Letter to the Editor

I am writing in response to an editorial in last week’s edition of The Observer, which contained what I contest was an inaccurate assessment of the Undergraduate Student Government (USG) Presidential candidates by the editorial staff.

This assessment came in the article “The Observer endorses Colin Williams for USG president.” Full disclosure: as a candidate for USG President, I was an opponent of Colin’s in the elections and I am writing this before the election. Thus, I obviously disagreed with the choice, but I respect The Observer’s right to make such an endorsement. What I object to does not relate at all to the politics of the race, but to the characterization that the field of four candidates running for USG President was in any way “lackluster.”

Anyone who has worked with Dan, Taryn, or Colin knows that they are not only excellent to work with, but inspire excellence in those around them. I have had the good fortune of working with them in USG since our freshman year, and for the entirety of their time here at Case Western Reserve University, each one of them is a dedicated and hardworking member of USG. Whether as a representative or an executive officer, each stepped up to improve USG and worked tirelessly to insure that undergraduate students have a strong voice in the business of the university. Through agreements and arguments, I have worked alongside them week in and week out for almost three full years, and I truly feel that USG would be worse off without any one of them.

Under what criteria can you call this “lackluster”? I look at my fellow candidates and see shining examples of people willing to devote themselves to USG and to serving their peers, and each would make a great president of USG in my estimation.

I cannot fault The Observer for only having time to form their opinion of each candidate during an hour-long interview. However, I do take exception that, in the course of only one hour, The Observer editors not only proclaimed that these superb candidates are all lackluster, but also latched said “lackluster” capabilities to “structural difficulties” in the organization. At best, this assessment represents a failure of the interviewers and reporters to truly understand and appreciate these candidates for their contributions to USG, the university, and all undergraduate students enrolled.

To Colin, Taryn, and Dan: I ran against you because I felt I would make a better President. But, whoever has won our race, and in whatever positions we find ourselves next year, I look forward to the honor of serving alongside you.

Matt McKee
Undergraduate Student