A Message from the Chancellor
Thursday, January 7, 2021
The peaceful transfer of power is something that few of us ever consider. We assume that after an election, the president-elect and vice president-elect are sworn in on Jan. 20, then four years later, the process repeats itself. This nearly 250-year-old process has become routine and accepted by following the Constitution.
What we witnessed on Wednesday, Jan. 6, was not routine and not acceptable. Certainly, I never thought I’d see something like this in my lifetime. St. Louis Community College condemns the violent disruption of a normally peaceful ceremony of our governmental process. We acknowledge the hurt and disgust caused by yesterday’s reprehensible and unlawful actions. Last summer, those protesting racial inequality were met with rubber bullets, tear gas, and militarized weaponry; we saw none of that yesterday as the violent mob roamed around and inside the U.S. Capitol building desecrating and stealing property and posting their unlawful deeds on social media. As this nation grapples with race, the differences were jarring, and we are right in naming this injustice and voice our continued effort to work towards changing the obvious double standards.
For 59 years, the College has demonstrated its commitment and responsibility as the premiere hub for education, workforce development and a beacon for the community to safely debate and exchange ideas. We lead from our Core Values which include Respect for All and Integrity. Our commitment and responsibility to the St. Louis region has been non-partisan.
There’s no way to ignore what is happening. We’ve seen and heard constant coverage on television, radio and social media. At times, it is difficult to set boundaries and minimize exposure to stressful political images or coverage. If you are feeling overwhelmed or need someone to talk to, please visit stlcc.edu/counseling for a list of mental health resources offered at STLCC and in the surrounding community.
Post-pandemic, I am looking forward to a time when we can come together in a peaceful and constructive manner - even when we do not agree.
Jeff L. Pittman, Ph.D.
Chancellor, St. Louis Community College