Daily Kent Stater

‘They do it too’ not an acceptable defense for reactionary filibuster

Dear Editor:

Your May 3 editorial advocating the Senate filibuster is curious. You are misguidedly defending an institution that has been employed in numerous reactionary attempts to prevent the governing-majority’s will.

In one of its most inglorious instances, the filibuster was employed by former Ku Klux Klan member, West Virginia Democratic Sen. Robert Byrd, in an effort to prevent the enactment of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. In a remarkable defense of the filibuster, California Democratic Sen. Barbara Boxer embarrassed herself by claiming Byrd as her inspiration for her new love of the filibuster. Struck by the irony of the situation, the left-leaning Los Angeles Times penned an editorial, published on April 26, advocating the elimination of the filibuster.

It seems the best defense that pro-filibuster organs, including the Stater and other leftist writers, can muster is that any minority party benefits from the filibuster. For instance, one filibuster defender, David Greenberg, wrote in the Los Angeles Times on Tuesday, that the Republicans successfully opposed the “amply qualified” Abe Fortas for Chief Justice in 1968.

Subtly, in between the lines of its well-articulated editorial, you can hear the young Stater editorial staff crying out: “But Mommy, the Republicans do it too.”

Hey Stater: Listen to your mothers. “They do it too” is no excuse.

We should get rid of that ill-conceived reactionary and obstructionist doctrine, the filibuster. Don’t just “nuke it.” Rip it up, burn it, stomp on it, bury it and, only then, nuke it.

Winning the White House, the Senate and the House of Representatives should be all the excuse Republicans, or Democrats, need to implement their policies and judges.

I hope the Stater retains its commitment to democracy when it loses at the ballot box, as well as when it wins.

Paul Thompson

2003 alumnus and second-year law

student at UCLA School of Law


Writers need to show respect for May 4

Dear Editor:

I have been going to Kent State since I was 18 years old, and I have been reading the Stater faithfully since then. I loved the antics of some of your writers and their attempts to educate the masses, but in the May 4 commerative edition, I believe several people went too far. I whole heartedly endorse freedom of speech, and, even if someone’s view and opinion is contrary to my own, I still would like to hear it. Time to toss the rules of etiquette aside now … Norvell and Schooley’s article was the most abysmal and insensitive thing I have ever read.

Thirteen seconds that meant nothing!!! The loss of human life never means nothing! Thirteen seconds was all it took for four families to have branches of their family trees sawed off and burned, for people to be paralyzed their entire lives and mostly for a generation of children to show the same courage to stand up against what was/is wrong as those who went there to fight. Even if the students had 10 opportunities to leave, that will/can never justify shooting unarmed people when your “emotions are running high.” Mr. Schooley and Mr. Norvell fail to realize three of the slain students were doing exactly what they did in their article … express their opinion on a topic, while one was simply on her way to class.

I won’t even go into how the people who witnessed this tragedy are affected because after all those 13 seconds of random gunfire meant nothing … I dare either of the writers to go up to the Miller, Krause, Schroeder and Scheuer families and say those 13 seconds meant nothing! I certainly think they will get another opinion on that one. Human life is sacred and the loss of it’s a tragedy. This incident here is just as much a tragedy to some as the attacks on Sept. 11(except fewer casualties, which is a minor miracle) — it still is a tragedy, and it deserves to be treated with the same deferrence and respect. So Mr. Norvell and Mr. Schooley should treat it with such even if it means nothing to them — it means something to me and a lot of other people.

Okneisha Brooks

Senior psychology major