Berklee College of Music has sinned.
Yes, the prestigious music school in Boston is guilty of an egregious wrongdoing amid the George Floyd protests.
Here goes: Boston police officers were allowed into the Berklee Performance Center to use its restrooms Sunday night after protests at the State House.
Yup. That's it.
Still top administrators — including President Roger H. Brown — signed a letter to the Berklee community in which they left no angle of apology unexplored for letting city police through campus doors.
"The decision to allow them into our facilities was ours," the letter states. "This was not a formal decision by the institution, but an informal one, made on the spot. Some have asked if the campus was used to house or stage activity of the Boston Police; it was not."
The letter adds that school officials "have heard from many of you personally and across social channels of your hurt and anger that this access was permitted," but the letter adds that "allowing police officers into the space was in no way meant to undermine Berklee's support for Black Lives Matter."
We understand that many members of our community feel betrayed. We are deeply sorry for the impact this had on our community and for perpetuating feelings of oppression, silencing, and marginalization. We will make a more concerted effort to consider the effects of our actions.
Let us assure you, this should not have happened, and going forward, it will not happen again.
Yes, there was backlash — for bowing to the virtual mob
A cursory look at comments following the letter of apology shows very little outrage at Berklee for letting Boston cops use its restrooms — but lots of outrage for apologizing in the first place. Here's a sampling.
"This is a ridiculous overreach by school administration," one commenter wrote. "I'm ashamed of their cowardice. These people aren't leaders and it shows. You cant let the police, that are there to protect your property, as well as the rest of the city, use the restroom or the building to stage? Really? Whoever made the decision was being human, and made a good choice to help these officers. I feel badly they have to answer to these clowns. We thought Berklee was better than this, but it has given us serious pause in our future relationship with them."
Another commenter added, "Law enforcement is essential for keeping our students, our children, safe in the city. And I'm grateful you showed them kindness. I'm disappointed however, that you promise 'never again' to show such kindness. How sad you should give in to bullies this way. I'll remember to say 'never again' when you ask for a donation."
And yet another observer reminded school officials that Boston police have been there for citizens in the darkest of times: "Perhaps you don't remember, but there have been police posted at the same intersection for every Boston Marathon run, including in 2013 when they cared for the injured, got people safely out of the area in case there were more devices, and oh, with the help of the FBI found the bombers in just FOUR days, FOUR! Then there were the many Championship Parades that they have been assigned to, many on mandatory overtime, at the same intersection in front of your school. Their presence never bothered anyone, including the plethora of drunk Berklee students they assisted where they were going, or when they called EMS for the children who were too drunk to walk away safely. Letting them use your facilities doesn't make you a hero, but refusing to let them use the facilities makes you ridiculous."