As a retired UCC minister I am increasingly concerned about the unresponsiveness of our major institutions to the crisis of climate change. I am in full support of the April action by Tufts students and alums, and wish to add my voice to the call to "Divest Tufts" from investment in fossil fuels. I plan to withhold donations to Tufts until I see progress in that direction. I will however consider a donation to a scholarship only fund, but I need to research that option.
Wednesday, May 6, 2015
I wish this movement had been active when I was at Tufts so I could have done more to support it! I am a proud Jumbo working in environmental advocacy, but Tufts's support of fossil fuels and treatment of students working for divestment makes me ashamed of my alma mater. As a school built on a former seashore (ask the geology professors!), Tufts leadership should be aware of how much the climate--both physically and politically--can change.
My mom (J '74, M '79) and grandfather (M '52) are both Tufts Alum. They instilled in me a strong passion for activism and creating social change. I came to Tufts because active citizenship is in its mission statement. However I quickly learned that Tufts as an institution, as a corporation, does not live up to the values in its mission and vision by any means. I will not donate to Tufts until it divests from fossil fuels, tobacco, guns, private prisons, and the Israeli occupation of Palestine. I will not donate to Tufts until it creates sustainable labor policies for all of its workers including its janitors and adjunct professors. I will not donate to Tufts until it actually practices the active citizenship that it preaches. I will not donate to Tufts until it lives up the values that attracted my mother, my grandfather and me to this school in the first place.
Tufts posits itself as an institution on the leading edge of both societal and technological developments, with a strong commitment to furthering the public interest. Divestment is a great opportunity to prove it- Tufts ought to be embracing this chance to take an early role in such a socially and environmentally conscious movement. Let's be the guiding light. Pax et lux.
I refuse to support an institution that doesn't support my future or the world we call home. My frustration with the university stems from my gratitude for everything it gave me. I want Tufts to be a place that I want to be associated with.
Climate change is the greatest challenge humanity has ever faced. We must take immediate and monumental action to confront this challenge. Our action in the next 5 years will determine if this century is a difficult one, or an impossible one, for humanity.
As someone who has been dedicated to development at Tufts during my four years here, it disappoints me that Tufts refuses to take leadership on the crucial divestment movement. This, among issues relate to labor practices at Tufts, will prevent me from giving to Tufts until I see that our administration decides to take leadership on choosing ethical practices.