LSU President’s Words of Wisdom to the LSU Baton Rouge Student Body
In the middle of finals and stress over the future of the TOPS program, students at Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge had another stressor yesterday... uncertainty over the reaction to the Department of Justice's decision to not prosecute the officers involved with the shooting of Alton Sterling.
Clearly, DOJ's decision was an emotional one for many. No one knew whether or not protests or even riots would erupt in response. Thankfully, we haven't heard of any extreme reactions. However, LSU President F. King Alexander sent the following the email to the student body in Baton Rouge just in case. When I read it, I'll be honest, I was in awe. His message is both insightful and healing. I'm proud to know that President Alexander is shaping the future of our young adults in Baton Rouge.
From: Broadcast_LSU_Community <BROADCAST_LSU_COMMUNITY@LISTS.LSU.EDU> on behalf of King Alexander <alexander@LSU.EDU>
Sent: Wednesday, May 3, 2017 2:26 PM
Subject: Statement from President Alexander
Today, the U.S. Department of Justice announced the decision not to prosecute in the Alton Sterling case. The matter will be turned over to the Louisiana Attorney General’s Office and State Police. This restarts some of the difficult conversations that began last summer.
As members of the Baton Rouge community, our perspectives are tempered by the efforts and compassion shown by our neighbors during the August floods. Last summer, we learned a lot about each other and the character of our fellow citizens. The world got to see what we see every day: neighbors, friends, family members and even strangers willing to lend a helping hand or offer a kind word. Those qualities define the very essence of LSU’s community: we are a family, and family takes care of one another.
The University will maintain a safe learning and working environment for our students, faculty, and staff. Campus safety is a priority. We are committed to helping students understand societal challenges, supporting them in expressing themselves in a safe manner if they wish to participate in the public dialogue, and developing future leaders who will help avoid situations like the ones of July 2016.
As we process today’s news and consider our path forward, remember to focus on the things that unite us, not those that divide. Remember what we learned at Moment or Movement: that no matter what the circumstances, we can come together to heal and make progress toward our shared goals. As part of the LSU family, your role in this world is to learn, think, and influence others to make a profound impact on society, and we’re here to support you on every step of that journey.
We will share any information pertinent to the campus community as it becomes available. Good luck on finals, and be kind to one another.
F. King Alexander