LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Re: ‘I Believe You, Brett Kavanaugh’

To the Editor:

A casual stroll through the government department reveals an environment exploding with stress. Some of this, such as the stress attributed to upcoming prelims, is justified. The stress surrounding the nomination of Brett Kavanaugh and subsequent allegations is wildly misplaced. Cornellians are rightfully distressed about the prospect that an abuser could sit on the court. However, we seem to be ignoring the disturbing and rapid decay of due process in the United States as a result of this debacle.

GUEST ROOM | A Breakdown of the “Turkey: A State of Emergency” Talk

Doom was a dominant theme in Myron Taylor Hall this past Friday. This was unsurprising, considering the subject of the event there — “Turkey: A State of Emergency.” The speaker panel, hosted jointly by the Clarke Initiative for Law and Development in the Middle East and North Africa and the Ottoman and Turkish Studies Initiative, aired out some of Turkey’s dirtiest political laundry. Each of the panelists zeroed in on one particular undemocratic facet of the Middle Eastern nation’s recent political tumult, from extrajudicial detainments to growing anti-intelligentsia sentiment to the increasingly precarious livelihoods of the four million Syrian refugees there living. Most generally, the talk was geared toward unpacking the political machinations of President Reccip Tayyip Erdogan in the wake of this summer’s failed coup attempt. The statistics are jarring.

Letter to the Editor: Conflict-free university contracts increase militia-led violence

To the Editor:

Yesterday, four of my colleagues coauthored a letter raving against Dodd-Frank’s Conflict Minerals Rule, §1502, which is in President Trump’s crosshairs after a leaked Executive Order allegedly advocated its suspension. Specifically, my colleagues believe §1502 decreased militia-led violence in the Democratic Republic of Congo. It did not. They correctly judged the intent of §1502 — and I agree with the statute’s intent — but not its result. My response will explain the regulation, expose its failure, and argue against their mandate that Cornell University waste its endowment and our tuition on useless audits. My colleagues asserted that §1502 “prevents American companies from purchasing conflict minerals.” Well, that’s a very simplified picture of what the statute does.