Message regarding social media post from President Murray, May 31, 2020
MEMORANDUM TO THE MARIST COLLEGE COMMUNITY
FROM: DENNIS J. MURRAY
Earlier today, I was made aware of a post circulating on social media, apparently authored by a Marist student, which contained a racial epithet. Members of our campus community who saw this post were understandably shocked, insulted, and hurt by this egregious display of discriminatory language. I count myself among them. Coming at a time when so many people across the nation are in distress over the continued deaths of African Americans in police custody, this post not only displayed a callous indifference to recent national events, but made a mockery of our institutional values. The College’s Office of Student Conduct is therefore in the process of investigating and addressing this situation as a disciplinary matter.
Regardless of the outcome of that individual case, let me unequivocally reaffirm that discriminatory language and behavior will not be tolerated on this campus in any way, shape, or form. As the College’s diversity and inclusion statement notes, “at Marist, we strive to create an environment that reflects the diversity of our nation and the world, ensuring that all members of our community feel welcomed, valued, and supported.” Simply stated, hate has no place at Marist. Whatever difficulties are occurring in our larger society, our College community should be a refuge from bigotry and strife, and all of our members should feel at home.
When we reconvene in the fall, we will look for ways to promote meaningful dialogue among our campus community about the racial issues our country is facing. As I have done in the past with other topics, I’ll be sending a broader communication to the Marist community in the coming days about the recent civil unrest we’ve seen across the nation.
Dennis J. Murray