Warren Wilson president asks Trump for respect
Warren Wilson College president Steven L. Solnick signed an open letter asking President-elect Donald Trump “to condemn and work to prevent the harassment, hate and acts of violence that are being perpetrated across our nation.”
Solnick is one of more than 100 college presidents to sign the letter, which includes North Carolina leaders from Brevard College, Davidson College and Guilford College.
The letter is the brainchild of Bennington College president Mariko Silver, according to Inside Higher Ed. It calls on Trump to “reaffirm the core values of our democratic nation: human decency, equal rights, freedom of expression and freedom from discrimination.” The original open letter with the current list of signees is available here: https://goo.gl/ua0UOt.
Before this communication to Trump, Solnick wrote a personal message to employees and students of Warren Wilson College acknowledging the end of “a long and toxic political season that inflamed passions and deepened divisions in communities across our state and nation.” In the Nov. 9 note, he calls on everyone “to show compassion and respect for each other” as they reflect on the results.
Here's the full text of the letter:
"Dear President-elect Trump,
"As do you, we 'seek common ground, not hostility; partnership, not conflict.' In order to maintain the trust required for such productive engagement, it is essential that we immediately reaffirm the core values of our democratic nation: human decency, equal rights, freedom of expression, and freedom from discrimination. As college and university presidents, we commit ourselves to promoting these values on our campuses and in our communities, and we stand alongside the business, nonprofit, religious, and civic leaders who are doing the same in organizations large and small.
"In light of your pledge to be 'President for all Americans,' we urge you to condemn and work to prevent the harassment, hate, and acts of violence that are being perpetrated across our nation, sometimes in your name which is now synonymous with our nation’s highest office. In our schools, on job sites and college campuses, on public streets and in coffee shops, members of our communities, our children, our families, our neighbors, our students, and our employees are facing very real threats, and are frightened.
"One of the roles of leaders is to protect and empower the most vulnerable. As President-elect, this responsibility rests heavily on you. Let this be a mark of your leadership."