Hodge: President Tony Frank’s Email said it best, CSU is no place for hate

Jayla Hodge

Editor’s Note: All opinion section content reflects the views of the individual author only and does not represent a stance taken by the Collegian or its editorial board.

In a mass email to all Colorado State University members sent Feb. 1, President Tony Frank condemned the spread of a number of anti-immigration flyers attributed to the Traditionalists Worker Party that have been posted around campus and white nationalist groups were seen at the Charlie Kirk, “Smashing Socialism” event. 

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In comparison of Tony Frank’s past responses to racial motivated incidents on campus, this was by far his most forward email. His statements were bold, but extremely necessary.

This university embraces and emphasizes diversity, tolerance, inclusion and social justice while remaining advocates for the freedom of speech and protection of student’s first amendment rights.

Tony Frank’s email makes a clear distinction of what behavior and rhetoric is acceptable and in alignment with the university’s values, mission statement, and principles of community.

Student protestors outside the Lory Student Center Friday Night. A number of students and community members gathered during an event held at the LSC (Erica Giesenhagen | Collegian).

“Colorado State University denounces the racist, homophobic rants of this and any other white nationalist organization that attempts to gain inroads on our campus or in our community. We denounce the sexist, rape-supportive culture they idealize. We denounce their stigmatizing of religions they do not share – and their attempts to claim our national identity as exclusively their own.”

We should applaud our President for making sure that our community knows that while all viewpoints can be shared on this campus, our leadership will not condone hate, racism, sexism, homophobia, and all the other oppressing and despicable agendas. This email shows that our president is standing up for his diverse students who are directly under attack from the sentiments being expressed by the Traditionalist Worker Party, or in the words of Tony Frank the, “unapologetic Nazis who advocate murdering all those who don’t align with their worldview.”

“Colorado State University denounces the racist, homophobic rants of this and any other white nationalist organization that attempts to gain inroads on our campus or in our community. We denounce the sexist, rape-supportive culture they idealize. We denounce their stigmatizing of religions they do not share – and their attempts to claim our national identity as exclusively their own.” -President Tony Frank

This response is also the safest and smartest stance for the University and President Tony Frank to take. When issues regarding racism, hate speech, and other things of this nature are not directly addressed by University officials the retaliation is general dire. It is crucial that university’s and presidents address controversial campus matters. 

At the Smashing Socialism event, a student held a sign during the protest that reads a quote from Franks Email, “a Nazi is a Nazi is a Nazi.” Franks email resonated with and had an influence on students regarding these issues on campus. 

The 2015 protest and crisis at University of Missouri, also known as the Mizzou fallout, is a great example of a president poorly addressing campus climate and issues. It lead to large scale protest and eventual their president’s resignation.   

This is not the university president pushing his political views on this campus. Frank is just being a decent human being and a leader for all CSU Rams. It’s about standing up and doing the right thing, and calling out hate and oppression in a time when it may not be recognizable.  We must remain united, and as Tony Frank stated, there is no place for hate at this university.

Jayla Hodge can be reached at letters@collegian.com or online at @Jaylahodge.

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