What do we do? What do we do in the face of a conflict that never seems to end and only escalates, as it has in Gaza since December 27th? Yes, the rockets Hamas lobs into Israel are a disgusting form of collective punishment. But we must also acknowledge that over 1,000 people have been killed in Gaza since Israel began its aerial bombardment; several thousand have been injured; and tens of thousands have been forced to leave their homes. UNICEF estimates that one third of the casualties are children.
There is something blissful about those first few days of term. They remind me of the feeling of just waking up in the morning—those first short moments when all I know is that I am awake and that the sun is shining through my window, but otherwise the rest of the world is forgotten. My assignments won’t get hard for at least another week, the new term offers a fresh start with friends, and for the first couple of days at least it’s easy to forget about all the drama that may have happened in the fall. Life is very simple in the beginning.
When we ran for office, we made very specific “promises we could keep.” We promised to: 1) improve student services, such as the Wellness Center and Career Center; 2) expand PE credit for Club Sports; 3) promote financially responsible investments towards a more sustainable Carleton; 4) increase accessibility and accountability of Senate; 5) improve budgeting; and 6) provide a rewarding first year experience. In order to address these tasks, we formed working groups that allowed all 18 Senators to focus their energies on a specific issue. Have we been able to achieve these goals?
In this coming week, we will be faced with two of the most important events in recent history: the inauguration of President Barack Obama and the annual Volunteer for Carleton drive. As both American residents and students of Carleton College, these events will offer unique opportunities for economic rejuvenation of both this country and this school, while at the same time laying the groundwork for structural change.
In the midst of the hustle and bustle of life at Carleton, it sometimes is difficult for one to stop and think about what a particular event means.One may pause and read the newspaper at breakfast or lunch, but there is always the next exam or paper after that. There is never time to stop completely to think, because the Carleton life does not afford such a luxury.
This past Monday night, the CSA Senate voted to set the Student Activity Fee for the 2009-2010 academic year, as is done every year around this time. There are however, some changes that I feel that you should know about before you receive your tuition statement for next year.
It wasn’t Obama’s being elected that I was unhappy with nor was it the man himself. It was what I perceived as the Carleton community’s explicit assumption that everyone on campus was a supporter of Obama.
As a 5th year intern then, sandwiched between being a student and a staff, the great surprise for me thus far this year has been seeing the far greater seriousness about and energy toward the issue of environmental sustainability from the faculty and staff. I am not sure why there is not quite the same level of practicing commitment among students.
Reid’s maxim of “if a person is unable to care for a child, they should not bring one into the world” is not that simple.
On Monday night, the Carleton community received an e-mail from Dean Hudlin Wagner announcing that Director of Campus Activities T. Todd Masman would be leaving the college to look for new opportunities after just four months with the college. Masman’s departure now leaves the important Campus Activities office with no director, no associate director, and no assistant director, and represents the third departure from the office in the past year, and the fourth from the Division of Student Life.
For the past month there has been a series of events to commemorate the 90th anniversary of the Armistice that ended World War One. The war was a defining event in the 20th century, and by all accounts it was a horrible, inhuman conflict beyond what anyone could have imagined. In the words of Robert Frost, it was a war “fought for a reason beyond reason.”
I did not do any homework Tuesday night. And it is my impression that many Carleton students found themselves similarly unmotivated to read fifty pages of poli sci or write a two-page response paper. Instead, I headed to a friend’s room and we flipped between NBC, ABC, and CBS. As minutes ticked by and electoral votes were divvied out, the noise in the hallway steadily increased.