Letters to the Editor

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Letter to the Editor:

Thank you for helping with Mirthday: We would like to thank The Current for their excellent coverage of Mirthday 1999. Not only were the articles informative and greatly appreciated, but the photo coverage was magnificent!

Race still an issue at UM-St. Louis: I'm responding to your article in May 3rd's edition of The Current, concerning SGA president-elect Butler. Let me be the first to say that I have personally reaped countless benefits that the University of Missouri-St. Louis has had to offer. Secondly, I did not vote for Butler in this year's election and I believe, after reviewing them, the grievances put forth by vice-president Carrie Mowen are valid and deserved to be heard and reviewed. Now after saying all of this, do I believe that as an African-American female, that there are racial biases involved in this case or that there is racism here at our university? The answer to both questions would be a clear and resounding yes.

Butler must show respect for campus: If Darwin Butler is indeed instated into the office of SGA president, I hope that he will show greater respect for the students and system he claims to represent than he has thus far. Mr. Butler's recent question (in The Current 4/26/99) "Do you really think that you are going to dismiss me over some allegations?" show a stunning lack of respect for fairness in the SGA elections.

Facing the problems of UM-St. Louis: Why is it that UM-St. Louis: ÑLikes to demolish attractive, older buildings (i.e., Mt. Providence)? . . .

Prop B would have been beneficial: Joe Harris' April 5th column on Prop B was very interesting and deserves a response. I voted for Prop B even though I'm not a gun owner or a member of the NRA.

SGA needs students to apply for seats:The Student Government Association Assembly is designed to represent all students' interests. However, if your interests and concerns do not agree with the Assembly's executive officers, then your voice will probably not be heard.

Comptroller owes group an apology:The Student organization of the National Education Association requests a formal apology from SGA comptroller Ben Ash. In the Mar. 1 issue of The Current, Mr. Ash submitted the name of our organization as one of the campus organizations listed on page eight that "have missed four or more [meetings] and may be facing expulsion."

Unfilled seats are SGA's real problem: The real problem of the Student Government Association is not Jim Avery. It is the lack of representatives that represent the whole student body.

An open letter from the SGA President: I would like to address a few concerns recently brought to my attention. These understandable concerns focus on my absence from a number of meetings, including my first emergency absence from an SGA meeting in my two years of presidency. While I openly admit that I have missed various meetings, and I apologize for any inconvenience or concern which my lack of visibility has caused, there has been some exaggeration and sensationalism of my errors. However, it is important for the students to understand, despite what you have heard, I remain committed to my role as President of the student body. While some suggest that I no longer care about the students nothing could be further from the truth.

Evening College prevented from voting:This is an official grievance regarding the lack of a voting booth during evening hours in the recent Homecoming Court elections.

The campus senate: a vital asset to the students:On March 4 and 5, the student Senate elections will be held. Recently, there has been considerable discussion on this campus regarding student participation in the Senate: the poor attendance of student Senators at current meetings, the lack of respect felt by some students from faculty members of the Senate, and whether student seats on the Senate should be reduced or eliminated all together. As a current member of the Senate and a member of the election committee, I would like to share my thoughts on each of these areas of discussion.

Student apathy may cause reduced representation:I am writing in response to the recent turn of events in the campus senate. I am disgusted with talk of reducing student senate seats, but I don't know who to blame. I am upset that the students face losing seats because quite a few of them have been absent from meetings.

Why Avery should resign from Student Government: Top ten reasons why Jim Avery should resign his post as president of the Student Government Association:

Critics are too quick to condemn Jim Avery: I believe that the current criticism of president Avery is both unfair and hypocritical. Absenteeism has been a problem for student government well before the Avery administration.

There's no misunderstanding about the Arts Center: Mr. Wombacher's latest letter to the editor in The Current (Feb. 1) claims to expose "a few fallacies" in my understanding of the Performing Arts Center. Upon reading the letter, I immediately took issue with it. Since he has obviously misunderstood me, I will make my points clearer.

CLARIFICATION FOR LAST CAMPUS SENATE MEETING: In The Current's January 25 article on the proposal to grant Senate voting rights to non-regular faculty, Prof. Joseph Martinich was quoted as saying at the Senate meeting on January 19, that " a secret ballot was requested and was denied." I would like to offer a clarification of this matter.

SEXUAL ORIENTATIONN NOT SO PRIVATE AND INVISIBLE: Speaking at the Board of Curators meeting Friday, January 29, University President Manuel T. Pacheco warned students and faculty to stay in the closet. No, he did not say it explicitly. Instead, he recommended Executive Order #3, which subsequently passed; this order substitutes vaguely worded guarantees of a "positive work and learning environment" for the direct disavowal of discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation. Hundreds of students, staff, and faculty had sent letters and made telephone calls to seek full inclusion. Refusing to specify sexual orientation by name, one curator added importantly that sexual orientation should be, in any case, private and invisible.

PERFORMING ARTS CENTER JUST MISUNDERSTOOD: In last weekÕs issue of The Current (Jan. 25) there was a letter to the editor written in response to my guest commentary written the week prior about the planned Performing Arts Center. The letter (signed Jake Parker) pointed out the cons of even bothering to erect such a building. Unfortunately, there were a few fallacies cited in his letter.

ARTS CENTER NOT SO GOOD: Thomas Wombacher's argument for the building of the Performing Arts Center brought up a point that should be responded to. Being that Mr. Wombacher says that the millions that the Center needs to be built can be raised by "selling candy", I propose that the only ones who would even step inside the Center (performing arts students) do exactly that: sell candy . . .

INVISIBLE SGA PRESIDENT: Where is the SGA President? He failed to attend the University senate meeting Tuesday the 19th.

PERFORMING ARTS CENTER PROVOKES STRONG FEELINGS FROM STUDENTS AND FACULTY ALIKE: I may only be a lowly undergrad student at UMSL so I realize that the Blanchellor may not care to hear my humble opinion, but maybe some of those students who fall into a category similar to mine (the vast majority of UMSL students) might. . .;

I have just finished reading your article "Arts Center focus of Council debate" in the 16 Nov 98 issue. Rarely have I seen coverage so one-sided. . .

DIALOGUE FOR PERFORMING ARTS CENTER NEEDED: There currently exists on this campus an opportunity for an experiment in collaboration between all stakeholders concerned with the issue of the proposed Performing Arts Center. Those stakeholders are the administration, the faculty, business and civic organizations that would utilize such a facility, and, perhaps most importantly, the students of this university.

THERE ARE ADVANTAGES TO BEING AN ALUM: A recent issue of the Current included a guest commentary entitled "Alumni Disadvantage." While the author, Gail Rimkus, made some valid observations, she failed to distinguish between problems the University faculty or staff are addressing, difficulties which all students face and must handle with parental or other assistance, and those where alumni are legitimately interested parties. These misunderstandings can be cleared up with the information contained in this letter.

AN EFFIGY OF HATE: In Wyoming four young people were convulsed by a violence that they could not understand and so they created an effigy. What an effigy does is to defer understanding from those who have made it to those who must view it. It is an emblem of convulsion over and above any crime or riot committed rationally for gain. Our term for the excess in effigy-making is hate, hence hate crime, a direct and even laudably simple term when you think about it and probably a necessary one in the prosaic world of the law.

SYSTEM'S BENEFITS LOST IN ANTI-COLUMBUS RALLY: In response to: "Protesters hold Anti-Columbus rally."
Some things I know, some I continue to learn. I know life under communism and capitalism. I know working for and with the poor in the slums of Calcutta and flooded fields of Bangladesh. I know dining with heads of state. I know growing up with the effects of imperialism in Ireland.

DOWNTOWN ST. LOUIS NEEDS UMSL STUDENTS: Downtown St. Louis IS important to the UM-St. Louis student! Downtown is where. . .the sports teams play, the nightlife is, thousands of the jobs are, the cool people LIVE! OK, so may IÕm exaggerating a little.

PARKING STILL A PROBLEM: Again I find myself writing about the parking. The situation here is desperate; many students are finding out they have to leave the house very early to get here and find a parking place.

CREDIT WHERE CREDIT IS DUE: I join the Current in applauding offering Latin courses but wish to correct what seriously misrepresents my actions as Dean.

SPRING BEFORE MARCH: It may be a little early to start being concerned about this, but I was just wondering why our glorious institute of higher education continuously finds it necessary to segregate us from the rest of the college students in the U.S. by making our Spring Break so early.

UPB DIRECTOR SAYS PROGRAMMING IS ALIVE AND WELL: As the Director of the University Program Board I challenge the statements made in the September 28, 1998 issue of the "Our Opinion" column of THE CURRENT. Information I shared with representatives of the newspaper was inaccurately reported regarding recruitment for new members.

Letters Recieved On-Line: A few Letters to the Editor recieved on-line recently discuss the fate of downtown St. Louis and the parking situation at UM-St. Louis

Y2K: MILLENIUM OF A MILLION HEADACHES: I can assure you the Y2K problem is real. It will cause millions of problems in thousands of industries. There may be programmers hiding out in the woods somewhere but the majority of them are laughing all the way to the bank.

PARKING MILES FROM NOWHERE: Last year I wrote about the parking situation. Well, guess what? It hasn't gotten any better.

FUMING STUDENT LETS SPARKS FLY: I agree that is a good idea to have non-smoking buildings. The smoke gets contained in the rooms and fills your lungs, clothes, and eyes. Since I am allergic to smoke, it bothers me more than most. However, I think it has gone a little too far when you deny smokers the last refuge outside of their homes: the great outdoors?