The Oberlin Review

RECs Best Invested in Community Programs

John D. Elder, Oberlin Resident

February 24, 2017

Filed under Letters to the Editors, OPINIONS

To the Editors: The Oberlin City Council wants to establish a Community Choice Fund to receive donations from credits it would begin giving on electric bills in July. The credits would come from 85 percent of the proceeds of the sale of Renewable Energy Certificates, as voted 4–2 by council in a surprise move on June 20 of last year. However, to credit ratepayers and then hire a PR firm to try to convince them to donate the credits back makes no sense. And it’s not fair! The credits would be issued to rate payers on the basis of how much electricity they use. For the typical homeowner this would be about $9 a month. But for the large users it could be well over $100,000 a year. A homeowner can’t do much with...

Master’s Programs Would Damage Oberlin

David Arnow, OC ’73

February 24, 2017

Filed under Letters to the Editors, OPINIONS, Uncategorized

To the Editors: Be careful what you wish for — you may get it. Among the top reasons I went to Oberlin was that it did not follow the university model. Master’s programs were few and almost every class I took was taught by a full-time, experienced professor with the highest degree available in the discipline. This remains the top reason I advise students I know to apply to Oberlin. Be wary of Master’s programs. It is all too tempting for scholars and researchers to focus on their graduate students to the detriment of their undergraduate teaching. Since 1981, I’ve been a professor at the City University of New York and have witnessed this in my university and others. John Ciardi’s famous quote, “A univer...

Immigration Ban Undermines Urban Values

Joe Bialek, Cleveland resident

February 17, 2017

Filed under Letters to the Editors, OPINIONS

To the Editors: My grandfather, Albert Joseph Bialek, came to the United States from Poland in 1910. According to the Ellis Island website, he boarded the ship Kaiser Wilhelm der Grosse in Bremen, Germany. He had just completed his service in the Austrian Army. Poland, at that time, was divided into three spheres of influence by Austria, Prussia and Russia. Upon being discharged, he returned to his father’s farm. Officers from the Austrian Army made an attempt to re-enlist him, but tradition dictated that he could remain at home so long as he was sorely needed on the farm. Immediately after the officers departed, Albert’s father gave him his brother’s travel documents and instructed him to immigrate to the Uni...

Stalinist Left Attempts to Silence Free Speech

Bob Gross, Oberlin Visitor

February 10, 2017

Filed under Letters to the Editors, OPINIONS

To the Editors: As much as those on the left see Trump as a Hitler in the White House, moderates like myself see the left as wanting a Stalin in the White House. In Stalin’s Soviet Union, speaking the truth resulted in a prison sentence — perhaps even execution. In a Stalinist manner, the left uses political correctness to silence free speech and dissenting thought, even willing to use violence against anyone who differs from them. In Stalin’s Soviet Union, the people believed the government was lying to them and government propaganda was printed in the newspapers. Except for the leftists in this country, the people didn’t believe what Hillary Clinton was telling them during her campaign, and they also be...

Alumna Welcomes Students Back

Thelma Morris, OC ’54

February 3, 2017

Filed under Letters to the Editors, OPINIONS

To the Editors: Winter Term has just ended. Oberlin was quiet, with few students on campus involved in research with faculty, bookmaking, writing, theater work and practicing an instrument. Many of you were engaged throughout the world in diverse projects. Many of you went home to think, reconnect or volunteer. Winter Term did not exist when I graduated from Oberlin in the ’50s. There were rare semesters abroad and a few academic exchange programs to take a handful of us off campus. We remained college- and curriculum-bound from September to May for four long years. Nowadays, each student is encouraged to develop a special project for three Januaries — projects which find you close to home or far from it...

Interfaith Students Offer Solidarity

210 people of diverse faiths, and counting

February 3, 2017

Filed under Letters to the Editors, OPINIONS

To the Editors: We the undersigned, representing a wide spectrum of worldviews and campuses all across the country, wish to express our support for refugees and immigrants all over the world impacted by the executive order issued Jan. 27 that bars them from entering the United States. We are especially disheartened as the order was signed on Holocaust Remembrance Day, a day dedicated to remembering what happens when we close our doors to innocent people because of our fears. Barring refugees and immigrants from certain Muslim-majority countries is a direct assault on religious freedom and disrespects foundational American values. Out of 3.3 million Muslims who live in America, only 11 have committed a crime of ter...

Executive Order Threatens U.S.

Booker C. Peek, Emeritus Associate Professor of Africana Studies

February 3, 2017

Filed under Letters to the Editors, OPINIONS

To the Editors: To date, it has been American citizens who have slaughtered masses of people in this country, except on 9/11 when 19 foreigners, mostly Saudis, attacked the U.S. Because of the Internet, those outside the U.S. wishing to do us harm do not have to travel here; they can from anywhere in the world inspire Americans to kill Americans, and they have succeeded. All agree that we must do everything legally possible to reduce the chances that more Americans will be radicalized; it’s the lone wolf, an American citizen among us, that poses the greatest threat to our security. We are much safer if American citizens band together to notify authorities of those among us who might hurt us. The Presidential ban ...

CPB Deepens Commitment to Justice

Rev. Steve Hammond, Al Carroll

February 3, 2017

Filed under Letters to the Editors, OPINIONS

To the Editors: A Statement from Community Peace Builders of Oberlin: As the United States recently inaugurated a new president, Community Peace Builders of Oberlin and like-minded groups and movements around the world are concerned at the ways in which actions of the incoming administration may negatively impact individuals living in our communities, our efforts to build a just and peaceful world and the work underway to save the planet. In January, Community Peace Builders, along with others around the world, have been more keenly focused on inaugurating movements of hope, renewal and non-violent resistance. We will be deepening our commitment and strengthening our efforts for peace, justice and the prevention of env...

DeCafé Employee Expresses Gratitude, Bids Farewell

Kathy Baker, DeCafé Grill Cook/Counter Cook/Cashier

December 9, 2016

Filed under Letters to the Editors, OPINIONS

To the Editors: My name is Kathy. I work in Wilder Hall in DeCafé. Most of you see me when I’m working on the cash register. Some of you may know I’m retiring this December. I want to say a few things to you, the students, before I go. Thank you. You cannot know how much you have enriched my life over the years. Thank you for your energy and your humor. They have sustained me. Thank you for the conversations we’ve had — wonderful conversations about your families, your travels, your studies, your plans for the future. I have so enjoyed these interactions with you. Thank you for the invitations to your recitals and performances. I have thoroughly enjoyed attending and have been amazed by your talents! Thank you ...

Trump Aspires to Greatness

Booker C. Peek, Emeritus Professor of Africana Studies

December 9, 2016

Filed under Letters to the Editors, OPINIONS

To the Editors: President-elect Donald Trump wants to be a transformational president, honored just like Presidents Washington, Jefferson and Lincoln. But because of his ego, he wants to be elevated above them, to occupy the pantheon of greatness envied by all gods. In his first month as President-elect, he might have done a little more to unite the country. His march toward eternal greatness could have already begun had he first spoken to the nation with an undiluted message of unity, comfort and specific reassurances to those who felt most threatened and unsafe, followed by any number of rallies in stadiums to which all were invited, especially those who did not vote for him — not rallies designed for him to thank...

Rosenfeld Misrepresented

Sidney Rosenfeld, Professor Emeritus of German

December 2, 2016

Filed under Letters to the Editors, OPINIONS

To the Editors: In his Review report on Dr. Karega’s dismissal (“Karega Fired After Split Faculty Recommendations,” Nov. 18, 2016), Oliver Bok misrepresented what I had written in my April 23 letter to the Review (“College Fails to Address Antisemitism on Campus,” 2016). Nowhere in the letter did I “criticiz[e] the College’s failure to fire Karega last spring,” nor did I imply such criticism. Rather, I focused solely on the College’s failure to call antisemitism by its name. To forestall more confusion, I’ll add that my one-sentence email letter cited in the Review Nov. 18 was written at Oliver’s request after Dr. Karega’s dismissal had been announced. I stick to the content of both letters. ...

Cohesion Critical for Oberlin Community

Officers of the Oberlin Alumni Association

November 18, 2016

Filed under Letters to the Editors, OPINIONS

To the Editors: This has been a difficult week on the Oberlin campus and for the alumni community, specifically because of the election results and the process itself, the student arrests arising from an incident at Gibson’s and now the dismissal of Dr. Joy Karega. As the Executive Committee of the Alumni Association, and given the quick turnaround required to get this to press, we feel individually compelled to respond to the community. People are divided in their opinions, reactions and feelings, all of which are valid, important and deserve to be heard. The outcomes of existing laws, structures and governance processes do not necessarily yield results with which everyone can feel happy and supportive. We diffe...

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