Commentary: The Patriot needs new perspective

The Northeastern Patriot recently published several articles on affirmative action, in particular one on Northeastern University’s Ujima Scholarship program. I will leave it to others to debate the merits of the Patriot’s position on affirmative action, because I feel there is a more important issue here.

I am sure readers of the Patriot have noticed its tendency to focus on issues like affirmative action, abortion and immigration. The paper is noticeably lacking, however, when it comes to the most pressing issues facing our country: the Iraq debacle; America’s loss of global credibility; irresponsible tax cuts by the Bush administration; profligate spending that creates unsustainable budget deficits; and the erosion of the rights of ordinary Americans under the Patriot Act including warrantless wiretapping and the FBI’s abuse of power with regard to National Security Letters.

By focusing on wedge issues, the Patriot does a disservice to political discourse at Northeastern. This strategy comes straight out of Karl Rove’s playbook, which guided the Republican Party to congressional victories in 2002 and George Bush’s re-election in 2004. In the 2006 congressional elections, Americans looked past the wedge issues to focus on the real problems facing this country. It is time for the Patriot to do the same.

I know many people on the Patriot staff. I believe they are intelligent people who are capable of creating a better paper, and I challenge them to do so by focusing on the important issues and raising the level of discourse at Northeastern.

– Michael Murphy is a junior history major and former President of the Northeastern University College Republicans

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