Your Turn

Readers write, react and respond. (September/October)

The Nays Are In
You do neither the alumni magazine nor Senator Gillibrand ’88 any favors by printing her laundry list of anti-Trump slogans [“The Crusader,” July/August]. Freedom of the press, an independent judiciary, immigration problems, terror attacks by Muslims and others, the ISIS threat, and climate change are serious issues, and they deserve thoughtful, civil discussion, not knee-jerk mud-slinging.

In my day at Dartmouth, President John Sloan Dickey offered the “Great Issues” course to help seniors examine all sides of issues.

Apparently, that’s long gone. How sad!

Elmer L. Sullivan ’52
Ewing, New Jersey

 

Jake Tapper’s interview with Senator Gillibrand fails to address her opportunistic support of the Iran nuclear deal, despite her assertion that “You must stand up when evil is spreading.” If funding the No. 1 state sponsor of terrorism is not evil, then what is her concept of evil? The opportunistic morphing of her positions and her support of the Iran deal make her an unlikely paladin in the battle of what she calls “good vs. evil.”

Roger A. Gerber ’59
Scarsdale, New York

 

Gillibrand strikes me as a hypocrite. In earlier years she campaigned extensively with Bill Clinton. Only after Hillary Clinton’s defeat did she speak out concerning Bill Clinton’s behavior toward women. Tapper danced around the issue but never really confronted it. He knows how to ask hard questions. Gillibrand is a deeply flawed spokesperson for #MeToo, and Tapper confirmed his reputation as someone soft on Democrats.

Douglas Furth ’79
Chappaqua, New York

 

Tired
In each issue of DAM I read letters from old alums who lament that Dartmouth has become far too liberal, too female, too colored, too gay, or, in some other respect, too changed. They wail about Dartmouth’s liberal leanings and deftly cite unsourced statistics (“95 percent of Dartmouth professors are Democrats!”), resurrect tired boogeymen (“socialism!”), and excrete hackneyed catch phrases (“fake news!”).     

Their desire for a safe space at Dartmouth is derived from fear, and they resent it when the same fear is expressed by anyone else—the fear of being a minority. In true conservative fashion, such a concern only matters when being in the minority happens to them. Can we let these annoying voices cry in the wilderness rather than condemn every issue of DAM with their presence?

Hemant Joshi ’04
Boston

 

Me Too
Your May/June issue [“What’s Next”] featured an illustration of astronauts on the cover. Did you know that one of the world’s premier painters of astronauts is a Dartmouth alum? Me! I’m writing to advocate for all alums making art. People know Dartmouth for its doctors, economists, and politicians—and rightly so. But people don’t think of Dartmouth as a school that produces artists. I’d like that to change. Talk about Dartmouth as a place that produces artists. If we don’t, I’m not sure how we’re going to convince anyone else.

Scott Listfield ’98
Somerville, Massachusetts

 

High Point
The essay about the 50th-reunion Moosilauke hike [“At the Mercy of the Mountain,” May/June] painted the landscape of the September of our lives. Through the years we’ve taken family, friends, and two dogs on various trips to the summit, and all our daughters carry fond recollections of those summer hikes. Thanks for stirring those memories.

Bill Jacobs ’73
Berkeley Heights, New Jersey

 

Head of the Class
My compliments to Joe Gleason ’77 for his excellent reminiscence on the unique teaching skills of John Adams [“Awakening,” March/April]. Professor Adams’ publication record and administrative contributions may not have been as great as those of some of his colleagues, but his ability in the classroom was unequaled. I, too, took History 52, as well as most of the other courses he offered. I’m a professor of history at Carleton University, and my notes from his courses subsequently influenced my own lectures, and, to an even greater degree, his way of conveying European history also left its mark. It is fitting the magazine should recall his talents more than 30 years after his death.

Carter Elwood ’58
Ottawa, Ontario

 

We Beg to Differ
The contributions of Janos Marton ’04 were critical to JustLeadershipUSA’s #CLOSE rikers campaign [“Freedom Fighter,” July/August] but were mischaracterized. We did not “work closely” with Mayor de Blasio or manage the campaign. The mayor opposed closing Rikers, and it was only through our major organizing effort that he relented a year after the campaign launched. In addition, Marton supervised a small team, not a team of 25, and the #CLOSErikers budget is a fraction of the amount cited.

Monica Novoa
Director of Communications JustLeadershipUSA
New York

 

CORRECTION: In the last issue we failed to include Rep. Alex Mooney ’93, R-W.V., in our list of members of Congress. Mooney is up for reelection this fall and was in the Maryland state senate from 1999 to 2011. He majored in philosophy at Dartmouth.

 

Portfolio

Alumni Books
New titles from Dartmouth writers (September/October 2019)
Command Performance
Composer Oliver Caplan ’04 celebrates sestercentennial.
Living Well for Culture

Journalist Chelsey Luger ’10 is on a mission to promote health and fitness among Native American communities.

Ann McLane Kuster ’78
A fourth-term congresswoman on working for the people

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