Controversial Cartoon Prompts Call for Civility at U. of Cincinnati

A controversial cartoon that was circulated anonymously this week at the University of Cincinnati has prompted a call for civility from the institution’s president and other campus leaders. The cartoon (seen in a local television station’s report here) depicted two African-American administrators, one of whom is Ronald L. Jackson, dean of the university’s College of Arts and Sciences, in a way that many criticized as racist. In a written statement, a group of campus officials, including Cincinnati’s president, Santa J. Ono, said the cartoon had “crossed the boundaries of civility on this campus.” They added that “this crude attack is an affront to the principle of justice that is central to a learning environment offering everyone an equal opportunity to contribute and flourish.”

Ono has supported Jackson despite a $7 million operating deficit at A&S that will take several years to close, and increasing criticism of his management.

One associate dean resigned, calling Jackson unprepared. Department heads appealed to UC’s top executives, urging an intervention, and a consultant was hired to help improve management of the college.

The cartoon labels Jackson and Tonge as “self-appointed king and queen of A&S.”

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