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Statement of Solidarity

Posted: Monday, June 1.  4:00pm

Pine Croft is owned and operated by Berea College.  We typically share woodworking updates and insights in this space, but today requires something different.  Today we’re sharing the College’s statement of solidarity in the wake of the recent, prominent displays of racism and hatred.  It’s with overwhelming sadness and anger that we share this; sadness for the African American community and the societal dangers all around them and anger at the repetitiveness with which this continues.

Here at the Berea College Woodcraft Department, men and women of diverse races and nationalities work together to make craft and furniture. We hope to create a similar community of makers at Pinecroft. It is our goal to develop and nurture that community.

We support those who seek justice.  

We know that institutional racism is real.  

We believe that we can find ways to love and support one another.  

-Andy Glenn and Aaron Beale

To our fellow Bereans and Kentuckians,

Last week, our nation was roiled yet again by the videotaped killing of an unarmed African American man by police: George Floyd. In our own beloved Kentucky, protestors are marching for justice for Breonna Taylor, an African American woman shot in her own home by the police. Even in the midst of a pandemic, people of color remain targets, often with little recourse. Christian Cooper was bird watching in Central Park a week ago and asked a young woman to put her dog on a leash, which was required in that section of the park. Instead, she told him that she was going to “call the police and tell them that an African American man was threatening her and her dog.” The message was clear—Mr. Cooper would be perceived by the police as a threat to her, and would, subsequently, be punished.

In 1857, the United States Supreme Court issued an infamous decision that, it seems, echoes still today. An enslaved man, Dred Scott, sued for his freedom after being taken by his “owner” into what was then a “free” territory. In its decision the court wrote that “They had for more than a century before been regarded as beings of an inferior order…: and so far inferior, that they had no rights which the white man was bound to respect:…” (Dred Scott v. Sanford, 60 407). That decision was overturned by the 13th and 14th Amendments to the U. S. Constitution.

Today, we stand as a nation at a moment when we must decide if the notorious language of Dred Scott will guide our future, or the language of The Declaration of Independence: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all (men) peoples are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness…” Here at Berea College, we have long stood on the side of justice, and today, we remain steadfast, holding to the motto of our Founder, the great Abolitionist Revered John G. Fee, taken from Acts: 17:26, “God has made of One Blood All Peoples of the Earth.” Berea College remains steadfast in its support of all marginalized communities and peoples, and we ask that all Bereans and Kentuckians remember these individuals—that we remember their names and their stories. That we never forget that we are, indeed, one blood.


Officers of the College: Lyle Roelofs, Linda Strong-Leek, Channell Barbour, Sylvia Asante, Jeff Amburgey, Chad Berry, Phillip Logsdon, Matt Saderholm, Derrick Singleton, Teri Thompson, Judge Wilson

Trustees of the College: Robert Yahng (Chair), Vance Blade (Vice Chair), Vicki Allums, Celeste Armstrong, Charlotte Beason, Anne Bonnyman, David H. Chow, Charles Crow, Libby Culbreth, Samantha Earp, John Fleming, Mike Flowers, Nana Lampton, Betty Olinger, Miriam Pride, Dennis Roop, David Sloan, Rocky Tuan, Diane Wallace, Stephanie Ziegler, Elton White (former)

Faculty of the College: Rebecca Bates, Mike Berheide, A.J. Bodnar (spouse), Jill Bouma, Richard Cahill, Jean Cupidon, Leonard Curry, Liza DiSavino, Ashley Elston, Robert Foster, Nancy Gift, Richard Hale, Megan Hoffman, Connie Lamb, Shannon Phelps, Cindy McGaha, Meta Mendel-Reyes, Amanda Peach, Loretta Reynolds, Mary Robert-Garrett, Ron Rosen, Tyler

Sergent, Rob Smith, Bobby Starnes, Teri Thesing, Julian Viera, Penelope Wong, Andrea Woodward

Staff of the College: Kishore Acharya, Dan Adams, Elaine Adams, Jenny Akins, T.J. Akins (spouse) Ray Arnold, Aaron Beale, Lisa Berry, Sarah Broomfield, Susan Buckmaster, Charlie Campbell, Sarah Campbell, Nathaniel Clements, Ashley Cochrane, Richard Dodd, Mary Galloway, Judy Ginter, Andy Glenn, Ryan Hess, Mike Hogg, Alice Hooker, Leslie Kaylor, Tennant Kirk, Julie LeBrun, Martina Leforce, Laura Magner, Dorothy Morgan, Judy Mott, Mark Nigro, Joan Pauly, Jessica Peña, Frank Pollon, Laurie Roelofs, Sarah Rohrer, Joanne Singh, Melissa Strobel, Zack Thompson, Wendy Warren, Judith Weckman, Joe Wilkie, Jenna Zimmerman

Students of the College: Cora Allison, Josiah Creech, Rachel Dodd, Amber Follin, Sean Mack, Eli Prater, Phoeba Weber

Retirees of the College: Lothar Baumann, Carla Baumann, John Bolin, Sandra Bolin, Sandy Bolster, Steve Bolster, Jean Boyce, Peggy Burgio, Dorothy Chao (spouse), Eugene Chao, Debra Duerson-Swinford, Betty Hibler, Bill Laramee, Monica Laramee (spouse), Harry Rice, Nancy Ryan, William Turner, Joan Weston

Alumni of the College: Dale Barlow, Donna Dean, Carol Gilliam, Theresa Scherf