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Turning Pain into Action
June 2, 2020



Dear CLU Family,



I write to you during this time of sadness with the hope that we as a nation will come together to take meaningful and sustainable actions towards a peaceful, just world.  We stand in solidarity with the Black community and with anyone who experiences the unimaginable pain of injustice, prejudice, and violent acts.  For mothers and fathers who have endured generations of fear for their sons and daughters.  For entire communities who struggle through the multiple inequities produced by systemic racism, compounded by racially motivated abuse at the hands of law enforcement.  Being Black and unarmed is not a crime and must not be treated as such.  People are in pain.  People are broken-hearted – and we must listen.  We stand in solidarity with the many people who despite personal risk, are peacefully protesting for urgently needed change.  As individuals and as a community, we must look inward as well as outward, speak loudly against injustice, and commit to action.

Claremont Lincoln University was founded on the principles of the Golden Rule, and the idea that every person can take action to lead positive social change.  Everyone, from all walks of life, faiths, and cultures can and must come together to find common solutions to ensure equity for all.  With so many forces changing the ground we stand on, we as a community must step into the void of uncertainty in spite of our fear of the unknown.  What we do know is that the status quo cannot remain, and we cannot stand on the sidelines.

So many of our faculty, students, and alumni work every day towards overcoming these forces.  In the coming weeks and months, our faculty will lead virtual Town Hall Meetings to make space for us as a CLU family, to listen to and uplift each other through these difficult times, and to share examples of good work that is happening.  To address the immediate and ongoing needs of our community, these will not be one-off events.  We commit to supporting change and to act in ways that promote moral leadership and action to end structural inequity.  We will share ideas and resources for hope and for action, beginning with four inspiring resources below.  We do so in a spirit of solidarity with others working for peace and justice.

Sincerely,

Tony Digiovanni, President & CEO


We want to share four resources for peace and action today:

  1. Read Kareem Abdul-Jabbar’s Op-Ed in the Los Angeles Times  and share it.  We wish everyone in the nation would read this.
  2. Stay informed, get engaged and take action on The Obama Foundation’s Anguish and Action Page.
  3. Follow CLU Alum Umar Hakim Dey, who is organizing a Day of Outrage on June 5th, asking each Masjid center or organization across California dedicate their Friday talk or recorded message in condemnation of anti-Blackness and police brutality.
  4. Read this article about CLU student Phillipe Cunningham, and his work in the epicenter as a Minneapolis city council person, and the first openly transgender man of color elected into public office in the United States.