Opinion

EDITORIAL Finally, some action

Thank you, Advocates for Conservative Thought.

No, we aren’t taking a stance for or against affirmative action in thanking this group. We thank them for triggering an important debate on campus. Besides giving us plenty of news stories to cover, the affirmative action controversy has turned our infamously apolitical campus into a slightly more active, opinionated one. This is undoubtedly a good thing. As college students, we should be engaging in this type of debate for all kinds of issues, from those affecting our university to those changing the world.

College campuses are supposed to be the brainstorming grounds for new ideas. In the history of this country and countries around the world, major movements and protests began in college campuses (think the Vietnam anti-war movement in the ’60s and the anti-sweatshop protests in the ’90s). We are not calling for UM students to radicalize and revolt. After all, there’s no real reason to do so. We are calling, however, for greater student involvement in intellectually stimulating discussions on campus.

For much too long, UM students have lived up to their reputation of being laid-back, beach-loving, party-going football fans that, as a whole, are generally not very interested in serious debate.

Yet, this recent affirmative action controversy seems to be changing that. Students are coming together to voice their opinions, as evidenced by the newfound interest in attending ACT meetings and by the general meeting held Tuesday by COISO, UBS, FEC and SpectrUM, where more than 100 people – members and nonmembers alike – showed up to discuss the issue.

These discussions are taking place because students feel the need to defend their points of view on the subject of affirmative action. In doing so, they are also forced to acknowledge, whether they like it or not, that other points of view exist. By trying to understand these different perspectives, students gain further insight on any given issue.

Analyzing our beliefs, rules and programs periodically is absolutely necessary to keep up with changing values and changing times. If, in doing this analysis, we maintain the same position we had in the past, then we will do so knowing that we choose to think this way and don’t simply accept it as something imposed upon us. Likewise, if we change our position, it will be a conscious, justified choice.

Of course, not all the student body is involved in this debate yet. The next challenge will be getting students out of their secluded dorms and away from sunbathing in the IM fields to participate in the discussions. Perhaps more importantly, it will be a challenge to get commuter students who largely represent the minority students to make an effort to come back to campus or stay to participate in these meetings.

Is affirmative action obsolete? Is it unfair? Should we embrace it because it’s possible that we owe our campus’ enviable diversity to it? We don’t have any answers, but we’re glad someone’s asking the questions.

March 5, 2004

Reporters

The Miami Hurricane

Student newspaper at the University of Miami


Around the Web
  • Miami Herald
  • UM News
  • Error

With the University of Miami season opener closing in, the next starting quarterback has yet to be n ...

The second fall scrimmage, closed to the media and public, is over. University of Miami coach Mark R ...

1. DOLPHINS: Fins any good? 'Dress rehearsal' may tell: Opening win, then lopsided loss. W ...

University of Miami linebacker Jamie Gordinier has had another unfortunate setback, effectively side ...

The calmest coach on the planet got mad Friday after football practice. University of Miami coach Ma ...

UM’s new chief academic officer holds some 40 patents, and in 2017 was inducted into the National Ac ...

University of Miami students and researchers are blogging during a month-long expedition in the Gulf ...

María de Lourdes Dieck-Assad, a world-renowned economist and former ambassador, fills a new role for ...

Through the U Dreamers Grant, DACA students find essential support as they pursue their college degr ...

UM students talk about their internships up north in a city that never sleeps. ...

RSS Error: A feed could not be found at http://www.hurricanesports.com/. A feed with an invalid mime type may fall victim to this error, or SimplePie was unable to auto-discover it.. Use force_feed() if you are certain this URL is a real feed.

TMH Twitter Feed
About TMH

The Miami Hurricane is the student newspaper of the University of Miami in Coral Gables, Fla. The newspaper is edited and produced by undergraduate students at UM and is published weekly on Thursdays during the regular academic year.