Another Token · 21 December 2003

By Editorial Board of the Badger Herald, 11/03/03

This year, the Distinguished Lecture Series at U. Wisconsin-Madison has once again followed its traditional approach by scheduling one token conservative: Linda Chavez.

As President of the Center for Equal Opportunity, Chavez has worked against affirmative action policies at universities across the country. She has recently written a book on her political transformation from a liberal to a conservative. And she was tapped by President Bush to be the Secretary of Labor, though she later withdrew her name. She is, under any interpretation, a prominent conservative voice in this country.

Regardless of whether students believe in her opinions, hearing those opinions has an important educational value. After all, there is no better way to learn that others are wrong -- or right -- than by hearing them speak. On a campus so heavily concerned with diversity in all forms, the critical role of political diversity must receive more attention.

One prominent conservative is not enough to create the balanced discourse DLS should work to create. We believe that a quality political discourse on a university campus is one that addresses all parts of the political spectrum and, as a result, challenges the beliefs of students. That, in the end, is the best form of education.