Letters to the editor

Broken system

God bless The Hatchet for saying what’s on every GW student’s mind when it comes to the SA (“New year, new names, same old garbage,” Nov. 17, p. 4).

However, perhaps your editorial board should go further: call on every person affiliated with the SA who is tired of its incompetence to resign. They have all had their chance to improve the system from the inside, and they have failed.

Those that remain will reveal themselves as shameless self-promoters, while those that leave will make a powerful demonstration that the system is broken, and that drastic change is needed to fix it.

-Steve Kolbert, sophomore

Give the SA some credit

I have something positive to say about our student government. Is this even allowed at GW?

As a freshman senator, I am growing increasingly disgusted and disheartened with the attitude towards the Student Association Senate. According to students we are corrupt, politically motivated, inept, inefficient and consume our time debating meaningless issues. We are apparently a waste of your student fees.

There are initiatives right now being taken by your senators to gain student representation on the Board of Trustees, change the health and safety inspection process, improve the quality of life at Mount Vernon, increase the salaries of adjunct professors and offer an airport shuttle during holiday breaks.

In addition, the Finance Committee continues to successfully allocate hundreds of thousands of dollars to GW student organizations. Most if not all theater projects, Greek Week events, cultural dinners and political speakers are funded through the Senate with your SA fees.

Can it truly be said that this is all meaningless? Decide as you wish, but I think we need to really start giving credit where credit is due. All of the Senate’s undertakings have been carried out by a body of dedicated students who many times put their homework, friends and jobs on hold in order to create a better campus community.

Instead of being praised, we are consistently put down. I think this campus needs to rethink its treatment of the Student Association. Can we please take a step back and possibly acknowledge the many truly awesome things our SA is doing?

-Nicole Capp, freshman

A perspective on impeachment

It is unfair for student politicos to take advantage of Student Association President Audai Shakour’s personal judicial issues. Forcing him to defend himself before the Student Association Senate jeopardizes his ability to conduct a full and fair defense before Student Judicial Services. The Senate would be wise to let SJS conduct an investigation and adjudicate the process in a way that protects the parties’ rights.

Impeachment is not to be taken lightly. In 1999, I served as a freshman senator during the impeachment of President Phil Meisner. It was a colossal waste of time conducted by a group of disgruntled politicos seeking advantage and trying to satisfy their insatiable appetite for power and retribution. It sounds like the current situation is one in which political sharks smelled blood in the water.

To reiterate a point from an op-ed I wrote during the Meisner impeachment, these students would be better off concentrating on their school work than an ill-conceived and likely frivolous set of impeachment charges which no one in the real world cares about.

Further, such childish behavior will guarantee that students never get a seat on the Board of Trustees. When they cannot act like responsible adults in their own representative process, they have no place at a table with adults.

-Joshua Rothstein, alumnus and former SA Student Court chief judge

Fundraising myth

In response to Professor Parsons’ piece “Restoring educational excellence at GW” (Nov. 14, p. 5):

He commented in his piece on the effectiveness of fundraising at the University. Because this is my area of responsibility, I write to respond to his assertion that “the current administration has well known weaknesses in fundraising .”

In the past 17 years, GW has raised $740 million, averaging more than $43 million per year. Last year, alone, we closed the year with $62 million in gifts and new pledges. In addition, this administration is being supportive of expanding the fundraising effort to match the opportunities that are available to GW to secure philanthropic support.

I must point out that it is not just the “current administration” that needs to be involved in fundraising. Truly successful fundraising universities include nearly every member of the University community in the effort. While my division is responsible for leading the initiative, everyone has a part to play.

-Laurel Price Jones, Vice President for Advancement

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