Fordham Community Addresses Attack on Capitol

After Trump supporters stormed the Capitol to protest the confirmation of electoral votes, Fordham deans and faculty shared their thoughts on the historical moment




President Donald Trump was accused of inciting violence after angry mobs stormed Capitol Hill on Wednesday, Jan. 6, during the congressional hearings to certify the 2020 election results. Fordham University and several Fordham professors and staff members released public condemnations of the outbreak of violence at the Capitol.

“As members of a Jesuit, Catholic University community, we repudiate the forces of unreason which have stormed the Capitol. We oppose mob rule, and those who propose to subvert the electoral process,” the Office of the President wrote in a community-wide email that evening.

Laura Auricchio, dean of Fordham College at Lincoln Center, kept her remarks simple, tweeting “Amen” in response to Fordham University’s statement.

Christina Greer, an associate professor in Fordham’s political science department, spoke on “Zerlina,” a political commentary show on Peacock, commenting on Trump’s involvement with the attack.

“This president has excavated the worst bile of this nation … What he has done consistently over the past few years, and more specifically in the last few months, he started that coup on Nov. 4 when he refused to concede,” she said.

Greer also tweeted in response to a Spectrum News reporter, Josh Robin, who expressed surprise to see these events happen in the United States, saying in part, “the coup happened Nov 4th when he refused to concede. Check his tweets. It’s just taken the bulk of white America this long to see it.”

Vice President of United Student Government Robert Sundstrom, Fordham College at Lincoln Center ’22, posted on Facebook: “I don’t want to hear any Republicans talk about how ‘shocked’ you are – this is the culmination of your last four years. You knew what you were supporting. You have supported this domestic terrorist from the start.”

Zephyr Teachout, an associate professor of law at Fordham University and a 2014 New York gubernatorial candidate, tweeted that she saw it as critical “that impeachment, expulsion of members, and charges follow today’s actions.”

Teachout continued, “Failure to respond with serious consequences will feed future similar actions and feed a belief that those in power have different laws that govern them, that once something can be called ‘political’ law does not apply, a very dangerous precedent.”

The Fordham College Republicans, a student club based on Fordham’s Rose Hill campus, reposted a statement on Instagram from the College National Republican Committee (CRNC), adding that they condemned “in the strongest way possible the actions and violence taking place in the name of far-right political ideologies.”

The statement from the CRNC compared the events on Jan. 6 to the protests following the murder of George Floyd by policemen and for Black Lives Matter (BLM) and denounced both groups of demonstrators that engaged in violence.

There was a stark contrast between the law enforcement used against the demonstrators in Washington, D.C., protesting for BLM and the law enforcement, or lack thereof, used against the white rioters storming the Capitol. The police used pepper spray, tear gas and rubber bullets on the peaceful protesters advocating for an end to unprovoked police violence against Black people. However, the Trump supporters were treated with restraint, even as they broke through the barriers into the halls of the Capitol. 

“We know that America is predicated on white supremacy, anti-Black racism, patriarchy and white capitalism — all encapsulated in the man that is Donald Trump,” Greer said in her Peacock interview about the difference in treatment between Black and white Americans.

The CRNC statement avowed that any individual who engaged in the storming of the Capitol would not be welcome in College Republican chapters or the Republican Party.

Trump attended Fordham College at Rose Hill for two years before transferring to the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania in 1966. As the nation and world reels from the events of Jan. 6, the Fordham community continues to grapple with the consequences of the actions of a president who once walked the halls at Rose Hill.