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March 29, 2021, Adrian, Michigan – The leaders of Congregations of Catholic Sisters in Michigan – including the Adrian Dominican Sisters – issued the following statement in response to Ron Weiser’s offensive statement on Michigan’s top three elected women officials.
As women of faith whose congregations have served the people of Michigan – men and women, Republican and Democratic – for 1,084 collective years, we were deeply troubled and alarmed to hear University of Michigan Regent and Michigan Republican Party Chairman Ron Weiser refer to our state’s top three elected women officials as “witches” that the GOP’s “job now is to soften up” so that “when we have good candidates to run against them that they are ready for the burning at the stake.”
This language is not only abhorrent on its face, it poses a real and present danger to the three elected leaders and to all women in Michigan, giving bullies and abusers public license to vent their anger and vitriol on the bodies of real women in our cities, neighborhoods, and State Capitol. One in three Michigan families are already impacted by domestic violence and over 100 domestic violence-related murders occur in Michigan every year, according to Haven, a national nonprofit promoting violence-free homes and communities.
In our faith tradition, all people are made in the image of God. This kind of abusive language, displaying misogynistic contempt for women, is abominable. It has no place in our public discourse and is appalling coming from a Regent of one of our nation’s premier educational institutions. Chairman Weiser’s inflammatory aside about “other than assassination” as to how to deal with two Michigan Republicans who voted to impeach President Trump is both shocking and horrifying. No political party should associate itself with such deeply disturbing remarks, much less abide them in its own leader.
We call for Ron Weiser’s resignation as Regent of the University of Michigan and for his removal as Chairman of the Michigan Republican Party, urging party leaders to clearly and unequivocally condemn these dangerous and alarming comments.
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The Michigan Catholic Sisters issuing this call include the elected leaders of the Dominican Sisters of Adrian (email@example.com); Dominican Sisters of Grand Rapids (firstname.lastname@example.org); Sisters, Servants of the Immaculate Heart of Mary (Monroe) (email@example.com); Home Visitors of Mary (firstname.lastname@example.org); Servants of Jesus (email@example.com); Marist Sisters (firstname.lastname@example.org); Mission Sisters of the Holy Spirit (email@example.com); Sisters of Mercy of the Americas – West Midwest (firstname.lastname@example.org); and Congregation of Sisters of St. Joseph (email@example.com), who comprise Region 7 of the Leadership Conference of Women Religious (LCWR).
March 22, 2021, Adrian, Michigan – The General Council of the Adrian Dominican Sisters issued the following statement, calling for an immediate end to the violence against Asian Americans and people from the Pacific Islands, and for the enactment of strong legislation against these hate crimes.
We join in the national call for an immediate end to acts of violence against our Asian-American and Pacific Island sisters and brothers. We were horrified by the mass murder in Atlanta last week of eight individuals – seven of them women, including six women of Asian descent. The killings evince racism and misogyny, pointing to a hate crime.
On the day of these mass murders, a report was issued that showed nearly 3,800 hate incidents have been reported against Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders nationwide since the start of the coronavirus pandemic. Most of these hateful acts were directed at Asian women who encountered spitting, name-calling, shunning, refusal of service, and physical assault as they went about their daily life and work.
No one should be subjected to such hateful and violent behavior. Each of us is made in the image of God and precious in God’s sight and none exempt from our nation’s promise of the right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.
We call on Congress to enact strong hate-crime legislation to ensure those rights are protected by law. And we pray for a profound conversion of heart among us all that we may root out the racism that continues to cause such injury to our sisters and brothers of color and to erode the moral fabric of our nation.