February 5, 2009 Volume CXXV Issue 2

Student applauds accountability

By WHITLEY ARENS, Opinion Editor

After reading the Georgetonian’s front page article from last week, I must admit that I’m sorry I was unable to attend the meeting hosted for the “Save Our Professors—Demand Accountability!!” movement that’s sprung up on campus. I am, however, one of the 474 members of the Facebook group. When I first joined the group, I truly didn’t think it would amount to much more than adding to the list of groups on my Facebook profile. I had seen student-created groups before; I had seen groups “with missions.” And I had seen these groups do nothing more than gather dust in cyberspace. However, this Facebook group has not only gained an impressive number of members, but has also managed to exist beyond the Facebook realm.

The meeting held in the LRC last week shows that this student- organized group might be more serious than its predecessors. The relative success of its meeting—a healthy attendence of thirty devoted students working toward a common goal—make me believe that we students perhaps have more power than we previously thought. The purpose of this group (to save our professors by demanding financial accountability) is a legitimate cause, one that I believe is both relevant and worth students’ attention. I think it’s very important for students to know exactly what they’re paying for when they fork over a lot of money for tuition. I also think it’s very important to save our professors and preserve the close-knit atmosphere that is Georgetown College. This aside, I find what amazes me most about this movement is that students have actually managed to facilitate it.

In some ways, Georgetown College is now home to its own little grassroots movement. I’m uncertain as to what exactly the outcome of this movement will be—can the students save their professors? Will we gain transparency from the administration? Truthfully, I don’t know. But what I do know is that some good has already come of it all. The students are taking some initiative and playing an active role in the state of their education. Not only that, but students and administration are working together, cooperating and productively discussing important issues. That, in and of itself, is a success.


FACEBOOK: Is it good or evil?

By AVA JORDAN, Staff Writer

Facebook is ubiquitous on college campuses all around the country and is quickly spreading around the world. More than just a “social networking” website, it also serves as a way for teachers and students to communicate, acquaintances to learn more about each other, a quick reference sheet for personal information and a great way to stalk your friends (in the less scary sense of the word). As the number of Facebook users grows, so do the groups and events that go with them. These serve as means of connecting people with common interests or activities and can be quite the useful organizational tool. However, these things can also be negative. Some people share their most private information and emotions through Facebook and similar websites, allowing anyone with internet access and time to learn everything about them. Even things we think are private can be seen by many more people than we realize, some of whom may not have good intentions. Do the communicative properties of Facebook outweigh the openness with which some people approach it? Is Facebook good, evil or indifferent? It seems to me that Facebook is still a boon to society at this point in time, though with its widening circle of users and information, it may not be in the future.

So what of the future? In the age of Facebook, can we see the future as bright or grim or is it still shrouded in mystery? Just as people find hope in political figures, some of us can find hope in Facebook. Picture this with me: if Facebook continues its nearly exponential growth, it could very easily become a dominating force in society. Facebook could become the symbol of a generation, much like the peace sign represented the 1960s and 1970s. Millions, nay billions, of people could use the website for casual communication, meetings, passing along important information, planning and much more. If this possible future becomes a reality, then those who run Facebook would, in essence, rule the world. They could have access to the thoughts and discussions of every member of the website and, through them, the majority of the rest of the world as well. Only those in remote areas without computers, access to the internet or friendship with someone with a computer and internet access would remain unaffected. In this way, the men and women behind Facebook could take control of the world. Their rule, however, could be a tyranny or a benevolent dictatorship. Facebook might someday become the next Fidel Castro (only on an international level) or, if the idea of a website running your life does not appeal to you, it could just eventually fall by the cultural wayside, forgotten and ignored. Kind of like Yahoo! 360°.

facebook

This could be the result if Facebook turns to the dark side.


A reflection on Obama’s beginning

By JASMINE GREGG, Staff Writer
obama1

Barack Obama is the new president.

Obama’s first days in office have proven to be very productive. He has not only addressed the economy, but he’s also chosen to start working on other campaign promises. And he is even trying to get everyone involved in the decision making process. Obama wants bi-partisan support on his proposal to stimulate the economy even though he does not have to get that. This shows, at least to me, that he is trying to center the government on one goal and push everyone toward that together. This makes sense, especially if he expects something to be done to help the economy quickly. He’s already met with Congress in order to get his bill passed and he hopes to have it on his desk, ready for him to sign, by mid-February.

Although I like his optimism, I believe that it may not happen that soon. Another thing that he is pushing for is to open up communication with the Muslim world. He is trying to communicate with them that America is not their enemy and has even appointed an envoy, someone to represent a government when dealing with another, to help him do that. This is something that I applaud. I am a firm believer in communication and this is something that I really liked about his campaign. I hope that it will not stop here, but continue on to other parts of the world.

Another thing that has been done is that Obama has turned down a rule that prohibits the U.S. from giving money to international family-planning clinics that support abortion or give counseling or referrals about abortion services. This goes hand-in-hand with his decision to get the support of both parties in order to pass his plan. He is trying to keep everyone together and he has named this a “wedge issue” that he does not want to continue supporting.

I believe that this is a great start for a president who has inspired hope. I approve of everything that he has done so far but I am hoping that he has not bitten off more than he can chew; I am also hoping that people do not put so many expectations on him that he crumbles under the weight. It is not the intelligence, nor the strength and determination, of Obama that I doubt; it is the patience and understanding of the American people. I just hope that they give him a chance to make the change that he has promised.


The Georgetonian/JOEL DARLAND

The Georgetonian/JOEL DARLAND

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