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Undergraduate Senate introduces resolution supporting faculty targeted in racist attacks

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Undergraduate senators introduced a working resolution to support faculty targeted in racist attacks during their Tuesday meeting. 

The resolution comes in light of an ad campaign by the David Horowitz Freedom Center targeting assistant professor of political science Hakeem Jefferson. It calls for the University to publicly condemn these kinds of attacks as racist, support the professors being targeted and provide them with mental health support and protection from future attacks.

Senator Gabby Crooks ’23, who co-authored the resolution, said she hopes it will help prevent future racist attacks on faculty. And even if such attacks do occur, the resolution — which will be voted on next Tuesday — will make sure that the University is responsive, Crooks said.

“Black professors have felt like they have to tiptoe within their own classes,” but “Black intellectual thought should thrive” in their classrooms, said Senator Emily Nichols ’23 in support of the resolution. “Is Stanford really committed to Black intellectual thought thriving at this university?”

Senators Amira Dehmani ’24 and Darryl Thompson ’23 also introduced the Frosh Representation Act, which would establish a process for up to three members of the Frosh Council to be appointed as ex-officio members of the Senate. Frosh ex-officio members would have all the responsibilities and privileges that Senators have, except voting privileges.

“It’s very important that [frosh] views are on the table,” Thompson said.

If passed, the program would begin in the winter, and if the Senate finds the program successful, it could be expanded to grant ex-officio status to the sophomore, junior and senior class cabinets in the spring.

The Senate has recently been working to increase its representation of students from other class years. The introduction of the Frosh Representation Act comes after a successful initiative by the Senate to include the voices of transfer students in its legislature. On Tuesday, Kyle Becerra ’24 was introduced as the Undergraduate Senate’s first ex-officio transfer student member.

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Julia Biswas is a writer for the News section. Contact her at news 'at' stanforddaily.com.