Colleagues & Friends of the Wake Forest Biology Department,
I know you have already seen the statements from Nathan Hatch and Erica Still on the need for the Wake Forest University community to stand against racism. As Chair of Biology I don’t imagine that I can speak for all members of the department. But I don’t feel that it is a time to stay silent. The historian Ibram X. Kendi, Professor at American University, argued in his 2019 book How to Be an Antiracist that the statement “I’m not a racist” is a term of denial. He wrote:
One either allows racial inequities to persevere, as a racist, or confronts racial inequities, as an antiracist.”
This moment in U.S. history is challenging for all, but with this e-mail I want to acknowledge that these times are particularly challenging for our black friends, colleagues, and students and also that for them, the challenge is not new, but ongoing.
I know that many members of the Biology Department and friends of the department belong to scientific societies that are providing resources on antiracism, but if you need a place to start, I recommend a list you can find here:
I am personally working through:
Stay safe, everyone.
Susan Fahrbach, Ph.D.
Professor & Chair of Biology