As the mother of a child who is of mixed race, I commend Western Washington University President Bruce Shepard for suspending all campus classes Nov. 24 following allegations that Tysen Campbell sent fear-inducing hate messages about students of color, as well as swiftly suspending him in a public showing of non-tolerance for his dangerous behavior [“$10K bail set over threatening WWU posts,” Page One, Dec. ].
For Campbell’s family members who have tried to minimize his words by describing them as an “honest mistake … and it spiraled out of control,” try reflecting on this: My daughter, who is normally extremely independent, was in a state of controlled panic that Tuesday. When I emailed her to just come home, she emailed me that she was finishing up a paper that was due. It broke my heart to have to tell her to just submit it online and not walk onto campus to do so. It also broke my heart to realize I was worried about her hair style, wondering if she still had her box-braid hair extensions, which could have made her a target.
I can’t even imagine how the students and families of the students felt who were named in Campbell’s threats.
Annette Peizer, Seattle