Letter to the editor: Response to staff editorial

This is a Letter to the Editor in a series of letters responding to last week’s Staff Editorial: From some other concerned Grinnell students. Find a list all the letters in this series below the article.

Thank you for writing that editorial,

I too, was shocked by recent campus action and actively question what purpose this rally serves. Maybe I just missed the word of mouth, but I don’t remember seeing any posters or receiving any e-mails from any campus group regarding outreach to discuss this issue, either what had happened or what the response should be (which is unsurprising given the sensitive nature of the issue and the fact that it had just occurred this past weekend). Therefore, I was caught by surprise to see students rallying outside the JRC. I only stopped to watch for a few minutes, but I really couldn’t parse through the message of the thing, which seemed a combination of reaction to the hate-crime and desire to reject the recent election (and it’s implication for LGBQT rights), at least to me.

I don’t know, maybe I’m just missing the point here…but I really don’t see what purpose this type of action serves. The lack of communication outlined in this article undermines any chance at possible desired institutional change by alienating administrators. And the rally I feel simply preaches to the choir (this who share the views expressed or wish to support their LGBQT peers) or simply angers, or puts-off people who have differing views or are on the fence about LGBQT rights, and hate-crime response issues…people have this notion that Grinnell College exists within a cultural vacuum and this type of action simply reaffirms this false view. If I was a first year, or a member of the (non-campus) community, I would be highly uncomfortable with what I saw and aren’t these people you’re trying to reach at a cultural level?

If you undermine your chance at institutional change and shut down any possible discourse to create cultural change, you fail at accomplishing any “real change”. I admit, maybe I don’t get it, the rallies, the institutional frustration, but I think I”m far from the only one. So please someone explain this to me?

More Letters to the Editor from this week’s series: