About Reaffirming CI Shared Values

Background

Since November 8, 2016, we have struggled to understand how to place our commitment to evidence-, inclusion-, and justice-driven discourse in a social context that has begun to normalize dishonesty and exclusion. Since becoming president-elect, Mr. Trump's political appointments and policy positions have begun to codify the racism, misogyny, and anti-evidence of his campaign and have led to our deep concern for the future of our nation. A number of very worrisome incidents on campus post-election crystallized the need for faculty to take a leadership role in creating meaningful dialogue as well as space for action. The recent public statement by faculty at MIT provided a clear view of how the professoriate should begin to carry out their responsibility to the public. We acknowledge their leadership and the inspiration their letter provided.

A small group of CI faculty wrote this open letter in the hopes of calling on the collective wisdom and voice of CI faculty, and to set forth a set of principles that we can act upon in an effort to enrich and expand the discourse in our classrooms, on our campus, and in our community. Julia Balén, Blake Gillespie, and Brad Monsma created and edited the letter, in consultation with many others. Brian Thoms created the website.

This letter also builds upon the earlier letter sent by President Beck and Chancellor White to our community shortly after the election. You can read that letter here: http://civalues.org/ChancellorWhiteLetter-11172016.pdf

Their letter:

On Monday, December, 5, 2016, the option to sign the statement opens to all CI community members. Signatories must have an CI email address.

FAQ

  1. How are signatures collected?
  2. Signatories must possess a valid CI email to sign. Upon signing, signatories receive an email with a confirmation link. Once the signature is confirmed, the list is updated in real time.

  3. I'm an CI community member but not faculty - can I sign?
  4. Yes! Sign on as an administrator or community member (must have a confirmed @csuci.edu or @myci.csuci.edu.

  5. I'm not an CI community member but I support the statement - can I sign?
  6. Not at this moment, but please feel free to share this statement and the broader message to any and all interested.

  7. I have other ideas about how faculty can act on the principles you describe. How can I share them with colleagues?
  8. The preparation of this document has already led to new ideas for teaching-action. These ideas will be shared with the community through this site as tools for others to use or model themselves. Please contact Prof. Blake Gillespie with any thoughts or ideas you would like to share through this portal.

  9. What evidence supports claims of the president-elect's views and actions?
  10. We must model the behaviors we expect from our leaders, including grounding our assertions in solid evidence. Here are our assertions again, and we are developing a body of evidence supporting. We hope that these can serve as a resource, as we all decide what actions to take. For now, much of our evidence has been taken from the MIT group's page.

    "...the president-elect has expressed and espoused points of view and political positions that are objectively racist, misogynist, bigoted, anti-intellectual, and anti-science."

    "The president-elect's embrace of ignorance, discrimination, fear, and hatred..."

    Recent Evidence:
    • President-elect Donald Trump appointed Stephen Bannon as his senior counselor and chief strategist on November 13, 2016. Bannon previously served as executive chair of Breitbart News, which has featured racism, misogyny, anti-Muslim, and anti-Semitic rhetoric. As executive chair, Bannon endorsed Milo Yiannopoulos, widely known as a voice for the Alt-Right movement. While at Breitbart under Bannon's supervision, Yiannopoulos penned articles such as this one suggesting a cap on the number of women studying STEM disciplines.

    • President-elect Donald Trump appointed Myron Ebell to lead his Environmental Protection Agency transition team in September 2016. Ebell has claimed that "the so-called global warming consensus was not based on science." These appointments do not require confirmation. Furthermore, the new White House Chief of Staff, Reince Priebus, has confirmed that climate change denial will be the default position of the Trump administration.

    • Additionally, it has been announced that President-elect Donald Trump will nominate individuals with records of racism and religious bigotry to senior positions of government. These include Jeff Sessions (Attorney General), who was denied a federal judgeship in 1986 for his "gross insensitivity to questions of race," and General Michael Flynn (National Security Advisor), who publicly described Islamism as a "vicious cancer" inside the body of all Muslims that "has to be excised."

Share on Social Media

     

Email Issues?

If you don't see your verification email and / or wish to expedite signing the pledge, please email Prof. Brian Thoms from your CI email account.

Contact

For any questions or concerns, please contact Prof. Blake Gillespie.