Dear members of the Trocaire community:
It is with a heavy heart that I send this communication to our students and employees addressing a national event like the one that took place in Charlottesville, Virginia during this past weekend. I have chosen to share my thoughts with you because it has become very clear to me that those of us in leadership positions need to speak out and be counted when actions in our society undermine our American ideals.
Please know that I am not naive to think that our society has not had a checkered history. But as a naturalized citizen, I also know that we collectively work diligently and tirelessly to achieve the ideals of liberty, justice, and a society free from every “ism” you can imagine.
The behavior of some extremists should not deter us from continuing to work together to build a better future for all members of our society. What was most striking this past weekend is the fact that the incidents occurred in a college town, where all members of the human race gather to learn and work together to improve all aspects of our lives. There is no room for hate groups like the KKK, the Neo-Nazi movement, or any other extremist entity that believes it stands alone in ensuring the success of the American dream.
So, join me in rejecting hate speech and terrorism and in calling out those who work to destabilize our society. These are our ideals as a College, as a Catholic institution, and one that continues to fulfill the legacy of the Sisters of Mercy and their critical concerns of taking care of the Earth; maintaining the mission of addressing women’s education, health, and employment, especially in repressive societies; working for just and humane immigration laws; working for peace and non-violence; and mobilizing against the evil of racism.
Bassam M. Deeb, Ph.D.