Kent State considers removing rock after messages target Black community

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KENT, Ohio (WJW)– Kent State University said it’s considering options after hurtful messages were painted on the rock.

The rock, located on the lawn along East Main Street, has been a staple of the KSU campus since the 1930s. Over the years, it’s been painted over hundreds of times by the Greek community and other student organizations supporting events and causes.

But most recently, that rock has been covered with offensive images.

“We are appalled that some continue to use the Rock to convey vile, hurtful messages that are threatening to our Kent State community, specifically our Black community, and against our core values,” the university said in a statement on Monday.

KSU said it’s investigating actions, including putting a fence around it, installing security cameras or removing it.

“Now more than ever we commit to inclusion, respect and kindness as the most authentic expressions of who we are as a university and who we are as a family,” the statement continued.

This is at least the second time in recent weeks that disparaging things about the Black community have been painted on the rock.

“Today, we became aware of a message painted on the KSU rock that was offensive and insulting to many, specifically to members of our Black community. Messages that are intended to be upsetting and hurtful are unconstructive and do not reflect our core values as a university,” the university said on Aug. 28.

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