Readers React

College divestment campaigns may alienate alumni

To the editor: One potential impact that I think this article overlooked is the loss of financial support from alumni like myself and scores of other donors. ("More colleges under pressure to divest, though effect is debatable," Jan. 21)

When UCLA's undergraduate student government made headlines two months ago by demanding university divestment from Israel, I heard from many others who had the same reaction I did: If UCLA follows through on this idea, the university will never see another dime from any of us.

In November, my wife wrote a letter to UCLA Chancellor Gene Block expressing the same sentiment, and fortunately the chancellor's office replied that it does not support such divestment.

As for demands to divest fossil fuel holdings, I suggest that the students set an example by demanding that their classes be lighted by candlelight and remain unheated in the winter and uncooled in the summer. After all, most of Southern California's electricity is still generated by petroleum-fueled power plants.

And, of course, these students should walk to school.

Jeff Pressman, Bell Canyon

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