In discussing the Thresher’s endorsement with friends and acquaintances, I’ve realized that many students aren’t aware the use of endorsements is standard protocol for both university and regular newspapers. The vast majority of newspapers endorse candidates. The Thresher endorses a candidate every year, as do most college newspapers, so their decision to continue with that tradition this year is to be expected.
The thoughts and opinions expressed in the editorial are not meant to be objective — that’s why it’s an editorial. Most importantly, the endorsement does not cross the threshold into territory that is inflammatory or disrespectful. You may disagree with the editorial (I myself take issue with some of the points that were made), but it maintains a professional and respectful tone while explaining why the staff believes Joan Liu would be the most suitable candidate.
As a university with no journalism program and limited funding for student publications, people do what they can. The Rice Thresher might not be the New York Times or the Harvard Crimson, but they collectively put in hundreds of hours a week so that we continue to have a weekly newspaper.
I'm not a fan of bashing anything unless I have ideas or input on how to make it better. If you care about the state of our student newspaper, I encourage you to consider joining the staff or finding other ways to improve it. If you think our school needs a better student magazine, consider writing a thought piece for the Rice Standard (Hello! Literally just email me with an idea and we'll get you set up). If students want to create another campus paper, and if that paper’s editorial board wants to endorse a different candidate, they are welcome to do so. But asking the Thresher to withhold endorsement — especially when doing so is standard protocol for college newspapers across the country — strikes me as unfair and illogical.
Bottom line: If you want to file a complaint about something, do it in a constructive way. There's no need to bash the people who take a significant chunk out of their time here to write what they do, and to ensure that you get your new issue every Wednesday.
A version of this letter was originally posted on Facebook.
Abraham Younes, Will Rice College ‘16