UConn-AAUP Statement Regarding Charlottesville

Dear Colleagues;

Those events that took place in Charlottesville last weekend on the University of Virginia campus have no place in this country or any place on the campuses of the University of Connecticut. We condemn not only the violence but also the bigotry, and we will stand with and defend anyone in our community who is at risk of becoming a target.

UConn-AAUP will not remain complacent in the face of such hatred that affects many of our members and their families.  We join with the National AAUP and other AAUP Chapters across the country in speaking out against the expressions of racism, anti-Semitism, and hatred that were witnessed in Charlottesville.

UConn-AAUP encourages our community to take the time to address these events in the classroom and in small organizations. We applaud the response from the UConn President’s Office but call upon the UConn President to respond with action by hosting a metanoia on race relations in our University, in our State, and in our Nation.  We will work with faculty members, students, and other community leaders to resist hate and are prepared to offer support to those that experience it.

Michael Bailey

UConn-AAUP Executive Director

Tom Bontly

UConn-AAUP President

The following statement was issued by the American Association of University Professors president Rudy Fichtenbaum and AAUP first vice president Henry Reichman following the events in Charlottesville, Virginia over the weekend. 

“Our hearts broke this weekend as we watched expressions of racism, anti-Semitism, and hatred on the University of Virginia campus result in violence. We are especially saddened by the death of one activist and the wounding of others. Expressions of racism and hatred paired with violent actions are not new in our country. Our history shows that marchers armed with guns and sticks, carrying shields and torches, and chanting Nazi slogans have but one purpose: to strike fear and terror in the hearts of people of color, immigrants, Jews, Muslims, and all who believe in a more inclusive America.

“To remain silent in the face of hatred is to be complicit in that hatred. Therefore, we will not remain silent while white supremacists, emboldened by the rhetoric of the Trump administration, perpetrate violence and incite bigotry. After equivocating, the President has finally denounced the KKK, the Nazis and other white supremacist groups. But he and his administration must do more. We call on the Trump administration to use all of the forces at its disposal to bring to justice those involved in fomenting violence and terror. Further, we call on the President and his administration to denounce all attempts to equate nonviolent protests like Black Lives Matter with violent hate groups.

“We decry the violence, the discrimination, and the attempts to intimidate, silence, and harm our students, educators, and community members. We reject racism and white supremacy.  We stand with students, educators, their families, and communities across the country working for equitable and welcoming environments where it is safe to exist, learn, and peacefully disagree and debate. Our members, chapters and state conferences will work with faculty members, students, and college leaders, uniting and organizing with allies and in our communities to resist hate and fight for a just society.”