All in all, this doesn’t seem like an unreasonable step on the part of the administration. So long as the content of SSNW’s original page was not deleted before they had a chance to save it (which doesn’t seem to have been a problem), then asserting university control over a page that seems relevant to future activities is not out of the realm of reason. I really don’t have much more to add on that point – the Daily article has the details on the case, including quotes from SSNW – so read it there if you’re interested. So what else interesting have I found?
More interesting is exploring the actual SSNW site. One of the first thing that we notice is that the site, although maintained by SSNW, has attracted a few other endorsement. Perhaps unsurprisingly, we see Stanford Students for Queer Liberation (SSQL) – a consistent opponent of ROTC – endorsing the page. More surprising is the stamp of approval from Students Confronting Apartheid by Israel (SCAI) – a group that spearheaded the short-lived attempt to divest from Israel last year. SCAI’s stated mission is exclusively tied to “secur[ing] Stanford University’s divestment from apartheid in Israel and the Occupied Territories.” It’s thus interesting to see them branching out to other causes. Perhaps it’s not surprising to see that there’s overlap in the ideologies (and perhaps memberships) of SCAI and SSNW, but to see SCAI moving outside its conventional mission is still interesting. Is it a relic of earlier action or an attempt to stay relevant after divestment fizzled last year? Just interesting to think about.Another interesting note, while we’re on the Daily website, is to look at the poll results. As of 10:20 PM on Tuesday, 66 percent of votes favor ROTC’s return, 24 percent oppose it, and 10 percent don’t know. Clearly, at least in terms of people who care enough about the issue to comment, there’s a strong push for it to return. The vocal opposition from groups like SSNW and SSQL doesn’t seem to have galvanized popular opposition. We’ll see what happens once the recommendations from the Ad Hoc Committee on ROTC come out and the Faculty Senate gears up to vote.