Letter to the Editor: Ayers an inappropriate voice for May 4

This evening, Bill Ayers will be speaking at a May 4 lecture panel. For those of you who do not know him, Ayers is a radical activist from the 1960s and 1970s, and the ringleader of the Weather Underground, a collection of extremists labeled by the FBI as a domestic terrorist group. Ayers and the group have taken credit for multiple bombings, including incidents at the U.S. Capitol, the Pentagon and the New York City Police Department headquarters.

In a New York Times interview on Sept. 11, 2001, Ayers stated, “I don’t regret setting bombs. I feel we didn’t do enough.”

As students of Kent State University, we should not support this decision to bring Ayers to our campus as a commemorative speaker for this unfortunate and tragic event in our nation’s history.

Forgiveness will always be given to those who deserve it, but Ayers has failed to voice regret for his actions. The group responsible for inviting Ayers to Kent, the May 4 Task Force, states on its website that it is tasked with the effort to pursue an “ongoing quest for truth and justice and to attain proper memorial tribute to our fellow students.”

Ayers should not speak at the night’s event, and we are disappointed with the fact that a man with a violent past is allowed to honor those fallen victim to unfortunate violence.

We can do better, and we hope next year the May 4 Task Force invites speakers that Kent State students can be proud to have on their campus.

— Kent State College Republicans