The Quest | The Free Press of Reed College

Letter: A Modest Proposal

What should happen in and with the sophomore year, that is the question. The frosh have hum. Juniors have qual. Seniors have thesis. What is the defining, signature experience of the sophomore year? Survival? Personally, I believe study abroad should be a feature of the sophomore year, for the following reasons: If you are going […]

Read More

Listen to me, I’m an Econ major: Thoughts on Student Body Finances

One of the reasons I choose to attend Reed College is that we—the students—have a large role in the creation of policy and a great degree of autonomy in our own affairs. We derive a great deal of our autonomy from our collective ability to control and recalibrate our own finances by levying student body […]

Read More

Not-So-Gray Area: Gray Fund and Honor

Let me first admit that I was a bit disappointed that the Gray Fund calendar for this semester had no hiking trips to the Gorge. I love wildflower hikes, and the Gorge is one of the most beautiful areas around Portland in the springtime. Yet what I have found more disappointing about Gray Fund is […]

Read More

Letter: The Risk Of Being The Coolest College In Town

Since fall of 2013, Community Safety Officers (CSOs) have documented no less than ten incidents of Lewis & Clark students at Reed who have engaged in various and sundry mischief, including getting drunk (usually underage), openly smoking pot in groups with no Reedies in sight, joy-riding an electric cart, stegophily, and most recently, being uncooperative […]

Read More

Letter: Handling Sexual Misconduct by Visitors to Reed

Events at parties, including Bad Bitches Ball last weekend, have raised some questions about visitor misconduct. I’ve been here a month. I don’t know this campus well yet. But I can make some generalities based on what I’ve seen and what people have told me. Sexual misconduct, including rape, and domestic violence are as common […]

Read More

Letter: Refund Request for the Officers and Trustees of Reed College

To Whom It May Concern, With the tenth anniversary of my graduation upon us, and your constant solicitations for money ever since, I think a full refund of tuition circa 2002-4 is long overdue. Higher education is a business like any other and, in this case, I liken Reed College to Bed Bath & Beyond. […]

Read More

Letter: Making Good Citizens

At the strategic planning committee meeting, Professor Nathalia King voiced a compelling and heartfelt claim: that the goal of a Reed education is to produce good citizens, who are prepared to adapt and face whatever new challenges exist in our changing world. As a believer in the power of education and as a child of two public school teachers, I am compelled to believe her claim: that the value of our Reed education has been to transform us, students, into better human beings.

Read More

Letter: Problems with Sexual Violence Discourse

It is important to attend to how the discourse around sexual assault at Reed privileges certain narratives while silencing others. This letter is written to begin that conversation in response to a recent presentation by Assistant Dean of Students for Sexual Assault Prevention and Response Rowan Frost.

Read More

Letter: In Response to Recent Events

My fellow Reedies, I am writing this letter not because I am looking to continue an argument, but rather because I feel the need to express my thoughts. I write to all of you not as the girl who restarted the Black and African Student Union nor as the girl who often finds herself placed […]

Read More

Updated Community Affairs Smoking Policy Draft

We, as a community, believe in the right of all members of the Reed College community and all visitors to campus to be able to conduct their affairs without unwillingly being exposed to second­hand smoke. The purpose of this policy is to express the need to protect this right while recognizing the individual freedom of those who choose to smoke. This policy does not replace the Honor Principle; it articulates a community norm that requires each individual to recognize a certain right and to act accordingly.

Read More

Community Affairs Committee Smoking Policy Draft

The CAC made the following proposal at the February 11 Senate meeting, when Senate also introduced a proposal of its own. No vote was made on either proposal. It is the aim of the CAC for Senate to pass a policy for presentation to the Faculty at their March 3 meeting. Preamble: We, as a […]

Read More

Letter: Demanding Divestment

Fossil fuel extraction continues to accelerate globally despite increasingly urgent scientific predictions about the pace and progress of climate change. At current CO2 levels above 400 ppm, we are almost locked into at least two degrees Celsius of warming, the lower bound on safe warming. The total reserves of the fossil fuel sector hold five times as much carbon as remains in our two-degree carbon budget, and if extracted and burned threaten unpredictable and possibly catastrophic climate change.

Read More

Letter: Time to Ban Smoking at Reed College

Color me insensitive, out-of-touch, uncool, anti-libertarian, The Man, whatever, but it’s time for a total ban on tobacco smoking at Reed College. It’s long past time, in fact. Three reasons propel this argument: 1. Cigarette smoking is terrible for your health; it will turn you into an addict, and then it will kill you. Anything […]

Read More

Letter: Smoking at Reed—Towards Some Revised Codification

In December, the faculty overwhelmingly supported a proposal put forward by Professor Irena Swanson ’87 to expand the current restrictions on tobacco smoking on campus. [Editors' Note: The Faculty voted only to make a behest to the CAC to draft a policy "like this one," i.e. Swanson's policy. Their vote did not necessarily indicate support […]

Read More

Letter: Smoke and Mirrors

Alongside mirrors, smoke is a crucial element in theater production. Entering the library through a cloud of smoke is magic. Deus Ex Machina. At the same time, smoking is good for mental acuity. What other tools heighten perceptual clarity at the same time as expanding the realm of the possible. In the future, there will be no dirt or grime, my lungs will be clean, but I will not be happy!

Read More

Letter: Smoking Areas at Reed Are Necessary

Any campus smoking policy adopted by Reed College must provide facilities for smokers to smoke with a roof, canopy or umbrella overhead. Lewis & Clark College has a “designated smoking areas (DSAs) only” campus smoking policy. All twelve of Lewis & Clark’s designated smoking areas have picnic tables with large umbrellas serving as protection from […]

Read More

Letter: To the Smoked People of Reed College

Research1 has shown that conceptions shape not only how but what we see. This has become manifest in so prevalent expressions as the way we see things: in effect, our system of assumptions about the world is hardly distinct from the way we look at it with our eyes—these are never bare but always our […]

Read More

Letter: Smoke, but Be Conscious of Medical Needs

Since the Quest is currently accepting letters about the smoking policy, I thought that I should step up and offer my opinions on the issue. I am a non-smoker with asthma and a tobacco allergy. These health issues can be aggravated when I have to walk to class with people smoking on the paths, which […]

Read More

Letter: “I Do Not Like Enforcement”

I believe that all members of the Reed community, as well as guests, visitors, and CSOs doing their work, should be able to enjoy and take full advantage of what Reed has to offer without being required to be exposed to secondhand smoke. I believe that people who smoke should be able to engage in that […]

Read More

Letter: Ban Smoking on Campus

Scientific studies clearly demonstrate the adverse health effects from smoking. Scientific studies also clearly demonstrate the negative health effects of breathing secondhand smoke.

The ill effects of smoking are once again in the news. In a recent NY Times article titled “List of Smoking-Related Illnesses Grows Significantly in U.S. Report,” the acting US Surgeon General significantly expanded the list of illnesses that cigarette smoking has been scientifically proved to cause. In addition to lung cancer, smoking also causes heart disease, diabetes, colorectal and liver cancers, and ectopic pregnancy.

Read More

Letter: Beyond The Limits of Policy—An Honor-Focused Proposal

In my five semesters at Reed, I’ve yet to be struck by a cyclist, but I’ve evaded secondhand smoke fairly often. Why this difference? Why is it unnecessary to regulate the great, immediate threat that bikes pose not merely to those with medical conditions but to pedestrians as a whole? This is a product of […]

Read More

Letter: Honorable Consumption

The Honor Principle is an individually defined and dynamic concept, and for me at this time it boils down to this: Upholding the common tenants by which we all agree to interact with each other, for example: bodily autonomy, respectful dialogue, and democratic rule. During our campus’s discussion on smoking policy these and many more […]

Read More

Letter from the Community Affairs Committee

At its 12.9.13 meeting, the faculty voted to charge the Community Affairs Committee (CAC) with the task of writing a new smoking policy “like the one” Irena Swanson presented at that same faculty meeting. In response to this behest and in accordance with Reed’s governance processes, the CAC has taken steps to “work with Student Senate to make such a policy a reality.”

Read More

Smoking Cessation Resources at the Health and Counseling Center

Research shows that smoking even one to four cigarettes per day can have deleterious health effects: significantly higher risk of dying from all causes, heart disease, and additionally from lung cancer in women (Bjartveit & Tverdal, 2005). There is no better time than now to stop smoking and the staff of the HCC would like […]

Read More

Letter: “The Reed Campus Should Have a Couple Designated Smoking Areas”

Although I’m not a smoker, and I get headaches when people smoke outside of the South entrance of Reed, and the smoke comes in my office window… I still think that the Reed Campus should have a couple of designated smoking areas. Several years ago my husband and I submitted photos of combined shelters for […]

Read More

Letter: Desire for Clean Air May Win Out in the End

I don’t have anything special to add to this debate. Picking up cigarette butts is more of an issue for facilities staff than secondhand smoke. I would not want to be in any indoor environment where I was breathing secondhand smoke, but I don’t personally care if people smoke outside. Many other people do care. […]

Read More

Letter: “We Do Not Need Consequences”

Students particularly, but faculty and staff as well, came to the forum with Honor on their lips. Smoking catches Honor in an uncomfortable place – there are often physical and social barriers to opening up discussion, and the paradox is that honorable discussion is really the only way for this conversation to happen reasonably. We […]

Read More

The Smoking Issue

Smoking Map 1

Introduction This week, we (the Quest Editorial Board) invited members of the community to submit letters to the editors on smoking policy and culture. We received letters from students, faculty, staff, and alumni young and old. These letters can be found below, along with maps depicting the footprints of potential smoking policies. We also wrote reviews of […]

Read More

Letter: “A Problem of Enforcement”

I’m an alumnus, so my views and facts may be out of date. That said, the smoking problem as I saw it was never a matter of policy but instead a problem of enforcement. When I was at Reed smoking went from matter-of-fact in the pool hall, to becoming something that was not done in […]

Read More

Letter: “Reedies Are Capable of Changing Themselves”

The debate over smoking policy at Reed allows us to take one of two positions: we’re either for the establishment of a smoking policy that goes beyond the restrictions imposed by Oregon law, or we’re against the establishment of such a policy. Much of the debate, once it really heats up, will take place entirely […]

Read More

Letter: Smoking Shelters May Be a Solution

I believe I understand the arguments for the freedom to decide what goes into your own body, even if it is potentially harmful. However, I believe we all understand fully now how much smoking can affect that same freedom for those around smokers. I have recently become aware of what some are calling “thirdhand smoke.” Children of smokers, even when the parents carefully protect them from “secondhand smoke,” evidently have more smoking related health problems. Purportedly this comes from smoke that is retained in the hair, clothing and even skin of their parents. Walls and furnishings can retain the harmful residue.

Read More

Letter: On the Smoking Question

On creating a policy: By creating a new policy on something that should be governed by honor I worry. I worry Reed is telling its community what to do instead of encouraging them to ask what they should be doing. And hey, I think self inquiry is fucking important and hella Reed.  As students we […]

Read More

Letter: Honorable Community Norms Begin with Honorable Communication

Instead of staking a specific claim about the drafting of a smoking policy, I want to encourage us as a community to construct a thoughtful conversation around smoking. This may seem like an obvious request, but it’s a serious one. I hope that barriers of communication between smokers and non-smokers can be breached in order […]

Read More

A Review of Some of the Resources on the Smoking Blog

What follows is a short review of the most pertinent resources available on the community smoking discussion blog.  Curtin, Bill et al. “Report of the Committee on Smoking.” At Reed, 1991. The smoking memo outlines three points in the then-new smoking policy of 1991. “1. Since Vollum College Center has a ventilation system that circulates […]

Read More

Letter: On Alexis Ohanian and “Awesomeness”

This weekend, a friend dragged me along to see a guest speaker, Alexis Ohanian, give a presentation in Vollum. I’d never heard of Ohanian, but was told that he was the co-founder of the social news website Reddit, and had seen a few posters for the talk the day before. I go on Reddit fairly […]

Read More

Letter: Support Portland Public Teachers!

Portland Association of Teachers is currently in a contract fight with Portland Public Schools. While PAT is advocating for smaller class sizes, richer resources, and more academic freedom, PPS decided at its last Board meeting to add limited teachers and to bank millions “for a rainy day.” PAT has drafted a proposal to use a […]

Read More

Letter: Statistics Seem to Indicate Sexual Assault Survivors Trust Reed, but More Remains to Be Done

Director of Community Safety Gary Granger taught a three-part series at Paideia about sexual assault at Reed. I would like to share a few notes from the first installment of these classes, “Sexual Assault Dynamics at Reed.” While this information can be helpful and informative, it is also potentially triggering, so please take good care of yourself. We have resources on campus including the Health and Counseling Center and our new Assistant Dean for Sexual Assault Prevention and Response Rowan Frost.

Read More

Letter: Re-Thinking Divestment

A significant majority of students at the Reed Union this past Tuesday evening (December 3) argued in favor of divesting Reed’s endowment from fossil-fuel companies, but I am writing this opinion editorial to make an argument against divestment. I will briefly explain why I see politically neutral investing is impossible, and then state why it […]

Read More

Ideas from Greenboard

College, for those of us fortunate enough, is the first great nexus in our lives during which we organize what notions we had previously of the world. College endows us with efficacy, as we discard some opinions, and bolster others. But what of the land that contains the experience? We forge our ideas of how […]

Read More

The ADSAPR Position: Where Will We Go From Here?

Submitted by the ADSAPR Working Group Several pieces have appeared in the Quest this fall concerning Reed’s Assistant Dean of Sexual Assault Prevention and Response (ADSAPR) and the process of replacing Jyl Shaffer. This article is meant to clarify where the process is now and how students can engage with these issues going forward. The […]

Read More

Title IX Apology from the Pantheon

By “Humplay” As the group who participated in the Pantheon, we would like to formally apologize for the Libations ceremony conducted in front of Vollum Lecture Hall on the first day of Humanities 110 Lecture. We understand that the full and nude exposure of numerous performers, when coupled with specific aggressive behaviors, was not an […]

Read More

Open Letter to Reed Magazine

Hello Chris and the Reed Magazine staff, I’m writing about a recent article published about RKSK. It includes a picture of someone wearing a feathered headdress at Noise Parade in 2008. Wearing Native American garb in this context is a form of racist cultural appropriation, and publishing this picture is no different. Cultural appropriation is dangerous because […]

Read More

Letter from the AOD Committee

Dear community members, Last year, the Multnomah County Health Department received multiple complaints about smoking on campus. These complaints resulted in two official visits by the Health Department to Reed, and the issuing of substantial fines related to a variety of problem areas on campus: the Pool Hall, the GCC interior lower level, the GCC/Commons […]

Read More

Letter: Carl Bernstein Talk Squandered?

Last Thursday we squandered a great opportunity. The great opportunity being Carl Bernstein giving a talk followed by a Q&A. How we squandered it? By focusing our questions on and asking him to talk about political philosophy, which in turn became pseudo political philosophy. This is a misstep on our part because Bernstein is not […]

Read More

Letter: Goings-on in “Green” Town

Reed students are working in all venues to engage with issues of sustainability, environmental justice, and the dirt. I’ve collected some recent activities, both associated with the academic institutions and not, to note all in one place! Environmental Studies Major: The interdisciplinary major that was created 3 years ago is maturing, and will graduate the first […]

Read More

Letter on Sustainability

A fresh movement for sustainability at Reed is building momentum, but students are the only soldiers in the fight. While the Sustainability Committee and Environmental Studies program are supported by staff and faculty, the burden of moving sustainability forward as Reed policy rests entirely on students. For many years, student activists campaigned the administration to […]

Read More

Letter: Notes from the Underground — of Physical Plant

Dear Reedies, Y’all should study up on your Marx, or at least check out his Wikipedia page, because your relationship to the laborers on this campus is atrocious. You might ask me: “Why should I read Marx? His prose is unintelligible, his word choice is unpalatable, and his ideas are ambiguous.” We read Marx because […]

Read More

Honor Council Case Opinion

As you’ll read in today’s Quest, John Kroger has passed his duty of reviewing J-Board sanctions on to Mike Brody, Vice President and Dean of Student Services. From my perspective, as a former member of Honor Council, current senator, and member of the student body, this announcement presents serious cause for concern. As Anonymous wrote […]

Read More

Sustainability: Honor that Endures

Last semester, Reed hosted a Union to address climate change and issues of sustainability on campus. Hosted by two new assistant professors and two off campus guests, the moral question of Reed’s contribution to environmental destruction was brushed off. Many felt that the Union was a diversion of attention from the “specific relevance to the […]

Read More

SU Piano – The Piano Technician’s Verdict

Yesterday I took our piano technician over to the Student Union to assess the damage to the piano.  Although I had previously taken a look at the damage, my heart broke again when I comprehended the brute force it took to destroy the instrument, and yes, it is destroyed…beyond repair. The damage done: All 69 […]

Read More