Dear students, alumni, colleagues, community partners, our North Philadelphia neighbors, and other friends:
We, the Department of Sociology at Temple University, are heartbroken and outraged by the recent murders of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, and the many other people of color that have occurred at the hands of police or in the name of vigilantism over the years. In our work, we are deeply committed to attempting to understand, shed light on, and work toward dismantling the ways that overlapping systems of oppression and racism result in these senseless deaths. In carrying out our work, we urge action. This may take many forms, but we join you in protest, community activism, contributions to social justice organizations, and in our commitment to create inclusion in our own community. The racism and oppression faced by people of color and other marginalized groups in the U.S. must be relentlessly uncovered and vehemently confronted. We, as educators, must recognize our responsibilities to expose these systems of injustice and oppression even as we recognize our own roles in perpetuating them. We must listen to those who can help us change them. It is our plan in the coming weeks, months, and years, as a department, to create a space where we can promote this change. Please take advantage of the linked resources.