Letter to the Editor statement

A number of Duke alumni have shared concerns about a letter to the editor that was published in the Winter 2020 issue of Duke Magazine. The letter advanced points of view about racial issues that were insensitive and offensive. They most emphatically do not reflect the mission and goals of Duke University, the Duke Alumni Association and Duke Magazine, and are contrary to our commitment to antiracism.

The Duke alumni community is large, diverse and widely dispersed, and the beliefs and perspectives of 180,000 graduates from the 1940s to the 2020s will encompass every point on the political and cultural spectrum. While Duke Magazine is, and always should be, a place where Duke alumni can learn about the university and debate viewpoints, we made a mistake by presenting these letters without any context, reflection, deliberation or response, particularly given the wrenching and still incomplete efforts of so many in the Duke community to address issues of racial equity.

For that we apologize, and can only ask that you trust us to continue to learn, even at times publicly, hard lessons as we continue our work of becoming an antiracist institution. 

Sterly Wilder
Associate Vice President, Duke Alumni Association 

Robert Bliwise
Editor, Duke Magazine