The Oberlin Review

Constructive Institutionalism Includes Diverse Perspectives

Editorial Board

May 25, 2018

Filed under Editorials, OPINIONS

Oberlin has reached many milestones this year — some deserving of celebration. Among those was the beginning of Carmen Ambar’s presidency. Ambar has worked to be more transparent and communicative than former President Marvin Krislov, whose time at Oberlin was marked by campus tension and administrative opacity. Ambar’s presidency has begun at a time of great financial uncertainty for Oberlin. To her credit, Ambar has made an effort to be candid about those challenges, carrying out a series of campus presentations regarding the College’s financial outlook this winter. She has also called upon all of us — students, staff, faculty, and alums — to be Oberlin’s stewards, institutionalists concerned not only with Oberlin...

College Must Prioritize Student Happiness

Editorial Board

May 11, 2018

Filed under Editorials, OPINIONS

As the academic year comes to a close and further consequences of, and navigation through, Oberlin’s financial austerity ensue, the administration and student government must prioritize student happiness to ensure that both mental health and morale are addressed as fully as possible in the immediate and coming years. With Student Senate and the Office of the Student Treasurer’s anticipated changes to the structure and efficiency of the Student Finance Committee, the College may be in a comfortable position to do just that. Most Oberlin students would laugh if you asked them whether the student body was generally happy. It’s a symptom of pressure-cooker academics paired with with the more student-centric fabric...

ResEd Neglects Student Needs in Housing Registration

Editorial Board

May 4, 2018

Filed under Editorials, OPINIONS

In the midst of the housing selection process this week and next, students have been surprised to find that their choices were more limited than usual. Rising juniors discovered that singles were mostly taken by their allotted registration period, while other upperclassmen found themselves without the Village Housing that typically comes with seniority. Though navigating Residential Education’s housing process is typically stressful and daunting to students in any given year, ResEd made a crucial error in planning when it eliminated multiple Village Housing options without adding a reasonable amount of alternative choices. Houses may be typically reserved for seniors, but the trickle-down effect is felt by all studen...

Drag Ball Attendees Must Prioritize Trans, Queer Identities

Editorial Board

April 27, 2018

Filed under Editorials, OPINIONS

Hundreds of students will flood Wilder Hall Saturday night dressed in gender non-conforming clothing and ready to have the time of their lives. Drag Ball is one of the highlights of the school year for many students. It is a time when both LGBTQ and non-queer students can come together, celebrate queer culture, and enjoy an abundance of glitter. When Drag Ball goes well, it gives LGBTQ students — especially transgender and gender-nonconforming students — a chance to celebrate their identities without fear of judgement. The evening should also serve as a way for non-queer students to respectfully explore gender nonconformity and express appreciation for their queer friends. The workshops individuals are required ...

Student Activism Must Work Toward Solutions

Editorial Board

April 20, 2018

Filed under Editorials, OPINIONS

After entering this academic year with significant under-enrollment contributing to a $5 million deficit, the Admissions Office has emphasized the importance of ensuring that Oberlin hits its enrollment goals. A large part of that effort, as President Ambar highlighted in a campus-wide email in February, has been in emphasizing the persuasive power of All Roads Lead to Oberlin — a program in which admitted students visit campus. This weekend is the third and final All Roads event, and compared to last year’s All Roads, which was littered with student protests against the 2017–2018 tuition hike and room and board changes, this year was significantly more successful. However, we must remain cognizant of our action...

Ambar Must Address AAPR Faculty Concerns

Editorial Board

April 13, 2018

Filed under Editorials, OPINIONS

For the third time this academic year, the Review is publishing in full a letter originally sent to faculty and staff with grave concerns about Oberlin’s financial situation and how to respond to it — something that, as far as the Editorial Board is aware, has never occured in the history of this publication. It is a significant decision, one that we do not take lightly. In September, we printed a message from Chair of the Board of Trustees Chris Canavan, OC ’84, that outlined Oberlin’s long-term and short-term budget deficits to faculty and staff. These were never acknowledged in any official communication to students. In December, we published a letter to Canavan from two faculty members, James Monroe Prof...

Increasing Medical Marijuana Accessibility Would Help Fight Opioid Epidemic

Editorial Board

April 6, 2018

Filed under Editorials, OPINIONS

President Trump gave a speech on March 29 in Richfield, Ohio, that, among other topics, tapped into a conversation which hits home for many Ohioans: opioid addiction. As of December 2016, Ohio’s opioid-related death rate of 39 percent was second only to that of West Virginia. Out of the 4,329 general drug overdose deaths in Ohio in 2016, 83 percent of these deaths were opioid-related. Despite numerous attempts at lowering this death rate through policy, nothing seems to work. Trump’s audience, mainly union engineers and maintenance workers, and the setting, an industrial barn, were carefully chosen; his words, less so. One topic that he failed to mention — as most legislators have failed to as well — is the po...

Falsely Equating Gun Control With Abortion Restrictions Prevents Productive Reform

Editorial Board

March 30, 2018

Filed under Editorials, OPINIONS

While the student-led movement to tackle gun reform has spread across the country, culminating in hundreds of thousands participating in the March for Our Lives throughout the U.S. on Saturday, many Americans still want to protect the status quo of gun accessibility. Pro-gun advocates often argue that people kill people, not guns; point out cases of armed officers in schools foiling the attempts of shooters — whether true or not; or express fear that a restriction on legal circulation of guns will endanger people who relinquish their arms to the government from criminals. As frustrating as these excuses are for failing to address how absurdly easy it is to obtain firearms in this country — especially the AR-15, which...

Closing Dascomb Dining Presents As Many Problems As It Solves

Editorial Board

March 9, 2018

Filed under Editorials, OPINIONS

While the administration’s potential decision to shut down Dascomb Dining Hall may reduce costs during a time of financial stringency, the decision has far-reaching implications that jeopardize the already-delicate balance of Campus Dining Services. Despite President Carmen Ambar’s transparency in announcing the possible change at her recent budget presentation, there are numerous logistical concerns that the administration has yet to adequately answer. First, Ambar did not sufficiently address how the school plans to disperse Dascomb diners to other dining facilities. To compensate for the closure of Dascomb, the administration plans to expand DeCafé and Lord-Saunders Dining Hall hours, as if Lord-Saunders and ...

Journalism Program Would Revitalize Academics

Editorial Board

March 2, 2018

Filed under Editorials, OPINIONS

President Carmen Ambar is future-oriented. She thinks, as she says, in a “doubly futurist” way, in that Oberlin needs to reconfigure its coursework and infrastructure to not only serve children being born today who will be applying for college 18 years down the road, but also to equip them with tools that will allow them to thrive for the decades to come after they graduate from Oberlin. High school students today are questioning the value of a liberal arts education, and we’ve seen the consequences of that doubt in this year’s drop in admissions and retention. In short, we need to redefine the liberal arts education to keep it viable for students’ futures today and in the generations to come. Although Oberlin cer...

Americans Must Resist Russian Influence

Editorial Board

February 23, 2018

Filed under Editorials, OPINIONS

In May 2016, as Donald Trump’s campaign snowballed into a force of nature, a quiet conversation at the Kensington Wine Rooms between George Papadopoulos, a foreign policy advisor to the campaign, and Australian diplomat Alexander Downer took on the distinct scent of a smoking gun. Having overindulged in the establishment’s titular offering, Papadopoulos mentioned to Downer that Joseph Mifsud — a professor with connections to Russia — had indicated that the foreign government had “dirt” on Hillary Clinton, instigating a push to connect Trump to Russian efforts to discredit the Democratic candidate. Downer was not the confidant Papadopoulos may have expected, and provided the tip that would kick off a clandes...

City Must Improve Traffic Safety

Editorial Board

February 16, 2018

Filed under Editorials, OPINIONS

As the snow and ice that has covered city streets and sidewalks this winter begins to melt away and Oberlin experiences its first real doses of warmth in 2018, it’s a sure bet that bicycles will soon begin clogging those same areas, much to the chagrin of drivers. For many, the thought of getting on a bike again after a long winter is delightful. But after the deaths of Oberlin resident Kyle Gutierrez, 22, last week and Jason Baird, 26, last semester, the Editorial Board is gravely concerned about pedestrian safety in the coming warmer months. Though those two incidents ended in tragedy, near-misses with pedestrians and vehicles are a frequent sight, occurring all over Oberlin. Every morning, droves of students cros...

Established 1874.