Dear Panther Community,
There is no solace in today's verdict for any of us, only the reminder of the injustice of George Floyd's murder. As Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. penned 58 years ago from his cell in a Birmingham jail, "Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere." Mr. Floyd's murder was an injustice to him, to his family, to his community, to Black people across our country, and in truth, to all citizens of this nation. While this verdict may bring justice in a legal sense, no verdict can return Mr. Floyd to his family, friends and community. No verdict can erase the injustice of Mr. Floyd's death, so the threat to justice remains.
Sadly, other events in Minnesota, Chicago and Atlanta in recent weeks are a reminder of how much further our society still must go to achieve equality. Black, Latino/a, Asian American and Pacific Islander, and Indigenous peoples' lives matter.
To help our community process the verdict and to provide opportunities for conversation and solidarity, the Center for Multicultural Education will provide space for students, faculty and staff to informally gather, reflect and connect throughout the evening tonight. These spaces are designed to welcome those who want to talk or meet with others who are concerned about equity, police-community relationships, race in America, or any other issues that have surfaced since George Floyd's death.
At UNI, we are working to improve our living, learning, and working environments, and are preparing our students to be catalysts for change, creating peace and justice in their homes, workplaces, and communities.
Mark A. Nook