Western should follow its own guidelines

Adam Eadens

Two weeks ago you probably didn’t know who Philip Schardein was. You still may not. If you left your dorm room or home and went to class or turned on the radio or television the week before last, chances are you might.

Color flyers with the header “For The Love Of Philip” were posted all over campus to inform students of a bone marrow screening to be held on his behalf.

Philip has Acute Myelogenous Leukemia. Philip found out two weeks before the screening that he would need a second transplant. He also needs a matched donor.

The media campaign that ensued was nothing short of inspiring. I applaud the efforts of his friends and family.

There was one other outlet that informed potential donors of the screening – an e-mail sent to every student on campus.

This e-mail – like the flyers and ads – personally invited each each student to get their blood screened to find Philip a bone marrow match.

This is helpful to Philip and his family and friends. I question how good it was for the university and its students.

Guidelines for sending a mass e-mail to students are listed on Western’s Web site (http://adcom1.wab.wku.edu/html/massmail1.htm). The letter that students received last Tuesday did not meet any of the requirements set forth by Western. Most importantly, it didn’t have anything to do with Western.

Western created the guidelines just before the start of this semester. They were put into place to prevent all students from getting lots of unwanted e-mail. Western has already broken them.

The Western webmail account is mandatory as of this semester. Should we be solicited to any cause Western deems worthy? What else will slip through?

The e-mail last week was sent out anyway because the administrator in charge of approving it “made an exception.” He thought it was worthy because informing of the screening could save a life.

I hope that it did.

I hope Philip found a match. I hope he found fifty, and I hope the procedure works. I hope the screening matched potential donors to others in Philip’s shoes.

But that’s not the point.

Making exceptions creates dangerous situations. Who else gets an exception? Who else is worthy? I am confident that Philip is not the only person that needs bone marrow. People need organs. People need food. People need blood.

I didn’t receive the e-mail about the latest blood drive. I couldn’t tell you who needs your or my kidney. I missed that one too. Why?

Was it because no one filled out the proper request and sent the e-mail to all of Western? I sure hope so. Because Western now has no grounds to block anyone from requesting cash donations or part of your body to save the life of another. I would recommend to anyone in need to try it. You don’t need to be a Western student. Philip is not and never has been.

If Western says no, they are hypocrites. They have just made themselves the judge and jury of anyone else who comes knocking.

The signs and ads were more than enough to inform about the situation. Don’t spam us, even if the cause is worthy.

Adam Eadens is a senior print journalism major from Bowling Green.

The opinions expressed in this commentary do not represent the Herald, Western or its administration.