By: Rhassan Hill
rlh1 (at) williams (dot) edu
My name is Rhassan Hill ‘11. I am a student and long-time friend of Professor Moore as well as a participant in Bernard Moore’s Fall ‘09 class, Black Leadership. I took a few moments tonight to speak with my friend Professor Moore, and will be the first to speak up in his defense.
Firstly, I’d like to say that Bernard Moore is a great inspiration to students of color on this campus, in particular black males. As the author of the Second Chance Act, signed into law by former President Bush, the organizer of such forums as the Congressional Black Caucus event last year, and the upcoming Black Leadership forum, Bernard Moore has easily been the preeminent academician in, and has added immeasurably to, the strength of the Political Science department at this College for the past year.
The quality of Professor Moore’s classroom instruction has been of the highest degree for the year I have known him. Anyone testifying to the contrary is either being disingenuous, airing personal grievances, or, worse, consciously perjuring this great man. I am willing to place my integrity as a member of the Williams community on the line in defense of the above statements, and will challenge, to the administration or otherwise, allegations to the contrary. Professor Moore’s consistently high student ratings, his acclaim and scholarly distinction speak volumes in testifying to his pedigree as an educator.
There is, at least in theory, a creed with regard to the Williams community that holds privacy in the highest esteem. I am outraged at the crass and blatantly intrusive behavior of some supposedly mature members of this community. As Professor Moore is not available to assert his right to privacy, I will assert it for him. Professor Moore, as a member of the Williams community, deserves his privacy. If members of the Williams community were to speak of me in the same way in which some community members have spoken of Professor Moore, I’d be enraged.
Before you rush to judgment regarding the allegations Professor Moore faces, I offer words of caution: Professor Moore’s support in the black community at Williams runs strong and deep. The African American community, and myself in particular, will not allow the lynching of Professor Moore’s reputation and racial insinuations readily appearing in commentary to continue. We will stand in his defense. I say this not in a partisan manner, but as someone who does not want to see this matter metamorphose into an open racial confrontation.
Lastly, Professor Moore has asked me to extend his thanks to those who stand in support of him. The matter has been greatly exaggerated by individuals not in the know, a tendency when people speak of matters in which they have no interest. I join supporters of Bernard Moore in extending well wishes to the individual responsible for a substantial portion of our personal and intellectual enrichment. If any of you will be in Washington over Thanksgiving break, Professor Moore invites you to contact him.
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