Former first lady Michelle Obama is praising alma mater Princeton University for dropping the name of former President Woodrow Wilson from its school and college building and said she is "even prouder" of students who called for the change.
In a landmark move on Saturday amid the Black Lives Matter movement, Princeton University dropped Woodrow Wilson's name from its public policy school and one of its colleges, Wilson College, because of what the school said was his "racist thinking and policies." Michelle Obama, who graduated from the university in 1985, said she was "heartened by the move."
"Heartened to see my alma mater make this change, and even prouder of the students who've been advocating for this kind of change on campus for years," the 56-year-old tweeted on Monday afternoon.
Wilson was Princeton's president from 1902 to 1910 before becoming the US president in 1913. The students of the school named after him sent a letter to the school board on June 22, which read: "The undergraduate students of Princeton's School of Public and International Affairs speak with one voice in solidarity with our Black classmates when we say: the time for change is now."
Monmouth University in New Jersey has also said it will remove Wilson's name from its school's buildings.
The moves by the universities come since anti-racism activists have sought to remove either portions or entire statues, state flags, and other monuments and commemorations for figures who had offensive stances on race and equality, after the death of African-American George Floyd in police custody in Minnesota on May 25, reports People.
Confederate statues of controversial historical figures including former Vice President John C. Calhoun who owned slaves have been removed in several states across the country, such as Florida, Kentucky, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Virginia.
While Michelle Obama is lauding the move by Princeton University, President Donald Trump has dubbed it "incredible stupidity." The 74-year-old had earlier also expressed disappointment after protesters attempted to remove a statue of former President Andrew Jackson near the White House earlier this month. He also called for "10 years in prison" for anyone who defaces or removes federal monuments dedicated for service in the armed forces, under the Veteran's Memorial Preservation and Recognition Act of 2003.
The POTUS tweeted on Monday morning: "Can anyone believe that Princeton just dropped the name of Woodrow Wilson from their highly respected policy center. Now the Do Nothing Democrats want to take off the name John Wayne from an airport. Incredible stupidity!"