Diversity, inclusion hit the mainstream


To the editor:

I am writing to thank you the Review-Journal for its ongoing, high-profile attention to my role at UNLV. However critical that attention has been, it signals to me that diversity and inclusion work has finally arrived in the "mainstream," which is a positive step. A next positive step will be for this work to be welcomed in the mainstream.

UNLV is working hard to maintain and grow its funding, at the same time that it is seeking to sustain and augment its reputation. Everyone on the UNLV campus is working harder with less in a political climate that is highly contentious.

At a time when one might expect people to at least disengage, or do only the bare minimum, if not altogether cut and run, UNLV students, faculty, staff and administrators have chosen to step up their level of individual and collective engagement in institutional governance. While much has been made about the differences members of our campus community have related to the proposed policy on bias incidents and hate crimes, our shared commitment to arriving at a final product that addresses -- to the greatest extent possible -- everyone's concerns and interests has been overlooked.

It is unfortunate that some of the faculty feel that their concerns about the policy have been overlooked. This was never my intent, nor the intent of any iteration of the policy draft, but clearly, if that has been the impact on even one person, then there is more work to do. In fact, it is this very tension between intent and impact that is the most challenging to negotiate in the development of this policy.

While there has been a long and carefully documented vetting process of the policy drafts to date, as UNLV President David Ashley recently announced, that process will continue until we have a policy that we can all not live with and live through -- that is, a policy that we can walk, as well as talk.

Again, thanks for your attention to my role at UNLV. I look forward to the possibility -- however unlikely -- that this attention will come to affirm the work of diversity and inclusion at UNLV.

Christine Clark

LAS VEGAS

THE WRITER IS UNLV'S VICE PRESIDENT OF DIVERSITY AND INCLUSION.

Out of touch

To the editor:

Politicos and pundits alike are busy attempting to pigeonhole the growing disaffection with our representative form of government.

I will try to nail down some of the reasons.

Our representatives have alienated themselves from the people they are supposed to represent. Holding fundraisers in New York as opposed to Nevada. Gerrymandering voting districts to ensure re-election. Lobbying the Assembly to pass AB504, which would curiously be of benefit only to a lawmaker's company.

Should there be mention of the double-dipping public servants and political masters?

Should you not agree with the government, you are labeled a right-wing extremist who should be watched. If you supported the tea parties, you are a disaffected racist according to some in the media. If you are concerned about the deficit being passed on to our grandchildren, you are an extremist.

Our government seems to be allergic to common sense. With less money to spend it demands by force of law more money from the populace that has less money itself to spend.

To sum all of this up: Our government is out of touch with reality and its constituents. Our representatives have created for themselves an insulated class immune to the everyday concerns of everyday citizens. The only reality they recognize is the reality they wish to create.

Darrell Welch

NORTH LAS VEGAS

 

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