Larry Clark: An open letter on race

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LSUS Chancellor Larry Clark made an official statement Tuesday afternoon regarding a proposed merger with Louisiana Tech University. (Stacey Tinsley/Press-Tribune)

Dear Pilot community:

This is a difficult time for our nation. In the midst of a pandemic, our country must once again confront the long-term effects of racial injustice and systemic inequality that too often is drawn along racial and/or socio-economic lines.

At LSU Shreveport we unequivocally reject hatred, racism, and bigotry. The university’s Commitment to Community, which provides our guiding ethos, encourages us to hold ourselves and others to the highest standards of academic, personal, and social integrity. We must practice justice, equality, and compassion in human relations. We must respect the dignity of all persons and accept individual differences.

These are principles that we at LSU Shreveport must take very seriously. LSUS is committed to the goal of assuring a safe, welcoming, and nurturing community that celebrates diversity. Diversity makes us all better. It allows us to broaden our worldview, overcome prejudices, and creates a more vibrant and tightly woven social fabric.

To those of you within the LSUS community trying to make sense of the events unfolding in our nation, know that you are not alone. We must all take stock of what is happening and shed light on injustice and inequality in all its forms if we can ever hope to combat it. We encourage our students, faculty, and staff to look inward, and make use of our counseling services if you feel overwhelmed or need additional support.

We believe that everyone has the right to live in a society where they feel safe and where they have an equal voice. We believe that there is a real opportunity at this time to look at where we are as a country, how far we have come, and how far we still need to go. At LSU Shreveport, we have an opportunity to look at ourselves, and each other, and reaffirm our commitment to stand up for what is right for all.

Let us move forward together,

Larry Clark, Chancellor

Louisiana State University at Shreveport