At my school, it took dozens of students elevating each other’s voices and alumni’s threat to withhold thousands of dollars in donations before the school considered breaking the precedent. It took each of us sharing heartbreaking personal narratives, demanding the public and the administration look into our wounds directly for administrators to be great lawyers who could understand the purpose of the old precedent (to help foster a diverse and inclusive educational environment) and create new methods of achieving that purpose, including saying publicly that Black Lives Matter and sharing the Black Law Student Association’s demands with students and alumni to drive accountability.
In 1996, Michigan law students formed an Ad Hoc Committee on Race, Gender, and Sexual Orientation after the office door of Lance Jones, an African-American faculty member, was defaced with a racist slur. Shortly after that, the Res Gestae, a law student publication, published an attack on Catharine MacKinnon. The Ad Hoc Committee’s formation was followed by the publication of Res Ipsa Loquitur, a newsletter on race, gender, and sexual orientation. We’re making two issues of that newsletter available here.
Res Ipsa Loquitur Issue 1
Res Ipsa Loquitur Issue 2
Here is a twitter thread that is aggregating the issues and responses to Dean West’s initial statement and the responses from students and others (June 4-June 6)(includes documents).