Clemson Trustees Told “Hell No” On Tillman Hall Renaming

“THEY MIGHT AS WELL APPLY TO OPEN A CAMPUS ON THE MOON” || By FITSNEWS || After hypocritically rebuking recent efforts to rename their iconic campus landmark after someone who wasn’t a murderous racist (not to mention the author of the banana republic that is modern-day South Carolina), Clemson University’s board…


|| By FITSNEWS || After hypocritically rebuking recent efforts to rename their iconic campus landmark after someone who wasn’t a murderous racist (not to mention the author of the banana republic that is modern-day South Carolina), Clemson University’s board of trustees now wants to revisit the issue.

But they’ve got a problem …

Sources close to the Clemson board – which governs the school via an unconstitutional “lifetime appointee” majority – tell us a belated effort is now underway to rename the school’s iconic Tillman Hall, which pays tribute to the Palmetto State’s infamous nineteenth century governor “Pitchfork” Ben Tillman.

An outspoken white supremacist and lynch law advocate, Tillman was indicted (but never tried) for his role in the 1876 Hamburg Massacre.  At least six black freedmen were shot and killed in that incident by a racist mob led by Tillman.  Three others were shot and seriously wounded.

Eight years ago, we called for Tillman’s statue on the S.C. State House grounds to come down in light of his racist past, but in the aftermath of last week’s removal of the Confederate flag from those same grounds – which we supported – we’ve revisited the issue.

“If we start down such a path … where does it end? ” we wrote.  “Does the definition of ‘offense’ ever stop expanding?  Or do we permit it to perpetually escalate into elevated echelons of ridiculousness?”

Two weeks ago, Clemson’s board of trustees’ chairman David Wilkins was adamant that Tillman’s name was staying on the building.  But now it’s apparently dawned on Clemson’s board (which is comprised of 12 white members and one black member) that having a landmark named for a guy like Tillman is bad for business.

It’s especially bad if the business involves recruiting black athletes to its football program – which has reemerged in recent years as a national powerhouse.

(More on that larger issue here).

Not only that, the school has been dealing with some present-day race-related issues which have further complicated its roots.

Aside from Tillman, Clemson’s Institute of Government is named after longtime segregationist U.S. Senator Strom Thurmond.  Hell, the very ground on which Clemson sits was once the plantation of John C. Calhoun – one of the staunchest antebellum pro-slavery advocates.

So what’s to stop Clemson from renaming its building?  The S.C. General Assembly – which after lowering the flag in an exceedingly caustic debate is in no mood to take up any similar measures.

“Not no, but hell no,” one lawmaker told us.

“They might as well apply to open a campus on the moon,” another said.

Why does Clemson need the state’s permission?  Because according to the 2000 Heritage Act, the original compromise which moved the Confederate flag from the State House dome, “any monument, marker, memorial, school, or street erected or named in honor of the Confederacy or the civil rights movement located on any municipal, county, or state property shall not be removed, changed, or renamed without the enactment of a joint resolution by a two-thirds vote of the membership of each house of the General Assembly.”

In fact just this week S.C. Speaker of the House Jay Lucas cited the act in rebuking efforts aimed at getting lawmakers to address other controversial monuments, memorials, buildings, etc.

“The South Carolina House of Representatives will not engage in or debate the specifics of public monuments, memorials, state buildings, road names or any other historical markers,” Lucas said. “The General Assembly, the House in particular, made it abundantly clear during the debate of the confederate flag that the only issue they were willing to discuss was the placement of the battle flag on the north lawn of the State House. We reached a swift resolution last week and in doing so put an end to this discussion. Debate over this issue will not be expanded or entertained throughout the remainder of my time as Speaker.”

Whoa …

One recourse available to Clemson?  The one we’ve been suggesting for years as it relates to the school’s unconstitutional form of governance – privatization.

In fact we’ve consistently maintained higher education is not a core function of government and that the Palmetto State’s bloated, duplicative and inefficient network of state-subsidized schools should be set free to pursue its destiny in the private sector.


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Details July 16, 2015 at 3:35 pm

I don’t believe Tillman Hall was named after Tillman in recognition of any acts or representations made by him with respect to the “Confederacy.” Therefore, the issue of renaming it seems outside the scope of the Heritage Act.

Perhaps the monument or a plaque on the building says otherwise with regard to why his name is on the building.

SC Code of Laws July 16, 2015 at 3:48 pm

SECTION 10-1-165. Protection of certain monuments and memorials.

(A) No Revolutionary War, War of 1812, Mexican War, War Between the States, Spanish-American War, World War I, World War II, Korean War, Vietnam War, Persian Gulf War, Native American, or African-American History monuments or memorials erected on public property of the State or any of its political subdivisions may be relocated, removed, disturbed, or altered.

No street, bridge, structure, park, preserve, reserve, or other public area of the State or any of its political subdivisions dedicated in memory of or named for any historic figure or historic event may be renamed or rededicated. No person may prevent the public body responsible for the monument or memorial from taking proper measures and exercising proper means for the protection, preservation, and care of these monuments, memorials, or nameplates.

(B) The provisions of this section may only be amended or repealed upon passage of an act which has received a two-thirds vote on the third reading of the bill in each branch of the General Assembly.

Fecal Matters July 16, 2015 at 3:55 pm

Haha, laws!?!? You think laws apply when “progressives are kicking and screaming like little babies about everything under the sun that they deem offensive?

Details July 16, 2015 at 4:08 pm

Thanks for sharing. Your citing of the statute reveals that the Fits article misrepresents the scope of the statute.

Superfly July 16, 2015 at 4:16 pm

As a former Governor and US Senator, the building named for Tillman at Clemson is clearly covered by the Act. However, I think the Act is unconstitutional and ripe for challenge.

CNSYD July 16, 2015 at 9:28 pm

I am shocked that Folks would misrepresent anything.

Soft Sigh from Hell July 16, 2015 at 8:04 pm

How did Sidney Park become Finlay Park?

mamatiger92 July 16, 2015 at 3:35 pm

“Aside from Tillman, Clemson’s Institute of Government is named after longtime segregationist U.S. Senator Strom Thurmond.”

Please…. isn’t the USC-E wellness center named after him, too?

Victorious Secret July 16, 2015 at 3:42 pm

Boom. Devastating. (and I’m a Gamecock, hardcore)

stuped coot July 16, 2015 at 4:16 pm

ha, you used cock and hard in back to back wurds

shifty henry July 16, 2015 at 11:42 pm

[ abbreviated}
It was a Zombie Jamboree
Took place in a New York cemetery
Zombies from all parts of the Island
Some of them was a great Calypsonians
Although the season was Carnival
We get together in bacchanal
And they singing
Back to back, belly to belly
I don’t give a damn, I done dead already
Oho back to back, belly to belly
At the Zombie Jamboree
One female Zombie wouldn’t behave
See how she jumping out of the grave
In one hand a quarter rum
In the other hand she knocking Congo drum
Believe singer start to make his rhyme
The Zombies are racking their bones in time
One bystander had this to say
T was a pleasure to see the Zombies break away
Back to back, belly to belly
I don’t give a damn, I done dead already
Oho back to back, belly to belly
At the Zombie Jamboree
A lot of World leaders talkin bout war
And I’m afraid they’re going too far
So it’s up to us you and me
To put an end to Catastrophe
We must appeal to their goodness of heart
And ask them to breech in and please do their part
Cause if this Atomic war begin
They wont even have a part to breech in
Back to back, belly to belly-

Not Just Universities July 17, 2015 at 10:44 am

We have a federal building named after him too.

Fecal Matters July 16, 2015 at 3:53 pm

Quick, better have Lincoln sandblasted off Mt Rushmore for killing all those indians!

El Chapo July 16, 2015 at 3:56 pm

You said Indian

TontoBubbaGoldstein July 16, 2015 at 3:56 pm

the author of the banana republic that is modern-day South Carolina

George Dickey?
Archibald Rutledge?
Pat Conroy?

Larry July 16, 2015 at 5:25 pm

Who cares. It is easy to be a nasty cynic. Most of the middling intellects in the world fall into that category.

Meow July 16, 2015 at 3:58 pm

Isn’t the whole “heritage age” contrary to the state constitution since it requires a 2/3 vote? Someone needs to just bring a lawsuit and have the whole law declared void. Surely now they’d never pass a new compliant version of such foolishness again if the original was struck down.

Quietus July 16, 2015 at 4:09 pm

From the Jenny Horne files.

Take that grandpappy Tillman.

utah July 16, 2015 at 4:44 pm

clemson should change it and dare the Legislature to challenge them on it. It’s not like the general assembly is going to send the Sergeant at Arms up there to attach a plaque reading “Tillman Hall,” and it’s not like the GA would be able to criminally charge anyone for violating this “law.”

Say what? July 16, 2015 at 4:51 pm

Superfly: The Heritage Act is unconstitional and a lawsuit has already been filed by members of Greenwood American Legion Post 20. This is a state lawsuit and if the state has it blocked, a federal lawsuit alleging a first amendment violation will be filed and I assure you that the state cannot pull any monkey business here. You can google this matter to see what the lawsuit covers but the state is behind the eight ball.

Bible Thumper July 16, 2015 at 4:57 pm

Everybody knows that action on the battle flag had no momentum until Governor Haley spoke out on the issue. But Haley didn’t speak out until after fitsnews changed it’s possition on the issue.

In light of these facts, and that there are no statues erected or buildings named in recognition of any women elected figures, fitsnews should suggest replacement of the Tillman statue with a much more attractive statue of a female elected official and renaming Clemson’s most recognized building after the most electorially successful woman graduate, l’m sure our governor will courageously speak out in support.

FastEddy23 July 16, 2015 at 5:00 pm

“… Turn over honey, it’s time to go to sleep.”

Quietus July 16, 2015 at 7:12 pm

Confederate Women’s Monument

Camille Griffin Graham Correctional Institution

Darla Moore School of Business

(Martha) Williams-Brice Stadium

Bible Thumper July 16, 2015 at 7:29 pm

Elected figures
That’s why I included those words.

Quietus July 16, 2015 at 9:14 pm

I missed that part, but I suggest the Jenny Horne wailing and lying wall be build the west side of the Capital near Assembly and Gervais , and re can rename a prison or a sewage treatment plant for Haley. Most of the people in the prison are more honorable than Haley so I would strongly lobby for a sewage treatment plant.

Father Sebastin July 17, 2015 at 10:32 am


Tazmaniac July 16, 2015 at 5:59 pm

I suspect this is more about football season being around the corner than anything else.

Question July 16, 2015 at 6:06 pm

How is the naming of Tillman Hall an “honor of the Confederacy or the civil rights movement?” Tillman had nothing to do with the Confederacy or the civil rights movement.

Accuracyplease July 20, 2015 at 12:28 am

I for one appreciate the lunatic stupidity of SC legislators.

Who else but a Republican based group would demand to name a whole bunch of buildings after a bunch of racist losers….with a super majority needing to change your racist, loser ways…so far, encased in cement?!

Why do Ya’ll even want to argue about winning the battle to be Un-American – when you already Won that battle by being first to cecede…and then shot boys who didn’t agree with you.

So speaking of shot – SC legislators done shot to themselves to the top of the stupidity meter. It doesn’t get any better than this. So thanks for the laughs. It really doesn’t get any better than this!

The Colonel July 16, 2015 at 6:27 pm

“…One recourse available to Clemson? The one we’ve been suggesting for years as it relates to the school’s unconstitutional form of governance – privatization….”

Oh give it a rest already.

Here’s a thought, how about an interpretive center in Tillman Hall where Tillman can be examined for all his good and bad in detail. Obviously he was a heinous racist but contrary to Will’s sensationalism, there is no evidence that he personally committed any murders. He was an important figure in the establishment of Clemson and Winthrop. He did great things for farmers. He was not a member of the klan (they wouldn’t have him), he was a Red-Shirt, a far better organized, more powerful and vile organization. Show the man for all his warts, we must remember the past in all its ugliness or we are doomed to repeat it.

erneba July 16, 2015 at 6:52 pm

All governments, institution, parks, and public places caught up in this mania of name-changing should should just make a public statement that any consideration and resolution for name-changing shall be deferred for a period of at least twelve months while the situation is being investigated and considered. By then, “it is yesterday’s news,” to quote HRC.

Lotta Splainin' to do! July 16, 2015 at 7:05 pm

4 Marines killed in bu Islamic terrorist.
Will you liberals now disavow your allegiance with ISIS and Iran, and call for the banning of the ISIS flag?

Or: are you a hateful hypocrite, who embraces Islam, if its agents kill American military?

You got a lotta ‘splainin’ to do

Rocky July 17, 2015 at 10:30 am

Obama and the liberals don’t care about anything but buying the illegal and immigrant vote. They want the US to be like a third world and have US well on the way!

Lone Ranger July 16, 2015 at 7:18 pm

Will Folks’ almost-higher education—typical of OTHER libs’
across the nation—so eminently qualifies the gutless hypocrite to judge the

He’s an ingrate from the gate—PC has sealed the coward’s
fate—and he proves it every time the mental midget opens his thankless mouth

Scooter July 16, 2015 at 9:17 pm

Damn man, don’t go and disparage mental midgets.

Tank July 16, 2015 at 7:25 pm

So, you went from not caring about the flag & being anti-Tillman statue to caring about the flag but keeping the Tillman statue? That’s quite a pretzel you’ve made, Fits!

E Norma Scok July 16, 2015 at 7:26 pm

I think there were about 2 sentences in that article that weren’t copied and pasted from previous articles.
Is it possible to plagiarize oneself?

nitrat July 16, 2015 at 8:44 pm

Yeah. Some guy in NYC got fired for it a couple of years ago. I will try to research.

Scooter July 16, 2015 at 9:19 pm

That boy has never had an original idea in his head.

Limbaughsaphatkhunt July 16, 2015 at 7:33 pm

One step forward (back in time I might add) and 10 steps back.

Progress in this state.

POS, like you, don't matter! July 16, 2015 at 8:15 pm

4 Marines killed today by an Islamic terrorist, yet Obama said he has defeated terrorism.

Do you apply your “10 steps back” adage to Obama, and his ABJECT failure to address murdering Islamic terrorists?

Or: do lives only matter if they fit your profile for mattering? You hateful, anti-American piece of shit, who needs to GTFO of my country, and take Obama with you.

Limbaughsaphatkhunt July 16, 2015 at 8:29 pm

Non-sequitur much?

Bush said terrorism was defeated and look how that turned out…”Mission Accomplished”.

Failure to address mass murdering islamic terrorists? Which president gave orders to kill Bin Laden? Anwar Aliki? Yemeni targets? Syrian targets? Terrorist leaders know they can run but can’t hide from drones and precision strikes…eventually they will be killed and Obama has done that. Also, read up on the coalition airstrikes that have pummeled ISIS and along with supporting group troops have pushed back gains made by ISIS and restricted their movements.

Are you suggesting we go all Lindsey G. and invade the Middle East…again? Have you not processed that Islamic extremists are mostly killing other arabs and muslims in their own countries? Are you that concerned about muslims being attacked by other muslims that you feel we need to attack?

As for today’s incident, while you’re lambasting the Prez for the death of 4 Marines. James Holmes was found guilty in Colo. for the shooting deaths of 12 innocent people (not insane by the way) and yet you do nothing to further gun control.

Who’s the real piece of shit here?

thats easy July 17, 2015 at 9:40 am

“Who’s the real piece of shit here?”


I Agree July 17, 2015 at 11:01 am

YOU are the real piece of shit, aren’t you, thats easy?

your mom doesnt agree July 17, 2015 at 11:50 am

Come now, your mommy always told me she liked me.

Torch July 16, 2015 at 9:50 pm

Got an idea. Lets start in Charleston and privatize the Citadel. Then we move to Columbia and privatize USC. Lastly, we move to the upstate and privatize Clemson.
ZZZZZZZZZZZ that is me sleeping soundly until this happens.

Philip Branton July 17, 2015 at 9:00 am

Dear David Wilkins…… Canada oil sands pimp…!!

Ya know David, since your a slave master for Big Oil………..dare to wonder how many of those Clemson students understand how much geo-thermal energy is sitting under Yellowstone National Park..?? ….and we wonder just how many Clemson Ladies and Gamecock Ladies and SCSU Ladies are educated enough to realize when you praise the Keystone oil sand pipeline that they should automatically think Yellowstone National Park geo-thermal pipelines…!!?

David Wilkins, your legacy may be just as bad a Mayor Riley and Mayor Summey…!!

Just Another Guy July 17, 2015 at 9:16 am

Will, The reason they can not go private is because they could NEVER raise enough money to buy the land from the state or the buildings. That is why the citadel never went private bc it would of cost them around a billion dollars to buy it from the state. So do you think the state should just give it to them or charge them for the land?


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