TO THE EDITOR:

I did not anticipate the anger I felt while reading Christian Suciu’s letter (“Extravagant Spending Proposals Must End,” THE HOYA, Feb. 15, 2005, A2).

I fully support wise budgeting, especially when the money in question comes from my and my fellow students’ ever-rising tuition payments. Yet in his call for more conservative spending Suciu makes a vicious attack on many of his fellow Hoyas. Perhaps he did not realize the seriousness of his accusations, so I will be happy to enlighten him.

Suciu claims that the only students seeking STD testing are those “irresponsible enough to require it.” I can only imagine how victims of rape and sexual assault must have felt as they read these words. According to Suciu, these young women (and men) didn’t have the “responsibility” to ask their attacker if he or she was free of venereal disease beforehand and take the necessary precautions to protect themselves. Well shame on them.

It’s a good thing Suciu has taken it upon himself to further shame these women into feeling like the incident and its resulting trauma, which may include contraction of an STD, is ultimately their fault.

Suciu further incited my anger as he referred to the proposal of free psychiatric counseling as “psychobabble” that would be “of detriment” to the university community. According to the National Mental Health Association, 10 percent of college students have been diagnosed with depression – that’s one out of every ten of Suciu’s (and yours and my) friends.

As much as he would like to think otherwise, depressive disorders do not go away with a visit to the Student Health Center and a prescription for antidepressants. Seeking help for mental illness takes a lot of strength and courage. I am enraged that Suciu has used his letter to further stigmatize an already shameful disease and ostracize those suffering from it by referring to its treatment, counseling sessions through a licensed psychologist, as illegitimate.

If Suciu feels that these services are not within our budget or necessary for the university, fine. But he would be wise to consider the injurious and downright harmful effects his unfair and unfounded conclusions will have on the Georgetown community.

EMILY ROWLINSON (SFS ’05) FEB. 15, 2005

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