UCSD Department of Anthropology Graduate Student Statement of Support
The graduate students of the Anthropology Department stand in solidarity with the Black Student Union, their allies, and all those who have been affected by and/or are protesting against the recent racist incidents on and off campus. We condemn all racist and sexist acts with the understanding that such events are not isolated but are situated within a broader context of institutionalized inequality. UCSD administration, faculty, staff, and students must address these conditions. The BSU list of demands offers a constructive model for dismantling the institutional forces that limit the representation of and support for historically marginalized and disempowered groups in our university. We must hold the administration accountable for addressing the demands in a concrete and timely manner.
At this critical moment when substantial hikes in UC fees and tuition and the increasing privatization of the university system threaten to further restrict the representation of underprivileged groups in our campus community, we recognize the urgent need for structural change that can increase retention, yield, and access. Further, the BSU’s focus on increasing spaces that encourage students to interrogate issues of race, ethnicity, class, gender, and sexuality is crucial given proposed funding cuts to departments and programs that threaten to reduce the availability of such spaces. In the midst of this crisis, we strongly support measures designed to preserve and encourage critical thinking.
As we monitor the administration’s actions, we are compelled to reflect on the ways that we as students, faculty, and staff may also be implicated in institutional and interpersonal racism and have a responsibility to enact substantive change. The graduate students from the department of anthropology acknowledge that current events have incited a sense of fear and mistrust within the university. We reach out with empathy to all those affected and remain committed to addressing injustice as members of the campus community and as anthropologists. We would like to thank the organizers for their tireless work and dedication.