Letters to the Editor, Opinion

Letter to the Editor: unfair treatment of STAND

Dear Editor,

For the past few years, the leaders and residents of Overtown have been asking University of Miami President Donna Shalala to sign a Community Benefits Agreement in return for the millions of dollars of support the UM Life Science and Technology Park is receiving from their low-income community.

S.T.A.N.D. (Students Toward A New Democracy), a University of Miami student organization, has supported the Overtown community in this struggle on campus and off. Currently, both S.T.A.N.D., as an organization, and individual student members of S.T.A.N.D., are being targeted, censored and hassled by the university administration. A small group of administrators are threatening to shut down the organization, claiming that the groups’ use of harmless, non-permanent children’s sidewalk chalk was an act of vandalism. Individual students have been called in for “on demand” meetings with deans; one had his course registration held up. I have seen chalk messages on campus from many student organizations and I have never heard of them receiving the same level of disciplinary action, suggesting that different standards are being applied for this group. Administrative hassling of students for their civic participation sends a chill through not only S.T.A.N.D., but the entire campus. As a professor on the University of Miami campus, I am appalled by such actions carried out in the name of our university. These proceedings fly in the face of our responsibilities as a respected educational institution and an important member of the South Florida community. Universities thrive only when they encourage the free exchange of ideas. The University of Miami should support freedom of speech on campus and encourage student engagement in the larger community, even when the message and civic involvement are critical of university actions or policies. Anything less shortchanges our students, campus and community.

Submitted by Linda Belgrave, associate professor in the Department of Sociology.


April 17, 2011

Reporters

The Miami Hurricane

Student newspaper at the University of Miami


Around the Web
  • Miami Herald
  • UM News
  • HurricaneSports

Before Daniel Carter decided to sign with the Pittsburgh Panthers out of St. Thomas Aquinas, the fou ...

Lots of nuggets on new UM quarterback Tate Martell, the fallout and Jarren Williams’ reaction: ▪ Whe ...

Katie Meier is a legend at Duke. Her photo hangs in the concourse at Cameron Indoor Arena. She was t ...

New University of Miami head coach Manny Diaz was asked on the radio the morning after he was hired, ...

Jalen Hurts is off the market — and he’s not making his way to South Florida. The former Alabama Cri ...

Miami Transplant Institute performed 681 transplants during 2018, setting a new national record in k ...

Jazz aficionados launch new video series by sharing invaluable performance techniques. ...

Gisela Vega, the former associate director of LGBTQA Initiatives at Florida International University ...

With new “personas” allowing for a more personalized mobile experience, the redesigned University of ...

Teams of scholars will use U-LINK grants to examine ways to reduce opportunity gaps and biases in mu ...

Miami released its 2019 football schedule highlighted by a season-opening matchup against Florida in ...

University of Miami Athletics announced Thursday that ESPN reporter and UM alumna Allison Williams w ...

University of Miami head women's volleyball coach Jose "Keno" Gandara announced Monda ...

After a weekend bye, the Miami women's basketball team resumes action Thursday evening at 7 p.m ...

University of Miami Athletics announced Monday that it will host its fifth annual Celebration of Wom ...

TMH Twitter
About TMH

The Miami Hurricane is the student newspaper of the University of Miami in Coral Gables, Fla. The newspaper is edited and produced by undergraduate students at UM and is published weekly in print on Tuesdays during the regular academic year.