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Interfaith Sundae Day
April 25th, 2013

A Report by Alli Wessells, '14

This year's annual Interfaith Sundae Social had no shortage of people eager for ice cream intermixed with toppings. Many walked in knowing exactly what flavors they wanted and circulated the different tables for toppings before walking out. Others grabbed a table and cheerfully chatted between bites.

Just outside of the Campus Center TV Room, a booth was set up for a new Smith solidarity movement. Humans Out of Bounds was born out of the ugly and Anti-Muslim media coverage in the days after the Boston Marathon. Its founders, Katie Trudeau ('14) and Claire Brown ('14) are committed to helping people understand that, as their mission statement declares: "violence affects everyone, regardless of ethnicity, religion, nationality, sexuality, class and ability." No single group should be blamed for a violent act committed by individual members.

This swell of indignation propelled the two founders to being their movement, asking Smithies to submit messages of solidarity. Students were happy to share their messages, myself included. With my friend Michelle Yeo ('13), we read some of the previous messages before deciding to write "Spread Love, Not Violence". We liked it as a suggestion of what to do when a violent, traumatic event occurs and people are quick to blame innocent lives. Rather than focus on a witch-hunt, love and healing should be emphasized over empty accusations leading to a mass mob.

In addition to Humans Out of Bounds, the Interfaith Council held a solidarity opportunity for members of the Smith Community to Stand with Boston, Stand Against Violence and Stand with All People (as the laminated signs read on the chain fence by Lyman Rooftop Lawn). Interested students were given felt hearts (either yellow or blue) and a pin as a way of showing their solidarity. Many people took a heart, happy to have a visual sign of support for the events that occurred just an hour and a half away. Anyone interested in obtaining a heart and pin can obtain one from a basket in the Center for Religious and Spiritual Life (Helen Hills Hills Chapel).

The ice-cream event ended with most people satisfying their chocolate cravings (though vanilla was a close second in terms of popular flavors) with no end of toppings (crumbled oreo, gummy bears, cherries, whipped cream, etc). It also worked for as a base for interfaith actions by giving students two kinds of opportunities to stand in solidarity with members of other faiths. This reporter looks forward to next year's Interfaith Ice Cream Social, complete with a scoop of ice cream from Dean Jennifer Walters.