Looby attempts to be serious for once in his life.
By John Looby
Recently The Ram has published some articles that have been controversial to say the very least. As an Editor for a rival (not The Rival) publication, I will admit that I would not have published some of these articles in our publication. In fact, my response to their submission might have included the words “fuck” and “that.” We’ve rejected articles in the past. As a publication, we go out of our way to uphold the value of free speech, but at a certain point in the editing process, you reach a moment where you have to ask yourself if you can in good faith publish something. Edits can be suggested and made up to a point. Some shit you just can’t fix.
An article such as “Turn Right: A Path to American Citizenship” that makes broad sweeping generalizations without citing even just one source and is also just overall poorly written should in all honesty probably have been rejected from our university’s proclaimed “Journal of Record.” I respect The Ram for their commitment to journalistic style and integrity. In this instance, however, I am disappointed in what seems to be a failure in the execution of editorial discretion. I am really hoping this was not published for the sake of the controversy it would cause. I am sure most people are aware of the attention the whole “I’m a conservative please stop questioning the hegemony and making me feel bad” article got. Provocateurs get attention, but seriously who doesn’t want people like Milo Yiannopoulos to just go away to whatever hatepit spawned them? After Father McShane officially states Fordham’s solidarity with the undocumented you would hope that a Fordham student and publication would put a little more thought into fanning the flames of this particular controversy. As much as there is that can be questioned about a publication that aims to be serious and of integrity publishing something like this, a great deal of the onus is still on the author. Everyone has a right to voice his or her opinion, I wholeheartedly believe that, but goddamn Brianna Lyman your shit is problematic. (By the way congratulations on having the number one article I’m sure that makes your argument well-constructed in the same way that everyone watching videos of a train wreck makes that conductor have an excellent safety record.) Putting out ill-informed and targeted messages like this is akin to yelling fire in a crowded theater you are creating and escalating a fear with a poor base in object reality that endangers others.
For those readers unaware of this issue “I have created my own sort of solution to the controversial” question of just how bad this article actually was. First, there’s this sentence “In a perfect world, people would respect our laws and no one would come here illegally…” Oh really, you don’t say? Well also in a perfect world people wouldn’t have to flee their homes for the safety of their children and end up in a foreign country that will stigmatize them for their sacrifice. Seems maybe a bit xenophobic to be more focused on American laws than foreign lives huh? Second, there’s this little gem of casual heartbreaking cruelty “…find these 11 million people… send them back and figure out what to do with their children who were born here.” The article comes across like the problem is that we don’t have the logistical capability to do the “just thing” and tear apart these families. Furthermore, those children would be citizens, natural born citizens with rights, not a problem to “figure out”.
Finally, there’s this Russian nesting doll of problems “They should also not collect social security and there should be a fine to pay for those who have been here longer than a year since some undocumented immigrants might avoid paying taxes.” So they must work since they got here, pay taxes into social security, never collect social security and what just never retire? They all have to pay a fine since “some” of them “might” have not paid taxes. By some did you mean less than half of undocumented immigrants don’t pay taxes according to the Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy? Oh, and those that pay taxes don’t get benefits like social security and still pay voluntarily. So maybe don’t vilify and suggest punishing undocumented immigrants en masse?
I could go on with all the problems with this article, but I think the point has been made. I’m not mad with the ram just disappointed. I mean you guys still aren’t The Rival so don’t stress. As for Brianna maybe just try harder next time? In 2017 researching further into an issue and treating others with sympathy and dignity really can’t be a source of many difficulties.