After a week of mounting racial tension on the campus of Georgetown College in Georgetown, Kentucky, including reported racial slurs directed toward African American students, racist graffiti found in campus buildings, and racist comments made in a classroom setting, the college president asked the local police department to maintain a 24-hour a day presence on the campus throughout this past weekend.
What I find positive in the midst of this unfortunate and hurtful situation is the action that the college’s administration has taken. The college’s president William H. Crouch, Jr. has taken the stance that such behavior will not be tolerated at Georgetown College and assured the college community that the perpetrators of these acts will be dealt with quickly and appropriately. While such circumstances are always unfortunate, we understand that in our society these things do still occur. But I am heartened to see leadership that stands up without hesitation to call out and condemn such behavior, act to remedy the situation to the degree possible, reassure students that the college community is one that truly values inclusiveness, and works to quickly bring the community to a place of healing. We will watch this situation as things progress.
My thoughts are with the student body as it tries to move past this last week. My hope is that leaders, faculty, staff, and students will use it as a valuable learning and growth experience. Let us now try to understand the source(s) of such hate and act proactively to avoid similar situations in the future.