Letter to the editor: A more perfect Kent

Dominic Gatti

Dear Editor:

In response to Anastasiya Spytsya’s column, “What would life be without you” (Sept. 15) praising the military and its “services” as “those who protect us,” I write with passion.

I have been in Kent for only three weeks, and aside from coming to a Lupe Fiasco concert last fall and a few parties visiting from Cleveland State, I have not spent that much time here. It did not take me long, however, to fall in love with this campus, this town and its surroundings. There is one thing that I believe will continually “down-press” and limit the popularity and comfort of this school – and that is the evident over-policing of Kent and its PUBLIC university.

Being from Youngstown – many times regarded as one of America’s most dangerous, corrupt and homicidal cities – I have very few good things to say about police as good stewards, let alone public servants. A few years ago, the city began “saturation” districting and “Zero-Tolerance” by bringing in state troopers to write tickets and harass motorists (our poor-enough people). Kent, on a similar wire, seems to have that same police-saturated feel all the time. It is far too intense and will keep bright minds out, if not angry. Kent is one of the safest campuses in the state, and a cowboy police force (such as ours) is hardly the way to keep us safer. Good jobs, an educated populous, civic events and clean-stimulating streetscape will.

I am no mathematician, but I do know simple addition:

Less police + more community = a more perfect Kent.

I believe NWA said it best…

Dominic Gatti is a graduate student in cultural anthropology of landscape.