To the Editor:
I strongly support the editorial in the October 18 issue of the Orient, “All that is great about Bowdoin,” calling for the resignation of Jes Staley ’79 from Bowdoin’s Board of Trustees. Staley worked closely with Epstein, even after his 2008 conviction for soliciting a minor and sex trafficking. Incredibly, Epstein served only 13 months in jail (with a work release which allowing him to travel to his office daily six days a week) even though the FBI had compiled a 53-page indictment for sex crimes against him.
The editorial refers to Epstein as a sex offender. This seems too vague and sanitized for a description of a man who sexually abused dozens (maybe hundreds) of underage girls. Lives were ruined. At least some of Epstein’s powerful associates have apologized. Bill Gates issued several statements: “Bill Gates regrets every meeting with Epstein and recognizes it was an error of judgement to do so.” MIT admitted to accepting $800,000 from Epstein (and millions more from Epstein’s friends and associates) and apologized to victims of his crimes. In addition, MIT President Reif wrote “To Jeffrey Epstein’s victims, on behalf of the MIT administration, I offer a profound and humble apology. With hindsight, we recognize with shame and distress that we allowed MIT to contribute to the elevation of his reputation, which in turn served to distract from his horrifying acts.”
It is time for President Clayton Rose to ask for Jes Staley’s resignation and stand up for Bowdoin’s values, particularly on behalf of the women who attended or currently attend Bowdoin.
Christina Files, Class of 1979