No need to reevaluate Vietnam protests
David Horowitz was my favorite prof when I was a student at PSU back in the day. He was very smart and had great wit and a lot of courage. So it was with more than a little disappointment that I read his comments on the student strike of 1970, where he questioned the tactics and mindset of anti-war protesters at that time and accusing them falsely of vandalizing Smith Center [“Four days that changed Portland,” May 5].
I read much of the same hand-wringing from former activist Joe Uris in an Oregonian article a couple of years ago about the Vietnam War protest movement in Portland and I cannot understand what has made these tigers of the past suddenly wimp out and start whining about how we were wrong to be “so angry” and to disturb the delicate sensitivities of an American public who would rather have ignored the horrors of the daily slaughter in Southeast Asia.
I hope David and Joe can find the heart they had years ago, believing the rightness of the cause and the actions we took, and refuse to go gently into the night.
Go, go-go dancers
Wow. After reading this, I start to think that Portland is not the open-minded place that it claims to be [“Showing skin, raising questions,” May 10]. Bias such as this is really no different from racial supremacy. As far as the event on a college campus, maybe “small” colleges have different rules. If you check any university, they all have dance teams or step shows. Many colleges and universities around the country have nightclubs on campus or across the street that the colleges actually sponsor or accept sponsorship from, and these clubs have go-go dancers as well as on-campus events on a regular basis showing off the girls for promotional purposes. I’ve personally DJ’d many events in where a particular frat or sorority had girls dancing in bikinis in a contest manner, and if people didn’t like it they didn’t watch. I bet if you took a poll on campus that was honest and not target-biased, you would find that the majority of students like more energetic events such as these. Too bad these students won’t speak up.
I bet PSU would be more fun and entertaining for everyone if they did. Go feminist groups, do your thing. You don’t like it when people criticize you for what you do, so leave these girls alone. They’re trying to have a good time doing something they like to do, and I think Lollipop Labs deserves nothing but praise for organizing and empowering that.
I DJ all night in clubs that are full of half-dressed women who love to dance. So be it!
Students care about environment
I was glad to see the article about the roadless rule in the Vanguard, because this is an issue students care about [“Governor blasts new forest policy,” May 6]. All term, OSPIRG has been working on protecting the roadless rule and urging the governor to do all he can. We have been gathering hundreds of petition signatures, faculty endorsements, student group endorsements and outdoor groups as well. It is also clear that PSU students want to keep environmental issues on the table.
Help the ‘body thetans’
In your rush to belittle Grand Master L. Ron Hubbard and his flock you have overstepped the boundaries of Dianetically-approved journalism [“This Independent Week,” May 12].
Oh sure, it must have given you momentary pleasure to hurt a minority evil cult but think of the hurt you have caused amongst the “body thetans.”
You see, one of the most sensitive of Church of Scientology secrets is the revelation that much of humanity’s misery is caused by the souls, or “body thetans,” of space aliens who were transported to Earth 75 million years ago, chained to a volcano, and exploded with hydrogen bombs by their ruler, Xenu. These body thetans attach themselves by “clusters” to individuals in the contemporary world, causing spiritual harm and negatively influencing the lives of their hosts – hosts like you and me, dear unenlightened editor. And only L. Ron Hubbard knew how to get rid of these darn pesky body thetans.
Now then, and here’s the pinnacle of my letter: when you disparage the Church of Scientology it will attract fewer customers. Fewer customers means fewer people who can get us “clear” of them lingering suck-up spirits. So, in essence, you damned the whole world just because you received a letter from a scientologist!
Perhaps your relationship with your mother is bad but this is unwarranted and I expect you to print a nice picture of L. Ron in your magazine and glowing words of praise about him and his scam.
Caesar salad with goat?
Forgive me if I’m wrong (which I may be) but the title of the article, “Vedi, vici, ambededi” doesn’t actually mean “I came, I saw, I ate” [May 12]. At least, it doesn’t mean that in Latin, which is the language of Caesar’s original quote: “Veni, vidi, vici” (“I came, I saw, I conquered”).
In Latin, the article’s title means, roughly, “Young goat, I conquered, I ate young goat around the edges.”
A correct translation of the article’s title would be “Veni, Vidi, Ambedi” or “Veni, Vidi, Edi.” Ambedi carries a possible meaning of erosion, eating away around the edges, whereas Edi simply means “I ate” or “I devoured.”
Spokane outing more complicated
Your article in today’s Vanguard, “Meddling in the Lives of Politicians” [May 13], about the outing of the gay mayor of Spokane, is wrong on at least three points. First, it states that this is an adults-only scandal. However, there are credible allegations by two men stating that Mayor West molested them when they were 14-year-olds in his scouting group. Secondly, your article states that this is news only because Mayor West is gay, which completely ignores that Bill Clinton’s affair with White House aid Monica Lewinski was also a very big deal. Thirdly, this story is not just some small-town politician who gets caught in a sexually compromising position, it is a saga of a right-wing political movement which has come to power using a totally dishonest campaign of false public morality.
Mayor West is a man who has led campaigns of persecution against gays by day and then had sex with them the same night. It makes this a fascinating study of hypocrisy and the radical living of two mutually exclusive lives.
Not having been openly and honestly gay all along, with the natural support of fellow gays, live-and-let-live liberals, and other fair-minded people, Mayor West will be politically alone and quickly dumped by his former supporters of the radical right.
[Ed. note: The column referenced was written by an opinion columnist and does not reflect the opinions of the Vanguard editorial board.]
Change for women scientists starts in high school
I am relieved to see that at the very bottom of the article [“Breaking into the boys’ club,” May 13] there is an acknowledgment that the marketing of the science opportunities must be initiated in the middle and high school levels.
So far, nearly every article I have seen on the topic has pointed to the disparity in college degrees awarded but nowhere have I seen any statistic on the ratio of incoming college student declarations of a technical major with respect to the graduation in that major. What are the attrition rates among male students, what are they among female students, at what level in the process does it tend to occur, and why, what majors did the genders change to, how many dropped out altogether, etc., etc.? These statistics along with interviews would reveal far more about the actual state of the issue rather than pointing to the ratio at the end of the process and simply saying it isn’t right and needs to be fixed. If fixing is going to be effective, the core of the problem has to be accurately identified.
I’d like to offer one piece of anecdotal evidence from 30 years ago. During one of the more intense periods of the feminist movement in seeking equality (early 1970s), a study was conducted to determine why more females were not seeking engineering careers. The result was astoundingly simple: engineering was not considered a “fast-track” to management positions. I doubt the current trend is quite that simple but it is indicative of how unintuitive the issue can be. As with nearly everything, there is far more to be learned about the condition in order to be effective in addressing it.