LTE: A Response to “A Pair of Confusing Candidates”

After reading a column in The Heights by Rachel Loos, I need to respond to this opinionated article. Rachel does not know Ray or me; we do not know Rachel. Writing for an independent school newspaper, Loos lambasts our character and reputation without providing clear evidence and justifiable statements.

To begin the article, Loos emphasizes that she had a difficult time selecting what to write about for her third Heights article. She claims that Ray and I have cognitive dissonance by us “adjusting our attitudes and our behaviors.” However, Ray and I have stood true to our values and policies during this entire process. It is one thing to critique the policies of others, which our campaign was unjustly penalized for; it is another to attack character, especially in a school newspaper.

Loos, who has individually endorsed cyber hate against us by liking Facebook comments, refers to my LTE as “strange.” She supports Edward Byrne’s discriminatory “jokes” on Facebook, which no one involved or who liked them has condemned. Moreover, she inaccurately states that my LTE was a pro-Israel message. When defending my commitment to the LGBTQ+ community, I referred to an experience from this past summer, while I was interning for Deloitte in Israel, about attending a Pride Parade. While this is not the only LGBTQ+ event I have attended, it was the most powerful. In addition, I have several friends who identity as a part of this community, to whom I have provided confidential support and encouragement. Loos does not only attack my foreign policy stances, which have very little to do with her flawed claim of cognitive dissonance, but also criticizes a student organization on campus. Expressing her “distaste” for Eagles for Israel, a cultural and non-religious club on campus, Rachel censures students’ commitment to promoting and experiencing a culture on campus, which is antithetical to the mission of diversity and inclusion (DIP). Loos accuses me of promoting a pro-Israel agenda while I was clearly defending my character and commitment to the LGBTQ+ community.

In her struggle to choose a topic to write about, Loos picked-on students who were trying to make a positive contribution to the Boston College community by running for UGBC. There are other topics Loos could have chosen, such as the ALC Ball’s significant decrease in attendance or how UGBC is not giving money to Relay for Life this year. Ray and I criticized the way DIP allocates its money due to instances like these. However, Loos wrote an article attacking my character and foreign policy stances. Instead of learning from this election as an example of cognitive dissonance, we should all focus on condemning the cyber hate from this election based on race, gender, and sexuality.  It has never been appropriate for BC students to personally attack the co-curricular aspirations and character of other students, and Rachel’s article steps beyond the boundaries of appropriate journalism.

Matt Batsinelas, CSOM ’19