Emory faculty begins confidence vote on president - CBS46 News

Emory faculty begins confidence vote on president

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ATLANTA (CBS ATLANTA) -

Malia Haile will start her first year at Emory University next fall, but she wondered: what was the university president thinking when he used an ugly period in our nation's history as an example of a good political compromise?

This past winter, Wagner suggested in article in Emory Magazine that today's politicians should look to history to end gridlock and reach a compromise in Washington.

Wagner used a deal struck between the North and the South in the early days of the nation. The problem is that compromise determined an enslaved black person would be counted as three-fifths of a person for purposes of representation in Congress.

"Of course that's offensive," Haile said. "He's taking something horrible and terrible and using it as a basis to build upon. He's not in tune with what sort of campus this is."

Faculty members at the College of Arts and Sciences on Monday started to vote on whether they think Wagner is fit to lead.

Students CBS Atlanta interviewed agreed that Wagner used a terrible example, but they differ on what his fate should be.

Jordie Davies, a sophomore, was offended by the comparison, but she said Wagner is a good president, who has much to learn about ethnic sensitivity.

"It shows a lack of awareness and this creates an opportunity for education," Davies said.

Dametris Osbourne, a freshman, said Wagner is out of touch with students of color and should step down.

"That says a lot about his character. I think he should resign," Osbourne said.

Wagner has apologized for the comments.

Wagner would not comment on the vote, which ends on Friday.

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