To say the least, we are disappointed by administration’s response, or lack thereof, to the Todd incident.
Michaela Todd, vice president of Associated Student Government and senior communication and political science major, made a Facebook post last week that used the term “illegal alien.”
Since then, there have been multiple calls by minority groups on campus for Todd to step down to be impeached or, most recently, for a recall.
These minority students have faced serious backlash in the social media comments.
Between calling them “snowflake liberals” to the more concerning threats to call immigration services to have these students and their families deported, this is extremely concerning.
But where is President Garrett’s message to Hornet Nation?
In the past, when there was a threat to repeal DACA, when the “Jane” stories broke and when there were other race issues on campus, Garrett and the rest of administration has generally been on top of these problems and confronted them head-on by sending out an announcement to let students know they are cared for and safe on Emporia State’s campus.
A message from Lynn Hobson, dean of students, and Jim Williams, vice president of student affairs, went out to students today, but a few sentence message about the “resources available on campus” is not a statement.
Additionally, attending a student government meeting and saying “sorry” and that there was nothing you could do to help students who are being threatened for their race, background or views, except to offer to call Police and Safety is disheartening and disappointing.
Especially as going to the police is not a realistic option.
Black and other folks of color are the subject of police brutality attacks daily.
And for students who are undocumented or have family who are undocumented, going to the police is not an option for obvious reasons.
Asking them to do so is insensitive, impractical and put those students and further risk of emotional violence and family separation.
We know administration can’t change the political landscape.
We know they can’t change people’s intolerance. Nor can they cause change on a state or government level.
But they can affect change on this campus and it begins with an attitude of tolerance and understanding.
It begins, at the very least, with a letter in support of our minority students.