Every year, the national Secular Student Alliance hears about the amazing things our affiliate groups are doing. When we hear of a group doing something especially awesome, we give out an Award for Outstanding Activism for their exemplary work. Today, we're spotlighting the Secular Student Alliance at Florida International University and their recent event on behalf of Dr. Avijit Roy, a freethinker and writer of Bangladeshi origin that was murdered in February 2015. This event has earned them an Award for Outstanding Activism.
Late last month, the Secular Student Alliance at Florida International University hosted an event entitled, "We are Avijit" on their campus where they encouraged fellow students and members of their community to join them to uphold the spirit of free speech. The purpose of this event was to protest against the brutal assassination of Dr. Avijit Roy, a prominent American freethinker, writer, and blogger of Bangladeshi origin. Dr. Roy was hacked to death by unidentified assailants in the streets of Dhaka, Bangladesh, on February 26, 2015. His wife, Rafida Ahmed was with him and sustained serious wounds. Dr. Roy was the founder of the Mukto-Mona (Free-mind) blog site which champions liberal secular writing.
This event was organized by concerned members of the FIU community and hosted by the Secular Student Alliance at FIU, both to commemorate the loss of Dr. Avijit Roy, and to reaffirm their commitment to the fight against any and all kinds of intolerance to opposing views. A number of students, faculty, and staff attended the event, as well as members of the local secular community.
"Although we were protesting against a specific incident, the message was loud and clear: this is not a one-off incident. Such brutalities happen everyday all over the world, especially in the developing nations," stated Soumyadeep Mukherjee of SSA at FIU.