Letters to the Editor

Re: Abstain from abstinence-only Oct. 23

First and foremost, who uses “pedagogy”? Just say “teaching.”

What is this “overtly Christian agenda” of which you speak? At the last top-secret Christian meeting, we couldn’t even agree on something as simple as the shape of the cross. You’d think that Jesus Christ would be the “overtly Christian agenda,” but some Christians can’t even agree on him.

In the history of the world, billions of people of all types and philosophies – including educational philosophies – have called themselves Christian, but instead of writing about the one who invented calculus (Sir Isaac Newton), or one of the many who feed the poor (Mother Theresa), you decided to write about the one who claims that touching genitalia causes pregnancy. Although, technically, I guess it depends on with what it is touched and for how long.

In a critical discussion about sex education, abstinence-only education or any topic, the religious beliefs of the parties in the debate are irrelevant. The editorial would have been far more enlightening had you discussed key points of the arguments and let us draw our own conclusions. Then, after contemplating the issue, I would have sent you a letter asking you how you came to define “abstinence-only education” in “its purest form”?

I’m not sure that I understand that type of journalism – to write about the most extreme person in a group in a way that smears the whole group. Or to write about an extreme person in a way to make him appear to be a member of said group for the same smearing purpose.

No, I don’t understand that type of journalism, but I do understand that type of bigotry.

Richard Eldridge is a junior majoring in biology.

Dear Oracle,

USF should be very proud of the students who are taking an active part in leading an investigation of Student Affairs, as well as all of the professors who excused students from classes to allow them take part in the sit-in Oct. 16.

This demonstration was an excellent example of how ordinary people, without anger or violence, can call those in power to account for their actions. It also shows that USF has professors who are wise enough to know that real life events that directly affect students’ lives can be great teaching moments. Encouraging students to listen to both sides of an issue rather than dismissing or shouting down opposing viewpoints teaches them wisdom – a much-desired and hard-to-come-by attribute.

These students seemed willing to listen and eager to learn. They have questions that they want answered. This is professors’ opportunity as professionals to help them get answers. Students who are aware of what is going on at their University and who find ways to take effective and legal actions are those who will graduate to be the kinds of citizens who require their communities and the world to do the right thing.

Barbara McLay is an instructor in Student Learning Services.