Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Geology on Katehi

An open letter to the UC Davis community: We are members of the UCD Geology Department. We speak only for ourselves and no one else on campus. And to be certain, no one, neither the Davis Faculty Association, the English Department or the Physics Department, speaks for us. We are saddened by the events of November 18th, where our University failed in its mandate to support free speech and peaceful protest. The actions of the University on that day were wrong and do not reflect our values or our principles. This University has and should always be a place that welcomes diverse views and respects the right to protest. The pepper spraying of students exercising their fundamental rights should never have happened. The media have portrayed the voices of a minority among us as the voice of us all. And this minority voice has called for the resignation of Linda Katehi, our Chancellor. We disagree. Logic, reason and critical thinking—the very traits we try to instill in our students—are missing from this debate. There is no indication that Chancellor Katehi ordered the use of force exhibited by the campus police. If this simple fact holds following investigation, then there is no reason to call for the Chancellor’s resignation. Rather, there is every reason to call for this Chancellor to take every measure to make certain that this never happens at our university again. We support Linda Katehi as Chancellor and reject calls for her resignation. The Academic Senate should do the same.

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