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Why Can’t Alums Make Up Their Own Minds?

When it comes to the proposed constitution for Dartmouth alumni, alumni are starting to wonder whether the drafters of the constitution doth protest too much. The heated arguments in favor of the constitution, it turns out, aren’t about the constitution at all. The message the pro-constitution folks are trying to send is that a vote against the constitution is a vote against Dartmouth. Few things could be so offensive. Below, an e-mail from an alum, Patrick Martin. Dartmouth ‘73, Tuck ‘74, and Parent of an ‘07:

I received an interesting phone call this morning from Canisius Sprouse (sic) on behalf of the Common Sense Group.

She wanted me to vote for Amendment 1 [the constitution].

She read directly from Fahey’s script on what it would do and why it was important.

I told her that I am a very busy person and have been totally out of touch with everything.

She referred me to the web site to read it. I told her I was very busy, so I wondered if Amendment was was very long. She assured me that it was a very short amendment and would not take any time to read. [In point of fact, the proposed constitution is about seven times longer than the current one, as longer indeed than the United States Constitution.]

I asked her if there were any other amendments. She said yes but did not know what they were and could not tell me how to vote on them.

I asked her what class she was and she told me that she did not go to Dartmouth, but that this was her job. I asked her who she worked for and she told me that she worked for Dartmouth College. I asked her where she was calling from and she told me it was a call center. I asked her where the call center was, and she told me that she was not permitted to reveal its location.

You can have an intellectual argument on both sides of this issue, but this is truly just offensive and too much.

Offensive — That’s the word.


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