Editor’s note: The following is a statement from Earlham College President Anne Houtman about the Atlanta shootings on Tuesday, March 16. Six of the eight victims were women of Asian descent.
Dear campus community,
As I sit here writing in the wake of the Atlanta shooting deaths, I am heartbroken, and I am reminded that there is still so much work to do to address the bias and hate that continues to divide our nation and world. Incendiary language and violence against people of Asian descent is a longstanding — and historically invisible — problem in our country. The brazen rhetoric and anti-Asian sentiment that has emerged in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic has only brought this reality out of the shadows.
There is also a troubling aspect of the depiction of these crimes that underscores the perils of white supremacy, misogyny and victim-blaming.
As a College and Seminary founded on Quaker principles and practices that include respect for persons and peace and justice, our commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion is resolute. Earlham and Earlham School of Religion’s focus on these values is steadfast as we acknowledge — and work to prevent, transform and heal — the deeper wounds caused by systemic racism in our country, including anti-Asian racism.
Today and always, we stand in solidarity with members of our Asian community here on campus, as well as Asians throughout the nation and the world, but we know that is not enough. We condemn all acts of hate and violence, and we reaffirm our commitment to working together — in words and in deed — to achieve a stronger, more just, and more equitable world.