Letters to the editor

Before protesting, learn about immigration

Dear Editor,

After reading Tuesday’s article about the immigration demonstration, I was, for lack of a better term, annoyed by the students here who jump on the band wagon of any cause just for an excuse to yell and scream in Risman Plaza. Let it first be noted that I am extremely in favor of immigrant rights, but let it also be noted that immigrant rights are not what is in question right now; the rights of people who enter this country without using the proper protocol is the issue. I believe that anyone who wants to enter this country should be permitted to do so, but in exchange they should follow the laws of this land, and the laws of this land require people not born in this country to do certain things.

Creating stiffer laws and enforcing laws that punish those who enter the country illegally should not even be an issue. That would be like protesting laws that punished people who steal or commit assault. I have friends who have immigrated to this country, who went through the tedious tasks of filling out paper work, going through the classes, following the procedure to citizenship, and I think that the protesting of illegal immigrant legislation is a direct slap in the face to every U.S. immigrant who entered legally. The immigration procedure is online (www.uscis.gov), and I would suggest that every Kent State student and U.S. resident (legal and illegal) investigate it before making a further mockery of our system.

Whitney Hilson

Junior justice studies major

Key to democracy is asking questions

Dear Editor,

Tuesday afternoon I attended a panel discussion as part of Kent State’s 7th Annual Symposium on Democracy. I admit I attended because I will receive extra-credit in my law class, but this made me wonder: What is the purpose of Kent State’s Symposium on Democracy?

I would think the purpose would be to facilitate and encourage discussion among students, faculty and community members. At the panel I attended, with the exception of few questions, the discussion was limited to the panel members. I know that I probably wouldn’t have been at this forum if not for the extra-credit. I have two piles of laundry to do sitting next to me, and it’s the last week of classes. Why should students care?

For one, as a student journalist, I have worked on stories this semester when I have asked the university spokesman simple questions and received no comment when other media outlets have received answers to the same questions. I have also requested public information, and found that if the person in charge is out of the office that day, the information is not open to the public. And this is a country where there is freedom of the press.

With this letter, I offer two suggestions. One is to those who put together these programs. Next year, I hope to see student leaders on all the panels of discussions. I also challenge the university to seek to achieve a true representation of faculty, students and community members. With the history and culture of this university, I would think we have the potential to have some programs that engage more people and stimulate more dialogue.

My second suggestion is to the students. Get more aggressive and ask more questions.

If we don’t ask questions, how will we be heard? This May 4, consider the importance of having a voice that can be heard and respected here at Kent State University.

Carrie Wise

Junior broadcast news major