Established 1874.

The Oberlin Review

Faculty Salaries at Oberlin College

Chris Howell and Kirk Ormand

December 8, 2017

Filed under Letters to the Editors, OPINIONS

Editor’s Note: Below is an email sent July 17, 2017 to Chair of the Board of Trustees Chris Canavan by College Professors Chris Howell and Kirk Ormand. The Review is publishing it in full, with minor changes to style. Dear Mr. Canavan: Thank you for your communication this spring, in which you explained Oberlin’s current financial crisis and the board’s decision to freeze salaries next year. While we recognize the seriousness of our current situation, we find it inadequate and depressing that neither the board nor the administration has the leadership or imagination to address this crisis in any way other than by eliminating raises for faculty and staff. Allow us to review a bit of recent history. At its June...

Word Choice Vital in Discussions of Misconduct

Lilah Drafts-Johnson, College Senior

December 8, 2017

Filed under Letters to the Editors, OPINIONS

To the Editors: As an avid reader of the Review, I was concerned by last week’s headline for the Dec. 1 story covering former Assistant Professor of Creative Writing Bernard Matambo’s resignation. It was not the first page headline, “Matambo Resigns Amid Sexual Misconduct Allegations,” but the second page headline, which read, “Creative Writing Department Loses Tenure Track Professor” that troubled me. While this headline is factual, I feel it deliberately capitalizes on a fear that is deeply felt by many students and faculty about the futures of various majors and departments: that we are losing tenure-track professors at an alarming rate, and that under the current financial climate, these positions wil...

Journalism Must Acknowledge Hate

Taiyo Scanlon-Kimura, OC ’15

December 8, 2017

Filed under Letters to the Editors, OPINIONS

To the Editors: College junior Kameron Dunbar recently wrote an impassioned criticism of disproportionate whiteness within media publications, which he argues leads to “uncontested platforms” promoting whitewashed perspectives (“Whiteness of Student Publications Threatens Integrity”, The Oberlin Review, Dec. 1, 2017.) In reference to The New York Times article “A Voice of Hate in America’s Heartland,” he writes, “It allows the bias of sectarianism and segregation to freely enter the American subconscious without opposition, priming us to respond to these irrational and abhorrent ideologies not with alarm, but with dereliction and indifference.” While I fully support greater diversification of loca...

Students, Community Must Collaborate Against NEXUS Pipeline

John D. Elder, OC ’53; Vice President, Communities for Safe and Sustainable Energy

December 8, 2017

Filed under Letters to the Editors, OPINIONS

To the Editors: A big “thank you” to the Review’s Production Editor Eliza Guinn for last Friday’s front page story “Court Rules Against Construction in Ohio City, Gives Oberlin Hope” (The Oberlin Review, Dec. 1, 2017) about the U.S. 6th Circuit Court of Appeals decision that has blocked the construction of the NEXUS pipeline through Green, Ohio. As her article points out, Oberlin has also filed a case against NEXUS and the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission to keep NEXUS from threatening the safety of Oberlinians. Though this fact was not included in the article, a local grassroots organization, Communities for Safe and Sustainable Energy, drafted the Community Bill of Rights and Obligations Ordinance in 2...

Perspective Important in Gibson’s Case

Kevin Adler, OC ’84

December 8, 2017

Filed under Letters to the Editors, OPINIONS

To the Editors: I’m writing to disagree with almost everything in Booker C. Peek’s recent opinion column, “Oberlin, Gibson’s Should Settle Out-of-Court” (The Oberlin Review, Dec. 1, 2017). I laughed at Peek’s opening comment that the lawsuit “has the potential to be earth-shattering.” Really? Let’s maintain some perspective here. This is a tempest in a teapot, a tiny incident at a small college. Potentially earth-shattering would be President Trump’s brinksmanship with North Korea, or the increasing severity of tropical storms fueled by global climate change. Those are earth-shattering issues that Oberlin and its students should be addressing. Peek also writes about the damage of a financial settlement. Ma...

Gibson’s Links Black People to Anti-Semitism

Booker C. Peek, Emeritus Associate Professor of Africana Studies

December 1, 2017

Filed under Letters to the Editors, OPINIONS

To the Editors: As the founding fathers of Oberlin College and Arthur Tappan, whose name Tappan Square bears because of his much-needed financial support of the College, would have wanted, Oberlin remains America’s most luminous beacon for a more just, peaceful, and humane world. As much as the Founding Fathers of our nation will always have our admiration, they showed a serious human weakness in their subjugation of women and willingness to enslave Blacks. As women throughout America need us all to step up to fight against sexism, so do Blacks need all Americans to help us fight against racism. But the middle-aged white men who feel hurt and abandoned — a disproportionate number of whom commit suicide — also need our f...

Public Exhibit, Program Celebrates ASFC Centennial

David Finke, OC ’63

December 1, 2017

Filed under Letters to the Editors, OPINIONS

To the Editors: A multi-part public banner exhibit and program celebrating the centennial of the American Friends Service Committee will be held in the Community Room of the Oberlin Public Library throughout the day of Wednesday, Dec. 6. It is part of a year-long observance of the 1917 founding of the American Friends Service Committee, a Quaker organization including people of various faiths and backgrounds that is committed to social justice, peace, and humanitarian service. The group received the Nobel Peace Prize in 1947. Their work is “based on the belief in the worth of every person and faith in the power of love to overcome violence and injustice.” A set of large banners entitled “Waging Peace: 100 Yea...

Oberlin Prepares Students for Real World

Donn Ginoza, OC ’74; At-Large Member, Alumni Leadership Council

December 1, 2017

Filed under Letters to the Editors, OPINIONS

To the Editors: Are you a newly arrived freshman or a senior about to graduate without a clear plan for Year One after college? If you are, or you are simply wondering if Oberlin was the best school for you, take it from someone who is nearing the end of his working career that nothing is more valuable for an engaged and satisfying life than an Oberlin education. When I graduated from high school, I chose Oberlin over two large public universities. I was a strong student in all subjects, but I did not have a “passion.” Luckily, it wasn’t really important to have one back then. It was a few years after Woodstock and the Vietnam War protests, and I remember a lot of students were critical of higher education not...

Students Should Engage with Indigenous History

Jean Foggo Simon, Member, Indigenous Peoples’ Day Committee

November 17, 2017

Filed under Letters to the Editors, OPINIONS

To the Editors: On Aug. 21, 2017, Oberlin City Council passed a resolution declaring the second Monday in October to be Indigenous Peoples’ Day in the city of Oberlin. Thus, Oberlin became the first city in the state of Ohio to abolish Columbus Day. The Indigenous Peoples’ Day Committee is working to continue to educate the community about all indigenous peoples, and our invitation is extended to Oberlin College. A series of events have been planned, and our next will take place on Monday, Dec. 4, 2017 at 5:45 p.m. at the Oberlin Public Library. The movie, Tecumseh’s Vision, from the acclaimed PBS history series entitled We Shall Remain: America through Native Eyes will be aired. This episode tells the story of...

Warfield Represents Change Police Department Needs

Ray English, Director of Libraries Emeritus

November 10, 2017

Filed under Letters to the Editors, OPINIONS

To the Editors: I am writing regarding the Review’s Nov. 3 article “Oberlin Police Chief Hire Sparks Controversy Within Department.” Readers who did not follow the process closely might not be aware of the thought and care that went into the police chief search. This past spring, Oberlin City Manager Rob Hillard conducted five listening sessions to determine what our community desires in its police chief and police department. Listening session participants — a total of 180 people from all segments of the community — expressed a clear vision for policing that focuses on developing positive relationships between the police and Oberlin residents. A summary of the listening sessions, including details of th...

Student Debate Will Help Strengthen Personal Views

Booker C. Peek, Emeritus Associate Professor of Africana Studies

November 10, 2017

Filed under Letters to the Editors, OPINIONS

To the Editors: When some anti-Semitic signs appeared on campus, President Ambar announced that her administration will not automatically amplify those messages by informing the entire campus each time they appear. But she will surely do an all-campus notification if need be. I have no idea if she explained to students or the campus what her rationale was before taking this action; in any case, her position does seem to be a good one, if only because there is nothing anyone can ever do to prevent one person — perhaps not even associated with the College — from having the power to sow fear throughout the entire campus by posting hate-filled scribblings. When President Ambar visited New York City about two weeks ago, she rece...

Ohio Residents Should Consider Whaley for Governor

Aliza Weidenbaum, Oberlin Resident

November 10, 2017

Filed under Letters to the Editors, OPINIONS

To the Editors: Of all the candidates running for Ohio Governor, Nan Whaley is my favorite. I see something refreshing — presidential — in her. She brings experience as the Mayor of Dayton, moral clarity, and a spark of youth. She has a knack for facilitating help that’s both speedy and systemic. She has helped lots of homeless veterans find permanent housing, many kids get better pre-K education, thousands of people get mentors, mentors get training, and lots of new Dayton residents feel welcomed, supported, and encouraged to start businesses. When Nan Whaley sees a problem, she responds as a governor should. Nan Whaley will be in Oberlin soon — Nov. 13, the Monday following Oberlin’s local elections. Mar...

Established 1874.