"But as much as I love Samford, I love my friends and family more"
Dear Dr. Westmoreland,
I love my alma mater. The faculty there pushed me to question my paradigm, think critically, and and act with bravery and kindness. Your deeply disappointing decision regarding SAFE Samford does not reflect that spirit of inquiry, fairness, and love.
I write as a 2010 Samford alum, a PhD candidate in English at the University of Kentucky, and an ally of LGBTQ+ friends and family.
I'm in graduate school, doing what I love the most--teaching, writing, and reading--because of outstanding professors at Samford. I used to dream of returning to campus as a professor and continuing the vital work of teaching and mentoring at a school I love dearly.
But as much as I love Samford, I love my friends and family more. And I could never be a part of an institution that does not value and support the voice of every student.
Irish poet Catriona O'Reilly reminds us, "Some just know / that love must be put into action or it is not love."
It's time to back up your profession of love for LGBTQ students with clear, supportive action that gives them a voice on campus.
Anna Bedsole Stone, Class of '10