Georgetown University’s Newspaper of Record since 1920

The Hoya

Georgetown University’s Newspaper of Record since 1920

The Hoya

Georgetown University’s Newspaper of Record since 1920

The Hoya

GUCRs Exploit 9/11

The events of Sept. 11, 2001, are still a national open wound. The images are fresh in our minds, and the shock, rage, grief and patriotism that were left in its wake are still strong. Indeed, we are still healing as a nation, still learning to live in this new world.

As such, recent events at Georgetown require urgent attention and action. Certain Georgetown students, our friends and peers, have exploited this mass murder for their own political goals. The Georgetown University College Republicans, a SAC organization receiving university funds, has distributed materials that use scenes of the rubble of the World Trade Center to pull at the heartstrings of Americans.

But rather than remember the Sept. 11, 2001, victims, reaffirm the resilience of America or unite Americans in patriotism, the Republicans’ literature exploits the sorrow and grief every American feels, with the intention of currying votes for their candidate, George W. Bush. The cover of the Republicans’ handout features the seal of the College Republican National Committee and a photograph of President Bush covering three-fourths of the page. The opening page includes a four-fifths page photograph of the rubble that was the World Trade Center, over which are written praises for Republican Party leaders. Three photographs of President Bush appear under the World Trade Center rubble.

The mayor of Washington, D.C., would never use photographs of murder scenes committed under his tenure to justify his reelection. Neither should the President of the United States. The victims of that day did not die as Democrats or Republicans. They did not die as conservatives or liberals. They died as Americans. They died as victims of an atrocious crime, and their resting place deserves respect, not photo-ops.

Did the President do all he could to prevent Sept. 11, 2001? Did he behave appropriately on that day? Has he made America safer? How would John Kerry act differently? The Sept. 11 attacks are a legitimate subject of discourse in this election but not in the way used in this glossy campaign literature.

The College Republican National Committee, who published the material, has engaged in a coordinated effort to exploit Sept. 11, 2001. The group’s Web site urged College Republicans to hold Sept. 11 memorials on their campuses because they “boost the standings” of chapters. However, the Georgetown College Republicans are not simply the foot soldiers of their national organization. They are Georgetown students who have pledged themselves to integrity, who are well-educated, morally upright young adults. The Georgetown College Republicans have the responsibility to reject these unsavory political tactics by refusing to bring them onto campus. We call on the Georgetown College Republicans to stop distribution of all material exploiting Sept. 11, 2001, and to repudiate the methods used by their national organization.

Chris Wooley is a junior in the College and campaign coordinator of the GU College Democrats. Arielle Holland is a sophomore in the College and secretary of the GU College Democrats.

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