To the Onondaga Community College family:
It is not often my habit to comment on things happening beyond our campus, but the events of last week caused me to think about Robert Kennedy who said:
“Every time we turn our heads the other way when we see the law flouted, when we tolerate what we know to be wrong, when we close our eyes and ears to the corrupt because we are too busy or too frightened, when we fail to speak up and speak out, we strike a blow against freedom, decency, and justice.”
I use my voice now and will continue to do so by joining millions across the country, expressing outrage at the brutal killing of George Floyd. I extend my deepest sympathy to the Floyd family, and I ask that local, state, and federal officials work quickly to bring those responsible to justice. I join the nationwide call for an end to the systemic racism that has plagued our country since its earliest days, and that has revealed itself in a series of senseless killings, including Ahmaud Arbery and Breonna Taylor. I commit to doing my part.
I firmly believe that higher education can be a tool for building a future rooted in equity and justice; this may be the most critical work we do. Hatred, bigotry, intolerance, and injustice have no place on our campus and, I pray, no place in our hearts. Onondaga Community College must continue to be a place that includes all of us, and that values each of us. Let us commit to each other that we will not turn our heads away, tolerate what we know to be wrong, close our eyes to the corrupt, or fail to speak up so that freedom, decency, and justice will be strong in our community.