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Saturday News: Not in our name


UNC STUDENTS STEP FORWARD IN SILENT SHAM LAWSUIT: “The Board of Governors’ secret negotiations, lack of transparency and false statements to the court, UNC students and the public is unacceptable,” De’Ivyion Drew, a sophomore at UNC-CH and one of the interveners, said in a statement. “These actions violate the Board of Governor’s duties to me as a student of this university and undermine UNC’s mission. The University’s agreement to give $2.5 million to the Sons of Confederate Veterans will help that group and other neo-Confederates continue to perpetuate the ahistorical and dangerous “Lost Cause” ideology. That ideology is a major obstacle to racial equity and reparative measures in our country.”

Friday News: It's Primary time


HOLDING'S NOW BLUE CONGRESSIONAL SEAT HAS DEMS LINING UP: Deborah Ross, a former state director of the ACLU and former state legislator, has filed to run for the seat. Ross, who lost the 2016 Senate race to incumbent Republican Richard Burr, represented parts of Wake County in the statehouse from 2003-13. Andrew Terrell, a former Obama administration official who led a UK trade office in Raleigh, has also filed to run in the race. Terrell, 32, would be the state’s first openly LGBT member of Congress. Monika Johnson-Hostler, executive director of the North Carolina Coalition Against Sexual Assault and a member of the Wake County Board of Education, has filed. Unlike Ross and Terrell, Johnson-Hostler was running before the map was redrawn. Retired Marine Scott Cooper, who raised more than $450,000 for a challenge to Holding, said the new map placed his home in the 4th district, represented by Democrat David Price.

Thursday News: One-Term Pat


MCCRORY VS, FOREST IN GUBERNATORIAL PRIMARY A POSSIBILITY: With a poll showing him with a double-digit lead in a Republican primary, former North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory suggested Wednesday that he’s keeping the door open to running for his old seat. “This is a decision for me and my family,” he told listeners of his morning radio show. McCrory was reacting to a new Civitas Poll that showed him leading Lt. Gov. Dan Forest 42% to 31% among likely GOP primary voters. State Rep. Holly Grange had 3% and 25% were undecided. Forest had $1 million on hand at the end of June, according to a report filed with the State Board of Elections. McCrory’s campaign account showed $69,000. Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper, who narrowly defeated McCrory in 2016, had $5.6 million on hand.

Wednesday News: Failing Leandro


LEGISLATURE NEEDS TO SPEND ANOTHER BILLION PER YEAR ON SCHOOLS: Twenty-five years after school districts first took the case to court, an independent consultant says North Carolina needs to sharply increase school funding — $8 billion more over the next 8 years — to help provide students a sound basic education. The report from WestEd, a nonprofit research group, says that state funding has not kept up with needs, leaving North Carolina near the bottom in the nation in spending on education. The result, the report says, is that academic performance has lagged in the state’s public schools. “The state is further away from meeting its constitutional obligation to provide every child with the opportunity for a sound basic education than it was when the Supreme Court of North Carolina issued the Leandro decision more than 20 years ago,” the WestEd report says.

Tuesday News: Major demographic shift


AS NC RURAL POPULATIONS DWINDLE, CONGRESSIONAL REDISTRICTING WILL RADICALLY CHANGE: But as the biggest cities boom, 43 counties — mostly in rural areas — actually shrank between 2010 and 2018, according to census data. Many mid-sized cities are also struggling. The Rocky Mount area has been hardest-hit, losing several thousand people. And the home counties of places like Goldsboro, Wilson, Asheboro, Shelby, Wilkesboro and Morganton have experienced below-average population growth. But all of those population changes of the last decade — the urban booms and the rural losses — have been ignored when lawmakers have redrawn the political maps after the lawsuits in recent years. The law required that even the new congressional maps drawn just last month had to use population data from 2010. So the maps drawn in 2021 with new data could represent a sudden political jolt, in places large and small.

Monday News: Code Yellow


THREATS MADE TO FAYETTEVILLE HIGH SCHOOL OVER THE WEEKEND: Terry Sanford High School Principal Thomas Hatch informed parents and students of the threat in an automated message sent Sunday, according to The Fayetteville Observer. ″Law enforcement has been notified and is investigating the situation,” Hatch said. School officials are cooperating with law enforcement officials, Cumberland County Schools spokesman Lindsay Whitley said Sunday night. “We take any threat very seriously,” Whitley said. “School officials learned of the threat earlier (Sunday) evening and notified law enforcement immediately.” Whitley said, depending on the investigation, Terry Sanford High School could operate under a “code yellow,” status Monday morning, meaning there would be additional investigation and security at the school.

Sunday News: From the Editorial pages


WHY DID UNC GIVE MILLIONS TO A NEO-CONFEDERATE GROUP?: After years of protest, Silent Sam was pulled off its pedestal during a rally in August 2018. Since then, the university has hidden the statue in a secret location. The Daughters of the Confederacy recently handed over ownership to the North Carolina Sons of Confederate Veterans, which made clear that it intended to sue the university for control of the statue. Before it could, several members of the university system’s board, each appointed by the conservative state legislature, announced that not only would the group get the statue, but it would also get access to $2.5 million to be placed in a trust for the “care and preservation of the monument.” The board, and the university, claim that the settlement avoids a nasty legal battle and ensures that Silent Sam will no longer sit on school grounds. But legal details aside, how do you make a deal with a group that valorizes something so morally abhorrent as the Confederacy?

Saturday News: Lipstick on a pig


UNC INTERIM CHANCELLOR PENS LETTER JUSTIFYING SAM SETTLEMENT: In a letter to the campus community, Guskiewicz explained that members of the Board of Governors negotiated and approved the settlement, which included a $2.5 million payment for the SCV to preserve and display the Confederate statue, through its governance committee. That committee met in private to discuss the solution before the lawsuit was filed. “The settlement ensures the monument will never return to campus, but issues of racism and injustice persist, and the University must confront them,” Guskiewicz said. “I now want to focus on our shared values of diversity, equity and inclusion, and I will continue to reject and condemn those individuals or groups who seek to divide us. We have a lot of work to do to thoroughly address and reconcile with our past.”

Friday News: A sign of progress


CHRISTMAS PARADES AND CONFEDERATE FLAGS DON'T MIX: On Wednesday, Wake Forest became the second Wake County town in a week to cancel its Christmas parade over safety fears. Santa Claus was planning to come to town on Dec. 14, but Wake Forest officials canceled the parade for what is though to be the first time since it started more than 71 years ago. Town officials said they had received credible information that “extremist” groups on both sides of the issue of how — and whether — to preserve and interpret symbols of the Confederacy were making plans online to attend the parade. Crabtree said no one from either side made any threats, but the fear was that that dozens of people from the different groups would clash at the parade and that the situation could get out of hand. Because the town is a sponsor of the Christmas parade, Crabtree said, it can’t shut out a particular group from participating. In the future, he said, turning over the parade entirely to a private organization or a nonprofit community group would allow for closer scrutiny of who is allowed to join the parade.

Thursday News: Rising tide of outrage


UNC STUDENT GROUPS PLAN PROTEST OF SILENT SAM DEAL: De’Ivyion Drew, a sophomore at UNC who’s been active in the Silent Sam protests and a member of the campus safety commission, said the money is “way worse” than the statue being put back up. “There’s a lack of perspective from a person of color, particularly black people, who would prefer to have the statue back up than to have the Sons of Confederates or any white supremacy group get $2.5 million dollars,” Drew said at the meeting. Student activist groups, including the UNC Black Congress and the Black Student Movement, have planned a campus protest for Thursday afternoon on the theme that “‘Silent Sam is not ‘Resolved.’” The protest is about “UNC negotiating with and investing in white supremacy,” the group said on its Facebook page.


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