It has come to light that there are citizens of Tallahassee that feel that FAMU should be closed. The Tallahassee Democrat ran a letter to the editor in Monday’s paper stating just that.
The writer accused FAMU of being racist and incompetent.
The mere suggestion of closing an 116-year-old institution is a serious offense. And to dare question the quality of education students are receiving has nothing to do with the recent financial fiasco at FAMU. Professors are still teaching, students are still learning and assignments are still assigned.
To even entertain the idea that the closing of FAMU would solve anything would be an ineffective use of time.
The writer inferred that Florida A&M is a racist institution. There couldn’t be a more unfounded, ignorant statement. No one denies people within the university may hold racist or prejudice views, but This is the way of the world. Are their beliefs right? No. However, this does not reflect the character of an entire university.
Statistically speaking, FAMU is the most integrated university in the state of Florida, according to http://www.staugustine.com, http://www.polkonline.com and http://aad.english.ucsb.edu.
The numbers don’t lie.
It may seem as if FAMU is racist from an outside perspective, but using the writers criteria, a case can be made that Florida State is also a racist and even sexist university. When FSU was established, it was the Florida Female College and then the Florida State College for Women; white women. The only thing different about FSU’s admission policy today is that it admits white males and a small percentage of black students, of which the large majority are athletes. But no one would dare suggest closing its doors and cite racism as its primary offense.
One must present a very strong case when calling for the elimination of a historic institution. This writer did not.
While there are administrative officials that should be replaced and other changes that need to be made, FAMU does not need to be closed down. People can be replaced, the institutions can be improved.
Undoubtedly, the writer is someone who has never visited Florida A&M’s growing campus, has never had an extensive conversation with any of its prominent and proud alumni and has never taken the time to research and learn the university’s rich history. Only ignorance could have prompted a letter so venomous.
Robyn K. Mizelle for the Editorial Board.