Letter to the Editor: Statement by physics department faculty

24 physics faculty members

We strongly disagree with the thoughts expressed by Jonathan Katz in his April 16, 2017 op-ed contribution to Student Life. As faculty members of the physics department, we are saddened that our colleague uses his position to tell “serious students” what they ought to do and what they ought to feel, implying that students voicing concerns are not serious scientists. We are outraged that he invokes biological differences rather than historical and structural obstacles for the underrepresentation of women in many STEM disciplines. Denying the existence of a problem delays the initiation of suitable countermeasures. Furthermore, we strongly reject the homophobic views that he has expressed publicly in the past and from which he has not distanced himself. We are committed to identifying and changing structural barriers and a culture that suppresses and delays gender, sexual orientation, socio-economic and racial diversity. A diverse community is desirable in itself and has higher potential for making paradigm-changing discoveries.

 

Mark G. Alford 

Sachiko Amari

Carl Bender

James H. Buckley

Anders E. Carlsson

Bhupal Dev

Willem H. Dickhoff

Vikram Duvvuri 

Francesc Ferrer

Christine Floss

Erik Henriksen

Mairin Hynes

Martin H. Israel

Kenneth F. Kelton                               

Fabian Kislat

Henric S. Krawczynski

James G. Miller

Kater Murch 

Ryan Ogliore

Brian Rauch

James S. Schilling

Alexander Seidel

Ralf Wessel

Li Yang

 

Editor’s note: This Letter to the Editor has been adjusted to reflect that the authors’ wording was “We are committed to identifying and changing structural barriers and a culture that suppresses and delays gender, sexual orientation, socio-economic and racial diversity,” rather than “We are committed to identifying and changing structural barriers and to a culture that suppresses and delays gender, sexual orientation, socio-economic and racial diversity,” as initially published.

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