Letters to the Editor 4/14

Grading system needs examination

I think the college grading system is out of control and completely lazy on behalf of the professors. As a freshman, almost every class I have taken, excluding English, has graded based on tests, and most of them have only had a midterm and a final. This fact is ridiculous. Tests do not prove the knowledge of the student, especially just two tests for an entire semester. In high school, though it was high school, students were graded on several assignments, projects and, yes, tests.

In college, one test can virtually determine the final grade, and I am not the only one who finds this ludicrous. Colleges and their professors need to begin determining grades based on the academic ability of the student through an array of assignments rather than just four or five tests. But after all, we do pay the professor’s salaries, so they can do whatever they want even if it doesn’t help the student, right?

Kyle Simon is a freshman majoring in masscommunications.

War guarantees freedom for others

I am writing in response to Anthony Schmidt’s “antiwar” opinion published on April 2. I truly understand the current peace movement. It is simply a movement of hypocrisy. It was a war that brought us the U.S. Constitution. It is the same constitution that states that the United States will defend democracies and fight against threats to democracy (i.e. dictators, communists, etc.). We will also defend the rights of citizens around the world who are deprived of “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.”

Face it, the United States has given Saddam Hussein 12 years to comply with numerous U.N. resolutions. Time and time again, Hussein has failed to comply. Now, no one is generally for war, but sometimes it is a necessity. I cannot deny that innocent people are dying (on both sides, I may add), but many more lives will be saved by the removal of Hussein.

The peace protesters are still arrogant enough to tell the Iraqi people the price for their freedom from fear and torture is too high. Peace protesters state there are other solutions, but they never mention them. Instead, they make childish remarks about President Bush. They state they are not anti-American, yet they make anti-American statements. All this, while Iraqi civilians suffer the inhumane acts of Hussein’s cruel regime.

The peace movement only sees air raids, weapons and destruction. That’s not what I see. I see the falling statue of Hussein symbolizing Iraqi freedom. I see Iraqi people finally having the ability to have their voices heard without fear of repression from the tyrant Hussein. I see them standing up, shouting against Hussein and letting the entire world finally hear them speak.

Vicken Mouradian is a junior majoring in business.

Antiwar protesters think for themselves

I respect anyone’s right to their own opinion. In our society, that right is one of the most important of our ideals. That said, I wish to respond to Ashley Konrad’s letter in the April 8 Oracle (“Opinion attacks commander, troops”) specifically, though there have been plenty of letters saying the exact same thing.

For one, I certainly do not support any oppression or barbarity committed against innocent people. Though many of the stories about Saddam Hussein may be greatly exaggerated (he really never did throw those Kuwaiti babies from their incubators), I do not doubt that he is a dictator. His people do not have the human rights we take for granted. He severely oppresses the Shiites and Kurds. However, I remember the adage that “two wrongs don’t make a right.” Whether or not you hear about it in the news, our war is killing Iraqi civilians. Baghdad is under siege, and it affects the lives of the common people as much as it does the government. It is hypocrisy to say that in order to get rid of this dictator and free the people, we must go to war and put all their lives at risk.

As to not supporting the troops: Vietnam was a long time ago. Times have changed–and in this day and age, if you actually bother to listen to an antiwar liberal, they are very quick to note that they do support our troops. Yes, I am against this war (in that I am against any war). However, I could not wish more than luck, and I support to our troops. They are risking their lives in defense of their ideals and beliefs. I may not agree with those ideals, but I agree with their right to have those ideals. I may not agree with the war they are fighting, but I hope each and every one of them comes home safe.

And last, there are some who say anyone who is antiwar merely feels that way because it’s the cool thing these days; it makes it nice and convenient, and they don’t have to think. This position sounds straight from the Rush Limbaugh archives. In case you haven’t been watching the polls, 77 percent of Americans support the war in Iraq. Any news channel you turn on fully supports the war. Antiwar protesters are constantly insulted and shown in a negative light. If I had any desire to look “cool,” then by God I would support the war like everyone else seems to. It is, in fact, because I think for myself and because I have come to a different conclusion than 77 percent of my peers, that I oppose the war.

So far, I have not (and incredibly, nor has anybody else) seen any weapons of mass destruction. I have seen no human shredder. I have seen no terrified Iraqi civilians except those terrified by the barrage of our bombs. I think Saddam Hussein needs to be out of there, but there are better ways of doing it than going to war — better ways of doing it than celebrating the day we rolled into Baghdad and killed 3,000 Iraqi people. There are diplomatic solutions, but they have not been played out.

And as far as I’m concerned, one innocent civilian death is one too many.

Kyle Woodlock is a sophomore majoringin communication information systems.