Columbia President Passes Buck on Noose Incident

This post, written by Malena Amusa, originally appeared on RaceWire

The president of Columbia University Lee C. Bollinger is trying to distance Columbia from its graduate Teacher's College where the recent noose hanging outside a Black professor's office took place. In a letter to campus, he wrote:
"As most of you now know, a terrible incident of bias occurred at Teachers College yesterday, directed at a member of the faculty. Teachers College is a cherished affiliate of Columbia University with its own president, Susan Fuhrman, to whom I have offered our support and assistance. We may be two independent institutions, but we are one community; and we stand together in our commitment to oppose the frightening sentiments that lay behind this act."
Here, Bollinger hesitates to totally embrace the Teacher's College because he calls it an "affiliate." But the Teacher's College is a graduate program of Columbia, as much as the Columbia Graduate School of Journalism I attend.

Further, his letter is a careful condemnation that reads so cautiously, it doesn't come close to calling event what it is: an atrocious act of pedestrian racism. So why is Bollinger calling this a "bias incident? No where in the letter does he marry the words "hate" and "crime." Does he know his referencing the threat of a lynching as "sentiments" is a naive understatement?

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