Dear Students of Gonzaga University,
As your GSBA President, I am emotionally and morally inclined to denounce the disturbing incidents and the loss of an innocent life in Charlottesville, VA. The events that occurred last weekend have poured salt into the wounds of a country marred by divisions. These violent actions serve as undisputable reminders that bigotry, hatred, and discrimination continues to proliferate and challenge the guiding principles our nation was founded upon.
It is our duty as students of a Jesuit, Catholic, humanistic university to be stewards of justice in the face of intolerance. Today, the rights of people of color, the LGBTQ+ community, followers of Jewish faith, Muslims, and immigrants are threatened by the dangerous ideology of white supremacy and Neo-Nazism. We are called as students of Gonzaga University to stand in solidarity with the poor and vulnerable and to meet any act of injustice with a fierce resistance guided by the Jesuit teachings of love and compassion.
I acknowledge and firmly support President McCulloh’s statement delivered on August 13th, and resonate with his quote, “We cannot be complacent in our commitment; we cannot assume that stamping out racism – or any other act or expression of prejudice, be it on the basis of sex, faith or religion, national origin, sexual orientation, gender identity, ability, age, or veteran status – is someone else’s responsibility. It is our responsibility, each of us, every day.”
The Gonzaga Student Body Association reaffirms that remaining silent in the face of hatred is compliance with injustice. Therefore, we are committed to stand in solidarity with all of those affected by the issues that plague our nation. Throughout the year, GSBA will strive to foster a culture of progressive dialogue with the intention of teaching and promoting acceptance that will become a defining characteristic of our institution.
We celebrate diversity, equity, and inclusion and strongly believe that our differences make Gonzaga University an incredible place for individual growth. As the year begins, GSBA will not falter in the face of adversity and welcomes all individuals to think critically about their role in creating a more just society.
In common struggle,
Carlo Jerome Juntilla