Student Senate posse knocks over Review office
In September 1974, tensions were running high between two campus groups – The Oberlin Review and Student Senate. The article below, “Senator Disrupts Review,” explains how disagreements over the printing of Senate candidates’ statements resulted in fist fights and threats by Senate to suspend the Review’s printing.
Sept. 24, 1974
Following last night’s senate decision to file a complaint against Executive Editor Myron Mykyta and to consider impounding Review funds, student Senator Lee Morrow, accompanied by four companions, entered the Review offices, and then entered the printer’s office and attempted to forcibly take possession of a controversial interspread that contained senate candidate statements.
Confronted by the printer, Michael Kinney Morrow became involved in a brief tug of war over a stack of the disputed pages, ripping a number of them in the process. After several moments of contention, Kinney asserted that the five were trespassing, and demanded that they leave immediately. Kinney then instructed his wife to phone the police.
After several seconds hesitation, the group turned and left, on their exit informing a Review staffer, “We voted that if you print those pages, we’re going to impound your funds.”
Deans George Langeler and Hal Payne said that Judicial Board has discretion to call off senate elections, but that they cannot halt publication of the Review. Senate discussed removing Mykyta as Review editor, but Payne noted that senate and Judicial Board lack that authority, which rests exclusively with the editorial board of the Review.
The senate meeting was tense and frustration was evident in many of the senators, who felt that the election was tampered with by the Review. At one point during the heated debate, Lee Morrow “asked” Spencer Busby to resign as Elections Committee Chairman. His rationale for this request was an alleged “conflict of interest,” noting that Busby is also on the Review. There was no support for Morrow’s request.
The new date for freshman senate elections is Wednesday, Oct. 2. Mykyta told senate that the Review would not print any more candidates’ statements for the next election, unless reimbursed by senate, despite the fact that the candidate pool was reopened by senate until Friday.