Mar 2, 2010

From the desk

by Amanda Sullivan

Last Tuesday I attended the Lynchburg City Council public hearing where the relocation of the Ward III-4 polling location was discussed. One thing that became increasingly evident throughout the evening was that the communication lines between Liberty University students and the City of Lynchburg have become jumbled, allowing for hurt feelings and poor remarks on both sides.

I grew up in Texas. I am a Texan at heart and am full of pride for the Lone Star State. However, over the past four years, Lynchburg has become my home. Lynchburg is full of charm and wonder. It is one of the few places where a person can lose a wallet at Target and have it returned with a couple of hours (I’m speaking from experience here), and is filled with people who genuinely care about others.

I love Liberty, and I love Lynchburg. I just wish the two could love each other. It is a little ridiculous that the university and the city cannot work together to form logical compromises.

The communication lines need to open. The city should realize that Liberty University is here to stay and does, in fact, have a positive impact on Lynchburg community in regards to the economy. I, for one, have no intention to help my school “take over” the city, because taking over the city isn’t on our invisible agenda. That’s because we don’t have an agenda. The only thing that Liberty and its students really want is fairness. We don’t want things handed to us on a silver platter, but we would like to be heard. The city council meeting was the first time that Lynchburg heard from the students. But I don’t feel that what we said translated well.

When I left the meeting, I felt like a chastised child thanks to words from Vice Mayor Bert Dodson, Councilmen Michael Gillette and Ceasor Johnson who quoted Carly Simon’s “You’re So Vain” to students. I think the consensus among students was that their voices fell on deaf ears.

However, Mayor Joan Foster’s meeting with Chancellor Jerry Falwell Jr. seems to be a beacon of hope for the students. Falwell and Foster’s get-together allowed for the twosome to rekindle their old friendship and allowing for opinions and grievances about the issues to be aired and compromises struck, according the News and Advance.

Although Foster and Falwell did not completely agree on every issue, their meeting made a statement to the city and to students. It’s very simple: some members of the city council are willing to listen to the needs of Liberty students, which is all we really want.
Chancellor Falwell and Mayor Foster, thank you for taking the next step to open up the communication lines. I pray that this meeting will be the start of many, and that Liberty and Lynchburg can work together more easily.

Contact Amanda Sullivan at

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