Last week, Isaac Schorr ’20 wrote a pretty divisive letter to the editor concerning the Class Council gala fundraiser for Planned Parenthood. In the space below I’m going to discuss both Isaac’s letter and the campus response it received. Saying that Planned Parenthood is a divisive organization isn’t a novel claim. Nor is the claim that the Class Councils, who purport to represent the interests of their corresponding classes, shouldn’t plan events fundraising for divisive organizations. I can only imagine what would’ve happened if the gala were raising money for the NRA …
A little over a month ago, Dr. Leana Wen, President of Planned Parenthood, confirmed what the American pro-life movement has recognized for years when she tweeted: “First, our core mission is providing, protecting, and expanding access to abortion and reproductive health care.” In the words of its own leader, Planned Parenthood is an organization that believes its primary purpose is to push for more abortion, full stop. This admission renders the decision made by the Class Councils of 2021 and 2022 to fundraise for Planned Parenthood at their Valentine’s Day Gala completely inappropriate and extraordinarily insensitive. Although the majority of Cornellians may favor abortion rights to one extent or another, there exists a great many of us who believe that the result of the procedure is the ending of a distinct human life deserving of dignity like any other. Despite my own strong feelings on the matter, I understand that in a diverse community such as ours, disagreement on this issue is inevitable. What I fail to understand, and what I object to, is the Class Councils’ reckless decision to spend money collected from each and every undergraduate via the Student Activity Fee on a fundraiser for such a deeply divisive organization — an organization that performed 332,757 abortions in 2018 alone.
After a long and arduous campaign process, the Class Councils named the presidents and vice-presidents of each class on Friday. Class Councils are charged with planning events for their entire grades in order to bring people together and foster unity. Past events have included Battle of the Late Night Foods, class talent shows and meet and greets with President David Skorton. The Class Councils for each graduating class are also in charge of planning Senior Week, Convocation and Commencement.
Class of 2010
President: Jeffrey Katz ‘10
Vice President of Finance: Kelly Dowling ‘10
Class of 2011
President: Alex Meier ‘11
Executive Vice President: Theresa Cederoth ‘11
Class of 2012
President: Annabel Fowler ‘12, Sun Contributor
“The system set up by the university to solve diversity-related issues is doing exactly what it was designed to do — nothing. Diversity kills us every day, every moment,” said Prof. Belisa Gonzales, a professor at Ithaca College at Diversity Kills Me, a dinner discussion yesterday evening. The event examined issues of diversity at Cornell and Ithaca College.
“Universities don’t want to diversify, they want to sell diversity to prospective students,” she said.
The evening opened with a brief review of a history of discrimination in the U.S., given by Prof. Alan Gomez, city and regional planning. The focus of the discussion then shifted to the students as they were challenged by Gomez to think of what diversity is and whom it is for.