The Berkeley Political Review has always been guided by an unwavering commitment to a platform that is non-partisan, that accounts for diverse political world-views, and that is made safe and inclusive for our membership. In recent comments made at an ASUC Senate session, Senator Isabella Chow made remarks that directly violate and threaten our organizational duty to ensure that our members feel secure in our publication and that their contributions are validated and protected in our space.
Over the past two weeks, BPR has consulted university resources and convened our internal conduct body as we sought to adjudicate this matter. By virtue of Senator Chow’s position within our organization, our process has required consultation with several institutional channels and diligence from our internal conduct body through a deliberative, thorough process. In conducting this process, the BPR conduct team sought to guarantee that Senator Chow was provided an opportunity to offer testimony. As a result of this process, BPR’s internal conduct body has come to the decision that we must terminate Senator Chow’s membership within our organization.
The BPR Executive team had not known Senator Chow to carry the views expressed at the Oct. 31st Senate session. The remarks made were surprising and severely disappointing to BPR leadership. The Berkeley Political Review does not and cannot exist in any capacity without its members. Ensuring that our staff — our writers, business team, designers, and tech experts — feel that their identities are not threatened by the views expressed by an organizational leader is our responsibility to our membership.
The statements made reflect discourse that has been historically wielded to marginalize, subjugate, and invalidate the existence of the LGBTQ+ community. BPR recognizes such marginalization and will continue to strive in serving as an inclusive platform for the totality of our membership. While BPR strongly affirms non-partisanship, any view that denies the validity of a community does not fall within the spectrum of political discourse that our guiding mission allows for.
The Berkeley Political Review Editorial Board
*The views expressed in this statement were endorsed by a majority of the BPR Editorial Board.