'Cheap Shots'


To the Editors of The Crimson:

In the past The Crimson has taken a sadistic delight in attacking student government, and now they continue their tradition with the Undergraduate Council.

But I wish to address the issue of Crimson staff members using the editorial page to deliver personally offensive "cheap shots" at council representatives. I foolishly sat back and dismissed Paul Engelmayer's attack on my candidacy for the Undergraduate Council chairmanship--but even with the elections over, the abuse goes on.

The Crimson's Thomas Howlett (in an Oct. 30 editorial) crassly asserts that five of the six candidates that lost the race for the chairmanship did not run for vice-chairman, secretary and treasurer because of an "inability to swallow their pride."

Dear Tom: Did it ever occur to you that two of the top candidates have already held the offices of vice chairman and secretary in student government, and they might know that these positions would not fully allow them to make the contribution to the success of the Undergraduate Council that they would like? And in reference to the office of treasurer, perhaps none of us wanted the controversy and bookkeeping responsibilities. Just maybe we found it inappropriate to run for another publicized office as some sort of consolation. You seem to forget that there are other leadership positions within the Council where we might serve (e.g., chairing a council committee or sitting on a student faculty committee).


Isn't it sad that such a bright, young reporter just failed to take anything other than "pride swallowing" into account in his superficial effort to explain why candidates for chairman did not run for lower offices.

It seems to me that even a Crimson reporter could have had enough compassion or simple forethought to look for (or even ask the candidates for) other reasons for their decision not to run for only three of the eight administrative positions that were open.

When you first began covering student government for The Crimson, many were glad to have a person who was both competent and fair in reporting. Little did we know you were the type of person who would report on a chairmanship election with six losing candidates and then start off an editorial that blatantly added insult to their injury.

When you (or anyone else) devotes a few lines to painting all the candidates for chairman (or even all of your Undergraduate Council representatives) as nothing more than "humility-lacking glory-seekers" you give us a label we do not at all deserve. I, for one, have had a commitment to trying to make student government work that has been enduring and sincere. The beginning of your Oct. 30 editorial was unfair and hurtful: I am, to say the least, disappointed--I have always thought much better of you... Victor Freeman '84