EDITORIAL: CHANCELLOR WACHTER, DECLARE UWS A SANCTUARY CAMPUS

The University of Wisconsin – Superior should be made a sanctuary campus and defy any orders by government officials to name, turn over or cooperate in any actions that means the deportation or unsafe treatment of ANY member of the campus community.

Sound a bit strongly worded? Keep reading.

In a report early this week, The New York Times reported that upwards of 15,000 students in the United States hold visas from countries that have been put on a “banned” list by an Executive Order signed last week by President Donald Trump which directly targeted Muslim immigrants to the United States, especially refugees.

One of these students is right here on campus. They deserve every ounce of respect, dignity and rights as a human being that are afforded to them. And as a campus community we must do everything in our power to not only protect them, but all international students that make UWS their temporary home.

It is for this reason, that we as editors of the campus newspaper strongly encourage our campus administration to declare our campus a sanctuary for those who need our protection as our democracy unravels itself and unfairly targets innocent people who are here to learn and to make the world a better place.

While our government officials at many levels of government have tried to strong-arm campuses and municipalities into dropping sanctuary literature from their bylaws, the opposite needs to happen. As a campus community, we need to come together and tell our government that we stand against them, and we stand with all people, no matter who they are and where they are from.

A petition is now being circulated by the Promethean advisor, Susan Stanich, which urges Chancellor Wachter to work with the campus and the necessary officials to ensure our international students are kept safe and secure here on campus by making it a safe haven or sanctuary. While the Promethean has no direct role in the authorship of this petition we stand behind its message and our advisor in solidarity.

It is our opinion this cause transcends all rationality of remaining ethically unbiased and we have a duty as the press to inform you that we believe the direction taken by our government against Muslims immigrating to this country is wrong and flies in the face of the freedoms guaranteed to all people by our constitution.

As a campus, we should be charged to be the guardians of our international friends and family studying on campus. And in doing so, we should do what we must to protect them.

The statement issued earlier today to the campus via email is a good start. And we applaud the efforts of the administration to come out in support of the students here on campus. This editorial does not in anyway wish to come into conflict with the Chancellor on her earlier statement. What we are asking is for her to do more, and as our campus leader, defend her students from unfounded scrutiny by a government acting without reason.

Just because something is coded into law does not make it right. If we have to take a stand and pour out the tea once again, then so be it.

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