UO staff have right priorities

The Register-Guard clearly displayed what it viewed as the single most important news of the day on June 27. Of course, it was the fact that the Oregon Ducks football team would be spared the horrific fate of not playing in a bowl game despite breaking some rules and, perhaps worse, getting caught. The story was above the fold, proudly and prominently on a pedestal for all subscribers to view. 

What news story got to play second fiddle? The Defense of Marriage Act going down at the hands of the U.S. Supreme Court — that’s right, important, historic national legislation that signifies a major turning point on a controversial social issue for our community, state, country and world was made to take its place on a lower tier than Duck athletics. …

It’s easy for tenured faculty like me to bitch about Duck football excesses, but it takes real courage for the staff to speak out. Thank you. Having spent some time at top-scholar recruitment events, I can say that he does a damn good job with the prospective students and their parents too.

There’s also a letter from former UO Bookstore Duck Store manager Jim Williams, on Rob Mullens’s plan to cut off local Duck vendors:

I believe it will be a huge mistake if the University of Oregon goes forward with the plan to limit the number of local, state and regional vendors who can provide UO-imprinted sportswear and memorabilia. Having retired a little over a year ago as general manager for 35-plus years at the UO Bookstore/The Duck Store, I had a front-row seat when it came to watching the growth and the sale of such products. … 

With the proposed change, it’s unlikely there would be opportunities such as the UO students who did the “I Love My Ducks” shirts, Shady Peeps sunglasses, etc. We at the Duck Store felt it was our responsibility to help young entrepreneurs and local business share in the passion associated with the university and its athletic programs. 

There’s been lots of pressure on President Gottfredson to rescind Mullens’s decision – but the AD has got to pay for his staff’s free cars somehow. I notice they have stopped paying for cell phones though – presumably because it made it too easy for the sports writers to get copies of the calling records. Don’t give up guys, the public records law still applies!

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