Blackballed employee deserves apology from administration, VP HarperTo the Daily:

Last Monday, Shannon Martin, former Native American Programs Coordinator for the University of Michigan”s Office of Multi-Ethnic Student Affairs, was acquitted of charges of embezzlement from the University, brought by the county prosecutor under direction of the University administration. The faulty charges were an attempt to retaliate against Shannon Martin, a dedicated servant and advocate for students, who refused to compromise pride and belief in her culture for the protection of the administration”s faults.

While on staff at the University for six years, Martin coordinated the successful Ann Arbor Pow-Wow, Native American Heritage Month and countless other events that helped foster a real understanding of diversity on campus. Martin worked with a love and dedication that supported and encouraged Native and non-Native students alike. Her suspension and subsequent termination from the University came only months after her involvement and support of the Students of Color Coalition”s occupation of the Michigamua “wigwam” in the Michigan Union (Feb. 6-March 13, 2000). It is obvious that administrators within the University, together with powerful Michigamua alumni, targeted Shannon Martin for her outspoken dissent toward Michigamua and attempted to damage her integrity and reputation as a professional Native woman, and as a human being.

The truth made itself apparent prior to and during the trial, as dozens of supporters testified and gathered to show solidarity in supporting the innocence and integrity of our trusted friend and colleague. The jury agreed, finding Martin not guilty on all counts, directing the question back to the University as to the real motivation behind the charges.

It is unacceptable for any public institution to target and prosecute people for defending their culture and ethnicity. Shannon Martin, a servant to students and diversity for six years at the University, has been victimized by this evil force, but continues to stand tall and proud and has now been proven not guilty in a court of law. She deserves an apology in the highest accord from all involved administrators, particularly Vice President for Student Affairs E. Royster Harper, in addition to compensation for the year-long assault on her humanity carried out by her former employer.

Joe Reilly

Alumnus

The letter writer was a member of the

Students of Color Coalition when the organization occupied the Michigan Union tower for 37 days in winter 2000.

Call for uprising, “revolution” unsettling

To the Daily:

Before Sept. 20, I was originally considering joining BAMN in their anti-war rally. I am not entirely against the idea of constructive retaliation regarding the terrible acts of the Sept. 11, but I thought I would march for the sake of showing that I hoped that there could somehow be a way of solving this situation peacefully.

Incidentally, I had some other commitment at this time and wasn”t able to join the rally, but as I was walking to my class at the Modern Languages Building I did happen to catch a glimpse of what I believe to be the tail end of it, and this is what I saw: this older guy, obviously not a University student, standing on a platform, hawking the “benefits” of communism or socialism and calling for a revolution against our own government. There were various people with red shirts dispersed in the crowd, handing out literature about “revolution.”

As I continued on my trek to class, I couldn”t help but to feel disgusted by what I saw. Politics aside, this group was clearly using the terrible act committed against us to gain visibility and further their cause. In the face of all the acts of charity I had seen on the part of the survivors (that includes all of us still living) of the Sept. 11 terrorist acts, this display of selfishness really bothered me.

I guess this letter might be a little late, considering that I made this observation over a week ago. Well, the real reason I”m writing you is to thank you for Friday”s article about BAMN (“Who exactly is BAMN?”). Now I basically know where they are coming from and that there are others who are equally disturbed about their recent actions as I am.

J.J. Wallbillich

LSA sophomore

Trotskyism leaves nothing but “death,” “suffering” in its wake campus should beware

To the Daily:

The Daily”s editorial “Sectarian Sojourn: BAMN must work well with others or take Trotskyite philosophy elsewhere” (9/28/01) claimed that “BAMN”s exclusionary and inflexible brand of sectarian communism is not the problem at hand its actions and intentions are.”

May I point out that BAMN”s ideology stands in support of one of the two great evils of the 20th Century, the other being Nazism.

Their hero, comrade Trotsky, was the inventor of slave labor in the Soviet Union. A cruel and vicious man, it was he who destroyed the independent labor unions, crushed the Kronstadt rising, and decimated the party rank-and-file. Like Lenin, he argued that history was above all moral restraints.

He was a moral relativist to the end: “Problems of revolutionary morality,” he wrote, “are fused with the problems of revolutionary strategy and tactics.” And as for one of the world”s great religions, he had nothing but venom: “The putrescent tissue of Islam will vanish at the first puff.”

Any group that supports Communism or Trotskyism ideas that have left nothing but suffering and death in their wake has no place on this campus, and should not be worked with, even if one happens to agree with them on a particular political issue.

Would the Daily encourage environmentalists to cooperate with a Neo-Nazi student group if the group happened to support Earth Day?

Justin Shubow

Rackham

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