Texas students demand removal of statue of pro-Confederate, racist campus dean
Arlington, TX – On Monday, September 4, a group of about six Progressive Student Union at UT Arlington members convened on the South bridge of the UTA campus to display two banners above the overpass, calling for the immediate removal of the statue of the racist former university Dean E.H. Hereford in the University Center, and for renaming the center after alumni and community leader Fahim Minkah. This has been a campaign of PSU for several semesters now and has been met with massive support from the student body as well as opposition from the UT administration and student government.
An hour after the banners were put up, campus police took down them down and put them in the trash, on the grounds that they were protecting state property. This is a blatant attack on the freedom of expression. PSU members will continue to exercise their rights on campus.
E.H Hereford was the former dean of UTA from 1949 to 1958 and was largely responsible for the pro-Confederate culture present on the campus at the time, as well as attempting to delay integration after Brown v. Board of Education was passed for as long as he was legally allowed to. This is a man that the UTA administration honors with a statue and a building named after him, while at the same time touting the racial diversity of the student body as a selling point to donors as well as incoming students. This hypocritical contradiction is one that PSU members have called to attention in the campaign to get Hereford’s name and statue removed from the University Center.
More than 1500 students have expressed the desire to remove Hereford’s statue, and with this growing support the students will not stop until their demands have been satisfied.