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October 27, 1978 - Image 4

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1978-10-27

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Page 4-Friday, October 27, 1978-The Michigan Daily

heMtht4gaun Bat41
420 Maynard St., Ann Arbor, MI 48109
Eighty-Nine Years of Editorial Freedom.

Quebec:A province divided

Vol. LXXXIX, No. 44

News Phone: 764-0552

Edited and managed by students at the University of Michigan
Distributing basketball tickets

HE PROPER method for distribut-
ing basketball tickets is not easy
to determine. All sides present
interesting points that are not easy to
dismiss. This year, Ticket Manager Al
Renfrew has decided to employ a
lottery system. Under this plan, each
student has an equal chance of getting
a good seat, an average seat, or a poor
The system begins with seniors. Any
senior who wants season basketball
tickets had to first sign up, and pay $24
by Wednesday of this week. Then,
basically, all the names are thrown
: into a drum, and students are assigned
seats randomly.
Mr. Renfrew developed this system
in response to widespread complaints
over the old system of waiting in line
;f for tickets - to those of perseverance
go the spoils. While it is refreshing to
see a member of the University
bureaucracy who is responsive to
concerns, we feel that in this case Mr.
Renfrew has overlooked the rights of
the minority in order to satsify the
whims of the majority.
There is no completely just method
of distributing tickets. We can only
hope to recognize all students' needs,
then try to meet as many of them as
best we can. The flaw with the lottery
system is that it does not distinguish
between those who are loyal, rabid
fans, and those who like basketball, but
are not consumed by it. With the
lottery, students who have purchased
tickets for three or more years may
well get bad seats.
How can we tell these committed
supporters who have suffered through
poor to mediocre seats for three years.
that now, when they are seniors, they
may not get good seats? Much as the
seniority system prevented them from
getting good seats for three years, the
lottery denies them the chance to
determine their own fates. Under the
lottery system there is nothing they
can do, even if they are willing, to
better their chances.
Last year, and for many years prior,
students were allowed to form lines to
wait for tickets. Not everyone cared
4 that much about what seats they got,
so not everyone got in line. Many
seniors simply waited until the rush
was over, and then picked up their
tickets, which were still better than the
juniors'. There were, however a
handful of dedicated fans who braved
the cold and waited several days in
order to get the coveted mid-count blue
seats. Many argue that this system

was unjust because some students
didn't have the time to wait in line, and
they were thus denied good seats -
this is not true. The ticket policy
cannot work out the details so that
each person can wait in line without
interfering with his or her schedule. All
the policy can do is afford everyone the
same opportunity to wait in line. Some
persons place basketball tickets high
on their list of priorities, and others
don't. Those who do will wait in line
and get the best seats, while the others
will get less good seats. What about the
individual who has to work, or must
attend class? There is a solution - get
a group together to share waiting
responsibilities. Alternatively, one
could persuade a good friend to wait
during the conflicting hours.
The remaining problems with the
line system - when does the line start
and how to prevent underclasspersons
from using senior IDs - are easily
solved. First, in order to give everyone
a fair chance to be first in line, we need
only to have the ticket office announce
that the line will start on a certain day
at a certain time, but keep the location
secret. Then, the night before the line
is to start, announce the location over a
pre-arranged radio station at a pre-
arranged time. That way, no one could
line up any earlier than the night
before the official line starts, and
everyone would have a fair chance to
be first in line if he or she is willing to
As far as eliminating the ploy of
getting a senior ID, the ticket office
would simply make each person in line
produce a va-lid student ID, senior
standing, along with a picture ID.
Then, when the tickets are distributed,
each student would have to follow the
same procedure. This would eliminate
the problem except in cases where an
underclassperson found a look-alike
senior who didn't want his or her
In general, Mr. Renfrew's, actions
have been motivated by good
intentions, but he has been duped into
denying the rights of the minority. The
majority of persons aren't willing to
give up their time to wait in line, and
we say fine. Don't wait. All we ask is
that they not try to prevent those who
are willing from doing so. Obviously,
the non-dedicated persons prefer the
lottery - they get a shot at the best
seats without having to make any
effort. We urge Mr. Renfew to consider
the rights of all concerned in this
affair, and to adopt a line system along
the pattern we have laid out.

EDITOR'S NOTE: Two years ago on Nov. 15, the
French nationalist Parti Quebecois came to power in
Quebec and began a quest for the sovereignty of the
French-speaking Canadian province. The jolt was
felt all across Canada and still is today. Here is a
report by a Quebec correspondent for The Canadian
QUEBEC (AP)-In 1968 Pierre
Elliott Trudeau became Canada's third
French-speaking prime minister and
Rene Levesque founded the Parti
Quebecois with the goal of making a
nation of Quebec province, where most
French Canadians live.
A showdown of sorts between them
could come next week.
Trudeay, 59, is still prime minister
and will likely seek a fourth mandate in
the coming year. although some
members of his Liberal Party say he
should step down because of recent by-
election setbacks. Levesque, 56,
premier of Quebec, will ask Quebecers
in a referendum in the next year or two
to approve his plans to seek
negotiations with the federal
government in Ottawa for what he calls
sovereignty-association for his
But Canada's 10 provincial premiers
meet this week with Trudeau in Ottawa
to discuss the prime minister's recent
proposals to amend the Canadian
federal system, eventually leading to a
new constitution. The main matchup is
expected to be between Levesque and
It is confrontation Parti Quebecois
(PQ)s strategists say they want to
avoid, but Trudeau's back is to the wall
as the result of the by-elections and it is
considered likely he will force the issue
in an effort to reassert his leadership.
Trudeau's Liberals took a pounding
in the by-elections on October 16,
holding only two of 15 seats up at stake
across the country. Both Liberal wins
were in the party's Quebec powerhouse,
where Trudeau maintains a popularity
rating polled recently at 57.5 per cent of
Quebers approve of Levesque.
In the background is the French
nationalist fervor in Quebec.
In its first year of office the Trudeau
administration made French and
English the official languages of
Canada, hoping to assure equality for
the 25 per cent of Canadians whose first
language is French.
Levesque led his party-the PQ, as it
is known-to an electoral win on
November 15, 1976, promising to deliver
good government and hold a
referendum on the status of Quebec.
In its first year the Levesque
government passed a law making
French the only official language of
Quebec. Trudeau's goal of a bilingual
Canada from the Atlantic to the Pacific
was dismissed by the PQ as
unattainable, even undesiraable.
The good intentions expressed in the
bilingualism law would do little to help
the one million French-Canadians
outside Quebec to preserve their
identity, as the PQ saw it.
It also held that encouraging
bilingualism in Quebec would erode the
position of French-speaking Quebecers,
or Quebecois, since immigrants, given
a choice, would not adopt English, the
language of North America.
Bilingualism was seen by the PQ as
a threat to Quebec's status as the only
Canadian province where French
speakers form the majority.
In order to maintain the French fact
in Canada, the PQ said, Quebec, which
is 80 per cent French anyway, should be
unilingual French and eventually the
Quebec government should achieve full
Quebec is the largest of Canada's 10
provinces in area and with 6.3 million
people ranks second after Ontario in
population. The Canadian total is about
23.5 million.
Although he remains popular in

Quebec, Trudeau is losing support
elsewhere to Joe Clark, leader of the
Progressive Conservative Party.
Inflation and unemployment are
running high across Canada and the
Canadian dollar, which until last year
traded at a premium to the U.S. dollar,
now has dipped to about 85 U.S. cents,
at a time when the American dollar
itself is on the skids.
On top of the economic woes, there is
lingering resentment toward Trudeau
and his bilingualism.
The last regular federal election was
in 1974 and Trudeau won. By custom
Canadian prime ministers call
elections every four years but with
recent polls indicating Clark's
Conservatives could beat him, the
prime minister has postponed the vote.
Constitutionally he has until next July
to go to the polls.
As an underdog now, Trudeau is
likely to come out swinging at the
premier conferences Monday and
Tuesday in Ottawa.
At the start of the fall session of the
Quebec National Assembly as the
provincial legislature is called,
Levesque announced he will seek in his
referendum a mandate to negotiate
It wouldn't be out of character for
Trudeau to challenge Levesque at the
conference to negotiate then and there,
putting the Quebec premier on the spot
and restoring Trudeau's image of
Until his announcement that he will
ask for a mandate to negotiate, it was
unclear what Levesque would ask for in
the referendum beyond the basics of
political sovereignty and an economic
association with the rest of Canada.
It also appeared that Levesque was
headed for certain defeat in the
referendum if he asked outright for
unilateral secession. Polls indicated
that at most 30 per cent of Quebecers
approve that option.
But by saying he will ask for a
mandate to negotiate, Levesque put
himself back in serious contention.

Polls indicate most Quebecers want
some kind of increased powers for the
provincial government and could will
approve a referendum to negotiate with
Levesque also watered down the
content of the economic association
portion, proposing a common currency,
a joint central bank, continued
participation in NATO and North
American Air Defense and the free flow
of goods and people between Canada
and Quebec-in short, the continuation
of existing arrangements.
However, he maintained his position
on sovereignty, proposing a break with
the present federal structure.
He called for assumption by Quebec
of all taxing powers, rather than
sharing them with the .-federal
government, and replacerhent of the
present division of powers between
Quebec and Ottawa with one law-.
making body, the Quebec National
Levesque also backed off from the
Parti Quebecois position of declaring
independence unilaterally if
negotiations fail. In fact he refused to
consider the possibility of failure.
He said sovereignty-association is a
package deal.
"We have no intention of first
obtaining sovereignty and then
negotiating an association," he told the
National Assembly.
"We do not want to end, but rather to
radically transform, our union with the
rest of Canada so that in future our
relations will be based on full and
complete equality."
Levesque holds that Quebec is not
just one of 10 Canadian provinces, as
Trudeau would say, but the home of a
people with its own language culture
and history.
Parti Quebecois strategists say a
Trudeau victory at their expense would
be a major setback, and they don't want
Trudeau to draw them out this week in

5 Editorials which appear without a by-lne represent a con-
cen sus opinion of the Daily's editorial board. All other editorials,1
4,s well as cartoons, are the opinions of the indlividuals who sub-
p it then.-
- -

Letters to the Daily



_ . .._.
___ _
1 ..
'" ..
; ,.
, .
, ' f






1 J7 1

The recent improvement of the
Michigan basketball team which
began during the 74-75 season has
led to a sharp increase in the
demand for tickets.
Unfortunately, the heavy
demand for tickets became a
controversial issue when two
years ago a dispute broke out
over who was entitled to be first
in line. This quarrel was
intensified, when last year the
Daily, after condeming the
previous year's line assumed the
number one spot. Despite efforts
to start a line for the upcoming
season, the Athletic Dept. has
decided to use a lottery
distribution system for senior
Admittedly, finding a just and
equitable distribution method is

To the Daily

at the request of higher
authorities, such a system could
no longer be used.
Although there is some merit to
that contention, the lotterya
alternative has many faults of its
own. First, using the so called
'successful' football lottery as a
model would be misleading.
Basketball, played indoors by
only ten players is a much more
intimate game, and attending
fans in contrast to football,
generally come to enjoy the game
rather than an adventurous
Saturday afternoon. Second, the
problem of single students using
other people to purchase extra
coupons for private dispersion
and scalping would be intensified
by the institution of a lottery
since students would seek to
increase thair number of entries
tn imnrnov their chances

lottery. Conceivably, a ratio of
one student in line for four tickets
would not be so time consuming
as to disrupt scholastic
performance, but would be a
sufficient burden to attract only
the die-hard fans. If properly
advertised and organized this
system would roughly match the
avid vans with the tickets they
deserve, thereby providing a
superior alternative to the
However, so long as the lottery
provides the athletic dept. with a
convenient system of ticket
dispersal, which indeed gives
every interested student an equal
opportunity, and as long as
administration officials feel that
it's their duty to tell university
students when they ought to
attend classes-it would appear
that the lottery is here to stay, If I

200-300 Seniors would qualify for
the highest bracket and so they
are matched by a computer with
the best seats. Computer
matching of season tickets held
with seat quality continues
through the Senior class and
successively down to the
freshman level. Finally, Senior
priority maintained by graduate
students who have attended the
university for longer than four
consequtive years shosuld be
revoked, thus enabling every
Senior to enjoy at least one
season from good seats.
Certainly,m there are drawbacks
in this system too, but some of the
clear advantaes are: No
incentive for underclassmen to
use Senior ID, no reason for
people to buy more than one
ticket, guaranteed yearly ticket
sales even in bad years, no lines,


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