letter to the editor

I remember being young once upon a time. The world was my oyster, and I had more hair on my head. I also recall saying things that I probably shouldn’t have because maybe I didn’t have the knowledge or understanding.

Chloe Earwood was mostly wrong in her opinion piece. As someone who has been engulfed in sports their entire life, though, I understand the point she was trying to make in saying that student-athletes work hard and could always use more help.

The problem with MOST universities is that they can’t afford the things they’re already paying for. Chloe’s first mistake was using Clemson University as an example. The Tigers’ football program alone generates north of $50 million a year. Missouri Western loses money every year.

I think and hope that this will be one of those lessons that Chloe learns as a young writer moving forward. As a reporter, you have to compare apples-to-apples and even then, have a semi-decent understanding of the financials.

The second issue I found with the article was her opinion on the work ethic of student-athletes. I won’t argue that athletes work hard, but her opinion how much harder was hyperbolic and irresponsible. Over my final two years, I worked a full-time job, had my first child, an internship, worked for the GN, and had two part-time jobs. I am not bragging; I am just pointing to what I and many other students had to do in order to get through college while also working to better their resume. 

College is hard, man. Anyone who gets through with a degree worked hard. Do athletes deserve more? Maybe. Maybe not. Athletes are given the option to compete in college and if they choose to do so, are awarded with some sort of scholarship.

There’s also the part where for the most part, these sports are actually costing the university money. Money that they can now not use to improve parts of the campus that are being used by students paying out-of-pocket or taking on loans.

I’m not bashing athletes; I was once one and I respect the hell out of the work they put in and the entertainment that they provide. But athletics cost a loss of money and in a lot of cases, it’s one sport carrying the rest. For example, a few years back there was a report on LSU athletics where it showed every sport losing money and it was only because of football that the athletic department ended the year in the green.

As far as the people criticizing Chloe’s writing abilities—you can fuck off. We all are entitled to our opinions, right or wrong or somewhere in between. Shaming a young person makes you yourself look childish and reaffirms why this country is being held together by spit and duct tape.

I made way more mistakes than I care to remember as a youngster—but I learned so much from them. Chloe will hopefully learn from this and maybe she changes her mind on some things and maybe she doesn’t. But be willing to help, not bash a college student for an opinion you don’t agree with. Save that for people who are paid to share opinions.

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