The Program in Jewish Studies at the University of Colorado Boulder condemns the horrific killings of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, Tony McDade, and so many other Black Americans. We denounce these brutal acts in the strongest possible terms, recognizing these killings both as unspeakable tragedies for the victims and their families, and as part of the violent criminalization of communities of color, systemic and institutional racism, and enduring white supremacy that so poison our collective life. We also condemn the ongoing violence against peaceful protesters across the United States, expressing our grave concern about what we fear is an accelerating descent into racist, anti-democratic authoritarianism.
We commit ourselves to ensuring that our teaching, scholarship, and public programming are shaped by the struggle against systemic, institutional racism in our society—including (and sometimes especially) in higher education. This is our obligation as academics committed to using the critical examination of Jewish history and culture to educate the global citizens and community leaders of tomorrow. This is our obligation as members of a public university committed to diversity and inclusivity. This is our obligation as individuals living in the United States during this fraught moment in American history. And this is our obligation as human beings.