“All people of good will and conscience”

10 minutes ago the entire campus received this email:

All people of good will and conscience at Brandeis University – the President, the Interfaith Chaplaincy, students, faculty, staff, the Provost’s Steering Committee on Diversity, and the Division of Students and Enrollment – stand together in condemning the vandalism to the Muslim Prayer Space and Lounge.

We unite in solidarity with all our Muslim students and assure them that this kind of action will not be tolerated at Brandeis. Any act of vandalism, especially those that target a particular religious or cultural community, is deplorable. This is particularly true here at Brandeis where we place the utmost value on being a community of inclusion and religious pluralism.

This affront to our community will not disrupt or destroy the spirit of our University family. We join together to denounce the acts of the individual or individuals who are responsible.

The Chaplains, and other Brandeis staff, are available to any and all in need of counsel and comfort in this difficult time. The University is committed to the full investigation of this incident. Anyone with information relevant to the investigation is asked to contact Ed Callahan, Director of Public Safety at 781-736-4240.

This is a sad moment for our Brandeis family but we will emerge from this time with a renewed spirit of understanding and cooperation.

President Jehuda Reinharz
Rev. Walter Cuenin, Catholic Chaplain
Imam Talal Eid, Muslim Chaplain
Alexander Levering Kern, Protestant Chaplain
Rabbi Elyse Winick, Jewish Chaplain
Jamele Adams, Associate Dean of Student Life

Agreed. I’m glad they sent out this email, I think it strikes the right tone, and I look forward to seeing the steps the community can take together in the future.

Update: I got an email from Neda Eid right before this email was sent out. She was planning on organizing something on Friday, and this is what she said:

So I met with several people about initiating a form of response to the vandalism and i’ve decided to delay the protest this Friday and work with the Brandeis faculty, club leaders and their organizations, the chaplaincy, the dean of student life, the general student body, and outside MSAs to address the larger issue of hate on university campuses and the need to actively respond. Considering that the administration hasn’t yet officially spoken about the MSA vandalism, i feel it’s important to give the campus time to react and through inclusive organizing, properly respond.

Thanks Sahar for covering the incident and i’ll keep you updated on the efforts.