I am writing in response to the story appearing last week (“Story of Religious Hatred Hits Home,” The Rider News, 10/12/07). The newspaper reported on a speech given at Rider by Osama Sabbah, a student at Guilford College. According to the story, Mr. Sabbah indicated he and another student were victims of a hate crime on our campus on Jan. 20, 2007.
While respecting Mr. Sabbah’s viewpoint, it seems important to add these facts to the report about his presentation:
• Guilford College has had a strong commitment to community and diversity since its founding in 1837 and welcomes students of all races, creeds and origins.
• People who were involved in the Jan. 20 incident have differing opinions about the details.
• Multiple students received campus judicial charges following the incident, and a student judicial panel found participants on both sides “responsible” and sanctioned those individuals.
• Greensboro Police investigating the incident failed to find evidence of a hate crime.
• Criminal charges brought against the football players were dismissed.
Guilford College students, faculty, staff and other constituents have spent many hours reflecting on the Jan. 20 incident. Through teach-ins and other educational experiences, the healing process has begun and is continuing.
More information about the college’s response to the incident is available at www.guilford.edu.
— Ty Buckner
Senior Director of Communications
Guilford College, Greensboro, N.C.