are still things that people say,” Reyes said. Many of the students we spoke with said the unity rally really highlighted how strong the Gamecock community is, they just wish they got more communication from the top.
“They just need reassurance on what’s going on. They need to be updated so that we can all come together so that it’ll be a better environment on the community,” Scott said.
“I feel really reassured. A lot of our issues were the fact we didn’t hear a lot from him after the event. There were a few tweets here and there but I really wanted to hear his voice after the situation,” Reyes said.
President Pastides said the fliers were put up by an individual who doesn’t belong to the school. There is still an open investigation into who that person is. There have also been some racist tweets from students. President Pastides said they are interviewing that individual.