Civil Rights group lays out legal case against Silent Sam settlement

In a new letter to the UNC Board of Governors, the Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights Under Law lays out its legal argument against the controversial UNC System settlement over the Silent Sam Confederate monument.

(Read the full letter here.)

On Wednesday the Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights Under Law announced they are representing UNC-Chapel Hill students and faculty clients and plan to intervene on their behalf in the litigation surrounding the controversial university settlement with the North Carolina Sons of Confederate Veterans.

The settlement gives the Confederate monument known as Silent Sam to the Confederate heritage group — along with $2.5 million from the UNC-Chapel Hill endowment funds.

In a letter released Wednesday morning, the national civil rights group outlines its legal argument against the settlement and demands that it be reversed.

“This is matter of grave public interest,” the group wrote in its letter. ” Particularly as it concerns the dubious transfer of $2.5 million in public funds to support the work of a white supremacist organization, apparent improprieties in securing the court’s approval of the Consent Order, and serious questions about the BOG’s fidelity to its legal, ethical, and fiduciary duties. We therefore respectfully request that you act immediately to take any actions necessary to protect the interests of UNC and to recover the 2.5 million dollars of public funds allocated to expand and perpetuate the racist and destructive ‘Lost Cause’ ideology.”

The letter was copied to N.C. Attorney General Josh Stein and C. Boyd Sturges III, who represented the Sons of Confederate Veterans in the settlement.

The UNC Board of Governors meets Friday in a special session by conference call.

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