I have been encouraged to write a line by line response to President Leebron’s interview in the Rice Thresher. It is difficult to keep writing against someone whom, in the end, I respect and owe a great deal. I thought that I was doing a pretty good job treating the KTRU issue like any other cause, but it is different when the people on the opposing side know who you are. And for the first few days, I forgot that I knew who they are.
It is quite trying to balance a deep and heartfelt opposition to the KTRU sale with my personal support for the people who engineered and support the sale.
Reading the comments, not just on this blog but elsewhere as well, some people seem to blur the line, following their support for the Rice administration and therefore supporting the sale. Other people have followed their opposition to the KTRU sale and therefore personally opposed Rice administrators.
I find myself supporting calls for Student Association and Faculty Senate to stand against selling KTRU, against the administrative process that led to the sale, and even against the administrators themselves, yet support those very same administrators.
During my time at Rice, I found my greatest supporters and defenders not among students, but among faculty and administrators. I feel like this blog is just a continuation of what I used to do, but considering the differing responses from former fans, something must have changed.
I do not mean to attack, and I do not mean to hurt. I am just trying to save KTRU. But when I do hurt, that is my failure. Looking back at a personal history, it is an issue with which I have some difficulty.
I dunno, I guess I’ll just keep writing until the KTRU saga is over, and then back to talking about Mad Men.
Anyways, I feel pretty awful, so maybe I’ll have something tomorrow. Until then, here is a guest post from Julia talking about the President’s House vs. KTRU comparison (That’s right, I do guest posts. Want to do one? Just ask. It is pretty open):
The Weiss House represents a tradition at the university, like the hedges and the architectural codes. The tradition is one born in the old south, one that William Marsh Rice would probably be proud of, to control the environment around Rice’s campus and bring a certain atmosphere to the university. Not tangible, but probably part of the reason that Rice keeps getting best quality of life.
Now, is the weiss house a necessary part of that tradition? No. It is not used by the campus community at large. [insert more arguments here]
Likewise, KTRU is part of another tradition. Another atmospheric ethereal unquantifiable bit of stuff that makes Rice what it is. But it is a different tradition. One that, along with the residential college system, promotes the development of individual identity and empowerment for students at the cusp of defining themselves as adults. It gives students a power and a voice, just as the architectural codes give them comfort and familiarity.
The question we must ask is, now that we have argued against the necessity of the weiss house to the architectural womb of rice, where shall we fall on the necessity of ktru as part of Rice’s role in kicking its growing students out of the nest and into the real world as strong, unique, capable individuals?
It is certainly a unique outlet for student expression, one that cannot be captured by blogs or participation in residential college cabinets, newspapers, or student government. Sure, the students who found their niches there could turn to the other creative public outlets rice offers, which have grown over the past few years, with the addition of more literary magazines and such. However, artistic and political voices cannot always be translated from one medium to another. You cannot dance the “I Have a Dream” speech, nor can you write the Mona Lisa. Which is not to say that KTRU djs are creating timeless masterpieces of human endeavor in their daily work, but depriving them of the opportunity to do so is a detriment to the student body of Rice University.
You can post that if you want; i have no outlet of my own in which to do so