Dear Members of the University of Virginia Young Alumni Community:
This weekend’s events have been both disturbing and heartbreaking. While we support the First Amendment rights to free speech and assembly, we are disheartened by incidents occurring in conjunction with the “Unite the Right” rally. We reject acts of terror, intolerance, and hate. As President Sullivan shared in an earlier statement, “We strongly condemn intimidating and abhorrent behavior intended to strike fear and sow division in our community. Acts of violence are not protected by the First Amendment.”
Our time at The University dared us to take our lives into our own hands, to take responsibility for our actions, to explore our potential, to inspire others, all the while knowing full well that in the end, whether we failed or succeeded, we alone were accountable. We, through our actions, have become ambassadors of honor and integrity. We have embraced lifelong learning and shared our passion for the pursuit of truth. We have become strong leaders, who aren’t afraid to face controversy, but show tolerance and empathy in search for solutions to problems. That is what it means to be a member of the University of Virginia alumni community.
The Young Alumni Council embraces diversity, inclusion, and mutual respect. While we understand differing perspectives exist on key issues, we believe in constructive dialogue and do not support extremism or violence of any form. Our thoughts and prayers are with the victims of violence this weekend. If you are feeling confused or upset, you are not alone.
To this end, we will be collecting feedback from the young alumni community to share with the Alumni Association and the University administration. Please send your thoughts to firstname.lastname@example.org by Friday, August 18th so our collective voice can be heard.
The Young Alumni Council