First Oath Week hosts Rabbi Talve

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First Oath Week hosts Rabbi Talve

John Schuler / Photo Editor
Rabbi Susan Talve spoke with a small audience at SLUMA in the keynote speech for the inaugural Oath Week on April 24.

John Schuler / Photo Editor Rabbi Susan Talve spoke with a small audience at SLUMA in the keynote speech for the inaugural Oath Week on April 24.

John Schuler / Photo Editor Rabbi Susan Talve spoke with a small audience at SLUMA in the keynote speech for the inaugural Oath Week on April 24.

John Schuler / Photo Editor Rabbi Susan Talve spoke with a small audience at SLUMA in the keynote speech for the inaugural Oath Week on April 24.

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John Schuler / Photo Editor Rabbi Susan Talve spoke with a small audience at SLUMA in the keynote speech for the inaugural Oath Week on April 24.

John Schuler / Photo Editor
Rabbi Susan Talve spoke with a small audience at SLUMA in the keynote speech for the inaugural Oath Week on April 24.

The inaugural Oath Week provided opportunities for students to learn and engage in discussion concerning campus diversity.

“The Oath of Inclusion was created by students for students,” Vice President-elect of Diversity and Social Justice Amelia Romo said about the event. “Oath Week gives SLU students a chance to think about ways that you can live out the oath and join the dialogue.”

“[We hope] to meet students where they are at by presenting these programs in a very open discussion and educational manner,” Romo said.

One lecture on the night of April 22 called “How We Define the Others,” included discussion about factors that affect whether or not a child becomes a delinquent. Associate professor of sociology and criminal justice Norman White discussed how the problem begins in the community.

According to White, a major factor is the inequality in employment rates and income throughout St. Louis communities.

The presentation included a talk from assistant professor of communication Mary Gould, who is a part of the SLU prison program. Gould provided startling statistics, stating that 30,000 people are incarcerated on a daily basis as opposed to the 1970s when the number was much lower, around 3,000. She also stressed the importance of a strong community.

“The hope is that when the prisoners return to a community, they become a part of the community,” Gould said.

She stressed the importance of discussion on how to enable and equip people to positively influence a community.

The keynote event of the week featured Rabbi Susan Talve, titled “Living the Oath: Social Justice through Inclusion and Activism.”

The event was held in the SLU Museum of Art on the evening of April 23.

Talve stressed the importance of incorporating scripture into our daily lives in order to live the Oath. She used several examples from the Bible and the Torah to send her message.

“Inclusion does not mean changing someone,” Talve said. “Inclusion means recognizing diversity.”

Talve encouraged the concept of “love the stranger,” found in the Torah, along with the “Golden Rule” from the Bible.

“We have different beliefs, we have to learn to make room for those different beliefs,” Talve said.

Throughout her speech, she continuously stressed the importance of recognizing the value of each person.

“We need to draw a line in the sand when we see any form of discrimination,” she said. “What we do today can redeem the past — that is the kind of thinking that will get us out of the cycle of violence.”

Oath Week also maintained a presence on social media, encouraging students to use the Twitter hashtag #Livinit to share how they are living the Oath.