Editorial 05.05.2006

By Peter Barlow

There can be little doubt that the position of dean of students is crucial to the running of any uni-versity. In my mind the position, and indeed the dean of students division, should ideally act as a bridge between administrators and students to ensure a situation which is conducive to the efficient and harmonious running of the university.

However, I feel that this does not happen at Rhodes and I am therefore heartened to see Bryony Green, presi-dent of our SRC, elected as a member of the task team to choose a new dean of students.

While it is traditional for the president of the SRC to sit on such a task team I believe that there is no one more suited to do the job, and the recent Student Forum, as well as the fact-finding mission Green and the SRC have conducted, is clear evidence that every effort is being made to get the students’ voices heard.

I laud this and hope that, for the sake of us all, students are taking every opportunity to inform Green and the task team what they really want out of the new dean of students, whoever he or she will be.Moving swiftly along to other matters, I feel it is safe to label homophobia, along with any other form of discrimi-nation, a form of hatred.

It was with this in mind that I gave the go-ahead for a story to be written exploring homophobia on this campus of ours. It’s printed on page 5. At this point I would like to admit openly that I have certain prejudices, as I believe we all do in our personal capacities. It is when these prejudices spill out to influence our behaviour and begin to infringe on the rights of others that I believe they begin to be intolerable.

This, as many of you may remem-ber, happened one evening in Friar Tuck’s and is the base of the story. It can be said without a doubt that the behaviour of the DJ that fateful night was completely intolerable in the free and open society we are aspir-ing to in South Africa. The fact that many patrons of the nightclub walked out after the incident, presumably in disgust at the DJ’s behaviour, serves to prove that many people might just agree with me on this one.

Why not email me what you think?On the subject of letters and emails I must commend Ryan Brear of His People (yes, you read right) for the suc-cinct email he wrote to me comment-ing on the creationism vs Darwinism debate. While I welcome any cor-respondence from our readers, I am glad that people are seeing Activate as a sounding board for opinions and viewpoints over and above making personal attacks on Activate staff and criticising the grammatical error in the third line of the fourth story on page 3, so thank you His People.

If you haven’t been living under a rock for the past few months you may have noticed that Chuck Norris is making a comeback and retro is once again cool. Why is this? A simple answer to this question is nostalgia. People like thinking about the old days because they were somehow better and prices were lower, etcet-era. Admittedly, Chuck was a little bit before my time but so was the Cold War and everyone seems to have gotten over that.


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