Rename Sanger College at Stony Brook University

Rename Sanger College at Stony Brook University

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Rename Sanger College Initiative started this petition to President of Stony Brook University Maurie McInnis and

Why is this petition needed?

Part of Stony Brook University’s mission statement mentions celebrating diversity. Our President, Maurie McInnis, has said  “Our foundation is anchored in our strong values of diversity, access, and inclusiveness, and based on the search for academic excellence, freedom of inquiry, and the generation of new knowledge.” Infact, Times Higher Education ranked SBU as #1 in U.S. institutions for reducing inequalities in higher education. Thus, it should be clear that our community stands together to promote equality and diversity.

However, if we take a look at the residence halls at SBU, one in particular stands out. That of Sanger College, named after Margaret Sanger, well-known as the founder of Planned Parenthood. She was a birth control activist who opened the first birth control clinics in the U.S.. On top of that, she was a eugenicist. Meaning she advocated for controlling birth to increase “desirable” traits in order to improve the human race. Through her publications and speeches, it is obvious to see that she has troubling views that the university doesn’t stand for.

Reasons to Rename Sanger College:

  • Sanger advocated for sterilization of the disabled and those considered stupid or genetically ‘unfit’
  • She advocated for segregating people in camps until they are deemed ‘fit’ for society.
  • She didn’t believe disabled people should be a part of our society and believed they were a burden to the ‘healthy’ people.
  • Eugenic views are linked to the occurrence of the forced sterilization in the 1900s. Thousands of mostly women of color were effected by this.

 
“The first step would thus be to control the intake and output on morons, mental defectives, epileptics.”

“The second step would be to take an inventory of the secondary group such as illiterates, paupers, unemployables, criminals, prostitutes, dope-fiends; classify them in special departments under government medical protection and segregate on farms and open spaces as long as necessary for the strengthening and development of moral conduct.”

- Margaret Sanger, From her speech “My Way to Peace”

Let’s remove Margaret Sanger from Sanger College. We must learn from the past and acknowledge how her views are harmful. It’s time for Stony Brook University to move away from this eugenic past and make the university more inclusive. The longer we wait the more we stand behind these horrific views. We request for the Stony Brook University Renaming Buildings, Spaces and Structures Ad Hoc Committee to rename Sanger College and create a more responsible university.

Will you stand with us to remove her eugenic legacy?

For more information please visit here

What would you rename Sanger?

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