Tuesday, November 11, 1997

Editor’s note: This article was initially published in The Daily Gazette, Swarthmore’s online, daily newspaper founded in Fall 1996. As of Fall 2018, the DG has merged with The Phoenix. See the about page to read more about the DG.

The Daily Gazette

Swarthmore College
Tuesday, November 11, 1997
Volume 2, Number 47

NEWS IN BRIEF

1)  Phoenix Editors-in-Chief temporarily denied office privileges

2)  World news roundup

SPORTS IN BRIEF

1)  Today’s and tomorrow’s contests

WEATHER FORECAST

Today:      Cloudy, windy. High around 50.
             This is not the best day to work on your tan.
Tonight:    Still cloudy, a bit colder. Low near 35.
             And if you are still trying to tan now, get help.
Wednesday:  A little more sun showing. High of 50.

NEWS REPORT

1)  Phoenix Editors-in-Chief temporarily denied office privileges

Phoenix Editor-in-Chief George Balgobin ’00 was escorted out of the Student
Publications Office by a Public Safety officer on Monday morning. The
officer was summoned by Sam Schulhofer-Wohl ’98, student publications
coordinator, when Balgobin entered the room after Budget Committee had
temporarily prohibited him from doing so.

BC decided at a meeting Sunday to suspend Balgobin and Phoenix
Editor-in-Chief Arun Mohan ’00 from using the office for a week, after
learning that they have twice failed to properly lock the office door this
semester. Schulhofer-Wohl, also a member of the Board of Editors of The
Daily Gazette, estimated that the office houses $30,000 to $40,000 of
technical equipment. BC Treasurer Vincent Jones ’98 said, “Sam told the
committee that he had informed George and Arun of the consequences of their
actions repeatedly, and that his usual punishment for such offenses was
suspension from the office for a week… He told the committee to decide
for itself what to do.”

Mohan and Balgobin were not present at the meeting, and were informed of
the decision on Sunday night.

Balgobin entered the office at about 11:30 a.m. Monday, where
Schulhofer-Wohl and Jones promptly intercepted him. Schulhofer-Wohl and
Jones were on the premises as Jones had known that Balgobin was planning to
work in the office, located on the fifth floor of Parrish. Schulhofer-Wohl
asked Balgobin to leave, but Balgobin refused. Schulhofer-Wohl then said
that he would count to 10, and if Balgobin did not leave by then,
Schulhofer-Wohl would call Public Safety, as BC had instructed him to do in
this situation.

When Balgobin again refused to leave, Schulhofer-Wohl called Public Safety,
who consulted with Associate Dean Tedd Goundie before sending an officer up
to the office. The officer arrived and asked Balgobin to leave, and
Balgobin complied.

The issue stems from a violation which ocurred during the first week of
school, according to Schulhofer-Wohl, when he discovered that the door to
the Student Publications Office had not been sufficiently locked by the
Phoenix staff. There are three locking devices on the door, including a
standard lock that is “flimsy,” according to Schulhofer-Wohl. On this
occasion, the two extra locks were not engaged, a violation of office rules.

After this incident, Schulhofer-Wohl sent an e-mail to Mohan, Balgobin, and
Dan Fanaras ’99, the Publisher of the Phoenix, in which he restated the
office rules regarding security and warned them that if the violation
occurred again, he would have to suspend their office privileges for one
week.

The office door was improperly locked again soon after fall break.
Schulhofer-Wohl sent another e-mail to Mohan and Balgobin, requesting a
statement informing him that they understood the rule and the rationale
behind it. Schulhofer-Wohl said that he wanted Mohan and Balgobin to assure
him “that this will not happen again. I really did not want to suspend
them.” When Mohan and Balgobin did not respond, Schulhofer-Wohl sent
another e-mail on Friday, and also called them to discuss the issue. “In my
mind, I thought they had agreed to send the statement” confirming that they
understood the rule, said Schulhofer-Wohl. However, when he had not
received a response by Wednesday night, he sent out a final e-mail stating
that he would have to receive their statement in his mailbox by Sunday
morning, or he would take the matter to BC.

Jones said that BC is authorized to intervene in the matter, stating that
BC hires and supervises various student employees, including the Student
Publications Coordinator. If BC employees have problems that interfere with
their jobs, it is BC’s role to address them, according to Jones.

Goundie met with Mohan on Monday to discuss the issue. He said that he does
not dispute BC’s decision, as “it sounds like they followed the right
procedures,” in adhering to the proper chain of command. However, he asked
“that they (meet) again with Arun and George there to present their side of
the argument.” He continued, “It sounds to me that there was some
miscommunication, and I would prefer that everyone were involved when
decisions like this are made.”

Fanaras concurred, saying of BC: “Even if they do have power, they
shouldn’t have done it without hearing (Mohan’s and Balgobin’s) side of the
story. …(This decision) affects more than these two people. …We don’t
know if there is going to be a Phoenix this week. They’ve completely
crippled the organization. It’s very irresponsible of the parties who made
the decision to knowingly paralyze the staff and the entire student body
for a mistake that was not malicious. It was simply a mistake.”

Jones said that BC will discuss the issue at next Sunday’s meeting, with
Balgobin and Mohan present.

Balgobin said that he and Mohan felt “that it would be inappropriate to
comment on the matter since it is still pending.”

The Phoenix did hold its weekly organizational meeting and stories have
been assigned, “but we can’t proceed without the editors,” said Fanaras.
“They each do 40 hours a week; we can’t just recover from that.”

*****

2)  World news roundup

MCI ACCEPTS $37 BILLION TAKEOVER OFFER

MCI Communications Corp. agreed Monday to be acquired by WorldCom Inc. for
$37 billion. If the deal is approved by government regulators, it will be
the largest corporate takeover in history. The plan merges the second- and
fourth-largest long-distance telephone companies in the United States; the
combined firm would have 25 percent of the U.S. long-distance market, still
far behind AT&T Corp. The new company, to be called MCI WorldCom, will be
among the world’s largest Internet service providers. WorldCom earlier
offered $30 billion for MCI but had to increase that bid to fend off
competing offers from British Telecom and GTE Corp.

CLINTON ABANDONS ‘FAST-TRACK’ BID

President Clinton dropped his quest Monday for expanded powers to negotiate
trade treaties when late-night meetings with lawmakers failed to round up
enough votes in the House of Representatives. The bill enjoyed strong
support from Republicans, but many of Clinton’s fellow Democrats opposed
it, arguing that so-called “fast-track” authority could lead to lower labor
and environmental standards.

IN OTHER NEWS …

A U-2 spy plane used by U.N. disarmament inspectors returned safely Monday
from a flight over Iraq despite Iraqi threats to shoot it down. … At a
one-day White House conference on hate crimes, President Clinton said laws
banning attacks on the basis of race, religion and ethnicity should be
expanded to cover violence against gays, women and the disabled. …
Hillary Clinton on Monday set off a second time for an eight-day tour of
former Soviet republics; engine trouble forced her plane to turn back
Sunday night.

*****

SPORTS UPDATE

1)  Today’s and tomorrow’s contests

TODAY
Women’s basketball hosts Neumann at 7 p.m.

TOMORROW
Both swim teams compete in their first conference match of the season at 7
p.m. at Franklin & Marshall.

*****

Interested in reporting or writing for the Gazette? Just want to tell us
what you think? Contact the Board of Editors at
gazette-management@student-publications.swarthmore.edu.

Got a news tip for us?
E-mail gazette-news@student-publications.swarthmore.edu.

Want to contact our sports editors?
E-mail gazette-sports@student-publications.swarthmore.edu.

The Daily Gazette
Board of Editors
Fred Bush
Kate Doty
Aarti Iyer
Karen Lloyd
Lorrin Nelson
Sam Schulhofer-Wohl

Staff Writers
Julie Falk
Jennifer Klein
Trang Pham

Weatherman
Rafi Dowty

The Daily Gazette is published Monday through Friday by an independent
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This concludes today’s report.

Copyright 1997 by The Daily Gazette. All rights reserved.

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