Dear Stanford community,

Like some of you, university leaders became aware this morning of an ugly and disturbing series of social media posts circulating online.

The posts include images of a Stanford professor’s face marked out with red ink and juxtaposed with a guillotine, along with offensive posts including violent imagery directed at members of the Black community.

There have understandably been many expressions of shock and dismay at these posts. I, too, found the posts and the images accompanying them outrageous and abhorrent.

I want you to know that we are actively working on several fronts to address what has occurred, and to take actions to ensure the safety of our community. In doing so we will follow the appropriate university processes and privacy considerations.

We are a community that values and protects expression, as I have stated on numerous occasions. However, threats to members of the Stanford community, whether those threats are direct or implied, are unacceptable. Identity-based attacks, of all kinds, are antithetical to our values. As a community, we must aspire to a higher level of engagement that respects the dignity of others.


Marc Tessier-Lavigne