A Message from the Director: Troubles at the Heart of Democracy

June 2, 2020
Steven Weitzman
Katz Center graphic C logo in diamond

It has always been a source of pride for the Katz Center that it is located so close to the birthplace of American democracy. That democracy is now having to reckon with many painful issues at the same time—racism, violence, and people’s distrust of a government that is meant to represent and serve them—and that too is now manifest in the Center’s immediate environs, in different kinds of loss being experienced by people who live and work very close to home for us.

At this time, I cannot find words that properly convey what so many are going through, but it feels necessary to acknowledge their pain and to commit to helping to rebuild this community as a better place. I have not lived through a period where the future has seemed so uncertain, but moving forward is clearly going to require deep truth-seeking and sustained community-rebuilding. We are resolved to find ways that, as a research center, neighbor, and denizen of this democracy, we can be a part of and contribute to that process.

As we learn about relevant resources and opportunities to help rebuild community, we will share them in future posts.


About the Author

Steven Weitzman

Steven Weitzman

Steven Weitzman is the Ella Darivoff Director at the Katz Center and Abraham M. Ellis Professor of Hebrew and Semitic Languages & Literatures at Penn.

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