Maryland Senator Ben Cardin (D-MD) has cosponsored a resolution condemning the threat of violence against historically Black colleges and universities (HBCUs) and reaffirming support for HBCUs. Resolution 534 was filed by U.S. Senator Tim Scott (R-S.C.) in the Senate, where the resolution was agreed to without amendment and a preamble by Unanimous Consent.
The resolution stated that HBCUs provide an environment of belonging, safety, and security for students, faculty, and staff. Threats against HBCUs have disrupted campus environments, obstructed educational opportunities, and instilled fear. The Senate also honored the legacy of HBCUs and reaffirmed the commitment of the federal government to combat violence against the students, faculty, and staff of HBCUs.
Cosponsors of the bill include Democrats and Republicans. The lawmakers represent many states where more than 104 HBCUs are located. They include Arkansas, California, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Maryland, Massachusetts, Mississippi, North Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, West Virginia, Connecticut, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, New Jersey, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Vermont, and Washington.
On January 4, at least eight HBCUs received bomb threats, including Howard University, which has received multiple threats. Other HBCUs that received threats the same day include Xavier, the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff, Prairie View A&M, North Carolina Central, Florida Memorial, Norfolk State, and Spelman College. On January 31, more HBCUs received bomb threats, including Southern University and A&M College, Bethune-Cookman, Albany State, Bowie State, Alabama A&M, Charles R. Drew, and Delaware State University.
Om February 1, the first day of Black History Month, at least eighteen HBCUs received bomb threats, including Shorter College, Philander Smith College, Arkansas Baptist College, the University of the District of Columbia, Howard, Edward Waters University, Spelman College, Fort Valley State, Kentucky State, Xavier, Coppin State, Morgan State, Jackson State, Alcorn State, Mississippi Valley State, Rust College, Tougaloo College, and Harris-Stowe State University.
On February 8, Spelman College received a bomb threat; and Howard University and Fisk University received bomb threats on February 14. On February 16, Fayetteville State, Claflin, and Winston-Salem received bomb threats; and on February 23, Hampton University received a bomb threat. Two days later, on February 25, at least three HBCUs received bomb threats, including Norfolk State, Elizabeth City State, and Dillard University.