May

9

Administration Releases Statements On Hate Crime And Athlete Twitters

Written by

Update: Athletic Director M. Dianne Murphy and Coach Pete Mangurian have released their own statement; their letter is after the jump.

Update #2: Aaaand another one, from OMA. Also after the jump.

Deans Valentini, Goldfarb, Awn, and Director of Athletics M. Dianne Murphy have just released a statement to the Columbia community on the recent hate crime. In the letter, the administration condemns “harassment, mistreatment and hateful language based on race, gender, sexual orientation, affiliation or other identities,” and states that students involved will be both investigated by the NYPD and subject to an in-school judicial process. The deans also very vaguely address the “social media messages reportedly posted by some students” (a reference to the generally offensive Twitter accounts of some students that we posted about yesterday) and insist that they “are addressing this matter aggressively with the individuals involved.” Read the full letter below.

Dear students,

As educators and leaders of a diverse learning community, we are deeply concerned when racism, sexism, homophobia and incivility—whether in words, actions or posts of any kind—target individuals or groups. Such behavior violates our Community Principles: http://www.studentaffairs.columbia.edu/comdev/principles.

For all members of Columbia University, harassment, mistreatment and hateful language based on race, gender, sexual orientation, affiliation or other identities are unacceptable and hurt every one of us. We all are committed to a campus environment which values and supports each individual in an atmosphere that is caring and respectful.

When a bias incident is reported, we move quickly to investigate the matter and ensure that all involved students are treated fairly and are supported throughout the process. This has been the main focus immediately following Sunday’s report, and we must honor and protect the wishes of victims. After an investigation by the New York Police Department, and in addition to any pending outside legal process, CC/SEAS students involved are also subject to a judicial process through the Dean’s Discipline process. For a fuller understanding of our Bias Response, please read the brochure: http://www.studentaffairs.columbia.edu/sites/dsa/files/handbooks/BiasProtocolBrochure.pdf.

We ask that you respect the privacy of all individuals involved and allow us to investigate thoroughly and act according to our protocols and procedures. Speculation based on limited or inaccurate information reported in the press, or anonymous rumor, serves no one well and is detrimental to the wellbeing of those involved as well as to our community as a whole. Senior administrators from Student Affairs and from the Athletics Program, with complete support of university leadership, are working together and treating this matter with the seriousness it deserves.

With respect to social media messages reportedly posted by some students, we share fully in the belief that offensive messages in any form are unacceptable and fall far beneath the standards of civility and mutual respect we expect of all our students, including student athletes who represent Columbia. We are addressing this matter aggressively with the individuals involved. We also believe that broad generalizations about any group are unfair and hurtful, and we unfortunately have seen that social media has too often become a forum for such offensive comments. Every one of us is responsible to this community, and we ask that you affirm the values that call for us to treat each other with respect and dignity. Let us commit to using our freedom of expression to promote civil dialogue and to appreciate our greatest strength—our diversity. We understand the deep hurt, disappointment, and anger and are committed to supporting and collaborating with all of our students in addressing these things in our community and how we will move forward together. Now is the time for all of us to reach out to one another with compassion and understanding.

James J. Valentini,
Dean of Columbia College and Vice President for Undergraduate Education

Donald Goldfarb,
Interim Dean, Fu Foundation School of Engineering and Applied Science

Peter J. Awn,
Dean, School of General Studies

M. Dianne Murphy,
Director of Intercollegiate Athletics and Physical Education

From Athletics:

Dear students,

In addition to joining the statement sent to you earlier by Columbia’s undergraduate deans, we feel that it is important for us to address the campus community directly and independently.

Our athletics program is greatly disappointed by the language and sentiment expressed online by a select few Columbia student-athletes.

These comments are not representative of the more than 700 Columbia undergraduate students who participate in our athletics program, or the coaches, administrators and staff who serve the University and our campus community.

Columbia Athletics is steadfast in its support of, and appreciation for, diversity on campus and in the world around us. Personal expressions of racism, sexism, homophobia, anti-Semitism and any other form of bigotry are abhorrent. This is disheartening and embarrassing for everyone involved. We respect and support the University’s goals and ideals of acceptance and tolerance of all members of the campus community.

We are addressing this inexcusable behavior with the individuals involved. We will also address this with each of our 31 varsity teams. All of our coaches, administrators and staff understand and appreciate how important it is for everyone on campus to communicate and work together in a civil and respectful manner.

We are working closely with our campus partners to make sure that we are diligent and proactive in our response to this matter. The athletics program is committed to providing additional resources to continue to educate our student-athletes about the importance of respect, civility and inclusivity in everything we do. Moving forward, we will continue to reinforce these important values that are so vital to our University community.

On behalf of the members of the Department of Intercollegiate Athletics and Physical Education and the Columbia Football program, we offer our sincere apologies to members of the greater Columbia community.

M. Dianne Murphy,
Director, Intercollegiate Athletics and Physical Education

Pete Mangurian,
Patricia and Shepard Alexander Head Coach of Football

From OMA:

Dear Students,

Thank you to those who were able to meet with me yesterday. By now, you probably have read the email from our undergraduate deans and director of Columbia Athletics.

We want to affirm that we are here for everyone who has been impacted, particularly those in our campus community who may feel particularly targeted. We acknowledge that moments as this bring to the surface the long and complicated history of how racism has impacted people of Asian and Pacific Islander descent, particularly in this country.

We hope that the Office of Multicultural Affairs and all of our Student Affairs colleagues can be a support and resource for you. Please also know our colleagues across the University and your fellow students, including your advising deans and RAs, also are here to offer support and any assistance needed.

Particularly through collaborative programming and work through the Office of Multicultural Affairs and Student Affairs, we hope – in partnerships with students – to continue educating our whole community about and addressing systemic oppression, social responsibility, and accountability to each other.

Sincerely,
Dean Aquino
Office of Multicultural Affairs
Division of Student Affairs

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74 Comments

  1. The Filthiest Bandie Alive  

    Did anyone else read the first paragraph and think it was gonna be about Orgo Night flyers again?

    Also football sucks.

  2. Anonymous

    A step, but wishes they addressed the Asian and Asian Pacific American Community as well.

  3. Hov  

    What better way to say goodbye to Ke$ho than a grand finale shitstormpocalypse?

  4. Anonymous  

    If Pete Mangurian still has a job by graduation, it's a complete travesty

    • The real issue is...  

      Dr. Diane Murphy has surrounded herself by "Yes men".

      She is constantly giving the football team what they want and the 5 assistant athletics directors below her essentially coddle her and prevent any harsh truths from reaching her. This lead to her buying all the football players #RMFL shirts. They just told her it meant "Roaree My Favorite Lion" when almost everyone else knew it mean "Mother F*@king Lion".

      On top of that when she was approached by an All-American athlete and asked why she (Dr. Murphy) didn't include that sport in a speech she gave at a dinner appreciating athletic achievements, Dr. Murphy responded "Until you accomplish something, you have not right to complain".

      She has her head buried in the sand and that is the real problem with the athletics department.

      She should be the one not returning next year. She is unprofessional and does a poor job at fostering the right kind of behavior because she does not exhibit it herself.

  5. Queen Victoria

    Nothing is so shocking as the incivility of ruffians! Have these scoundrels no manners?!

  6. CC '14  

    Well, I didn't expect a meaningful statement from the administration. But, wow. What a meaningless statement.

    • They've been studying, since...  

      I guess 1984 is going to be part of the core next year?

    • Worth pointing out

      The Barnard admin actually gave a good statement about the cheating, saying that, yes, a class was investigated and the professor added a final, but no students have yet been accused of cheating. Columbia, on the other hand, just spins and bullshits whenever they can. They even hung up on the New York Times during the whole Nutella thing.

      • Stop.  

        Barnard < Columbia. You're missing the point of this whole hate-crime scandal, too.

      • But...  

        ...you don't know what you're talking about. Statement above is clear about its purpose: These actions are bad; we're on it; don't believe everything you read and rush to judgment. Let the judicial process work. Consider who you'll offend with your nasty comments. And about Nutella, duh, many news orgs went ahead and repeated the #s first quoted even after being told that those #s were wrong, hence the later Univ statement.

    • Anonymous  

      "in addition to any pending outside legal process, CC/SEAS students involved are also subject to a judicial process through the Dean’s Discipline process."

      You're going to have to excuse me if I find a felony investigation by the NYPD to be a tad more serious.

  7. dirty mike

    how do you know that "social media messages reportedly posted by some students" doesn't refer to unmoderated comments such as the ones left on bwog about the hate crime?

  8. CC '13, non-football player athlete  

    can we take a minute to lol at the fact that M. Diane Murphy BLEW UP at the womens' rowing team for drinking earlier this semester?

    AND: she fucking found pictures of their "crime" via women rowers' social media accounts. which really points to the athletics department deliberately turning a blind eye to this.

  9. WTF  

    even is a "bias crime"?

  10. CC 15  

    It is a really disappointing statement made on the part of the administration. Hopefully donors to the athletics department threaten to withhold donations until Athletics takes this far more seriously.

    Just my 2 cents.

    • Anonymous  

      that's hopeful. But it's naive. Football is the moneymaker via donations.

      • Anonymous  

        true, for athletics. i'm hopeful that with the core fund, though, columbia college itself will get a lot more funding and not be so dependent on athletics (do we get any of that anyways?). would it really be so bad to stop recruiting athletes and spending so much on it? to focus on learning over catching/throwing/bouncing/kicking a ball?

        • Anonymous  

          doubt it, judging by:

          (a) the day of giving results—Athletics counting as a different "school"
          (b) Campbell's Sports center or whatever football thing is at Baker--see Mangurian's tweets of how luxurious it is
          (c) the donation form on columbia.edu, which lets you direct your money to different projects, incl. football, athletics, the campbell's sports center.

    • Anonymous

      Why would you want alumni to withhold donations because one student did something dumb? That would punish literally the entire Columbia community.

  11. Anonymous

    Fabulous statement by the administration. These were two students name calling slurs on a city street. THEY embarrassed the university, not the other way around. The university and the athletics department accepted this kid. He should be on his knees begging for forgiveness that he will never hurt and embarrass an entire community again by his sole actions.

  12. Anonymous  

    Made M Diane Murphy resign. This is an embarrassment to the entire community.

  13. Derp Derp  

    .... Let's also sack Prezbo as he was transitively responsible for the players' actions through his supervisory relationship with Mangurian.

  14. Anonymous  

    Weird thing is that at least someone working for Columbia Football knew about the Twitter accounts and was all about promoting them

    another gallery of tweets from the official Columbia Football account
    http://imgur.com/a/BDiza

  15. Ding A. Ling

    I, for one, am satisfied with the statement.

  16. Ho Wang

    Great statement.

  17. Sports  

    your just mad cuz your nerds #imadouche #ihatenerds

  18. Anonymous  

    "We also believe that broad generalizations about any group are unfair and hurtful"

    What if these broad generalizations are true? Statements like "athletes have higher gpas than non-athletes" are broad generalizations but no one discounts them or finds them "unfair". That's because they're based on statistics and perceived postives about a group. I guess what the deans are trying to say is that negative statements about a group hurt those that are not representative of it. But does that make them unfair? Football players may on average be more racist than non-football players at Columbia. Just because not all of them are, doesn't mean something about the culture of that group needs to change.


    Also, so glad to see Kevsho leave this summer. He does nothing to help students, and has led to a culture where free speech is suppressed (see orgo night). I don't agree with the tweets whatsoever, but why is it that he only gets involved when a member of the community reaches out to a higher authority about "discrimination"

  19. Anonymous  

    There was an email sent out from the Office of Multiculture Affairs. Here is the full text:

    Dear Students,

    Thank you to those who were able to meet with me yesterday. By now, you probably have read the email from our undergraduate deans and director of Columbia Athletics.

    We want to affirm that we are here for everyone who has been impacted, particularly those in our campus community who may feel particularly targeted. We acknowledge that moments as this bring to the surface the long and complicated history of how racism has impacted people of Asian and Pacific Islander descent, particularly in this country.

    We hope that the Office of Multicultural Affairs and all of our Student Affairs colleagues can be a support and resource for you. Please also know our colleagues across the University and your fellow students, including your advising deans and RAs, also are here to offer support and any assistance needed.

    Particularly through collaborative programming and work through the Office of Multicultural Affairs and Student Affairs, we hope – in partnerships with students – to continue educating our whole community about and addressing systemic oppression, social responsibility, and accountability to each other.

    Sincerely,
    Dean Aquino
    Office of Multicultural Affairs
    Division of Student Affairs

  20. athlete alum

    guys, we need to fire m dianne.

  21. CC'14  

    "Our athletics program is greatly disappointed by the language and sentiment expressed online by a select few Columbia student-athletes."

    Bull*hit. You followed them on twitter.

    • Anonymous

      what makes you think the coach had time to watch 100 twitter accounts and try to turn an entire program around?? The few individuals who have been named for their horrible tweets were either
      A: recruited before coach Mangurian was hired
      B: deliberately did not follow the rules and hid their twitters from all administrative eyes. AKA when told to give their social media information to the athletic department they failed to do so

      The point of a person such as coach Mangurian to have a twitter is to tweet- not follow what others are saying, it is used as a PR tool to help escalate the reputation of the program.

      With this being said punishing this program as a whole is not necessary in my opinion. These were moments of bad judgement by young college students- and lets be honest we've all done stupid things that we regret. I think that this is a learning experience for the entire student body.

      • That's BS -- you're telling me it has to be a "learning experience" to not put out rascist and homophobic statements? These are (allegedly) Ivy leauge students, not kindergardners.

        • Anonymous

          @John Dean
          EXACTLY they are ivy league students- so shouldn't we blame admissions for letting them go to school here they're the ones who admitted them to the school.

          To clarify: when i said learning experience i was talking about learning about thinking about what you say before you say it.

          Learn every fact before you start accusing or your going to come off as ignorant... oops too late

          • isn't that a little hypocritical  

            if you don't think the coach could watch 100 twitter accounts (if that many), do you think that admissions could screen 35000 and watch 1500? why would we hold admissions accountable for these students' actions and words? clearly the admissions process may be need to be rethought but let's not play the blame game

  22. hello

    100% agree. Let's see some resignations.

  23. Three separate emails?  

    Adminstrator overreach threatens me far more than old tweets.

  24. Dear Coach Mangurian,

    What did you know and when did you know it?

  25. Hypocrisy in  

    People getting mad about stereotyping and hate by stereotyping and hating all atheletes...
    Classy Bwog.

  26. Anonymous  

    I find it ironic that the tweets of 7-8 football players is a much bigger story than the 70-80 people that cheated in the Barnard scandal. I guess when there's names involved everyone wants to jump in and comment, but when people are anonymous nobody cares what they do.

    • Anonymous

      i do not find that ironic because that's not what irony is and some people cheating in college is not as important as a bunch of dudes being openly racist and hateful

      • CC '13

        Cheating is very wrong and should not be condoned. Neither should a bunch of dudes openly saying racist remarks. But you're comparing apples to oranges here.

  27. hello

    Guys, everybody chill out. You're all acting lin-sane.

  28. Fredo Santana

    Somewhere in Southside Chi-raq, Keith Cozart is sitting in his grandma's house, probably on house arrest, celebrating the fact that, while he may not yet be finally rich, his ad-libs have reach infamous status amongst the youth of the Ivy League. #3hunnad.

    Seriously though, if you're using Chief Keef ad lib hash tags on Twitter (even ironically) you're setting yourself up for disaster.

  29. Anonymous

    bwog wont let me add the link but i encourage everyone to look at coach mangurian's blog- there is a statement regarding this whole mess and it deserves to be seen.

  30. Anonymous  

    My post didnt work earlier ill try again -- who cares? so what he made remarks about the fact that hes asian? sterotypes exist and everyone thinks about them. How is this a hate crime? This is ridiculous. He has the right to say whatever he wants. Also, the whole twitter thing is absurb. Who cares what they tweet. They can tweet whatever they want, they didnt say anything bad either. Everyone since 7th grade has said "thats gay" and "you fag." The fact that this is a hate crime is beyond me.

  31. Anonymous  

    sterotypes are generally true--just putting that out there

  32. Katherine  

    I was one of the ball girls this past football season (and have been for the past three years), and I find it atrociously hypocritical that Coach Mangurian can express disappointment in his players for this type of behavior, yet no one complains about the things he's said on the field. I will never forget the day when, after a contentious call, he yelled back at the ref, “You like f***ing me in the ass like that, don’t you? That makes you feel real f***ing good, doesn’t it?” I almost emailed Diane Murphy after that game, but decided not to because I knew (know) my concerns would (will) be dismissed. Blame it on sports culture, blame it on being in the heat of the moment, blame it on whatever you like, but if we want to talk about who has “a real social problem,” let’s get real. Regime change begins at home, Mr. Mangurian. When I see you on the field next season, I expect better.

    • Anonymous

      clearly you haven't been around a lot of football coaches... that kind of talk is completely normal on sidelines you should hear professional nfl coaches (wayyy worse).. even high school coaches talk like that. Get with it before you make a statement like that please. it is what it is and what it always has been

      • Katherine  

        Hey, it's like I said in my post above, I know that this is a thing for a lot of sports, not just football. But if it makes you feel better to aggressively discuss sodomy with your refs when they make a bad call, by all means, be my guest.

  33. Mad Man  

    Happy to see that some of the racist thuggery is being cleaned up around here.

  34. conundrummed

    Sheesh the unmitigated hostilty toward student athletes at Columbia is nearly as offensive as the alleged incident. I have a Modest Proposal: only athletes of Asian heritage should be recruited for the football team.

  35. conundrummed

    On 2nd though, the composition of the football team should be entirely Asian heritage and 50% straight and 50% LGBT.

  36. conundrummed

    Geez, what was I thinking?! Of course it should be at least 50% women, too, to guard against the perpetuation of misogyny inherent in our male supramecist society.

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