Multiple historically Black colleges and universities have received bomb threats on the opening days of Black History Month.
The news: Close to 14 HBCU’s received bomb threats were reported on Tuesday. The schools that received threats include:
- Kentucky State University in Frankfort.
- Xavier University of Louisiana in New Orleans.
- Edward Waters University in Jacksonville, Florida.
- Fort Valley State University in Georgia.
- Spelman College in Atlanta.
- Coppin State University in Baltimore.
- Alcorn State University in Lorman, Mississippi.
- Mississippi Valley State University in Itta Bena, Mississippi.
- The University of the District of Columbia.
- Philander Smith College in Little Rock, Arkansas.
- Jackson State University in Mississippi.
- Howard University in Washington, D.C., received a bomb threat on Monday.
What they’re saying: “We’ve had these challenges before,” Howard University President Wayne Frederick said Tuesday, according to CNN.
- But “since I’ve been here (as a student) in 1988, it has not been this widespread and also, I think, this overt.”
U.S. Education Secretary Miguel Cardona said the threats are “disturbing.”
- “My team will continue to work with students, faculty, and alumni to make sure HBCUs continue to be a safe place for students to learn,” Cardona said in a tweet Tuesday.
What’s next: House Homeland Security Chairman Bennie Thompson, D-Miss., said in a statement that the FBI will apprehend those who are “responsible for this violent threat.”
- “The FBI is aware of the series of bomb threats around the country and we are working with our law enforcement partners to address any potential threats,” the FBI said in a statement, per USA Today. “As always, we would like to remind members of the public that if they observe anything suspicious to report it to law enforcement immediately.”
Flashback: In January, at least eight historically Black colleges and universities received bomb threats about a week before Martin Luther King Jr. Day, as I reported for the Deseret News.
- The University of Utah police department said it received a bomb threat at its Black Cultural Center, too.
The bottom line: “It is scary, it is horrifying, it is terrible that these students, these faculty, these institutions are feeling under threat,” White House press secretary Jen Psaki said Tuesday.