Following my Congressional testimony
Dear members of the MIT community,
As you may have heard, the US House Committee on Education and the Workforce called me to testify today on antisemitism. You can read my statement here.
In the eight weeks since October 7, students, faculty and staff have shared with me a wide range of views on the tragic situation in the Middle East and on its repercussions on our campus. Individuals have confided their families' stories and their experiences at MIT.
Every conversation has taught me something important.
As we find a way forward as a community, I’m inspired to see positive action coming from all quarters, including the many efforts Chancellor Nobles highlighted yesterday as part of “Standing Together Against Hate.”
I also hope we can all reflect on a remarkable letter circulated by a group of faculty, already co-signed by hundreds across MIT. It says in part:
Despite these tragedies, we can model the kind of future we wish for ourselves and our students. We must maintain and strengthen the bonds of friendship and collegiality that cut across political, ethnic, and religious differences, especially in the face of the rising tides of violence and hatred abroad and on university campuses. Our fate here at MIT can and must be different. Through living and working together we can become wiser and more compassionate.
I share this sentiment entirely. I hope you will join with me in standing up against hate of any kind, anywhere, but especially within our own community – and in reaching out to anyone who may be struggling with the burden of recent events. After these past weeks, I know many of you are exhausted and hurting. We have to make room for each other, in our hearts and in our daily lives. We cannot and must not let events in the world drive us apart, or erode our respect for each other’s humanity, or thwart the great mission we’re here to pursue together.