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March 31, 1983 - Image 4

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Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1983-03-31

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OPINION

Page 4

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Thursday, March 31, 1983
Wasserman

The Michigan Daily

I

Eie a M e bte ntahe U iichig an
Edited and managed by students at- The University of Michigan

Vol. XCIII, No. 142

420 Maynard St.
Ann Arbor, MI 48109

Editorials represent a majority opinion of the Daily's Editorial Board

Superfund safety

HREE YEARS AGO Congress set
3 up a multi-billion "Superfund" to
help pay the cleanup costs of thousands
of toxic waste dumps which dot the
nation's landscape. But under current
procedure, state and federal
regulations and inspectors are not only
unable to keep the wastes from being
dumped in the first place, but many
states don't have the money and the
EPA has been too slow in stopping the
danger from spreading.
Two sites in Michigan and California
are cases in point. Not being ones to
bicker too much with America's all-
important industry interests, the
Justice Department tried to work out
an "amicable" settlement for cleanup
costs with more than 200 companies
who illegally dumped wastes near
Riverside, Calif. Not surprisingly, the
secret negotiations broke down, and
the department is going to sue. But
during those six months of talks, the
EPA did nothing to clean up the waste.
Riverside was lucky. The state of
California had the funds to contain the
wastes from spreading during the

recent heavy rains there. Other com-
munities were spared from the health
risks posed by contaminated drinking
water supplies.
Midland, Mich. has not been so
lucky. The state Department of
Natural Resources knew about
possible dioxin contamination by Dow
Chemical Co. near the town and in the
Tittabawassee and Saginaw Rivers as
early as 1978, but cuts in the state
budget eliminated funding for study of
the area. It wasn't until after fish
caught in the river were found to- be
contaminated with dioxin, which has
been linked to cancer, that the site
drew any attention.
With such sites threatening millions
of Americans, it is ridiculous for
the Superfund to sit idle while lawyers
argue over who should pay and states
ignore dumps because they don't have
the money to investigate them. As sites
are identified, money should be allot-
ted and contracts for investigation and
cleanup signed. Legal battles can be
fought later, but struggles for the
nation's health and safety cannot.

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LETTERS TO THE DAILY:

a6

Daily ili from o bjective-jo urn alitis...

Heckling free speech

T IBERALS ARE FOND of fighting
for their First Amendment right
to a protected free speech when that
right is attacked. They rightly fear the
intrusion upon free speech would
threaten their input into the political
system. But when liberals are doing
the restricting, those principles go
flying out the window.
That has been the case in many in-
cidents involving U.S. Ambassador to
the United Nations Jeane Kirkpatrick
and others. The ambassador has been
heckled so persistently while attem-
pting to give speeches on various college
-campuses that she has had to leave the
podium on several occasions. She has
had to cancel at least two addresses,
one after Smith College officials told
her they could not guarantee her
safety.
The intensity of the heckling has
prompted a host of college academic
organizations to endorse a statement

condemning these intrusions on Kirk-
patrick's, and others, First Amen-
dment rights. The statement correctly
points out that the hissing and booing is
not only being used to disapprove of
particular viewpoints, but to "silence
those with whom one disagrees."
These hecklers don't have to agree!
with one word Kirkpatrick says, but
they have no right to prevent her from
speaking those words, or the audience
from hearing them.
Protesters need not cease protesting
if they disagree, but their opposition
prevents her from speaking, the
protesters must be removed from the
scene.
These type of restrictions on free
speech whether they come from the
right or the left, have no place under
the Constitution. Kirkpatrick's words
may not be palatable to some, but they
have a place in this nation's political
dialogue.

To the Daily:
The MSA endorsement of a
petition calling for the Daily to
acknowledge acts of irrespon-
sible journalism is laudable. The
petition may not, however, get to
the root of the problem. Sen-
sationalism and racism are only
current symptoms of the disease
that has infected the Daily for the
last few years. The disease if ob-
jective-journalitis.
This illnesspervertsthe minds
of the Daily staff from the editors
to headline writers. The vision of
the "balanced story" deludes
these students. Reporters, they
believe, must be disinterested
observers. Articles must not
"lean." Responsible journalists
only follow the "middle road."
Objective-journalitis blinds its
victims to its own internal con-
tradictions.
There is no such thing as un-
biased journalism. There are not
just two sides to every story.
Disinterested reporters are
either asleep - exemplified by
the Daily's misquotations and
typos -pawns of the powers that
be - exemplified by the Daily's
parodying of the national media
- or both. Responsible jour-
nalism is not synonymous with
objective journalism. Instead,
responsible journalism is first
and foremost a critical under-
taking.
Responsible journalism is not
sniping from concealment, but
rather an excercise in which even
the decision that a story is news is
openly admitted to stem from
one's (hopefully coherent)
systematic point of view. Your
status as a newspaper does not
prtect you from the necessity of
formulating an understanding of
the news you report. It is no use to

pretend that an eight page
newspaper has no criteria for the
selection of its stories.
Fortunately, objective-jour-
nalitis need not be terminal. The
Daily must begin to critically
examine, not just report, student
issues. A student newspaper is
not just staffed by students but
also run for students. Although
the Ann Arbor News and the MSA

News presently keep students in-
formed, the Daily could restore
its former credibility if it
assumed the role of an advocate
of student interests.
If the Daily were actually an
advocate of student interests, it
would not contribute to the
spread of institutionalized
racism. The fact that the Daily
continues to create racism and

feckless sensation indicates the
changes the Daily will have to
make as it seeks to become a
responsible newspaper.
- Eric Schnauf4
Josh Ezekiel
Ellen Trabka
Larry D. Jonas
Gwynne Sigel
John Schloerb
March 30

...Anti-Daily petition a bunch of bunk

To the Daily:
MSA's endorsement of the
petition asking that the Daily
admit to irresponsible journalism
is a bunch of bunk. The articles
cited by MSA member Mark
Klein clearly demonstrate this.
Although I'd have to agree with
him in regards to the story about
the bulimiac girl who was ex-
pelled from her sorority, at least
the Daily made an attempt to ex-
pose a real problem on this cam-
pus. The girl's name and picture
should not have been printed. But
all media have the right to expose
or not to expose their sources.
The "Jap" article, in my
opinion, was well done. It ap-
peared in an issue of Weekend,
that informative magazine
published by the Daily that offers
information on Ann Arbor night
spots, films, and dining, among
other things. It has also printed a
few intelligent book reviews.
These are items of interest to the
University community. After
reading the "Jap" article, I said
to a friend, "It's about time those
guys had the cojones to print
something that most students
really think about and discuss."
Is that irresponsible jour-

nalism? C'mon, guys, we all
know about Japs, earthies, frat
boys, sorority starlets, cynical
non-greeks, punkers, and on and
on and on. Why not write about
those who make up visible mem-
bers of the student body?
If Brian Sher and Mark Klein
have any opinions on these or any
other subjects, they should sim-
ply write an article, send it to the
Daily, and, if written even in
engineer prose, it would probably
get printed. That's what the

opinion page is there for. If these
gentlemen wish to further their
career ambitions, they should try
any other method other than
-sophomoric, attention-getting,
finger pointing. Free speech and
access to speak openly is offerred
by our campus newspaper and
thus represent the rules of the
game. So if you have anything to
say, write about it, don't bitch
(squawk) about it.
- Randy Watson
March 29

'U' will suffer from cuts

FATHER OF NUCLEAR FREEZE

'Yes' on MSA proposal 'A'

To the Daily:
I am a student at the School of
Education in the undergraduate
program. In regards to the
recommendations to cut the
School of Education budget by
40% and to phase out the un-
dergraduate program, J wonder
if the Budget Priorities Commit-
tee has considered the effects of
such action on 'the rest of the
University. I am afraid that not
only the schools targeted, but all
University schools and depar-
tments will suffer financially due
to declining enrollment for
several different reasons.
The greatest cause of declining
enrollment will be the University
of Michigan's drop in national
standings. Michigan's top ten
standing will surely suffer in light
of the university's lack of com-
mitment to imporve and main-
tain, by financially investing in,
the quality of education at the
schools of Education, Natural
Resources, and Art.
Already the response to the
review process from prominent
alumni who had been sending
their children here has been to
cease sending any more of their
children or financial aid to this
once great university. My final
point involves students such as
myself who would have left the
University three years ago to
complete my training as a

physics teacher elsewhere had
there been no School of
Education. I know that part of the
master plan is to retain the cer-
tification program, but this would
not have helped me. To complete
my training with a Bachelor of6
Science from the Physics Depar-
tment plus certification, given
my academic status at the time I
made the decision in 1980, would
have meant four more terms, at
least, than the time I have spent
at the School of Education. (In-
cidentally, I pay my tuition in
full, as did my brothers, without
loans.)
My two younger brothers did@
attend here and my youngest
brother plans to. If the Budget
Priorities Committee and the
Regents cut out the very heart of
this university as they plan to, I
will advise my youngest brother
not to attend here.
It is obvious to me what the
"bottom line" will be if the
University carries out the
recommendations of the review
committee. Please, before the
damage done already becomes
irreversible, show the people of
Michigan and the rest of the
nation, that we here at the
University of Michigan, put high
standards of academic excellen-
ce above all else.
- Elizabeth Dahlberg
March 21

To the Daily:
I am a student member of the
Board of Directors of Student
Legal Services here at the
University. On April 5 and 6 the
question of this services' funding
and funding for the entire
Michigan Student Assembly will
be voted upon by the student
body. I surge each and every
Michigan student to vote "yes"
on proposal "A" on the student
ballot and renew funding for
Student Legal Services for the
following reasons:
The ballot proposal is
designed to freeze the real
current level of funding with ad-
justments to be made only for in-
flation. This funding system is

save students and other tenants
up to $800 million in energy costs
in the next two decades. It has
drafted numerous other lan-
dlord/tenant laws and court rules
which help protect every
student's housing rights every
day.
" Student Legal Services is one
of less than a handful of Univer-
sity student programs directly
controlled by students. Five
members of a board of nine direc-
tors are students. These students
are chosen by the Michigan
Student Assembly.
" The funding proposal will also
fund many other important
student programs - such as the
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