New updates have come in for the University of Missouri since the interim president, Michael Middleton, was appointed to his new role yesterday.
Now there are reports of a sign for the university’s Oldham Black Culture Center being vandalized on Thursday morning at approximately 12:50 AM. Someone spray-painted the sign to cover up the word “Black” shortly after students gathered around the building to protest threats made against African American students online through the anonymous messaging board app, Yik Yak.
Police are now reviewing the surveillance footage covering the area. A White freshman student, Isaac Johns, alerted the authorities and informed the LA Times that he’d suspected criminal activity at the time when he was walking home from a dining hall with friends and heard yells and screams near the building.
He claims that he heard a man scream, “You Black …, you’re not welcome here!” and saw a Black woman running away. Jahns wasn’t sure if the woman was the target of the racial epithet.
Upon hearing the news, Mizzou’s Black student government, the Legion of Black Collegians, tweeted the following statement:
Meanwhile, a University of Missouri official has released requested images of the infamous “poop swastika” drawn in a unisex bathroom on campus to the conservative news site, The Federalist. The photos were taken by resident advisors and two police officers. A suspect has yet to be named from the incident. On the same floor as the defaced bathroom, another racially charged incident had happened just days before in which an intoxicated person had yelled the words “bitch ass nigga” in the presence of White and Black residents in the dormitory.
Amid all of the chaos, the Mizzou administration is trying to bring as much stability back to the campus as possible. NBC affiliate KOMU reports the university has rejected Associate Professor Dale Brigham’s resignation.
Brigham was highly criticized this week for trivializing Black students fears of threats being made against them on Yik Yak by insisting that students come into class to take his exam. In an email to pupils, Brigham wrote: “If you give in to bullies, they win. The only way bullies are defeated is by standing up to them. If we cancel the exam, they win; if we go through with it, they lose.”
No reason was given for the university’s decision to reject Brigham’s resignation. Brigham isn’t the only school authority to back down from his role as a result of the unrest on campus. Tim Wolfe shocked the university when he heeded to protestors’ demands and stepped down as university president, now leaving room for Middleton to preside over the school in the interim.
Melissa Click has also resigned her courtesy appointment with the journalism school at Mizzou after coming under fire for threatening a student photographer who was videotaping her during the protests and for trying to confiscate his camera. Click is still an assistant professor in the Department of Communication. However, now Mark Schierbecker, the student who was threatened by Click, has filed a complaint with university police for simple assault after the confrontation.