MOUNT PLEASANT, Mich. — A Facebook post featuring an anti-Semitic Valentine’s Day card allegedly received at an event on Central Michigan University’s campus is causing a stir online Thursday morning.
Facebook user Madison Rodriguez posted pictures of the card on her page late Wednesday, saying “Hey College Republicans at CMU, wanna talk about this anti-semitic “Valentine” you passed out today?”. She tagged the CMU College Republicans Facebook page in her post. She claimed the card was passed out during a Valentine’s Day event hosted by the campus Republican group. It features a picture of Adolf Hitler. The post has since been shared several hundred times.
Shortly after Rodriguez’s post started gaining momentum, the CMU College Republican’s posted a response. They say the card was passed out without their knowledge. “The College Republicans as an organization did not distribute this valentine. We in no way condone this type of rhetoric or anti-Semitism. We apologize for any offense, and want students to know that we do not tolerate this sort of behavior,” the post said.
On Friday morning George E. Ross, president of Central Michigan University, sent an official statement on behalf of the school regarding the incident.
We are deeply disappointed by last night’s situation with a Valentine card containing an inappropriate sentiment that was produced during a student organization meeting. This is not who we are as a campus community.
Such hurtful, offensive language, while protected by the First Amendment, is unacceptable and is not consistent with our values and standards.
Leaders from the president’s and provost’s offices, Office for Civil Rights and Institutional Equity, Office of Institutional Diversity, Student Affairs, Student Activities and Involvement, and the CMU Police Department met first thing this morning to review the situation and determine next steps. OCRIE has launched a formal inquiry, and OID will develop additional educational efforts for the campus community.
We caution against concluding that the action is representative of the entire student organization or its members and remind all that threatening others as a result of such an incident can have legal consequences.
We once again urge each of our students, faculty and staff to be beacons of peace, respect, inclusivity and civility — to be role models of integrity, dignity and leadership.
At Central Michigan University, we stand up against hate, protect the safety of all, and build bridges of understanding that bring people together.
CMU President George E. Ross