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Brandeis University's Community Newspaper — Waltham, Mass.

What to do with Abramoff’s $50 donation

Published: January 27, 2006
Section: Opinions

One of the largest stories in the news nowadays is about Jack Abramoff, the currently embattled ex-Washington-lobbyist. In a plea bargain, Abramoff agreed to work with the Justice Department for a more lenient sentencing. However to most people this reads: hes going to give the Justice department a black list of people he bribed. Needless to say, this black list could be very damaging to any politicians career, much less a respected educational institution. These politicians are quickly gathering up all the money they got from Abromoff and donating it to non-profits and other generally good causes.

So, I heard the rumor that Abramoff gave $50 to Brandeis, and it occurred to me that with the Darfur divestment campaign and Im sure the many more to come, there should be a Abramoff divestment campaign or rather, a reinvestment campaign for the $50 we got from him. Here are of a few ideas that popped into my head during lunch in Usdan a few days ago:

1. Give every Brandeis student, roughly 3,000 of them, a share. Thats $.016 per student we can all use towards paying for our overpriced books.

2. Give the money to Professor Coinerhell know what to do.

3. Add Pornography to the SSB video collection. Im sure Amazing will give us a friendly neighbor discount.

4. Give it to the NEJS department. I heard they might not be getting 50% of the budget next year and they may need it for their water-coolers.

5. Give it to Student Events so that next time Talib Kweli comes they can subsidize the tickets.

6. Facilities can use the money to upgrade the sprinkler systems in the buildings so that touching them does not, nor does it threaten to, flood entire dorms with three inches of water.

7. Plant some more flowers that mysteriously appear during Orientation, disappear soon after, and then suddenly reappear during Open House.

8. Buy the Shapiros two Brandeis Sweatshirts (the ripped one for Ruth) in return for the millions they gave to build all of our buildings.

And my favorite,
9. Give it to the Debate Team.

That being said, while Im sure you all agree these are good causes, the real message is that the University must do all it can to distance itself from Mr. Abramoff before the campus becomes filled with black Suburbans and men with guns.