Avoid the April 30 GESO poll on unionization: It’s a sham

To the Editor:

After much consideration, I will boycott GESO’s poll on unionization to be held on April 30. Participating in this rash “election” will serve only to legitimize GESO’s attempt to backdoor the established and legal system of union recognition. The short notice provided by GESO to the Yale community speaks of either a massively disorganized or furtive effort.

To my knowledge there was no referendum within the GESO organization to decide whether or not to hold this poll. I am not quite sure of what kind of democracy GESO thinks it represents.

Additionally, the fuzzy definition of who can vote in this election could have been replaced with a simple line reading, “Any graduate student enrolled full-time in the GSAS is eligible to vote in this election”. Instead, it is up to some unnamed individual to interpret whether students from the professional schools who might be mentoring an undergraduate can vote in this poll. GESO knows that this poll is not legally binding, yet they are setting up a situation in which they can claim victory, however pyrrhic it may be, by winning a majority of votes cast. The spin to the press will undoubtedly be tremendous; unfortunately, it will also be quite disingenuous.

Several anti-GESO groups have surfaced over the last week in response to this drive-by “election”. Most people I have spoken to really want to get together and vote GESO down once and for all. But with the time crunch and lack of a coherent anti-GESO organizational structure, many of us will voice our opposition to GESO by boycotting this sham election and signing a petition formalizing our opposition to GESO. We welcome any GESO member who feels disenfranchised by the parochial and controlling actions of the GESO officer elite to join our protest.

J. Kenneth Wickiser

April 24, 2003

The writer is a fourth-year graduate student in the Department of Molecular Biophysics & Biochemistry.

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