there has been an honor society named Michigamua
since 1902. Over the years Michigamua has been the subject of much criticism, much of which has been documented on The Goodspeed Update
(although please read things there with a grain of salt), including previously basing its rituals and symbolism on Native American culture (something it has not done since 1989). Since the names of the members of Michigamua are kept quiet, some people have taken it upon themselves to "discover" those names and make them public.
I've known about Michigamua for years, known people who were (and are) members, and have heard firsthand some of the wonderful things they do. Members are leaders from various student groups, amazing people with so much to give back to the University, and the potential to do such amazing things in their lives. The reason I'm writing about this, is that i've been shocked to hear about the reaction that so many so-called "activists" and "progressives" on campus have had to discovering that one of their own is a member of Michigamua.
Sam Woll, one of the most caring people I know, was recently "outed" as being a member of Michigamua. Sam has been involved in so many different organizations, and is so passionate about each and every cause she works towards. And to now see those organizations, and people she considered friends, turning against her the way they have, is incredibly painful. Sam will be okay, because that's the kind of amazing person she is, but my
faith in people has been a little shattered by this.
Sam wrote a response to the "accusations," that was posted on The Goodspeed Update
. I've added it here as well, since I think it is so well written:
* Please publish this statement verbatim. You do not have my permission to publish any excerpt from the following statement and may only use it in its entirety. Thank you *
Yes, I am a member of Michigamua. I joined this organization in order to work with other leaders on campus to serve the University. I know that my membership may be a surprise to many people. However, I saw potential to continue to drive positive changes within Michigamua in order to better serve campus and truly represent a diverse group of leaders committed to making the University a better place. Additionally, I acknowledge and recognize the organization’s past including the painful parts of its history.
I hope that the fact that I am in Michigamua will not lead you to question the sincerity of any of my past and future involvements on campus. Anyone who knows me and my passionate commitment to working for social justice knows that I would never be a part of organization that would betray these principles. I am still proud to be a capital “F” Feminist, Jew, Democrat, strong supporter of Affirmative Action and member of the student coalition to cut the University’s contracts with Coca-Cola corporation.
Although there are still many misconceptions about Michigamua, we are diligently working on ways to communicate recent changes and efforts to the larger University community. My intention in this statement is to let you know that I am committed to both Michigamua and other organizations that I have always been committed to on campus. This was not an easy decision for me and it took meticulous discretion. I invite those who wish to further understand my decision to email me at swoll (at) umich.edu. Please include a phone number if you so choose and I will do my best to speak with you in person. Thank you.
Way to go, Sam!
There was even this whole "art exhibit" called the Michigamua Exposed
exhibit, which even features a picture I took of Sam, Anna, & I that they stole off of facebook. Oh these people...
Cohen kids in the Bahamas:
So on Jason's (Rabbi Jason, Rabbi Miller, etc.) blog
yesterday he posted a variation of something I posted last February
, the fwd about the "study" that "it deosn't mttaer in waht oredr the ltteers in a wrod are, the olny iprmoatnt tihng is taht the frist and lsat ltteer be in the rghit pclae". The thing I find most fascinating about that, is that it does not
work for everybody! People with various learning/reading difficulties tend to read every letter rather than "chunks", so when they look at something with the letters jumbled, it simply looks like jumbled letters! I'm not basing that on any empirical research, just informal chats with people I know who've been diagnosed with some sort of "Learning Disability", but it's still fascinating to me.
Sorry I've been so horrible about posting lately... Things have been slightly chaotic since I got back--just a lot going on right now. Ill try and be better!!
It's a gorgeous "winter wonderland" outside right now. The snow is coming down
!! I know for most people they don't see that as a good thing, but for me...sooo excited. I love winter... Granted I also love summer (clearly)...and spring...and fall...
Jeremy & I went ice skating at Millennium Park
on Sunday night. Sooo
much fun. Freezing out, but that was okay. I love that it doesn't cost anything to skate, only for skate rental. So if I remember to get my skates next time I'm in Michigan...
The whole winter sports thing is wonderful. Now if only I can find a decent place to go snowboarding that's not crazy far away... I'm thinking about going on Sunday--anyone want to come?
All for now...enjoy the snow!!! :)Update: 9:30pm
So it ended up taking me almost 2 hours to get home from work...a little crazy, for a drive that should take half an hour. But it was (and is) gorgeous out, so that made it better. When I finally got home, I put on boots, rain pants, and a jacket that's way too big on me (a remnant from my "punk-ish wear clothing that's way too big on me" phase) and went for a walk in the snow. Amazing... The glitter of fresh powder--love it.