Dean David Hempton on Buffalo Shooting

May 18, 2022
A bunch of flowers at a makeshift memorial outside the Tops supermarket in Buffalo, NY
Flowers are left at a makeshift memorial outside of Tops market on May 15, 2022 in Buffalo, New York. Photo by Getty Images
The below message was sent to members of the HDS community from Dean David N. Hempton on May 16, 2022.

Dear members of the HDS community,

The violent, premeditated, and racist hate crime perpetrated on the Black community of Buffalo, New York, has horrified all of us. Once again innocent lives have been lost and families decimated by an act of egregious violence arising out of an evil, white supremacist ideology. In the days and weeks ahead, there will be many expressions of “thoughts and prayers” for the victims and their loved ones, but words alone are not sufficient to express the depth of the pain of the Buffalo community or pay tribute to its resolute determination to stand strong against this terrible atrocity.

As we continue our work of building an anti-racist, anti-oppressive, and restorative HDS, we join with others around the country, not only in condemning this violent massacre, but also in firmly resisting all expressions of white supremacist words and actions.

Please know that HDS has student support through the Office of Student Life, the Office of the Chaplain and Religious and Spiritual Life, and the Office of Diversity, Inclusion, and Belonging, through Harvard’s Chaplains, through the Employee Assistance Program, and through Harvard University Health Services.

David N. Hempton
Dean of the Faculty of Divinity