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Letter to the Editor

BY DI READERS | NOVEMBER 17, 2010 7:20 AM

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Marching for higher education

As a University of Iowa graduate now living in London, I was pleased to see Simeon Talley's Nov. 15 column"Tory scum and higher education." This issue certainly has a shared international aspect, because students are among the many innocent groups now being forced to pay for the financial mess created by bankers and stockbrokers.

What the Tory government here is effectively trying to do is privatize state higher education, because the tripled tuition fees paid by students would replace the funding for teaching staff salaries, simultaneously being cut by up to 80 percent in the humanities.

It's not a question of whether education is a right or a privilege — the right under attack is equal access for all to education; the privilege is that of the wealthier elite who will have no problem with student debt. In the UK, we still look with some envy at the United States for the sheer diversity of educational institutions and the array of scholarships available to students and the largess of alumni donors, little seen here.

And as a baby boomer who went on the students' march last week in support of my own children, I'd like to add that I was proud to see so many committed, passionate, good-natured, peaceful young people out there demonstrating. They weren't just marching for themselves but for education as a social good and as the mark of a civilized society, which is about to be trashed not by them, but by the millionaire elite in the government.

Keep it up, students, and there's hope for the future after all.

Gayle Goshorn
UI graduate


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