DES MOINES, Iowa–Drake University President Marty Martin alerted staff and students Sunday that someone carved a swastika into a campus elevator and left a racist message outside an African-American student’s dorm room.
“If we ever thought otherwise, we have been reminded recently that the reactionary forces of intolerance and bigotry remain all too present in American society,” Martin wrote in an email.
Martin’s email also said, “At some point during the weekend someone carved a swastika in the elevator in Olmsted Center. At some point last night someone wrote the most offensive of racial epithets on the whiteboard attached to the door of an African-American first year student. Both of these acts were done in a way that offered the offenders some sense of concealment and no one has come forward to take responsibility for either act. These facts attest to the cowardly nature of the conduct.”
Martin said the swastika had since been removed and the racial epithet had been erased from the student’s whiteboard.
He concluded the email, “Finally, it is likely that a number of individuals reading this message have information that could help us discover the identity of those who committed these acts. I encourage anyone who has such information to share it with a residential life or student life professional, or some other university colleague who will ensure that the information gets to the right place. Being a member of the Drake community means that we don’t stand-by passively when we could step-in and make a difference.”