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On Martese Johnson's arrest: letters from the community

This page will be updated as new submissions come in.


UNITED FOR A LIVING WAGE: In solidarity with Black Dot protests

We, the members of Workers and Students United for a Living Wage, stand in solidarity with the Black Dot protests and organizing that followed Martese Johnson’s assault and arrest by Virginia Alcoholic Beverage Control officers last Wednesday, March 18. The violence done to Johnson, and the community’s response since then, are evidence of systemic inequalities and injustices that characterize life on Grounds for many members of U.Va.’s staff, student body and faculty.

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EASTON: Empathy is critical in reacting to Johnson's arrest

In the last few days, amongst a group of friends, I've heard a wide variety of responses to the arrest of Martese Johnson. Some lament a rush to judgment before all the facts are known, or think the conversation should be left solely to law enforcement. Others argue that the real issue is the brutality of the Virginia Alcoholic Beverage Control toward students of all races. Many are simply frustrated by the déjå vu that accompanies reporters, news trucks and cameramen swarming around Grounds, desperate to capture any evidence of our discomfort and distress.

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BROWN: The new U.Va.: building a change coalition across race, class, gender and sexuality

I am writing as a concerned and committed alumnus. Recent incidents on Grounds have shocked and disturbed the community. Moreover, they have signaled the need for collective contemplation, direct action and a commitment to socio-cultural, political and ideological change. In other words, the changes the University must undergo are totalizing. Age-old traditions, attitudes and practices must be forgone and they must be replaced with new customs, values and traditions that speak to our evolving ideals.

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LETTER: Remove law enforcement powers from the ABC

To the Editor:

I am a third-year law student at the University of Virginia School of Law, and also attended U.Va. for my undergraduate education. I write in support of a bill proposed by Del. Benjamin L. Cline that would remove law enforcement powers from the Virginia Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control. Del. Cline has stated that he is “always willing to advocate for it in the future if there appears to be a need, and there does appear to be a need.”

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BLACK DOT: What Martese's arrest means for us

Will this University community survive?

Will the University withstand the lash of the whip of incident after incident as it terrorizes the hearts of thousands of students? Moreover, how can the black community heal during this crisis with our security, our humanity at stake? We must put an end to this Jeffersonian tradition of racial injustice.

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