Southern Illinois University Edwardsville police are investigating after a racist note was left on a student’s on-campus apartment door and a Confederate flag was painted on a boulder in the quad.
The note, reading “Filthy (n-word),” was left on sophomore Lamone Stansbury’s door on Sept. 13. Stansbury told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch that SIUE police have taken the note and are looking for who left the message.
The weekend before the note was found, school officials said, someone painted a Confederate flag on a big boulder in the SIUE quad, which student groups paint to promote events.
“Two recent incidents, one at Cougar Village and one in the University core, occurred when unidentified individuals posted symbols and racist language toward African Americans that demonstrate racial intolerance or signify hate and oppression, and defy our values and expectations,” a campus-wide email said.
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The university is working to have counselors available for victims of hate, and to create a response team to handle hate crimes on campus.
Some students don’t believe the investigation is genuine, according to a blog post by members of SIUE’s women and gender studies program. The first formal response to the racist note came Sept. 15 in the form of an email from the chancellor about former St. Louis police officer Jason Stockley’s not-guilty verdict in a first-degree murder trial.
“These acts make it clear that whiteness is seen as the norm, and blackness is seen as outside the norm,” the blog post read. “Both overt and covert acts reinforce power structures that maintain white supremacy, and paint Black students and faculty as at best atypical or foreign and more often as actively unwanted.”