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Protest, self-defense class planned in wake of lawsuit

By: Natalie Faas, assistant news editor

The Canisius community has continued to express anger in the aftermath of last week’s lawsuit as the Peter Griffin statue in the quad, among other areas, was vandalized this week.

A protest against the school calling for the termination of cross-country coach Nate Huckle has also been planned for Friday.

Vice President for Student Affairs Dr. Dan Dentino spoke on the issue. He said he was not surprised by the backlash and repeatedly asked for members of the community to “hold on” and “offer grace.”

On Monday, April 26 there were multiple chalk messages left in the quad and on the statue of St. Peter Canisius. They were all themed around sexual violence, incuding “Canisius doesn’t care about consent” and “Canisius defends r*pists.” The messages were found in the morning and quickly washed away.

“I understand the motivation and angst,” Dentino said. “The best way to express disappointment in our community is not graffiti.”

Dentino repeatedly spoke about opening a dialogue and is encouraging students and members of the community to be vocal about their opinions. He claimed that defacing buildings and statues in the middle of the night is not a productive method in making real change.

On top of the messages left in the quad, there is also a protest planned for Friday April 30. According to a poster that has been circling social media, the protest will be at 1:30 pm outside of Bagen Hall. The protest is “calling for the firing of coach Nate Huckle and a formal apology from the college, President Hurley, and all complicit faculty.”

In response to the planned protest, Dentino said, “People have a right to gather peacefully and respectfully.”

A self-defense class has been planned for Friday, April 30, the last day of Sexual Assault Awareness and Prevention Month. The event has been sponsored by the Asian Student Association, Residence Hall Association, Women and Gender Studies Club and the Undergraduate Student Association Public Health Committee.

Overall, the College has been silent throughout the past week and a half other than the official statement released on April 20. Dentino is encouraging students to “trust the process” and said that as a college “there are always ways to improve.” He also said, “It is impossible to thrive in an environment where you feel unsafe.”

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1 Comment

Nancy Rourke
Nancy Rourke
Apr 30, 2021

Sending my support to students who care enough to give their energy to improve the College!

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