FAMU is like a family, so why target us?

FSU Integration Statue located near Woodward Parking Garage. Photo courtesy: Imani Ruff

Tallahassee residents sparked an outrage after leaked information revealed that Florida State student Calvin Stowe-Ortiz, a member of the Patriot Front neo-Nazi group, planned to distribute anti-Black documents on the campus of Florida A&M University.

Calvin Stow-Ortiz, referred to as, “Arthur FL,” is not only a member of the white supremacist organization Patriot Front but is also the stepson of Tampa Police Department officer Antonio Ortiz-Saldana.

In an email obtained by Our Tallahassee, the vice president of student affairs and dean of students states, “FSU also prides itself on protecting freedom of expression and speech and the right to peacefully assemble. Individuals are entitled to personal beliefs, even if they are despicable and antithetical to our values as a university.”

Charity Graham, a FAMU alumni and first-year FSU masters student states, “It makes me wonder what will it take for the safety of students to be prioritized rather than the freedom of basically hate speech,” as a response to the Dean’s email.

“I feel worried because if they are going to a Black institution putting up hatred signs, how do they feel about us Black students here at FSU?” another Black student at FSU said.

Patriot Front members assisted in acts of racism and contributed to the destruction of a George Floyd statue in June 2021 and the destruction of an Arthur Ashe mural later in October.

On February 1, the first day of Black History Month, six historically Black colleges and universities around the country had to evacuate campuses due to receiving bomb threats from some of the members of this neo-Nazi group.