Athletics News

Oct. 14, 1997

Notre Dame Accepts Stanford Apology

NOTRE DAME, Ind. - The University of Notre Dame condemns the bigotry displayed by the Stanford University band and accepts the accompanying letter of apology issued by Stanford President Gerhard Casper, Notre Dame's president, Rev. Edward A. Malloy, C.S.C., said today.

The band's pregame and halftime performances at the Notre Dame-Stanford football game Oct. 4 included a series of ethnic and religious slurs directed toward Catholics and people of Irish descent.

"As a community formed largely by Irish-American Catholics, we find the behavior of the Stanford band not merely sophomoric and boorish, but personally offensive," Father Malloy said. "Such bigotry - whether directed at Catholics, Jews, the Irish, African-Americans, Native Americans or any other group - is absolutely unacceptable, especially from a student organization representing an institution that rightfully prides itself on diversity.

"After engaging in 10 days of private conversation with members of the Stanford administration, I am pleased they have joined Notre Dame in forcefully condemning the band's behavior. Although the band's performance and public statements indicate an ignorance of Irish history and indifference to human suffering in that country, I trust this will be the last time the group engages in bigotry against racial, ethnic, religious or other historic minorities."

The Stanford band has been barred from the Notre Dame campus since a 1991 performance mocked members of the Catholic faith, and Father Malloy said that prohibition will continue indefinitely. He also applauded Stanford's decision to prohibit the band from performing when Notre Dame visits Stanford again in 1999.

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