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LETTER: Issues with SGA president's statements

(10/07/11 10:00am)

I recently read the article “Faculty picket unwelcome at CMU and You Day, plans job action again if necessary.” I was shocked at the comments made by Vincent Cavataio in regard to the “inappropriate” ways the Faculty Association was protesting. I could care less what side of the fence he is on on the debate between the FA and the administration; what had stoked the coals of my ire was his attitude toward protesting. So, I made some snarky comments on Facebook, as I sometimes do. Mr. Cavataio then responded with, “I am always willing to debate in an appropriate forum.” Well, I sent him an email (which he gave me in a post on the FA wall, which has recently been removed) to do just that. In that email, I attempted to set up a time and place for us to publicly debate (he had attempted to lure me into some back room discussion at the SGA office, but seeing that his comments were made in the very public sphere of a campus newspaper, I felt it necessary to debate in public). “It seems that you are of the ilk that believe that there are appropriate and inappropriate places and times for civil action,” I said.

LETTER: Comment on state's rights during the civil war

(10/06/11 7:38pm)

I must comment on the recent "Ron Paul, a man to consider" column. I am not commenting on Ron Paul but rather the statement in the column that the main cause of the Civil War was states’ rights. It occurs to me that the entire reason the north and south had differentiated so much prior to the Civil War was slavery. The south was fighting because their ”way of life” (based on a massive slave population) was threatened. States’ rights were an excuse used to defend slavery, claiming states had the right to determine whether their citizens could hold other human beings in bondage. Is it disturbing that a music major has to point this out?  Where are our history majors?

LETTER: Bill for committee oversight unnecessary

(10/04/11 10:00pm)

Personally I feel that the House Bill 5000 that state Representative Robert Genetski, R-Saugatuck is proposing, mentioned in the Editorial of Monday issue of Central Michigan Life is unnecessary. Honestly, Central’s administration and others of the like in Michigan should already feel they are being held accountable to a higher power — us. The students who pay tuition should be the ones holding the university accountable for what they are spending money on. We are the higher power they should be held accountable to, not another bureaucratic group at the state level. They won’t know what it is like to go to a building in need of repairs and watch as terrific faculty in need of a contract start searching for jobs elsewhere while the Central Michigan Board of Trustees approves $1.5 million for a new Mongolian barbecue (all the while claiming fiscal responsibility.) We, the students, do. Considering that, I think we should stand up and start exerting this power.

LETTER: Wednesday headline says it all between FA, CMU

(09/30/11 3:00am)

The Wednesday Sept. 28 Central Michigan Life headline says everything that needs to be said about the current administration/faculty contract negotiation impasse: “CMU adds nearly $50 million to unreserved funds.” As reported in this article, Central Michigan University’s unrestricted funds now equal “about $276 million.” Meanwhile, the administration raised tuition 3.47 percent and is attempting to extort unnecessary and hurtful cuts from faculty who are already near the bottom in terms of compensation both nationally and in the MAC. According to the American Association of University Professors, CMU ranks 194 out of 227 reporting Category I institutions in terms of 2010-11 assistant professor average annual salary (CMU is 178/227 for associate professors and 187/227 for full professors).  Compared to other Mid-American Athletic Conference (MAC) schools, CMU ranks ninth out of 12 in terms of average salary. Believe it or not, some Michigan community colleges now pay their faculty more than CMU does and, although the very modest cost of living increase proposed by the faculty association would work out to half of one percent of CMU’s $429 million 2011-12 operating budget, this has been flatly refused. CMU clearly has abandoned its commitment to undergraduate education and, while paying lip service to the importance of excellent faculty, the administration’s position and tactics send the exact opposite message. It is clear that with an enormous $276 million surplus, the university can easily afford a reasonable contact for its faculty.

LETTER: President Ross responds to editorial about future of CMU

(09/07/11 3:45pm)

As Central Michigan University prepares to commemorate its 120th anniversary, it is an appropriate time to reflect on the past, review the growth and transformation happening at present, and have the foresight to enact steps to transport the university to its highest level in the future. It is understandable why the editorial in the August 31 edition of CM Life would suggest that challenging economic times be addressed by focusing only on the day-to-day operations of the university.