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September 26, 1972 - Image 4

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Publication:
Michigan Daily, 1972-09-26

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Eighty-one years of editorial freedom
Edited and managed by students at the University of Michigan

Where have all the voices gone?

420 Maynard St., Ann Arbor, Mich.

News Phone: 764-0552

Editorials printed in The Michigan Daily express the individual opinions of staff writers
or the editors. This must be noted in all reprints.
TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 26, 1972

Mafia defies courts

WHEN THE Colombo shooting triggered
a string of Mafiosi related murders
in New York, the killings were reported
in the media as being signals of thei gra-
dual demise of the Mafiosi.
But far from declining, the underworld
seems to be entrenched in society now as
well as it ever was. Underworld connec-
tions within the cour.ts are very strong.
indeed, 'according to an investigative
study done by the New York Times. The
study revealed that the rate of dismis-
sals and acquittals for racketeers was
five times that for other defendants in
state courts of New York.
And if the figures from the New York
courts are even remotely indicative of
other state court systems, it is no won-
der the country is faced with serious law
enforcement problems.
Witness a case arraigned in the court
of New York Judge Charles Marks:
CARMINE PERSICO, listed by the Jus-
tice department as a captain in the

Mafia family of Joseph A. Colombo, Sr.
was indicted on 37 counts of extortion,
coercion, usuary and conspiracy. Judge
Marks refused to set a trial date and
granted the defense 25 adjournments.
During that time the prosecution's star
witness disappeared. He was last seen
being escorted into an auto by a Persico
bodyguard. After a three year delay, an-
other judge, who finally heard the case,
dismissed all charges against Persico. He,
also refused to allow the press to cover
the trial.'
Unfortunately the Persico case was
not an isolated incident in the New York
courts. It is sadly ironic that the same
court system which quickly convicts ad-
dicts for petty crimes may on the same
day allow the ringleader of heroin deal-
ers to go free.
And until such corruption can be elimi-
nated, court systems will remain far
from solving some of the country's most
pressing enforcement problems.
-JIM REUS

By MARK DILLEN
A PERVERSE notion is finding
current popularity among the
mass of American people. On the
nation's campuses this vogue has
become a way of life, threatening
to prove concomitantly suspicions
that universities don't reflect or
lead society, but rather distort and
exaggerate-those aspects which at-
tract the intellectual in us. , Stu-
dents are engaged by and in the
University, there seems only one
course, and this seeming lack of
alternative gives one security to act
decisively, unafraid of being mis-
taken. Assured by past failures
that they could not change things
if they tried, young people n o w
assume there is no need to change
(or if they do recognize such a
need, think there is nothing they
can do).
Though our predecessors in this
"nexus of ideas" may not have
had the answer, they seemed to
be asking some of the right ques-
tions. Yet now the local political
debate over What To Do is being
replaced with the retorts, So What?
and Who Cares? And the unanimity
of thought in response to s u c h
questions is not very reassuring;
no one cares. Except maybe t h e
President. And George McGovern.
And other candidates for office.
WHAT IS THE cause of this at-
titude of futility and pasive accept-
ance of our social problems as an
immutable given? Should we real-
ly evenbe concerned about it?
To the. latter question I'd only
respond with a list of some of the
crucial problems that prompted the
mass involvement of young people
only a year or two ago: The War,
Ecology, Racism, Sexism, Inflation
and Unemployment. All still exist;
some have increased in serious-
ness. They're just being ignored by
all but a handful.
A few stalwarts lamely speak of
issues being "defused." Perhaps,
but I prefer to think those who
favor chance have "defused" them-

r

have, it's because heretofore white
instititions were scared to death to
begin with, and the demand to in-
crease black enrollment had the
effect of increasing the size of the
interest group.)
YOU'D think we'd learn. But
just last week, a small group of
student-types, mainly women, made
the traditional diag-to-Administra-
tion Bldg. trek to demand money
from the University for child care
centers. Fine. Every working pa-
rent in a people-oriented society
should have a place for their child
while they are working (yes, at-
tending class is work!). In fact,
all working parents deserve this.
But the reality is that this society
is not people-oriented so much as
it is consumer oriented. Unless
your complaints are punctuated
with dollar signs, you may as well
be silent if your group is small.
We should not suppose that the
way tohmake the University - or
any other local institution, - re-
-sponsive is a series of piecemeal
demands made in succession that
will, taken in sum at a future date,
result in total change. "The Uni-
versity has many constituencies,"
President Fleming is fond of telling
freshmen initiates, and he's right.
As a state-supported institution, it
is perfectly logical that the Uni-
versity power structure should ldok
to Lansing and the consciousness of
the whole state for directions on
how to serve "art, science a n d
math." Then faculty, then s t u-
dents. We may not be "nigers" yet,
dents. We may not be "niggers"
yet, but we're certainly low on the
scale.
Thus, if we really don't like be-
ing silent; we can either become
the monied class of '84 or find a
new philosophical and political
base with which to build a real
Movement. The choice is really
ours, isn't it?

N

Is this where we're headed?

selves. It should be obvious that
the Movement - (its title always
promised more unity and commit-
tment than was ever there) - is
now disintegrated; special interest
groups are the trend. OK, we re-
spond. Women will handle t h e
struggle for abortion reform, and
child care; blacks and other minor-
ities will fight against racism and
for equal rights, etc. But unfortun-
ately, one or two-issue groups are
easy targets for co-optation into
the institutions they are trying to

change. A social institution - like
a university, for example -"can
easily make concessions when pub-
lic attention or controversy threat-
en, and later, when the interest
group has been "defused," make
the changes meaningless through
bureaucratic stalling and altera-
tion.
RECITING EXAMPLES in this
community can be almost painful.
Student power turned into SGC, a
ridiculous group of lackeys stu-

dents voted to give a dollar p e r
term from each student; academic
reform became dozens of boring-
as-hell committees working so
slowly that by the time a proposed
change was instituted, the students
who yelled for it had either grad-
uated, given up, or forgotten what
they were yelling about; and sex-
ual equality became some neglect-
ed memo in the bureaucratic bow-
els of HEW.
(Blacks may have succeeded in
bucking this trend, but if they

Martial-law oppression

As GOVERNMENT officials in the Phil-
ippines reported- yesterday, life was
"proceeding normally". Just what had
happened to evoke this announcement of
business as usual?
In response to a vaguely defined
'Communist rebellion" President Ferdi-
nand Marcos had declared martial-law,
shut down all newspapers, radio and
television stations, seized all public utili-
ties and transportation, and incarcerat-
ed many opposition political leaders and
suspected Communists.
Life was indeed, "proceeding normal-
ly". These actions typify the sort of
things that have precipitated discon-
tent and bitterness among the masses of
Philippines poor, who are weary of vio-
lent oppression of attempts to reform a
corrupt regime, and are increasingly
finding violence the only path open to
them.
In a country that claims to be a de-
mocracy, how can- the leadership expect
to command the loyalty and faith of the
citizens when they expropriate powers
not granted in the national constitution
Today's staff:
News: Cindy Hill, Tammy Jacobs, J i m
Kentch, Paul Travis
Editorial Page: Lindsay Chaney, Marty
Stern
Photo Technician: Terry McCarthy
Editorial Staff
SARA FITZGERALD
Editor
PAT BAUER ............Associate Managing Editor
ROSE SUE BERSTEIN ....Associate Managing Editor
LINDSAY CHANEY...............Editorial Director
MARK DILLEN ..................Magazine Editor
LINDA DREEBEN .......Associate Managing Editor
TAMMY JACOBS ...................Managing Editor
LORIN LAI3ARDEE .............Personnel Director
ARTH-UR LERNER ..... ...........Editorial Director
JONATHAN MILLER ...............Feature Editor
ROBERT SCHREINER ..............Editorial Director
GLORIA SMITH .....................Arts Editor
ED SUROVELL . ........................Books Editor
PAUL TRAVIS ............Associate Managing Editor

and suppress all political opposition, even
that in duly elected public office?
In addition to decreeing ,martial-law,
Marcos has announced "sweeping gov-
ernmental reorganization", which he
claims will improve the lot of the poor.
Such promises from mouth of Marcos are
to be taken with a grain of salt. It is
not the first time such "reforms" have
been instituted and doubtless won't be
the last.
Such stop-gap measures do nothing
toward realizing the goal of Philippine
democracy- and can only temporarily
prevent open rebellion among an op-
pressed, poverty-stricken people. Real re-
form will never take place as long as the
endemic violence and corruption in
Philippine government continues una-
bated.
-JOHN CLEMENTS
Prrinciple-less
THE RECENT revelation that Washte-
naw County Sheriff Douglas Harvey
is boycotting a towing company because
it refuses to put his campaign posters on
its property shows a vindictive childish-
ness.
Though the action may not be in a
strict sense illegal, it is in the highest
sense unethical.
This is not the first time in this year's
campaign that Sheriff Harvey has been
charged' with using his county position
for political gain. He has been accused
of using a county truck to distribute
campaign material and forcing his depu-
ties to put Harvey bumper stickers on
their cars.
These accusations are serious, and
point to a lack of feeling on Harvey's
part for basic principles of fair play-
in fact they show a heavy handed
misuse of his position as sheriff of
Washtenaw County.
--DAVID BURHENN

LSA graduation study: a worthless effort?

By JAY RISING
IN THE LAST week, the office of
the dean of the literary college
has announced the formation of a
"blue ribbon" commission to study
''graduation requirements'' for
LSA. The fifteen member group
is charged with studying distri-
bution requirements, language re-
quirements, admission policies,
grading requirements, and several
other important matters.
The LSA Student Government
has been invited to participate in
the work of the commission. Spe-
cifically, it has been asked to
appoint one of its members.How-
ever, the LSA Student Government
finds itself obliged to refuse to take
part in this proposal. The govern-
ment has been compelled to take
this step becausemthepestablishment
of this commission as it is pres-
entlyenvisaged,'is not in the best
interest of the students of LSA.
The logic which inspired this
proposal seems, on its face, to be

admirable. The comprehensive na-
ture of the commission's work
seems to imply that it is expected
to formulate a wide-ranging and
well integrated proposal to effect
needed changes in LSA. For those
who are familiar with the history
of reform efforts in the literary
college, however, the actual impact
of the commission is likely to be
counterproductive.
The size and complexity of the
commission's task is staggering.
Though a full academic year has
been allotted for the commission
to do its work, Eugene Nissen, sec-
retary to the LSA Administrative
Board has admitted that the June
30, 1973 deadline may not be met.
Anyone familiar with the, opera-
tion of similar, though far less am-
bitious projects; in LSA, will tes-
tify to the almost incredible op-
timism suggested by this schedule.
AND IT SHOULD BE made
clear that after this lengthy period

of deliberation,. there is no guar-
antee that any commission pro-
posals will be accepted by the fac-
ulty since the commission is mere-
ly an advisory body.
The upshot of this is that every
issue important to the members of
the LSA community will have to
await the recommendation of this
commission. During the past year,
for example, both the Student-Fac-
ulty Policy Board and the Com-
mittee on the Underclass Experi-
ence (CUE) made significant pro-
gress in developing proposals on
grading. The considerable amount
of time, effort and iny the case of
CUE, money lavished on these ef-
forts will have been wasted if the
grading question, is, as proposed
recycled for further study.
Most importantly, however, the
commission endangers the progress
that has been made on the most
basic issue facing students and
the literary college as a whole.
The central effort of the LSA
Student Government since its in-

ception has been to gain for stu-
dents their proper role in the de-
cision making of the college. This
role should be one of an equal
to the faculty, not a minority or
advisory voice. This struggle has
not been an easy one, but a few
advances have been made.
Most notably, of course, is the
Student - Faculty Policy Board.
Created to contain equal num-
bers of students and faculty, the
board was to "debate any matter
within the jurisdiction of the fac-
ulty" and have the power to "ini-
tiate and introduce before the fac-
ulty its own proposals and legis-
lation."%
ESSENTIALLY THE BLUE rib-
bon commission assumes for it-
self the jurisdiction of the Policy
Board. Although the commission
is to be only temporary, it sets a
precedent for arbitrary removal
of any or all matters from the
hands of the policy board. Not only
does this destrov the board's abil-
ity to function, but it also negates
the concept of a permanent, equal,
and institutionaly recognized role
of students in decision making.
The LSA Student Government
has worked amicably with the ad-
ministration and particularly with

Dean Rhodes. The dean has ex-
pressed what seems to be a sin-
cere desire for reform, and the
government has whole - heartedly
cooperated in the past. The inter-
ests of harmony, will not, how-
ever, be allowed to override the
interests of LSA students and the
future of the college. We expect
the administration to respect the
position of the government; that
on this point, we will not com-
promise.
Nonetheless, the administration
has implied that if the LSA Stu-
dent Government refused to ap-
point tstudents to the commission
and deny its support,.students will
be recruited from other sources.
It is difficult t6 believe such a
blatant violation of student rights
is contemplated.
The LSA Student Government is
the only constitutionally authorized
body which may speak on behalf
of LSA students. Its members have
been popularly elected, and no ad-
ministration fiat can similarly le-
getimize the role of any student
with whom they might choose to
stock their "blue ribbon" commis-
sion.
Jay Rising is the President of the
LSA Student Government.

.4

y

,,

s

Letters to The 11

Fleming attacked
To The Daily:
THE FOLLOWING is a copy of
an openletter to President Flem-
ing:
It has become apparent that the
University of Michigan has some
unhealthy plans for Ann Arbor's
health care system. The recent af-
filiation agreement between St.
Joseph Mercy Hospital (SJMH)
and the University of Michigan
Medical Center (UMMC), planned
University facilities for family
planning and the planned UMMC-
Washtenaw County health center,
all point to a take-over of this
community's health facilities by
the state university in Ann Arbor.
The consequences of this take-
over are clear. Even now, the peo-
ple of Ann Arbor must struggle to
have their health needs met by
SJMH, a hospital which consid-
ers itself community - oriented.
With the responsibility for health
care placed in the hands of a state
university, community h e a lt h
needs will be subordinated to
teaching and research: functions
which the UMMC must carry out
above all else.
It is also clear that the people
of Ann Arbor are powerless to in-
fluence or change the decisions
which are now being made about
the health care system with which
they must live and for which they
must pay. It appears that the ad-
ministration of both hospitals are
most content making decisions be-
hind closed doors. These decisions
are then released to the public
piecemeal and well after the fact
so as to get as little feedback as
possible from concerned commun-
ity members. The "representa-
tives" of the community on SJM-
H's Community Advisory Board
(CAB) reflect only the big-money,
corporate interests of this region.

hospital, you have the responsibil-
ity to place their health needs
above all else. However, as the
president ofca state university, you
have the conflicting responsibility
to maintain teaching and research
as the priorities of the UMMC.
Your willingness as a member of
the CAB to allow the UMMC to as-
sume its new community functions
is living proof that both responsi-
bilities cannot be met simultane-
ously.
In light of this conflict and its
unhealthy results, we, the Ann
Arbor Chapter of the Medical
Committee for Human Rights, de-
mand your resignation from the
Community Advisory Board of St.
Joseph Mercy Hospital.
We ask that in all current and
future negotiations pertaining to
the health care facilities of the
people of Ann Arbor, you reflect
more upon the impact which your
secret dealings have on the lives
of those people and less upon the
power, prestige, and profits which
they may bring.
-Eric B. Schoomaker
and 10 others
Sept. 25
Anti-abortion
To The Daily:
I'D LIKE TO comment on John
Steele's letter representing the
views of "students in' defense of
life" toward the abortion issue.
He feels he has solved the un-
solvable question: "At what time
does life begin?" He knows human
life begins at conception because
"many doctors" have gone on re-
cord favoring this position. Doc-
tors are entitled to their own opin-
ions but they don't have the last
words of eternal truth.,
Many of us think the sperm and
egg are also forms of human life.
If this is true, then we are all
guilty of killing human life through

./ I
Requirements
To The Daily:
AS AN INCOMING freshman I
would like to ask the sophomores,
juniors, and seniors why they have
tolerated the language and distri-
bution requirements? Why, on the
progressive campus of the Univer-
sity of Michigan, does such an
archais and out-moded rule exist
which requires that to receive a
bachelors degree one must take a
language?
Of what use is Italian to a pre-
med student? Can physics be of
any use to a future poet? The B.
G.S. program is not a viable alter-
native to these stupid requirements
because it does not allow one to
concentrate. The time to act is
now - the longer something ex-
ists the harder it is to abolish it.
The 1 a n g u a g e requirement
should be the first goal. Lets put
pressure on those who can change
this unfair requirement.
-David Lambert, '76
Sept. 25

Putting ol' Sol to work
poses many problems

4

By DAVID FRADIN
RECENTLY during a qne-hour
Deriod a storm occurred on the
surface of the sun that produced
enough energy to meet the United
States' demand for electrical pow-
er for 100 years at the present
rates of consumption. The ques-
tion remains, however, whether
mankind can gather and use the
sun s energy on earth. Some sci-
entists have suggested erecting
large solar panels in orbit to col-
lect the sun's energy without wea-
ther inerference and beaming 'the
energy to earth by microwaves. Is
the idea feasible? Do we need a
source of energy other than fos-
sil fuels?
Upon examining where t h e
United States' energy supply
comes from one finds that over

75 per cent from oil and other
fossil fuels. Quite clearly a finite
source of fossil fuels will dry up
under the pressures of infinite de-
mand. In fact, the day may not be
too far away when we will drive up
to the gas pump and have to pay
one dollar per gallon.
An alternative source of energy
must be found. Nuclear breeder re-
actors- are an interim solution.
Thermonuclear fusion is a po-
tential long-range solution. Solar
power is another.
THERE ARE THREE major
problems with solar power. First,
the sun must be thoroughly re-
searched and understood. This is
being done today through the Na-
tional Aeronautics and Space Ad-
ministration's (NASA) P i o n e e r
spacecraft. Second, solar cells
must become much more efficient.
Today, solar cells convert only
about 10-15 per cent of the light
energy reaching them to electric
energy.
Already many aerospace com-
panies, such as Northrup, Grum-
man, and North American Rock-
well are conducting basic re-
search in improving the efficien-
cies of solar cells. Third, a cheap-
er way must be found to put solar
cells and energy-transmitting sta-
tions into orbit. NASA's Space
Shuttle, a reusable rocket that can
put satellites into orbit and shuttle
them back to earth to be- used
again, may go a long way towards
reducing the cost of erecting so-
lar power stations in space.

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