Santa Monica College Faculty Issues Apology to Governor Schwarzenegger

In a very classy gesture over 50 faculty members at Santa Monica College sent a letter to the Governor to apologize for students and staff members who heckled him as he presented the key note address a their graduation proceedings back on June 14th. (Story Here)

June 27, 2005

The Honorable Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger
State Capitol
Sacramento, CA 95814

Dear Governor Schwarzenegger:

We, the following employees of Santa Monica College, formally apologize to you for the treatment you received while giving your keynote address on June 14. The disruptive behavior of loud-mouthed student hecklers in the audience and the few faculty members who turned their backs on you was unacceptable.

From your clear vantage point, we hope you saw what those of us on the stage behind you saw: Almost all graduates and most of the audience listened attentively, and they stood and applauded repeatedly throughout your speech. Their support for you and for your inspirational message to SMC graduates was shown by the applause at the end of your speech, applause that drowned out the hate-filled banter of the malcontents.

It is unfortunate that a few individuals’ disagreement with your educational policies has not manifested itself in more fruitful and more place-appropriate forms of political action. Oddly enough, those who condone these egregious acts do so under the guise of free speech, failing to recognize that responsible participation in a deliberative democracy requires them to extend those same rights to others–even those with political ideologies different from their own. Preventing anyone from being heard is the worst infringement of free speech possible, and it is wrong. Furthermore, it is particularly unfortunate when such a violation occurs at an institution of higher learning, where respect for basic constitutional and human rights is the very air we breath.

Thank you for coming to Santa Monica College to deliver the keynote address. Your words about your experience as an SMC student and how it set the stage for the leader you are today gives us pride in the work we do. Your old professor, Dick Dodge, would also have been proud of how far that extraordinary student of his has gone!

In addition, we commend you for your courage in delivering superbly your entire speech to our proud, eager graduates and their friends and families without acknowledging those who tried to turn the event into a political coup.

You honored Santa Monica College by giving so generously of your time, and we can’t thank you enough for your words. In addition, we trust you will not judge Santa Monica College by the behavior of a rude few.


Fran Chandler, Chair of Business and Accounting Department
Shane Smith, Math Instructor
Co-Advisors, Santa Monica College Republicans

Those who also granted permission to send this letter in their names:

Winniphred Stone, Director of Distance Education
Alan Hong, Professor of Math
Marina Parise, Reference Librarian
Anne. L. Young, Dept. of Music
Ethan Gallogly, Professor of Chemistry
Carole McCaskill, RN, MS, Health Sciences Professor
Perviz Sawoski, Chair, Theatre Arts
Peter Lippman, Business Professor
Jim Downs, Business Law Professor
Megan Granich, Math Instructor
Paul Wissman, Ph.D., Life Sciences
Anne P. Stone, Adjunct, English Dept.
Dr. Michael Schapa, Professor of Accounting and Taxation
Marilyn Adler, Heath Science Dept., Nursing Program
Ron Fitzgerald, CPA, Professor of Business
Sal Veas, Professor of Business
Joshua Coplen, Business Instructor
Kay Waud, Physics Professor
Steven A. Fink, Life Sciences
Jim Downs, Business Dept.
Dr. David Goodman
Rich Robinson, Professor of Geology
Patricia Halliday, Professor of Business
Janie Jones, Instructor, Theatre Arts
Carolyn Feruzzi, Adjunct, Counseling
Eleanor Schapa, Professor of Art and Accounting
Kenneth Buckner, Teacher, Emeritus
William O. Robertson, Emeritus Campus
Linda Babcock, Business Professor
Vicki Drake, Geography Professor
Steve Hunt, Librarian
Lynette Shishido, Professor of Business
Dr. Moya Mazorow, Professor of Mathematics
Christopher Meeks, English
Richard Mednick, Adjunct Associate
James Smith, Chair, Dept. of Music
Jim Sinclair, Business Instructor
Nick DiCamillo, Professor
Gary Strathearn, Adjunct Instructor
Marilyn Goodrich, Administrative Asst., Student Services
Elizabeth Chavez, Adjunct Kinesiology
Jean Georgie, Professor of English
Claudia Celestial, DSPS Instructor
Jonathon Hodge, Planetarium Director
Audrey Roche, Retired Chair, Business, Computing and Public Safety
Herbert McNeely, Police Officer
Christopher Michael Davis, Dept. of History
Mary Colavito, Professor of Life Sciences
Helen LeDonne, Cosmetology
Jenna Gausman, Career Counselor/Counseling Instructor
Karlyn Musante, Associate Faculty, Psychology
Michael Schwartz, Astronomy
William Konya, Professor of Mathematics

These faculty members have shown true grace and leadership, and have set an excellent example for the students they are educating.

Let’s let them know how much we appreciate this gesture. The email for the Santa Monica College Republicans is . I am sure that they will make sure that your encouraging words get to the signers of this letter.

Craig DeLuz

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