To respond to Mr. Aaron French’s opinion on Sept. 22, 2009, Mr. Bacchus is not only presidential material, he is the best man for the job.
It seems that the opposition to Mr. Bacchus comes solely from his involvement with the WTO. I certainly understand why, the WTO has far too many unjust policies and, without question, favors “large nations” over “little nations”. However, to judge Mr. Bacchus based on that is not only unfair but not accurate.
Mr. Bacchus was not involved with the policy making branch of the WTO. In fact, he was one of the founding judges of the WTO appeals system, ensuring that “little nations” can seek justice. Not only did Mr. Bacchus found the appeals process of the WTO, he was elected by 130 countries twice to run it. Surely that speaks to his fair mindedness and ability to put his personal beliefs aside.
As for his personal beliefs, the man is a Democrat. He might not be as far left as many on this campus (including myself) but the objection that he is not radical enough is naïve and foolish. Moderation should be the first thing we look for in a leader.
Let’s look at Mr. Bacchus’ qualifications. He is an outstanding fundraiser. He has a large political network that could serve this college well in both Washington and Annapolis. With State and Federal budget cuts projected for next year, our next President must have the political wit to fight for our funding, Mr. Bacchus has that.
Most importantly, Mr. Bacchus is not your typical college presidential candidate. Where other candidates have spent their life’s teaching and speaking about the need for global engagement and leadership, Mr. Bacchus has taken action.
Perhaps most telling about Mr. Bacchus is what he said in response to Mr. French’s arguments, “I will defend to death your right to disagree with me.” That’s exactly the kind of gravitas and statesmanship that I look for in a leader.
Mr. Bacchus is by far the best candidate and I urge the committee to select him. Finally, should the committee select him, I hope the campus will welcome him, not with hostility as Mr. French suggests, but with a willingness to listen and work with Mr. Bacchus to ensure St. Mary’s ideals are reflected in his policies.