Xavier Magazine

Letters to the Editor

The readers always write. Now see if they’re always right. Letters about Garry Wills, women priests, God and grizzlies, and more.



Screen-shot-2011-12-16-at-1.56Dissenting View
The article on Garry Wills (“Against the Wind,” Winter 2012) was both thoughtful and interesting, an impressive accomplishment. As with anything of that nature, however, disputable points raised must be discussed and not merely accepted as true. The disputable point the author raised was her evaluation of liberals (likely a self-evaluation) as tolerating dissent. Now, madame, where did you ever get the idea that those who shout down visiting speakers of a rival political persuasion are tolerating dissent? Where did the idea that college professors, that most ardently liberal of groups, tolerate dissent when they would tell Wells that they would not tolerate writing for the National Review? Would not tolerate a law school professor speaking on behalf of conservative causes in his classroom? Would not permit a representative of the Tea Party to deliver a speech on a university campus? Perhaps these examples are taking only from modern American liberalism and not liberalism per se. European liberalism, however, seems to disprove this. In any case, the way one sees himself/herself is not necessarily the way others see them.
—John B. Flanagan, Class of 1963, via standard mail

Correct View
I am thoroughly enjoying this Winter 2012 edition and was intrigued with the “Against the Wind” article about Garry Wills. I graduated from Xavier in 1969 after arriving on campus in January 1965. While there Husman Hall was built. I believe Garry was gone from Cincinnati and Xavier by this time and don’t see how Bill Buckley could have “… tracked Wills down in his Husman Hall dorm room.”
—John Connell via email
[Editor: Wills lived in Brockman Hall. We stand corrected.]

letterspageCatholic View
It’s very upsetting to me as a graduate of Xavier (Class of 1984) and as a parent of a current Xavier student, to read in your alumni profiles (Fall 2012) about the woman Bridget Tierney who I have nothing against, we all make our own choices, but seriously, could you not find anyone else to write about other than someone who left the Catholic faith and became a woman priest in the episcopal church? The last I checked, Xavier is still a Catholic university and we should be promoting that! It’s things like this that cause myself and my husband who got his MBA from Xavier to NOT give money to the school other than the horrendous tuition. Come on, let’s speak and act like Catholics!
—Karen Westerkamp Ryan, via email

Religious View
WWJD regarding the recent basketball brawl on national TV. Nice PR. Jesus would be crying again.
—Tom Roller via email


Another View
Thank you for the article “A Decade of War.” (Fall 2011) But I must say that as the sister of an American soldier, I am disgusted by Samantha Groark’s opinion. She is a disgrace to the military scholarship she has been bestowed. And while she separates herself from this war “backdrop,” many more military families choose to actually support those who sacrifice so much for us rather than criticize their mission. Oh, to be young and stupid again…
—Jennifer K. Dettinger, MPH, JD (Class of 2001) via email

How you could let the statement above run about a current student at Xavier is disgusting to me. Everyone is entitled to their own opinion but there is also a thing called decency. As a current Xavier student I am outraged that you let something like that go online.
—Brian Schultz via email

Great issue of @xavieruniv magazine. Always very excited to see it in the mailbox. #proudalum
—Jessica Able via Twitter


Scenic View
Superior class. (“Of God and Grizzly,” Fall 2011) This is as education should be at a Jesuit university—experiencing, thinking, journaling, sharing, and yes, even praying. The level of introspection had to be amazing. This is the way to teach. Those 12 students were fortunate to take a class not confined to the walls of a classroom or a high pressure silly multiple choice final. This is a class the students will not only remember forever, but they will be touched by it forever. Education is about planting seeds in hopefully fertile minds, and the seeds from this experience should blossom in the hearts, minds, and souls of these students for the rest of their lives. Great idea and great class professor.
—Pat Bowes via Facebook

Don’t need to go all the way to Yellowstone to find the connection.
—Mary Anne Brauns via Facebook

Very ecumenical I suppose but hardly Catholic. I guess Antioch College would fill the bill as a religious citadel. Why not save the money and just sit on the Academic Mall and study cloud formations?
—Kevin Donovan via Facebook

Would have liked to have heard more in the video about the link between “our sacred earth” and the Incarnation, or about Man being the only creature God has willed for its own sake… or, gee, here’s a wild thought: maybe more about Jesus (?!) If I were a paying XU parent, I’d rather my kid learn about the Personalism of John Paul II than something that—in this video, at least—smacks of mere pantheism. [Suggested quiz question for ya: Can God be found in the filthy crowded streets of Calcutta?] Perhaps 3 minutes 36 seconds gives a false impression of the course. I certainly hope so.
—Teresa Donovan via Facebook

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