A Message from President James E. Clark After Protests, the Work Toward Change Must Continue

Sunday, June 7, 2020

The SC State family mourns the loss of yet another African-American at the hands of individuals in positions of authority who show disregard for the life of another human being. Yet, unfortunately, this is not new to many who, over 50 years ago, walked our campus and witnessed such disregard. The result was the loss of three young African American men on a campus dedicated to uplifting our communities through higher education. This has become known as the Orangeburg Massacre.

Pough12We understand and support the peaceful, nonviolent expressions of speech and discontent that thousands across our nation and the world have exhibited each day. Black Lives Matter. Nonviolent protest has been at the core of the racial progress we have made in recent years. And while racism cannot be tolerated in a society that is to progress, we do understand that we still have “miles to go before we sleep.” A message to us all and especially to our Bulldog Family is, when you join in whatever style of protest you choose, remember to remain safe.

Long after protests have subsided, we will still need to come together as a people, as communities, as neighbors with the determination to work together to resolve our differences, gain understanding, and address our grievances in an effort to move forward in creating a better society for us all. That time is upon us now, and the challenge to work toward developing solutions will continue to be an important part of what the SC State family is all about.

With Bulldog Tenacity,

James E. Clark
South Carolina State University