Vote on Administrator's Political Showcasing

Ashley Thorne

At the University of Wisconsin, Fox Valley, Campus Dean James Perry has a blog, linked from the university's homepage. The dean's most recent entry, "Thoughts on a New Era," was a post hopeful that Obama's presidency is a "giant leap forward" toward fulfilling Martin Luther King, Jr.'s dream. Dean Perry wrote that as he watched the inauguration, "For the first time in a long time I was proud again to be an American." He was also enthusiastic about the recent Association of American Colleges & Universities (AAC&U) meeting on sustainability and social justice, which Dean Perry wrote "are inextricably related." Finally, the dean quoted from Eric Lieu's pamphlet True Patriotism and commented that, "For too long the term 'patriot' has been equivalent to support for the war effort, support for the troops, my country – love it or leave it."

The blog enables readers to leave comments on each entry, and Dr. Malcolm Allen, a professor of English at U Wisconsin-Fox Valley, wrote the first one. Dr. Allen expressed regret that Dean Perry had used a university-sponsored platform to showcase his political views, and that the dean did not seem to realize that these musings even were political. Concluding his comment, Dr. Allen wrote, "But the millions who voted for someone other than Senator Obama, as he then was, were not necessarily unmoved by the work of Dr. Martin Luther King."

Since then there have been eighteen more comments, and on the blog's homepage a poll was set up for readers to vote: "Do you agree with Dr. Malcolm Allen’s comments concerning the UW Fox Dean’s recent blog posting?" 81 have voted: 50 agree, 8 are neutral, and 23 disagree (At the present time). There are three days left to vote. We encourage you to cast your ballot as your conscience bids.

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