To the Editor:
It is understandable why the coordinators of Dwight Hall would feel the need to address the alleged “evil-doing” history of their namesake to save face and maintain the level of political correctness which they have fought so hard to achieve.
But I cannot think of a greater waste of time and money than yielding to the pressures of the “Yale, Slavery and Abolition” report with a plaque and a ceremony. Not only does it divert attention from the genuine feeling of ethnic community that the organization tries to promote — as Monday’s Yale Daily News editorial attempted to show — but also it justifies a blatant, full-fledged act of historical and sociological anachronism.
One might assume two things in this case: that a Yale education would impart some knowledge about placing historical events and figures in their proper context, and that an organization like Dwight Hall, committed to ideals of socioeconomic and distributive justice, would have the wherewithal to allocate its funds wisely to worthwhile and forward-looking projects.
Sadly, neither seems to hold if the coordinators deem that Sunday night’s festivities are the best and most sensible way to generate publicity and make a statement on the more unsavory aspects of Yale’s past.
John McCormack ’04
November 13, 2001