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Dear President Paxson, Your Intolerance of Veterans is Unacceptable

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

 

Dear President Paxson,

I woke up this morning to very disturbing news regarding Brown University, located right here in our capital city of Providence.  This comes after a steady rise of intolerance that has festered on many college campuses and prominently more than once on Brown's campus in the past few years.  I call on you and the rest of your administration to immediately denounce such extremists intolerance and more importantly to formulate and implement a dialogue that consists of civil discourse.  I will gladly make myself available for any such discussion.

It is with sadness that we mourn the passing of journalist Gwen Iffil this week, but it is exactly her words that are so appropriate on this issue.  She was a passionate voice for a plea for civility in this nation.  

She once wrote, “And, yes, civility is something we prize on both NewsHour and Washington Week. I always tell audiences that we see more value in light than heat. Sometimes the only way to have a discussion is to have a debate, but the only way to learn something is if the debaters make an effort to listen to each other."

I struggle to understand how someone like myself, who grew up in a very low income household here in West Warwick, worked three jobs at a time for most of my life since age 12, served my nation for 24 years in the military through three wars, created directly and indirectly thousands of jobs, and am responsible for charitable contributions north of $10 million dollars, can wake up to this kind of news. 

You need to be held accountable, not the students.  Leadership is not easy nor assignable.  

{image_2}You have a responsibility and in order to continue to lead responsibly, you need to call out those that are intolerant and demand that they reach out to our veterans and apologize for the fear they have created in the military community.  At last count there are over 20 million veterans and over 80 million direct family members.  That is roughly one out of every four Americans that have received your campus community's threat.

I work hard every day and dream about how I will be able to donate to institutions of higher education to include Brown.  I will tell you emphatically, that I and I am sure many others will be meeting with our estate planners to reevaluate where to direct our hard earned money if we feel that you house a community of hate.

As a proud immigrant who calls Rhode Island home, I refuse to allow your campus to stain the fabric of our community and more importantly our great nation that I have stood up for and defended, the United States of America.

I am hopeful that you understand the importance of seizing this moment as an opportunity to bring our community together.

Very Respectfully,
 

MAJOR Giovanni Feroce (RET)

Chairman and CEO

B E N R U S

39 Pike Street

Providence, RI 02903

www.BENRUS.com

 

Related Slideshow: 25 Ways to Celebrate Veterans in Central Mass & New England - 2016

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Charlton Memorial Day Parade 

The Charlton Memorial Day Parade will start at 2 p.m. on Monday rain or shine. The parade will begin at the Masonic Home and proceed to the front of the town's Library at Dexter hall. 

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The parade stops at Soldier's Statue in front of the Police Station on Maple Ave, War Memorial at the Town Center and at the Veterans Lot at Mountain View Cemetery. 

At this year's ceremony, Massachusetts Lieutenant Governor, Karyn Polito will speak at the Town Center. 

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The East Brookfield Parade starts at 11 a.m. at the town complex and goes to Evergreen Cemetery where there will be a ceremony  and then goes to Depot Square where there will be a final ceremony and laying of wreaths. 

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Sturbridge Memorial Day Parade 

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Rutland Memorial Day Parade 

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Paxton Memorial Day Parade 

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North Brookfield Memorial Day Parade 

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Leicester Memorial Day Parade 

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Hardwick Memorial Day Parade 

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Douglas Memorial Day Parade 

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Operation Stand Down's Boots on the Ground Memorial 

Operation Stand Down RI (OSDRI) will host the first annual Boost on the Ground for Heroes Memorial this Memorial Day weekend from Friday, May 27 at 5 p.m. to Monday May 30 at 4 p.m. Overall, OSDRI will place 6,844 boots  in the field by the Temple to Music at Roger Williams Park throughout the weekend. 

A formal ceremony will be held on Saturday, May 28 at 11 a.m. where Sgt. Major Todd Parisi will deliver the keynote address. 

The event will honor all of Rhode Island's veterans American heroes who were killed in action defending the country during the war on terror by marking their lives with a boot, a flag and a name placard. 

Click here for more information. 

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Charlestown Parade 

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Battleship Cove in Fall River 

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The ceremony will consist of a the raising of the flag from half staff as well as a 21 gun salute. 

The ceremony is FREE and open to the public. 

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Witness for Peace Concert in New London Connecticut 

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Seekonk Memorial Day Parade 

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1876 Tribute Re-enactment and Procession 

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Portsmouth, New Hampshire Memorial Day Parade and Ceremony 

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Garden of Flags in Boston

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Hubbardton, Vermont Memorial Day Remembrance 

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PHOTO: Vermont.gov

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Bangor, Maine Memorial Day Parade 

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PHOTO: Davenport Park

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Seekonk Memorial Day Parade 

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Manchester, New Hampshire, Memorial Day Parade 

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PHOTO: Nasa/flickr

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Portland, Memorial Day Parade 

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PHOTO: Maine.gov 

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Essex Junction Vermont Memorial Day Parade 

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Flag Retirement Ceremony in Little Compton 

The flag retirement ceremony will take pace at post home on the commons in Little Compton at 2 p.m. 

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Following that, there will be a memorial service  at Acoxet Chapel  in Westport at 7 p.m. 

 
 

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