Borked or Guiniered?

Not everyone will agree with your point of view. Some Student Association senators need to learn this lesson.

At this Sunday’s meeting the SA denied an empty seat to Phil Dalton, former Star columnist, mostly due to his past controversial columns.

That criteria alone was all some SA senators needed to brand Dalton a racist, or certainly a conservative, and the witch-hunt was on.

If this is the case, what is happening to Mr. Dalton disturbingly resembles what has happened at higher levels of our government. Does anybody remember Judge Robert Bork, the arch-conservative justice who was denied confirmation for a seat on the U.S. Supreme Court due to his unpalatable conservatism?

Or maybe even closer to the minority caucus senators, the recent case of Lani Guinier who was denied appointment by President Clinton to the attorney general’s office due to her ideology, which was supposedly to the left of the views of the Clinton administration. Guinier was never given an opportunity to defend her views.

Sen. Curry Kimble should be commended for her insight on what issue was really being voted on at the meeting on Sunday.

“The reason we’re condemning him is because of his personal opinions. In order to be fair to him, we need to vote on his qualifications and not whether or not he’s a racist.” She and a few other senators, obviously not enough, knew that just because a person does not hold the same ideology, no matter how indignant, that does not nullify his or her qualifications for a job.

Where is the litmus test to measure racism? A person’s use of insensitive words may be a clue but is definitely not undebatable proof.

The student senate is very lucky to have someone with Kimble’s sharp perception. Perhaps in the future they’ll give a little more credence to her statements.

If the senate is supposed to represent this diverse campus to the point of even claiming itself to be a campus agent of this diversity, it is exceedingly ironic that Dalton appears to have been denied because he doesn’t think like the rest of the senate.

It brings the question of exactly what the senate means by diversity. Senators should be warned that they’re setting a dangerous precedent by deciding the thought agenda for the entire student body.