(WXIA) - First, it was a noose around the neck of a civil rights icon. Now, another incident at the Unviersity of Mississippi is jogging painful memories of a university where racism once thrived.
One day after a noose was hung from the neck of the statue, an African American student was called the N-word and doused with alcohol from a passing car.
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"I've never witnessed this blatant racism before, displaying hatred. It's always been very subtle and hasn't happened to me, I've only heard it," said Kiesha Reeves.
University officials and police are investigating if the two incidents are related.
Fifty-two years after James Meredith braved segregationist mobs to integrate the school, three freshman from Georgia, who have not been identified, are being investigated as suspects in his statues desecration.
The acts of a few have been chastised by fellow students.
The University has taken several steps to downplay the schools Old South image, including booting its mascot Colonel Reb, a white bearded caricature of a plantation owner. The schools chancellor admits systemic racism is still present.
"Much less so than in years past but there's systemic racism everywhere in the world. I wish that it weren't so," said chancellor Daniel Jones.