Normally, I’d title this “Sunday sampler, Father’s Day edition,” but Father’s Day stories weren’t featured on that many N.C. newspapers front pages. That’s OK with me. What is featured on many of the state’s papers is a version — I assume an early version — of this story from the News & Observer. Gov. Roy Cooper ordered the removal of three Confederate monument from the capital grounds to avoid them being torn down by protesters.
“I am concerned about the dangerous efforts to pull down and carry off large, heavy statues and the strong potential for violent clashes at the site,” Cooper said in a statement Saturday afternoon. “If the legislature had repealed their 2015 law that puts up legal roadblocks to removal we could have avoided the dangerous incidents of last night. Monuments to white supremacy don’t belong in places of allegiance, and it’s past time that these painful memorials be moved in a legal, safe way.”
Newspapers also featured stories about the protests going on around the state and nation.
Morganton: “’8 Can’t Wait,’ a project by Campaign Zero, proposes eight policies that police departments could implement that the organization said could reduce killings by police and save lives, according to the campaign’s website.”
New Bern: “Local citizens including clergy and retired law enforcement plan a peaceful march and demonstration at noon on June 27 in New Bern, a response to the nationwide movement on racial equality.”
Fayetteville: “‘It does not make sense for police internal review to be the end all when it comes to misconduct,’ said Shaun McMillan, who founded Fayetteville PACT. ‘’They can’t police themselves.’’ The outrage over the death of George Floyd is re-igniting the debate over whether Fayetteville needs an independent citizens review board to investigate complaints about police officer conduct.”
Hendersonville: “Hendersonville Police Lt. Mike Vesely joined about 200 area residents in a March For Change through downtown Hendersonville on Juneteenth, an event that called for an end to hate and racism.”
Both Greensboro and Winston-Salem have different versions — and good ones — on having “the talk” with black children about how to interact with police officers, and I hope that white readers will take them to heart. “This Father’s Day, Black men say they see hope in conversations now taking place regarding race, but they are facing the same circumstances that burdened their parents and now, seemingly, their children. As race dominates the headlines, many Black fathers find themselves discussing strategies based on the color of their skin before the ‘birds and bees.'”
But the best story of the day is this one in the N&O about the director of the N.C. Community Bail Fund in Durham, who bailed out nearly 30 men from jail to spend Father’s Day with their families. “Wearing all black and a Juneteenth T-shirt, she then walked up to the front desk of the jail with a deputy, who asked her how many people she was going to bail out. ‘I am going to try to get out 27,’ she said. ‘We have to get them free.’”