UPDATE: Morehouse College employee fired for discriminatory e-mail about a black gay couple

Michael Cole Smith and his husband Jamil Smith Cole, never could have imagined that their celebration of love and commitment could bring about so much hate. I really applaud Morehouse College President Robert Franklin (pictured) for taking such a strong stand against intolerance. In part, he said: "This has been and always will be a community dedicated to promoting respect and tolerance between heterosexuals and homosexuals. We encourage everyone to aspire to high ethical standards and we demand responsible community behavior. Those who cannot embrace the Morehouse code of ethics will be sanctioned accordingly."

Morehouse College employee fired for e-mail

Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports:
Morehouse College has fired a woman and reprimanded another for discriminatory comments made via their work e-mail accounts. The fired woman worked as an administrative assistant in the president’s office, according to reports. After receiving an e-mail forward that included wedding photos of a gay couple, she forwarded the e-mail to others and made comments that were considered discriminatory.

In a statement released Thursday, Dr. Robert M. Franklin, Morehouse’s president, announced that “the college has disciplined the persons involved in the incident, and one of the implicated employees is no longer with the college.”

The employees were not identified in Franklin's statement. Morehouse College has a no-tolerance position on discrimination, said Franklin. “The views expressed in the e-mail entitled, ‘The WTD of the Week,' (September 28, 2009) were the personal views of one individual and do not reflect the values or policies of Morehouse College,” he said in the statement. “The College has taken great strides toward building a diverse and tolerant community.” READ MORE


College president apologizes to gay community, gay couple mocked in email

Southern Voice reports:
Morehouse College President Robert Franklin followed with a letter apologizing to the gay couple in the pictures and the gay community in general.
Franklin wrote:

It is my sincere hope that the gay and lesbian community, and most specifically Michael Cole Smith and Jamil Smith Cole—whose wedding photographs became the subject of an unkind and intolerant email sent and forwarded by a Morehouse College employee—will accept my official apology on behalf of the College community.

Morehouse College—the institution where Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., one of our nation’s premier champions of human and civil rights, was nurtured—has a history of promoting tolerance and inclusion for all people. Remarks such as the ones made in the e-mail were counter to Dr. King’s—and the College’s—core values and will not be tolerated from any Morehouse employee or student. Effective September 30, the employee who made the offensive comments is no longer working for the College.

I will continue to emphasize to the Morehouse community the message that was shared during an April town hall meeting: On the matter of diversity, Morehouse is committed to being a respectful campus that balances personal liberty with the responsibility of membership in a moral community. This has been and always will be a community dedicated to promoting respect and tolerance between heterosexuals and homosexuals. We encourage everyone to aspire to high ethical standards and we demand responsible community behavior. Those who cannot embrace the Morehouse code of ethics will be sanctioned accordingly. READ MORE


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