Protesters march across A&M campus ending at controversial Sullivan Ross statue
COLLEGE STATION, Texas (KBTX) - Students, faculty, and supporters gathered on Texas A&M University’s campus Friday evening to protest racial injustice.
The event was a collaboration between the Black Graduate Student Association, Graduate and Professional Student Government, and the Texas A&M Young Democratic Socialists of America.
Qynetta Caston, a senior political science major, helped organize the event. She says it is important for them to make sure their voices are heard.
“Texas A&M for so long has prioritized traditions over inclusiveness, and for many years they have silenced the voices of their minoritized students and their black community,” said Caston.
Schuyler Carter, a doctoral student at A&M and Vice President of the Black Graduate Students Association says she hopes the university’s administration will take notice of the event.
“When we are loud proud and on the steps, literally on the steps of campus, talking about issues that mean life or death, it is significant and people take notice, and we hope that the A&M administration will take notice,” said Carter.
The group met at the steps of the Administration Building, making signs and passing out waters while speakers, including Aggie quarterback Kellen Mond made speeches.
“I think there is a lot of stuff going around this campus that obviously we know needs to change,” said Mond. “And I feel like the hardest thing for people is to learn new things, and it is even harder for people to unlearn what they already know.”
The protesters began marching down towards Texas Avenue, towards George Bush Drive. The protest ended at the controversial Lawrence Sullivan Ross statue that sits in the middle of the campus.
When protesters arrived, counter-protesters walked over and stood in front of the statue. When asked why they were standing there, the counter-protesters said, “We are here to protect history.”
KBTX asked the counter-protesters to make a comment on camera, but they declined.
Both parties engaged in a conversation following the initial confrontation, all of which remained peaceful.
Organizers say they appreciate the steps that Texas A&M has started taking regarding the issue of race within the school community, and say they hope action is taken soon.
“When you call this place home and you want this to be home, you want to feel comfortable, but that’s not how we feel right now,” said Carter.
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