on Charlottesville

I hate that making statements reiterating mine and my organization’s condemnation of bigoted violence has become a routine part of my job. I share below the email I sent to the MIT Libraries staff this morning, in case it is helpful to others looking to make a statement in their organization.

“Friends,

By now you all know what happened in Charlottesville this weekend – Nazi white supremacists marched on the UVa campus, inciting deadly racist violence.

While some insist that there are “many sides” to condemn, and that there is a debate to be had (in libraries and other public institutions) about the nuances of free speech; I believe it is my responsibility to state as clearly and unequivocally as I can that libraries should never support, condone, or provide space to organizations or individuals who promote hatred, bigotry, and racism.  At a time when white supremacists have been re-emboldened, libraries cannot hide behind a myth of neutrality. Reasonable people can have difficult conversations and can disagree about the best tactics for combatting racism; but there is no room in this profession or in this organization for the kind of rhetoric and actions on display by the white supremacists who marched on Charlottesville this weekend. As an organization, we must condemn white supremacy in all its manifestations.

There will be a “Cambridge Stands with Charlottesville” unity rally today at 5:30 at the Cambridge City Hall.

I’ll be there.

In solidarity,

Chris”

 

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