Officials at Duke University are investigating the origin of a noose found hanging from a tree on the school's campus this morning.
According to the New York Daily News, the thin yellow rope was spotted around 1 a.m. on, and was cut down just before 3 a.m. In an email to WRAL, Vice President for Student Affairs Larry Moneta admonished whoever is responsible:
To whomever committed this hateful and stupid act, I just want to say that if your intent was to create fear, it will have the opposite effect.
Citing a report by the Duke Chronicle, the Daily News adds that this incident comes two weeks after another which caused racial tension on the school's Durham, N.C. campus:
Two weeks ago, a black female student accused her classmates of chanting a racist song — which including racial slurs and an allusion to lynching — at her, reported the Chronicle, Duke’s student newspaper.
As a result, minority students have founded the Duke People of Color Caucus, which released its own statement on the group's Tumblr page:
To all black students, staff, faculty, and/or Durhamites on campus and in the area: Please take care of yourselves and each other. This campus is not a safe space, and has proven beyond any doubt that it is a hostile environment for any and all black people.
Update 4/2/15 (4:30 p.m.): Duke Univesity says a student has admitted to hanging the noose on a tree and is "no longer on campus," according to AP.