Saturday, April 30, 2016

At Yale, a Right That Doesn’t Outweigh a Wrong - The New York Times

This week Yale's leaders decided to retain John C. Calhoun as the name of one of its residential colleges.  Calhoun was the South Carolina Senator, and Vice President whose advocacy of slavery and nullifcation make him themost deplorable man ever to hold the office ofVice President of the United States of America,
Yale explained  that it would be whitewashing history to remove his name.  Instead they changed the names of two other colleges to Benjamin Franklin and Anna Pauline Murray - a black civil rights leader of great historical importance.  It's a balancing that I don't buy. Certainly students and others should learn of the respect once accorded to slavers by our leading instituions. But I think that retaining the name is a shame. -gwc
At Yale, a Right That Doesn’t Outweigh a Wrong - The New York Times
by Glenda Elizabeth Gilmore
"****his week at Yale, the arc of justice bent both ways. It reached back to sustain Calhoun’s name on a college where students of color have to live throughout their Yale experience. But it moved forward to sustain the Yale community with Pauli Murray’s lived imperative to fight injustice. Murray, not Calhoun, represents Yale values today; yet his name remains. Murray, not Calhoun, teaches us the lessons we need to learn about discrimination in all of its manifestations.
When A. Bartlett Giamatti, Yale’s president at the time, presented an honorary doctorate in divinity to Murray in 1979, he told her: “You are an inspiration to those who seek the upward way for the soul and for society. Others have always followed after.” It is only a matter of time before Calhoun will be forced to make his exit, and Murray will, once again, see her “lost causes found.” "

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