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Gale Story Was Speculative, Irreverent

Gale Story Was Speculative, Irreverent

The Tech reports the stories and experiences that define our community: the struggles, the achievements, the breakthroughs, and the tragedies. As a result, I feel a strong sense of pride when I read articles which capture the dynamic and diverse nature of the Institute. However, I felt great concern and alarm when I read a recent article on Philip Gale's death ["Gale's Death Prompts Questions on Scientology," April 3]. For a matter so tragic and serious as the death of a fellow student, the article was wildly speculative and unsupported by fact.

An eyewitness of Gale's death is cited as saying, "I felt like he was trying to send a message," and the story continues by examining a possible link between Philip Gale's death and the Church of Scientology. No facts exist to corroborate the link. In fact, the article cites Gale's friend and his mother, who both state explicitly that Scientology had nothing to do with Gale's death. In the end, the reader is left with a "puzzle which may never be solved" and a story based on gossip and hearsay. Not only does the story mislead, it also could easily warrant a lawsuit from the Church of Scientology.

In a community where precision and accuracy are guiding tenets of our studies of science and engineering, The Tech has the responsibility to serve the community with the same rigorous standards. We expect The Tech to provide us with factual, accurate, and timely information, especially in a time of tragedy and mourning. We do not need irresponsible journalism that borders on irreverence to the colleagues, friends and family of Philip Gale.

Eugene Lee '98