To the Editor:
I do not know the relative merits of the two candidates, have never met them, and have no involvement with either candidate, any union or any person involved in this campaign for Yale Corporation trustee.
But I do want to comment on the criticism of the Rev. W. David Lee’s DIV ’93 “undisclosed special interests” that “Fellow Yale Graduates” complain of in their recent e-mail to Yale alumni.
First, they themselves name the “undisclosed special interests” — the local labor unions — that trouble them. By now, I assume those unions have been quite widely “disclosed.” So what’s the dark secret that bothers them?
It seems they know who and what is involved. And that, I suppose is where their objection must really lie. Why is the interest of a labor union any more “special” than the interests of Fellow Yale Graduates or any other? I see one or two names on the list of signed names at the end of the email that have been tied to one or more other — albeit non-labor — “special interests.”
Are those “special interests” superior to organized labor “special interests”?
David Wecht ’84 LAW ’87
April 14, 2002
To the Editor:
In regard to the Yale trustee election, while “hidden agendas” are not appropriate in such endeavors, different perspectives of what is best for Yale should be welcomed.
Our representative governmental system is rife with structures in which people are elected to general governing bodies to represent particular constituencies. In fact no one is free from bias and influenced perspectives.
To question individual motives for running for elected office is perfectly appropriate; to advocate that someone be elected over someone else because one is biased to a particular point of view and the other is somehow free of biases is naive at best.
If one doesn’t agree with the Rev. Lee’s perspective, fine — but in the best interests of the University, let’s encourage open debate, and access to all voters, on the issues. Maya Lin is unquestionably accomplished in her field, but that doesn’t make her necessarily a wonderful trustee, as contributions in such activities rely on a very different set of skills and abilities: Are we concerned about the possibility of contentious debate among trustees or the quality of the collective resumes of the Board?
My recollection is that we usually have several candidates nominated by the AYA — why only one this time? Diversity and differences of opinion are essential to Yale’s quality and preeminence in its educational programs — I don’t see why they shouldn’t be welcomed on the Board of Trustees as well.
Michael C. Schuller ’73
April 15, 2002