Michigan State U. President Compares Border Patrol Visit to Racism, Vandalism

Michigan State President Samuel L Stanley
Michigan State University

The president of Michigan State University, Samuel Stanley, sent an email to the entire student body addressing several instances that have caused “concern and anger” on campus. In his email, the university president likened a recent Customs and Border Patrol visit to vandalism, among other issues on campus.

Michigan State University (MSU) President Samuel Stanley bizarrely listed the U.S. Customs and Border Patrol (CBP) visit to campus for a class presentation as one of four recent instances of “hate” that have caused “concern and anger” among MSU’s campus community, according to a report by Campus Reform.

“Our community has been affected in the past several days by incidents causing concern and anger,” said Stanley in his statement. “I, too, am concerned, because a safe, inclusive and respectful campus is my top priority. Hate has no home at Michigan State.”

“Recently the greater campus community has experienced vandalism at MSU Hillel, our center for Jewish student life; the presence of U.S. Customs and Border Protection on campus last week for a presentation to a class; an instance of racial bias reported from Bryan Hall over the weekend; and a survey in the College of Communication Arts and Sciences that offended students.”

The “instance of racial bias reported from Bryan Hall” was in reference to toilet paper that was found hanging on a dormitory door, which residents said was a racist act, claiming that it had resembled a noose. At the time of Stanley’s email to students, several MSU officials had reportedly already dismissed the incident as a prank.

The “survey in the College of Communication Arts and Sciences” department was in reference to a recent slur-filled survey riddled with racist and homophobic language, which was sent by professor Saleem Alhabash to students at random.

“These situations have disrupted a sense of safety that should exist for everyone,” said Stanley. “Building inclusive communities is at the core of our values, and the impact of recent events cannot be underestimated.”

“I want to personally let you know the concerns of our campus community are being taken seriously,” he added. “Investigations by both the MSU Police Department and our Office of Institutional Equity are taking place, and we are providing support to those who are affected.”

Stanley did not clarify if he would be asking the MSU Police Department to investigate the U.S. Customs and Border Patrol visit, but did stress that the university will be holding itself accountable.

“We will be responsive to these issues and will not ignore the effect they are having on our community,” said the university president. “It is important to hold ourselves accountable for being respectful, culturally sensitive and informed.”

“In the coming months, I will continue to work with students and others in the campus community as we undergo a strategic planning process, including an emphasis on diversity, equity and inclusion,” said Stanley. “Your feedback will be critical to this plan moving forward.”

The university’s Hillel student group — which had been subjected to vandalism — told Campus Reform that the organization did not feel Stanley was making a comparison between the vandalism and the presence of CBP on campus.

“MSU Hillel does not believe that the President is equating what we experienced with any of the other three incidents,” said Director of Jewish Student Life at MSU Hillel Nate Strauss. “Additionally, we would not want him to [do so], because they are not the same thing.”

The report added that MSU Hillel also mentioned that it did not believe the vandalism it suffered had been an act of anti-Semitism.

Michigan State University did not immediately respond to Breitbart News’ request for comment.

You can follow Alana Mastrangelo on Twitter at @ARmastrangelo and on Instagram.


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