K-State president releases statement after Jewish structure on campus vandalized

MANHATTAN, Kan. (KSNT) – Kansas State University President Richard Myers released a statement Monday following an incident in which a temporary dwelling erected outside a university residential complex for the Jewish harvest festival Sukkot was vandalized.

Every year during the Jewish holy season, there is an eight-day holiday called Sukkot. A main component of the holiday is erecting a temporary dwelling called Sukkah in accordance with Jewish law. The Sukkah is a gathering place for anyone in the community and members of the Jewish faith to eat their meals.

This year, Hillel at Kansas State University, a student organization, purchased a Sukkah, and in collaboration with the Department of Housing and Dining Services, assembled it on the lawn behind Goodnow Hall on Tuesday, October 3.

In his statement, Myers said he wants to emphasize how deeply concerned the K-State family is about the incident.

“There is no place in our community for hateful, criminal reactions to religious expression. Many who live or work on our campuses, particularly those of the Jewish community, are experiencing significant pain and fear as a result of this act. Our hearts go out to those in the K-State family who have been negatively affected.”

Myers went on to say that students, faculty and staff at K-State represent a wide variety of religious, nonreligious and spiritual perspectives.

“This dimension of diversity is essential to our campus community. It is in our best interest, as a K-State family, to engage in civil dialogue about such differences and not resort to uncivil and hurtful behaviors. We want to once again remind the university community about our Principles of Community and Statement on Free Speech and Expression.”

The Sukkah was rebuilt Sunday morning. Myers said the university is planning a Sukkot Solidarity Dinner at 6 p.m. Wednesday at Bosco Plaza in response to the incident.

To read President Myers full statement CLICK HERE




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