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The University Star




The Student News Site of Texas State University

The University Star

The Student News Site of Texas State University

The University Star

Letter to the Editor: Dear President Trauth

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An open letter to President Denise Trauth:
My only granddaughter has begun college at Texas State this fall. She has a right to be safe from the preventable and unsafe behaviors of others. Apparently, you and I don’t share this concern because you haven’t stood against an illegal order by the Governor of Texas that prohibits mask and vaccine mandates in publicly-supported institutions. Yet, dozens of public school districts have done so, as well as other levels of government. The Governor bases his action on The Texas Disaster Act of 1975, which gives the Governor authority to ameliorate the damage done by an epidemic. But it does not give him the authority to prohibit other government entities from also taking steps to protect the public health.
The three most effective actions that we can take as a state, community, or university community is to require vaccinations of all who are eligible, require that face masks be worn indoors, and require physical distancing. Students and faculty unwilling to take these steps can avail themselves of remote learning opportunities.
It is unconscionable for a university president to sit idly by knowing that some students, faculty, staff, and members of the San Marcos community will become infected – some will die – because of your unwillingness to protect the public health. At an institution of higher education, one would expect that science and rational thought and action should take precedence over nonsense, false logic, and thoughtless conspiracy theories about the Covid-19 vaccines.
To borrow a quote from the conservative writer and commentator David Frum, you, President Trauth, have “decided to inflict a preventable and unjustifiable harm upon family, friends, neighbors, community, country, and planet” by your inaction and mindless following of an extremist governor who cares not one whit about the public’s health and well-being.
Relying on personal responsibility has not proven an effective strategy to control this epidemic, any more than leaving it up to each individual to decide how fast to drive on our streets would work to protect public safety. Before you retire from your position of public trust, I encourage you to do something important with your position and your life by protecting the university and San Marcos communities from this devastating epidemic.
Respectfully,
Lamar W. Hankins
San Marcos, Texas

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