Dear Commons Community,
140 Liberty University graduates plan to send back their diplomas to the evangelical school in Lynchburg, Virginia, to protest college president Jerry Falwell, Jr.’s support of President Donald Trump, which they say has left them “with shame and anger.” As reported in The Huffington Post:
“As of yesterday, more than 140 alumni members had expressed support for the “return your diploma” effort on Facebook after university President Jerry Falwell Jr. lauded Trump’s remarks on the recent white supremacist rallies in Charlottesville, Virginia, as “bold” and “truthful.” That praise came despite Trump laying blame for violence on both the rallying hate groups and counter-protesters.
“Anything other than strong condemnation from Trump [of the hate groups] is disappointing,” Georgia Hamann, a 2006 LU graduate and attorney in Phoenix, Arizona, who penned a letter to the school on behalf of the participating alumni’s behalf, told HuffPost on Sunday.
The group intends to mail the diplomas to Falwell’s office on Sept. 5, and it also seeks his removal as the school’s president. The letter on the group’s Facebook page says Falwell, son of the university’s founder, has failed to condemn “things which are patently against the religion he and LU claim.”
Those actions, the letter says, “have filled us with shame and anger as alums.”
“I think all of the alumni have been troubled by Jerry Falwell Jr.’s intense defense of Trump,” Hamann said.”
As an aside, Jerry Falwell, Jr. has also been asked by President Trump to head a White House task force on reforming the U.S. higher education system.