August 15, 2017 - 8:33am

Dear members of the SUNY Oswego community,

As we prepare to open the academic year, please stand with me in solidarity against all bigotry and violence. I watched in horror and deep disappointment the horrifying display of racism, antisemitism and violence that erupted in Charlottesville, Virginia, and on the campus of the University of Virginia, this past weekend. The menace and murder by white supremacists and neo Nazis are abhorrent to our principles as Americans and anathema to our American beliefs in equality and justice for all. The criminal acts we saw last weekend are not protected by the United States constitution. It is important that we denounce and condemn the rise of this blight if we are to remain a free and equal society and if we will continue to offer that beacon of humanity around the world. Silence would suffocate our ideals and snuff out our future but individual example and peaceful collective action have the power to stem this deadly tide.

Our deepest sympathies go to all the victims of the violence perpetrated in Charlottesville, and especially to the families of Heather Heyer and the police officers– Lieutenant H. Jay Cullen and Trooper Berke M.M. Bates–who died in the course of duty. Tragically, they were selfless heroes in a cause of high honor.

At SUNY Oswego, we take pride in respecting, supporting and including one another as we gather to learn and grow. We reach out, discuss and listen to each other to build bridges across our divides and acquire knowledge and understanding. We celebrate and promote equality, diversity and inclusivity: truly democratizing the opportunity of this special place.  As the fall semester draws near, let us consider how we can individually, and together, increase the ways we value and view each other and how we can continue to lift each other up to face the challenges ahead.

Sincerely,

Deborah F. Stanley
President