Letters to the Editor

Continue the goals

I would like to respond to the Jan. 28 full-page advertisement against racial preferences entitled “Guilty by Admission” (p. 8) and the article about the ad (“Ad campaign claims illegal admissions,” p. 3). This ad is frustrating and disheartening. Universities should not go back to the days of exclusionary admissions policies because of the fear of lawsuits, but instead should continue to strive toward greater diversity.

The name of the organization that paid for the advertisement is “Center for Individual Rights.” There should be less emphasis on the individual rights for the wealthiest Americans and a stronger voice for community rights. GW is part of the larger American community and has the right and obligation to address the problems of its larger community.

Moreover, no greater problem faces American society than the economic, political and social divide between African Americans and the rest of America. A short tour of Northeast and Southeast Washington contrasted to Northwest Washington will give evidence of the seriousness of the problem. If a group of people is denied access to higher education, then they are condemned to be second-class citizens.

This year, GW was named as one of the premier schools for African-American students by Black Enterprise magazine. Moreover, GW also regained its position in the top 50 schools ranked by U.S. News & World Report. GW should strive to be a model in the related goals of academic achievement and diversity.

-Richard Hulshof
graduate student


Outdated rules

According to the preamble of the GW Statement of Student Rights and Responsibilities, “As members of the academic community, students should be encouraged to develop the capacity for critical judgment and to engage in a sustained and independent search for the truth.”

Having critically judged the present situation, we have sought and found the truth to be that the policy cited to prevent students of the opposite sex from rooming together is unfair, outdated and hypocritical. It must be reviewed and ultimately changed.

Concerns have been raised as to the possibility of romantically linked couples rooming together as a result of changes in the cohabitation policy. This may very well occur and as adults, students should be allowed to make that decision. Furthermore, the likelihood of couples feeling compelled to “go their separate ways” is no greater than the likelihood of best friends of the same sex deciding to go theirs.

Granted, as a recent Hatchet editorial pointed out, there are only two of us thus far who have officially taken issue with the cohabitation policy (Jan. 28, “Staying separate,” p. 4). To say that our small number makes us insignificant, however, is insulting and disheartening. At this point, we are “fighting an uphill battle,” but have found our fellow students for the most part to be highly supportive of our proposal. Change has to start somewhere, and we encourage more students to consider the policy carefully and voice their opinions.

-Clark Harding and Kathy Rooney
freshmen


New plan for meals

I would like to thank the author of the Jan. 25 letter to the editor “Profiting from points” for taking the time to express how he feels about next year’s all-points meal plan required for freshmen, sophomores and now juniors.

I understand his frustration, as the new meal plan is confusing and unclear for many of us. At first glance, requiring juniors to be on a meal plan doesn’t make any sense and seems unfair especially since many juniors have kitchens and cook their meals at home instead of eating at J Street. Many students choose to purchase their groceries from Safeway and other off-campus stores instead of the MC Store because of its small size and poor selection.

While this may be true today, I am pleased to announce that next year’s MC Store is expected to be more than three times its current size. With dramatic improvements in space and selection, those students previously trekking to Safeway for their groceries will no longer need to go further than 21st and H streets.

In addition to better service and higher quality, all students on the meal plan will enjoy up to a 10 percent discount on all purchases, as points are tax-free. This equates to savings of up to $50 a year for juniors who subscribe to the least expensive meal plan. Also, the choice of meal plan has been expanded and is cheaper.

Finally, with the new meal plan, all students will experience more flexibility, as the time you wake up in the morning and when you have classes does not affect your ability to purchase a meal. While this may make some unhappy, it is my belief that with an improved MC Store and an increase in food options that the majority of students, including juniors will pleased with the meal plan changes.

-Chris Voss
Dining Services Commission chair


Misguided coverage

When I was reading through the Jan. 28 edition of The GW Hatchet, I was dismayed to find an article entitled “GW Socialists call for economic equality and an end to capitalism” (p. 10) discussing a meeting of the International Socialists Organization.

I question the wisdom of devoting coverage to a meeting of a student group with only 12 members in attendance when so many other groups, which arguably do more for promoting the GW community, are not featured. Not to mention the obvious hypocrisy of the ISO, whose members, in their mission to end the woes of capitalism, choose to attend a private institution whose price tag is more than $30,000. If they truly believed in international socialism, I suspect they might be better off spending this money on charitable causes to promote the economic well-being of those less fortunate than themselves.

This does not even bring into account that The Hatchet gave coverage to a group whose shared beliefs have historically led to a repression of the freedoms of speech and the press. Note, for example, the East German Stasi, which obviously did wonders for freedom of expression while promoting international socialist revolution.

The only consolation I see in this unwise choice of coverage is the fact that it is given by a free press in a free nation that spent more than 40 years fighting socialist totalitarian governments such as the German “Democratic” Republic. It is a tribute to democracy when ideologically corrupt organizations can openly state their views. I only hope that next time The Hatchet devotes coverage to a more beneficial student organization.

-Erik Howell
sophomore

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