Statement Against Hate
As the writer of Ecclesiastes 1:18 tells us, grief accompanies wisdom and sorrow accompanies knowledge. As the speed of communication about world tragedies and events escalates nearly exponentially, we become saturated with the knowledge, and consequent sorrow, of too many crimes against humanity to name. We reel with the news of humankind in our neighborhoods and around the world being murdered, enslaved, tortured, forcibly removed from their lands, unfairly imprisoned, physically and psychologically violated, and assaulted. As if this isn’t bad enough, it feels like a personal assault when people with whom we identify in some way are targeted based upon their characteristics including, but not limited to heritage, race, religion, ethnicity, sexual orientation, nationality, age, ability, and the like.
Like sand, an emotional deluge of shock, sadness, helplessness, hopelessness, anger, and righteous indignation washes over us, sometimes suffocating us, as we are traumatized anew by each assault upon our conscience. These repeated assaults create in us a sense of moral injury, because as members of a faith-filled community, if we know nothing else, we know in the depth of our souls that God has created us all, and has created us all equally, of equal worth, and of equal worthiness of respect and humane treatment. Not only do our hearts grieve and our souls weep with every instance of sorrow, we at Pepperdine University unambiguously denounce the commission of all crimes against humanity.
Violence and poor treatment of humankind is not in the tradition of Christ, and we stand against any such events. We remain ever committed to peace, justice and mercy. We are committed to being led by dunamis, the power of God, to connect, support, equip, and educate members of our community to cultivate and sustain a unified Pepperdine community as we engage in endeavors of purpose, service, and leadership. As always, we invite you to pray with us toward this end that we may continue our efforts to be a light to this world.