By Anthony Covino
Student government leaders created an Instagram event to take action on the Black Lives Matter movement last week after being underwhelmed with how President Christopher Capuano and FDU responded to the death of George Floyd.
While FDU made a June 1 statement about the Black Lives Matter movement and the death of George Floyd, and followed up with additional clarification on June 3, the Student Government Association (SGA) issued a statement saying the organization was “disappointed because of how insensitive and generic the university’s response was to everything that was going on in the world.”
The SGA mobilized and held its first “Take A Knee’ event on Friday, June 5, to show support for the Black Lives Matter movement and unite the campus.
This was an online event where participants could either go live on Instagram kneeling or take a photo of themselves kneeling for nine minutes representing theof the time a former Minneapolis police officer knelt on George Floyd’s neck causing his death. Students could also post a picture with the hashtag #UKNIGHTED4BLM and tag @FDUSGA on Instagram.
The SGA’s Instagram has been a big success with tags, with upwards of 40 people contributing, including President Capuano.
About the initial FDU statement, Maame Mensah, the president of the SGA, said:
“Earlier this week when the SGA saw the response of President [Capuano], we were disappointed because our university that thrives on the ideals of diversity was afraid to say the simple fact that black lives mattered.
“Once we saw how badly the university initially responded, we knew we had to do something that truly united the campus through the common goal of shedding light to the injustices that were occurring all around us every day.”
This led to the creation of the event to unite FDU as a school and community, Mensah said.
“We wanted to do something that students and faculty could participate in from their various locations of quarantine. This idea came about, was agreed on, and put into action,” Mensah said.
Take A Knee proved to be an attention-getter with President Capuano and other members of the administration participating as well as students and alumni. Athletic Director Brad Hurlbut took part in the challenge as did FDU Head Men’s Basketball Coach Greg Herenda.
Click on the link to see all the posts on the FDUSGA Instagram from the event: https://www.instagram.com/fdusga/