Thursday afternoon, Charlene Sumlin posted a picture of a letter the Sumlin family received, threatening Texas A&M’s head coach and calling him a n-----.
Let’s call this disgusting letter what it is: Hate. Unabashed and unequivocal, something that should not tolerated at Texas A&M University. While we hope this letter was not written by an Aggie, it is time every single student at Texas A&M takes a stand against those who fundamentally believe things like race, sexuality or religion define you or make you less of a person.
The Battalion calls on Texas A&M’s administration to amend the Aggie Honor Code: An Aggie does not hate, lie, cheat or steal, or tolerate those who do. If this amendment cannot be made, then let us as students adopt it into our hearts.
While most Aggies who attend this great school do not hate others, there are those who do. It is no longer enough to merely say you are not racist or abhor those who are.
Last year there was a case of students yelling racial slurs at a group of high school students. This semester alone, a group of students drew racial insults on a Smart TV. Now, this letter.
The only way to fix a problem is to acknowledge it, understand it and take concrete steps to address it.
As it is with most things in life, it starts with the small things. When you hear that passing comment, masked as a joke, containing racial epithets, don’t laugh. Take it a step further and call it out. If you see someone who is uncomfortable by actions making them feel unwanted, walk up and help them feel at home on this campus. When you see the small aspects of hate rear its ugly head, dig it up at the root.
We can no longer live in a society that accepts these small acts of discrimination and division. It’s what divides us, makes us forget we are all citizens of a great country. Times like these are when we put aside our differences and stand firm against an act of evil.
As students, current and former, we can no longer tolerate blatant acts of hate, too. Send the Sumlin family a letter, an email or simply a tweet letting them know they are welcome on this campus, no matter what you think of Kevin Sumlin’s ability to coach.
Sports is not an avenue to express racism or any other aspect of hatred.
To all who will come to learn of this awful letter, know that students who express hate do not represent the values of the university. It is not a place that turns you away because of the color of your skin. While there are those who claim to be true Aggies, yet harbor hate in their hearts, know the core values we ascribe to are in direct contrast with hate in any form.
Texas A&M is a place where all who come to seek truth and knowledge can find it. You’ll probably have the best four, five or six, if you’re lucky, years of your life here. You’ll meet amazing people who might become lifelong friends. Have the best experiences of your life.
There is hope. While the school we attend, the region we live and the country we are citizens of contain the roots of atrocity and hate, every day we can and are moving toward a brighter tomorrow.
As always, The Battalion will continue to report this story as it develops. In the meantime, remind someone today they are welcome, accepted and loved here at Texas A&M.
This editorial is the opinion of the majority of The Battalion’s editorial board, and is the responsibility of the editor-in-chief.