The Oberlin Review

28th Amendment Would Separate Money, Politics

Ellen Greene Bush, American Promise Ohio

September 7, 2018

Filed under Letters to the Editors, OPINIONS

To the Editors: Many Americans feel strongly about getting big and dark money out of politics. A recent survey by The Democracy Project found that 77 percent agreed that “the laws enacted by our national government these days mostly reflect what powerful special interests and their lobbyists want.” Only 17 percent chose the alternative statement: “The laws enacted by our national government these days mostly reflect what the people want.” The American Promise Ohio group asked the two candidates for the U.S. House, Ohio District 4, to support the goal of a 28th Amendment to the U. S. Constitution to “1) secure fair, free elections by limiting the undue influence of money in politics; 2) protect the rights of al...

Bon Appétit Falls Short on Promises, Disrespects Workers

Caitlin Kelley, Michael Kennedy, Eliza Guinn, Dylan Palmer, and Mirella Gruesser-Smith

May 11, 2018

Filed under Letters to the Editors, OPINIONS

Editors Note: The following letter is a petition for Oberlin College to terminate its contract with Bon Appétit and to hire its own managers to run CDS. At the bottom of the letter, there will be a link to the petition and a link to personal accounts of current and former CDS workers. All of us at Oberlin, whether we are students, professors, staff, or administrators, have the same goal: making Oberlin College the best it can be. But the management of Oberlin dining services is not the best it can be. We call on Oberlin to adopt self-management to properly manage Campus Dining Services, improve the dining experience, and reduce wasteful spending. WHAT IS SELF-MANAGEMENT? Oberlin College followed a national trend...

Oberlin Students Must Re-Envision College Slogan

Donn Ginoza

May 4, 2018

Filed under Letters to the Editors, OPINIONS

To the Editors: Oberlin students are familiar with the poster featuring the slogan: “Think One Person Can Change the World? So do we.” Changing the world is on the minds of the current generation of students. A recent Pacific Standard survey found that two-thirds of college students intend to change the world, and more than one-third think they will have an impact within five years. The slogan speaks to the idealism and energy that incoming students now bring to Oberlin. The survey researchers also note that liberal arts colleges produce a disproportionate number of leaders because they produce inquiring, less self-certain, and more concerned citizens. Admittedly, one person changing the world seems presumptuous. A vide...

Oberlin Must Present True Facts About Hotel

John H Scofield

May 4, 2018

Filed under Letters to the Editors, OPINIONS

To the Editors: I write to express my concern about the misleading and false claims being made by Oberlin College with regard to The Hotel at Oberlin. I understand that our nation has a President who lies on a regular basis and the public is apparently unwilling to hold him accountable. But is the College no different? A recent article in the Spring 2018 issue of the Oberlin College Alumni Magazine claims that “The hotel … is one of only five U.S. hotels to have qualified for the rigorous LEED Platinum certification from the U.S. Green Building Council. Its heating and cooling systems rely on a geothermal well field …” These claims are also posted on the Hotel’s website, www.thehotelatoberlin.com. Nearly...

College Should Have Avoided Union Violations

Phyllis J. Jones

April 20, 2018

Filed under Letters to the Editors, OPINIONS

To the Editors: Nearly 50 years ago, a group of Oberlin office and library workers showed the courage and foresight to organize a new labor union on campus, Oberlin College Office and Professional Employees, to address the glaring inequities they faced as employees. Today, OCOPE continues to play an essential role in bringing economic justice to its 164 members. In early 2017, OCOPE filed charges on the basis of unfair labor practice with the National Labor Relations Board, whose recently-issued decision ruled in favor of the union. Furthermore, an arbitration heard this past December also found that the College had violated its contract with OCOPE. Labor disputes are costly for both sides, and the College has undoub...

Nation Would Benefit More From Political Unity Than Division

Booker C. Peek

April 20, 2018

Filed under Letters to the Editors, OPINIONS

To the Editors: Most of us in this part of Ohio root for the Cavs, Browns, or the Cleveland baseball team. Most people in New York, California, Texas, Boston, etc. root for their local teams. All year long there is a healthy exchange among sports fans from various parts of our nation. Occasionally, each area has its moments to brag, though some areas seem to be a lot more favored than others. The division of opinions or the rooting for this or that team has many advantages to a thriving nation. However, there should never be any division among us as a people, a nation, as far as ensuring that the poor, especially, and others receive excellent healthcare, get a fine education, have good jobs, decent homes, feel saf...

Stevens Strategy Poses Potential Threat to Job Security, Program Funding

Matthew Senior and Marc Blecher

April 13, 2018

Filed under Letters to the Editors, OPINIONS

Editor’s Note: The following is a version of a letter posted to the faculty listserv and sent to President Ambar and faculty by Professor of Politics and East Asian Studies Marc Blecher in collaboration with Professor of French Matthew Senior. This revised version was provided to the Review by Blecher at the Review’s request. Because of the content’s potential impact on Oberlin students and faculty, we felt it appropriate to publish the text in full. Dear Colleagues: When Stevens Strategy was named to consult in our Academic and Administrative Program Review, many of us had immediate concerns and reservations. One look at the Stevens website raises suspicions that they hew to a corporate model of career-oriente...

Union Victory Provides Dignity to All Workers

Chris Howell

April 13, 2018

Filed under Letters to the Editors, OPINIONS

To the Editors: One of the dispiriting things about Oberlin College is the disjunction between the analytical tools and burning social justice values that we teach and discuss in class, and the application of those same tools and values when it comes to the largely invisible labor performed by workers at the College. This is an institution that would collapse without its custodians, administrative assistants, dining hall workers, librarians, and the myriad other workers who allow the school to function. We are attuned to manifestations of power in its most fine, capillary forms, to privilege and microaggression in language and glance, as we should be. But when it comes to these workers, we are all suddenly neoliberals...

OCOPE Resolutions Indicate Larger Issues in Community

Tracy Tucker

April 13, 2018

Filed under Letters to the Editors, OPINIONS

To the Editors: Many people have asked what caused Oberlin College Office and Professional Employees to file charges with the National Labor Relations Board and take grievances to arbitration. Simply put, these actions were taken to protect the contractual rights of administrative assistants on campus. Oberlin College refused to adhere to long-standing policies and practices that were agreed upon and included in the OCOPE-Oberlin College contract years ago. Some of the disputed matters include hiring procedures, assigning administrative assistant work to non-bargaining unit positions, and refusing to provide information necessary for OCOPE to properly administer the contract and represent members. Language in the contra...

American College System Destroys Real Liberalism

Howard Sachs

April 6, 2018

Filed under Letters to the Editors, OPINIONS

Editor’s Note: This letter contains mentions of violence. To the Editors: Nathan, thank you for your thoughtful piece on gun control. I respond with respect. I used to be Jewish and a Democrat. Unfortunately, the Democratic party has now almost completely abandoned liberalism and instead embraced the illiberal value system called leftism. I am still a passionate liberal. Now, they call us constitutional conservatives. I certainly understand your values regarding gun control. However, I consider them, in general, highly illiberal and very harmful to us all. Here is why. First, like or not, believe it or not, leftism is a child-like value system. It appeals to people because all of us have a deep and strong drive to be ...

Leona Grigsby Finds Excellent Candidate in Charlita Anderson White

Leona Grigsby

March 30, 2018

Filed under Letters to the Editors, OPINIONS

To the Editors: Magistrate Charlita Anderson White is a glowing example of professionalism, intuition, and legal knowledge. She is the only candidate with 19 years as a domestic relations court jurist. I met her almost 20 years ago while I was assigned to her courtroom to interpret for Deaf participants. Her patience, fairness, knowledge of the law, and her compassion impressed me. I always felt privileged to be assigned to her courtroom. She has a wonderful way of reassuring Court participants. Children, parents, lawyers, and witnesses have been confident that they are safe and their rights have been being protected for over 19 years. She has presided over trials, pre-trials, motion hearings, and many other procee...

Communal Support Imperative in Fighting for Tolerance

David H. Finke

March 30, 2018

Filed under Letters to the Editors, OPINIONS

To the Editors: I was heartened to be able to join several hundred other Obies on March 14 at the bandstand in solidarity with school kids across the country walking out to protest gun violence. Hearing from the College’s dean and the city’s mayor added to the event. Later we learned of a walkout by Oberlin High School students — which was initially prohibited — adding their numbers to the over 3,000 such expressions of outrage and solidarity. This nationwide manifestation of youth activism will alter the political landscape. I’d like to share a statement adopted by our local Quaker Meeting that speaks to the immediate and underlying issues: Oberlin Friends Meeting of the Religious Society of Friends (Quakers) share...

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