George Floyd was a 46-year-old black man. He was murdered in plain sight over the course of nine minutes by men clothed by the state of Minnesota with the immense responsibility for enforcing the law. I am a 54-year-old white man who has spent all of my adult life working as a practicing lawyer and trial court judge. I read Richard Wright’s memoir, “Black Boy” when I was 20, and I didn’t find the above quote to be credible. At 54, after too many tragedies, I now sadly believe it to be truer than not.
With all of the news and happenings with COVID-19, this is a scary time for students. We are unsure about what our future is going to look like: will we transition well to all online learning? Will we get to keep our jobs? Will we be able to pay for food, for housing, for other necessities? Will we graduate on time?
You did it. You voted you bugged your friends to vote, you posted on your social media accounts, you supported your favorite candidates, you got loud, you cared, and you showed up. There are more of us who believe in inclusivity and opportunity, who reject hate and fear, and who stand together with love for our community and hope for our campus. There are more of us. So let’s keep showing up.
We at Ball State are aware of the unfortunate incident that occurred on our campus. One of the participants was Dr. Shaheen Borna.
I wanted to write to you and offer you my support in the wake of recent events.
Nearly everyone is now familiar with the events that transpired on Tuesday, January 21: Professor Shaheen Borna called the police on a Black student, Sultan "Mufasa" Benson, who declined to switch seats in the middle of class.
“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”