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The Daily Wildcat

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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

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    >Library should not fall victim to coming budget reductions

    Cutting the library budget in any amount is detrimental to the university. (“”Budget cuts may force UA library closure,”” Jan. 28, 2009). Ending programs is bad enough, but at least the library has resources so that students can continue to research their areas of interest independently. Getting rid of a library sends a sign to the nation that this university does not have the necessary resources to aid in student learning, which will lead to a decline in applications and therefore, less money flowing into the university.

    This also hurts current students who are trying to get the most out of their education. As for making books electronic, that is a good resource to have. However, at this point in time, it is impossible to make an entire library electronic before the budget cuts are implemented. There is also something irreplaceable about holding a physical book: the smell, the feel, the text and even the notes in the margins that students are not supposed to make. For a book lover, getting rid of actual books hurts.

    Please do not continue to hurt our libraries. They contain the most important resources at this university.

    Lily Pape
    English senior

    UA’s wastefulness makes mockery of vaunted liberal principles

    I may have worked my butt off to come here for nothing. My funding, advisor, cohort and program are all at risk because of impending cuts. Worrying about drops in the bucket may seem in poor taste to my fellow lefties right now, and this letter will make many people uncomfortable.

    But it’s not education-haters alone who threaten us. Some drops in the funding bucket have symbolism for taxpayers disproportionate to their size. Tucson wastes land and water, but compared to Phoenix we’re really “”green”” (desert-tan, that is), which makes me proud.

    The UA is the glaring exception, with more grass and fountains than half Tucson’s parks. Many classrooms are supercooled in the summer, overheated in the winter. None of my classrooms are swamp-cooled. Wasteful, costs money. Most of my friends are poor or respectful enough to follow EPA guidelines at home: 68 in the winter, 74 in the summer. Not the UA.

    Academia has an opulent culture. Beyond their healthy salaries, researchers, professors and administrators are compensated for lavish conferences in glitzy hotels, expensive receptions, catered events, and get generous per diems and ride the taxi everywhere instead of the bus, because that’s what life in the academy is supposed to be. Having a less auspicious background myself, I find living beyond one’s means pathetic. We complain about funding, live off taxes, and expect to live like kings? This is nothing more than tiny drops in the bucket. Education and research cost far more than any of this waste. But it has symbolic value in the eyes of working-class voters like my family, who resonate with Fox News’ and talk radio’s discourse about evil liberal academics. Arizona’s revenue crisis is bringing folks’ anger to roost, and education and research will be what suffer.

    Many middle- and upper-class readers will laugh at my calling these things opulent. To answer Thomas Frank’s question, their attitude is “”What’s the Matter with Kansas””? President Obama has figured that out; when will the rest of the liberals?

    Bryan James Gordon
    first year linguistics and anthropology graduate

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