Letters To The Editor

Misplaced tech priorities

I am on Teaching Media at Texas Monthly in Austin, and I couldn’t believe what I was reading when I saw “Medill classes require pricey gadgets” in The Daily. Medill needs to get a clue.

First of all – iPods? I worked at The Daily for two years, a small magazine this summer, and now I’m at a 300,000-reader magazine. I have freelance photographed and jumped though all the career-building hoops Medill prescribes. Never have I heard of journalists needing iPods or digital camcorders ($600 cannot even buy a professional-quality lens) – not even here in Texas, where I have been working with the New Media Desk on one of the most efficient, widely read magazine Web sites.

More importantly, why in God’s name is the school encouraging PCs? If anyone had asked any professional photographers, video editors, graphic designers, or even Web designers (i.e. those at texasmonthly.com), they would know that Macs are the industry standard. Period. Even writers are moving away from PCs.

If these poor freshmen are going to spend big, probably unnecessary, bucks in the first place (I know other schools that give away Adobe program packages to students for free), at least spend them in the right place.

– Chris DanzigMedill juniorFormer Daily staffer

Thumbs up to Fiske’s fight

Thumbs up to Judy Fiske for persevering in her efforts to ensure that future First Ward elections are free and fair! Thumbs down to The Daily Northwestern Editorial Board for failing to recognize that it was the NU administration – not Fiske – that disenfranchised students in the April 2005 local election by enticing some ASG leaders to participate in a scheme to win the election for Cheryl Wollin, the administration’s preferred candidate. Thumbs down to the Editorial Board for failing to understand that it is against the law in Illinois to offer valuable incentives to register to vote.

When NU offered priority housing to students to register to vote in the First Ward’s 6th Precinct and an election night party to students who proved they voted in the municipal election, it committed a felony: vote buying. The number of students who took advantage of the illegal incentives is more than enough to overturn the election.

Thumbs down to the Editorial Board for turning a blind eye to the fact that over 20 percent of the student votes in the 6th Precinct were tainted by voter fraud. That’s right – at the urging of some ASG leaders and university officials, students not eligible to vote in the First Ward election voted there anyway. Some lived outside the ward’s boundaries, some voted from addresses where they weren’t registered and some even voted using other persons’ names! There were no instances of voter fraud in the First Ward’s other five precincts or in the two student precincts in the city’s Seventh Ward.

Within the corporate culture that exists at Northwestern, it’s a virtue to stand together and defend the university against a perceived attack from the outside, but what about an attack from the inside? The Daily seems unequipped to deal with that. In 2001, a scheme to steal the First Ward election was hatched on campus to unseat incumbent alderman Art Newman. It involved the same cast of characters – Cheryl Wollin (then campaign manager for Allan Drebin), NU officials and ASG leaders. In 2005, the scheme was expanded, and this time it was successful.

If honest elections are ever going to return to the First Ward, the illegal activities on the part of the university must be challenged now. Judy Fiske is fighting for the hundreds of residents of the First Ward whose votes were legally cast and whose will was overturned on Election Day. And like it or not, if you cast your vote legally, Fiske is fighting for students, too. It isn’t Watergate, but it’s pretty close.

Maybe one of you kids sitting around that big corporate table in the Daily editorial office will read this. And maybe one of you will pay attention and realize what the real story here is. Thumbs up to that, if it happens.

– Anita RemijasEvanston resident