Campus discourse disappoints
I, like many students, was angered by the display case that the College Republicans organized Tuesday, March 1 ["Display debacle," 3-2-05]. They had taken things I respect and appreciate, namely the marketplace of ideas and good public discourse, and dragged them through the mud. But I was not surprised. They are, after all, merely students of the nationally dominant political ideology and it is easy to see the lessons they are learning.

First lesson: the College Republicans learned from Bush supporting group USA Next which is attacking the AARP on gay marriage and troop support, when the issue is Social Security reform. The College Republicans applied this lesson by using images of murderers in an attempt to smear their opponents in a way unrelated to any of the real issues on this campus.

Second lesson: when I asked the president of the College Republicans why they had posted the display, he replied that his group was "Providing information. We’re letting students know what the candidates look like."

Clearly, a page out of the Fox News playbook which regularly surrounds any actual newsworthy content with manipulative images and language while failing to make it clear whose opinions are being expressed (The group had initially neglected to add their name to the display).

So I suppose we can’t really be upset by the College Republicans’ actions. They are just students of a pathetic curriculum. But I do have one suggestion: That they change their group name to "Swift Boat Wannabes for Barron/Craven."

Justin Myers

Ridwan article lacking
Interesting commentary on the firing of Dr. Ridwan Nytagodien ["The firing of Ridwan," 2-25-05]. Granted, I would think that if a professor is being fired for failing to meet tenure requirements maybe at some point in a page long article it would be nice to actually talk about what the tenure requirements ARE and if/how Dr. Nytagodien failed to meet them. Maybe it’s just me, but it seems like if you’re going to devote almost a full page to the firing of a professor, somewhere in the story, you might want to go into the details of whether or not the firing was justified, since that seems like it might be a central point of the story. But again, that’s just me.

Steve Yousten

Respect campus health workers
I recently accompanied a friend to the Student Health Clinic. While waiting in the waiting room, I overheard a student throwing a tantrum to the RN in the pharmacy over how long it would take for a prescription to be filled.

I understand we live in a fast-paced world where instant gratification is expected and valued, but there is another side to this scenario. First of all, remember that in the real world, private health insurance would cost well over four times the amount of SHAC fees; be grateful for what you have. Secondly, SHAC is severely understaffed. The pharmacy is staffed by an RN and not a full-time pharmacist. Your wait time was caused by the doctor making random trips between patients to "sign off" on all medications dispensed. You had the option to take and fill your prescription at a regular pharmacy, but it wouldn’t take just as long and cost you more? Lastly, the education and experience required to obtain an RN position with SHAC could get them almost double the salary of what they are earning now anywhere other than PSU. For the last two years their union has had a freeze on all pay increases (this means no cost-of-living increases as well). Please don’t use your whiny attitude to punish SHAC’s RNs for their love and passion of working with university students. Isn’t the fact that they must work in a clinic that is short-staffed, pays half the salary of what they are worth with no pay increase in sight punishment enough?

Jennifer Samsom

Vikings on the rise
The men’s basketball program’s is by far exciting, and will go farther in putting us on the map than being the largest university in Oregon ["Viks a win away," 2-22-05]. You know what surprises me is no one knows we are the largest. Everyone assumes U of O or OSU is larger, when in fact we have been the largest for quite a few years.

Hopefully this sort of program stays with PSU for a while – it is good for the whole school.

Ken Mofford

Euromotion rocks
Euromotion has not just taken the hearts of Portland, but all across the country ["Portland in motion … Euromotion!" 2-2-05]. Remember everyone, keep dancing.

Marc Riedel
Billings, Montana

Offended by poontang
I guess you thought you were cute using "poontang" in your lead sentence ["Nothing the much ado," 2-23-05]. Guess again. Simply offensive. Misogyny has no place here. An apology is in order. And, by the way, an apology not only from the writer, but the editor, too.

In case you don’t have a dictionary at hand, here’s one definition–the one that most people would know.

poon*tang n.

Vulgar Slang. Sexual intercourse with a woman. Offensive Slang. Used as a disparaging term for a woman. [Perhaps from French putain, prostitute, from Old French, from pute, feminine of put, foul, stinking, from Latin ptidus, from ptre, to be rotten, stink. See p- in Indo-European Roots.]

Dennis Stovall
Asst. Professor of English