Skip to main content

Religious Studies Department Faculty Statement About NU Protests

October 30, 2020

In the spirit of the necessary reckoning that is happening throughout our country in the wake of the senseless, cruel and violent police crimes against black people, the Religious Studies Department stands with the protesters in demanding that Northwestern rethink the necessity of the NUPD, and which of its tasks might best be reframed away from a framework of violence and towards one of care.

We ask President Shapiro to recognize that the current moment calls for faster-than-normal responses to members of our community who are finally able to express criticism, call for systemic change and even revolt. President Schapiro’s recent clarifying email is a step in the right direction. He ought not to have used the power of his office to replicate the stark binary drama of our political culture on campus.

The president would be well served to go the distance by retracting the reprint of his original email in the Wall Street Journal, and acknowledging that his claims of anti-Semitic victimhood were ill-considered, inappropriate and hurtful.