The Daily Northwestern

Letter to the Editor: NUBAA’s response to ‘Schapiro condemns vandalism in Alice Millar Chapel’

Jeffrey Sterling

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The Northwestern University Black Alumni Association (NUBAA) again observes the occurrence of a racially explicit hate crime on campus with the defacing of the Alice Millar Chapel. We write this letter to add our voice to the chorus of voices condemning the crime, but importantly, we seek to look past the individual action to bring attention to the environment in which such events continue to occur. A statement from President Schapiro stated, “Northwestern is committed to creating a safe, secure and welcoming environment for all of our students, faculty and staff.” Implicit in that statement is an acknowledgement that the current environment is not always welcoming.

Approaching our 30th year as NU’s first and largest national affinity group, NUBAA believes it is time for definitive and decisive action that attacks the aspects of NU’s culture that produce ongoing episodes of racist and otherwise discriminatory actions. Yes, NU has responded to similar individual events in the past and has initiated efforts to enhance tolerance and understanding on campus. However, this crime is yet another reminder that the University needs to comprehensively readdress root causes and institutional conditions that diminish the student experience and the University’s reputation. As we have done in the past, NUBAA stands ready to participate in helping NU meet its commitment.

— Jeffrey E. Sterling, MD (Weinberg ’85)
President, Northwestern University Black Alumni Association

Correction: Due to an editing error, a previous version of this story misstated the number of years NUBAA has been in existence. The group is approaching its 30th year. The Daily regrets the error.