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GUEST ROOM | In Protection of “Martha’s” Humanity

This previous Wednesday, college students gathered in Goldwin Smith Corridor to protest the horrors repeatedly unfolding in Gaza. I’m not right here to make a press release on the Israel–Palestine battle. What I want to focus on as an alternative is the banner that stretched from the third ground to the bottom degree of the Goldwin Smith atrium, studying “MARTHA, BLOOD IS ON YOUR HANDS.”

Grace Elmore

As college students at probably the most esteemed universities on this planet, protest shouldn’t be solely our proper; in some ways, it’s our obligation. Holding accountable these liable for the ever-climbing dying tolls in Gaza is essential. That being stated, it’s equally — and if no more — essential to make sure that those that are really liable for these atrocities are those being focused, and President Pollack is solely not a kind of folks. As Cornell’s President, her duties embrace fundraising, monitoring College budgets, and offering basic supervision over affairs at Cornell. Pollack is the college’s govt, not its legislator. Her job is to execute the choices made by the College’s 64-voting-member Board of Trustees, to not make them.

A lot of the relentless criticism discovering its strategy to President Pollack targets her lack of public, vocal condemnation of what’s occurring in Gaza. In December, pupil demonstrators occupying Day Corridor chanted “Martha, Martha, you may’t conceal, you’re silent on genocide.” However President Pollack has no position in overseas affairs; Her duties are much more slim. A shallow overview of Conell’s Board of Trustees reveals the multitude of voices that our President is predicted to reconcile. Her abstinence from public statements is probably not satisfying to some members of the coed physique, but it surely’s a lot simpler to criticize that silence from the security of our pupil perspective. It’s one factor to claim that, if put in President Pollack’s footwear, we’d communicate our opinions freely and with out hesitation, however minds rapidly change when expressing these opinions locations your life on the road. By talking in protection or condemnation of both facet of this battle, President Pollack wouldn’t solely be placing the security of her life and the lives of her family members in jeopardy, but in addition the security of our College. So, we should pause and contemplate earlier than criticizing her public neutrality.