Letters to the editor

This isn’t the Army, it’s a university

Dear Editor:

Kent State – public university or military institution? Did I miss something when I enrolled, like the part about committing to be ever-vigilant in any condition and put my life on the line to defend education?

What I am referring to is the decision, or lack of one, that was made during the inclement weather Wednesday. Despite the fact that other area schools were all closed including The University of Akron, many area businesses were closed, and the Portage County Sheriff issued a Level 2 emergency, students were expected to be in class.

As a commuter, I awoke early expecting classes to be canceled. Instead I saw that all the satellite campuses were closed, but the Kent campus, apparently only for the brave of heart, was open.

I went to my 8:50 a.m. class because attendance is required, but the roads were treacherous! I was the only car on the road most of the way, which made me question why I was on the road – oh yes, class. The campus walkways were no better; they were snow-covered and icy.

As a public institution and a business, I would think that the university would do everything possible to protect its customers. It just should not be a risk to attend class.

To add insult to injury, classes were canceled at 11 a.m. We got here, now you cancel the classes we triumphantly came to attend?

I have not written this letter because I am a lazy college student who wanted to sleep in. I am writing this letter to bring attention to the fact that students often receive no respect. Although the university could not exist without us, there was no consideration for our safety. The leaders should remember that attending college is a choice that students make, and that we have all chosen Kent State.

School is not an income-earning job; we invest thousands of dollars yearly into this university. We have come for an education, not to be “The few, the proud. ” the only students in a classroom during a blizzard.

– Emily Cyr,

sophomore business administration major

There’s nothing bad about buying green

Dear Editor:

While I think I understand the underlying sentiment in the “Spending green when going green” editorial, it fails to represent the “green movement” situation accurately and recognize the importance that symbolism will have in the minds of Americans.

This symbolism, these intermediary steps to cultural enlightenment (for this is clearly not a matter of science but a matter of ethics and willpower), isn’t fast enough or proper enough. I will agree to that. But would anyone rather have two extremes? The completely cumbersome oaf and the eccentric? The back-to-the-lander eventually comes back to “reality” with a still-wonderful heart, and for what is he or she rewarded? He or she is too few.

The point being that we cannot ignore the possibility to raise this society’s class average above an F. A fantastical effort will be necessary, but even more so is the polishing and perfecting of those who simply may not be ready for it.

So we can’t reverse time. What’s done is done. Let’s utilize the fact that a lot of people in the world like to express their personhood through purchasing power. I buy the new organic Bronner’s soap and chapstick at the bookstore, feel good because I didn’t take a bag, feel good because my lips aren’t bleeding, and by golly, one of the managers starts talking about organic peanut butter at Acme. How cool?

Positive feelings are a scarce resource, and they turn into a commodity with money in hand. I need access to organic; everyone needs access. Besides bodily health, it saves oil, which is the basis for many pesticides, and prevents the application of such pesticides, thus thwarting the insidious nature of our infrastructure and chemical companies.

As a note, all food is shipped and processed ridiculously far away, so if organic isn’t purchased, conventional will be. And who even brought up the whole carting food across the globe problem anyway? Probably some green-hearted people.

To be short, I’ll bring up George Orwell’s “1984.” The mind is something to behold, but it can be easily modified and it latches on to what it can. Perception is all-powerful.

So if anyone around campus sees me toting some “I’m saving the world. What are you doing?” bag, it’s a pretty serious sentiment that I want people to at least have in their subconscious. Or heck, why not, let’s have the “green movement” – which is clearly diversifying as we speak – shoved in people’s faces. Top-down and bottom-up thought and action is necessary to clean up the lack of spiritual, logical and practical wealth of the country.

I appreciate the “Spending green while going green” editorial because in this world, it’s not all or nothing. Every little bit counts. Therefore the editorial is practical for some low- to mid-level greeners to critically evaluate their practices. But please, people, don’t think ill of true green, which is personal empowerment.

– Amber Nicole Myers, junior conservation major.