Seriously. Obama hung in effigy, and it wasn’t in the Deep South. It was at George Fox University in Oregon.

Officials of a small Christian university say a life-size cardboard reproduction of Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama was hung from a tree on the campus, an act with racial undertones that outraged students and school leaders alike.

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The disturbing image found near the heart of the campus recalled the days of lynchings of blacks and was all the more incongruous at a university founded by Quaker pioneers in 1891. Felton said he had been at the school since he enrolled two decades ago, and “I’ve never experienced or heard of any type of overt racial act.”

At the end of the college’s regular chapel service Wednesday, [University president] Baker told students he was “disheartened and outraged.”

“It has been my dream to establish a university that more adequately represents the kingdom of God,” he said. “This act causes some to question our commitment.”

Baker added, “What I’ve learned is we still have work to do.”

 
  • Karen

    An open letter to the person who hung Barack Obama in effigy at George Fox University:
    Lack of evidence to the contrary, I’ll assume you’re a student there at George Fox. So you’ve surely been chastised for behaving un-Christianly. And then there’s the horrible stain you’ve put on Quakers, who, after all, led the abolition movement. I add my voice to the chorus on both counts, and go one further.
    My young friend, take a walk with me to Ross Center, the visual and performing arts building on your campus. It’s been awhile since I’ve been there, but I’m sure the portrait of Milo and Alice Ross is still on display. Milo was president of this school for 15 years. His vision is what put George Fox (then College) on the map. He believed being a Christian meant having higher standards. Your university is rightly proud of its national reputation, and it was Milo Ross who led the way by getting the school accredited for the first time.
    In addition to academic excellence, Milo and Alice left a legacy of racial inclusion and tolerance, befitting their Quaker heritage. They provided a home for students from places like Jordan and Kenya. To be a guest in their home was to be treated with grace and dignity, no matter what color your skin was. The Act Six program also bears witness to their legacy. They lived their belief that justice and equality wouldn’t be achieved without positive action and support from those able to provide it.
    Look – there’s the portrait. Go stand in front of Milo and Alice Ross, and let me introduce you to my grandparents. Let’s tell them how your deed has put this now thriving institution on the map in a new way. Look at them and feel their hearts break because of what you have done.
    Yours in hope,
    Karen (Eichenberger) Lollis

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