On Saturday, former Bowie State University student Richard Collins III was fatally stabbed outside Montgomery Hall. University of Maryland student Sean Urbanski was charged with first- and second-degree murder, as well as first-degree assault, in connection with the stabbing.
Originally, University Police said the crime was not race-related. Urbanski, a white man, appeared to be a member of the racist Facebook group “Alt-Reich: Nation,” and University Police are now working with the FBI to determine whether the stabbing was in fact a hate crime.
This university’s students, alumni, staff and faculty took to Twitter with the hashtag #FearTheTurtle to share their thoughts, fears and experiences of racism, discrimination and hate on the campus.
freshman year @ a white frat party I told a guy in the frat i was from Iran. He yelled FUCK YOUR COUNTRY&high fived his bro. #FearTheTurtle
— #notmypresident (@pegahsus21) May 22, 2017
While university President Wallace Loh and the university administration have created various task forces and groups to address diversity and sexual assault on the campus, some members of the community have found his responses inadequate and dismissive.
Had a convo w Pres. Loh about need for mandatory anti-racism and diversity training for students/faculty… he told me it was a waste
— Erica Fuentes (@EricaYoFuentes) May 22, 2017
Loh has spoken out against President Trump’s racist rhetoric and travel ban, but one student columnist wrote that Loh has already undermined the legitimacy of marginalized students on the campus, especially when responding to groups such as ProtectUMD — a coalition of 25 student organizations at this university —and their demands for safety.
Several other students, professors and members of the community have also tweeted with #FearTheTurtle since the incident.