Months after the University of Alabama dedicated a plaza and clock tower to its earliest black students, the school has been swamped with unwelcome attention over the past two weeks because of racial slurs used on campus, the Associated Press reports. First, a white student was disciplined for yelling epithets at a black student early this month. Days after that incident, insulting messages about several racial and ethnic groups were written on campus sidewalks in chalk. The flaps fit a pattern that’s dogged the state’s flagship school since it was integrated: Missteps along the path to greater diversity and inclusion often make more of an impression than positive strides do…

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staff and wire services reports