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January 31, 1986 - Image 4

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The Michigan Daily, 1986-01-31

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4

OPINION
Page 4 Friday, January 31, 1986 The Michigan Daily

_AW

i

te mbtsa n Michigan
Edited and managed by students at The University of Michigan

Vol. XCVI, No. 86

420 Maynard St.
Ann Arbor, MI 48109

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

i;

Selective prosecution

Chas
THE SHUTTLE EXPLODS
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JANUARY 291986

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FAMILIES OF SHUTTLE CREW
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N TWO RECENT cases the
draft registration system has
shown that it operates in ways con-
trary to the American ideals which
the system is designed to defend.
The recent prosecution of Daniel
Rutt in Detroit is an example of
draft registration enforcement
which stifles free speech. Rutt op-
posed the idea of forced construc-
tion and felt that by registering he
would be acknowledging the
government's right to draft him.
Rutt's opposition stems from his
religious background as a Men-
nonite, a sect with a long history of
rejecting.military service on moral
grounds.
The fact that Rutt was chosen for
prosecution is obviously a result of
the fact that he stated his refusal to
register and his reason for doing so
in an outspoken manner. Around
the country, of all the young men
who failed to register within a
month of their 18th birthday, only
those who have chosen to speak
about their decision have been
prosecuted. By following this
policy the government is targeting
the courageous and principled, by
w doing so, are discouraging free
speech.
In a separate development
Secretary of Education William
Bennett announced plans to use
computer disks to compare lists of
registrants to lists of financial aid
recipients and to use this method to
deny financial aid to those who

have not registered.
Those who are affluent enough
not to qualify for financial aid are
not going to be affected by Ben-
nett's policy. Though the policy is
being justified by the need to en-
force the law, what it amounts to is
unequal and unfair enforcement.
Targeting the poor for enfor-
cement is reminiscent of unfair
conscription practices which have
marked the draft system since its
conception. The practice of
allowing those who could afford it
to pay someone else to take their
place on the battlefield in the Civil
War and the preponderance of poor
and minority draftees in Vietnam
are examples of economic
discrimination. If draft regis-
tration is only enforced among
those who require aid, registration
lists will be unfairly predominated
by this group.
The principle of sharing the bur-
den of military service not only
promotes fairness but discourages
military adventurism. It is easier
for a policy-maker to support a
conflict in which his own son will
not have to fight.
Registration is not the same as
an actual draft. But unfair
targeting simply encourages the
same type of practices were a real
draft to occur. The principles along
which draft registration is enfor-
ced should mirror those principles
which the registrants may
someday be called upon to defend.

E1-

JNUARY 31,1986

LETTERS:

0

Justice System misses point ofprison

Fixing what works

HE REAGAN administration,
in the words of Civil Rights
Commission Chairman Clarence
Pendleton, believes that "Affir-
mative Action is dead". It asserts
that loosening Affirmative Action
requirements will strengthen civil
rights. It's wrong.
Since 1968, government contrac-
tors have been required under an
executive order first issued by
President Kennedy in 1965 to hire
,,and promote blacks, women, and
Hispanics in approximate propor-
tion to the number of available,
qualified candidates in a given
market.
Currently these standards are
enforced through any annual
review by the compliance office
and by the threat of debarment
from federal contracts for com-
panies that are not making an ef-
fort to meet projected hiring goals.
Mandatory quotas are not a part of
Affirmative Action. Instead,
requirements consist of guidelines
and timetables to assist employers
in reaching these goals.
Reagan proposes a new
executive order which: would have
companies use the guidelines on a

voluntary basis. His proposal
would take the teeth out of the
existing order and make complying
companies vulnerable to reverse
discrimination lawsuits by white
males.
One of the main criticisms of Af-
firmative Action is that it has
created a gender and color con-
scious society. Employers are for-
ced to weigh these characteristics
when they hire and promote em-
ployees. The administration im-
plies that color and gender were
not considered before 1965: the
employment statistics of that
period indicate just the opposite.
Since 1965, the number of
federally employed women and
minorities has increased, but
disparities abound. Wages, expec-
tations, and educational standards
are all significantly lower for these
groups than they are- for white
males.
Clearly, Affirmative Action has
some problems, but it is necessary
to redress the past years of neglect
and discrimination. As House
Minority Leader Robert Michel has
said, "If it's working, you don't fix
it.''

To the Daily:
The criminal justice system is in
a sad situation. I often wonder
what can be done to revolutionize
our current methods of ap-
propriating not only just punish-
ment but more importantly also ef-
fective punishment. This letter ws
prompted by a Sixty Minutes show
following the Super Bowl (Jan. 26
Sun.). The segment portrayed a
candid, straightforward insight in-
to our thoroughly disappointing
correctional model.
Does a child/teenager learn by:
a) grounding for 3 months or a
whole semester, or b) a good hard
spanking or 6 hours raking the lawn
and a "don't do it again because I
love you." Will humanity benefit
from subjecting a thief/criminal to
current prisons for 5 to 20 years
who, all too often, upon returning
to society, commit more crimes. I
don't think so, yet our prison
system reflects or rather
proclaims society's ignorances in
addressing the situation.
What can be done? How can
someone who enters prison be at
all improved (sensitively, morally,
intellectually) after having served
his time? Worse, those few who
would like to rebuild, who "just
wish to do their time" are most
harmed; corrupted from attem-
pting to pursue a virtuous life, to
instead, inevitably maintaining
subsistence from prison cage to
prison cage. With the system of
hierarchies, with the necessity for
gang affiliations, the opportunity
to right one's self in prison is sim-
ply not an option, hence, there is no
incentive, no purpose to go
"straight." And shoot, philosophy
aside, it would be suicide to try and
be a moral upstanding citizen in
prison anyway.
It is obvious that our current
justice system does not serve as a
practical disincentive to drug
dealers or shop lifters, and it is
equally ineffective in
rehabilitating the more serious of-
fenders.
It is possible that in all the cen-
turies of society's progress, the
methods of criminal punishment
have been overlooked, or have
even regressed. I elude to the tried
notion of "public stockade." This
idea of peer judgement works very
well in China, and it worked in
early America and Europe, why
stop? Public persecution or public
ridicule is one of the harshest and
most effective curbs to criminal
temptation. Temptation is the key,
whether we speak of stealing,
raping, or dieting, it is from this
perspective that punishments and
disincentives must be sought.
People wonder why a rapist will,
upon release, go out and assault
someone again... "well he's had 10
Years to think ahout it hasn't he."

prisoner will return to the street
realizing half a life time, his
dignity, and all his youth, has
passed him by. This punishment is
a severe enough deterent now for
this 40 year-old who just spent 20
years in jail but an 18 or 21 year-old
does not realize these consequen-
ces. He will resent society for
having been imprisoned, or for
having been dealt a bad hand as a
child, in any case he certainly
Won't want to sit and study 4 or 6 or
8 years after prison.
If on your 16th birthday you
drive your dad's car into your
mom's car would it be more effec-
tive to learn your lesson by having
your driving priviledges locked up
all of high school until you're 18, or
by spending the next summer ear-

Demonstrators see film

C

To the Daily:
I would like to thank you for
printing a relatively objective ar-
ticle on the "demonstrators" of
the film Hail Mary. As one of the
demonstrators, I would like to
clarify a few details concerning
our action.
The Roman Catholic Church
believes 'the Blessed Virgin
Mary, the Mother of Jesus, was a
very special person. She was
conceived without original sin,
which no one else is able to claim.
She spent her entire life in an
extraordinary state of grace,
doing God's work, and never once
committing a sin. She remained a
virgin Her entire life, though
married to St. Joseph, who also
remained chaste. After her
death, She was assumed bodily
into heaven and is given the role
of Queen of heaven and Earth. It
is thorough Her intercession and
Her prayers to our Lord that He
shows us mercy despite out con-
stant provocations and offense
against Him. We owe Her a great
deal of thanks and gratitude for
Her help, lest the current suf-
ferings of the human race in-
crease tremendously.
Given all this, you can see why
we are so upset whenever Our
Lady is humiliated. We owe Her
our love, and instead we make
movies casting Her as a vulgar
tramp. She is as perfect as a
human being can be: sinless,
pure, the Immaculate Concep-
tion! And She loves us very
much. It is our duty as Christians
to go wherever Her name is belit-
tled, even in the least, and pray,
so that She may find some com-
fort from our prayers despite the
abuses she must endure. The film
Hail Mary makes Her appear in-
finitely lower than She truly is,
and this we consider blasphemy.
Our "demonstration" did involve

This is what we are doing for our
loving Mother.
The only point in your article
that I take exception to is your
rendition of the prayer called
"The Hail Mary." It is the most
often repeated prayer, not
"chant," of therosary. The
rosary is a series of prayers which
Our Lady asked us to recite. The
correct words of the "Hail Mary"
are: Hail Mary, full of grace,
the Lord is with thee; blessed
art thou among women, and
blessed is the fruit of thy
Web of lies si
To the Daily:
It is encouraging to see that a
jury of Ann Arbor residents has
acted to support the right of
citizens tosprotest against their
government, by acquiting the
four CIA protesters tried yester-
day. However, the fact that
people had to stand trial and risk
imprisonment for taking part in a
legal protest can only be at-
tributed to an effort by the police
and the university to suppress
dissent.
Apparently several police of-
ficers were prepared to lie under
oath in order to see the protestors
convicted. Perhaps even more
disturbing is the fact that at least
one university employee also ob-
structed the efforts of the defen-
dants to prepare their case by
preventing their lawyer from
speaking with university em-
ployees. who witnessed the
protest. This necessitated the
issuance of eleven subpoenas, in-
cluding one to President Shapiro
himself.
In addition to acquiescing to
the presentation of false
testimony and denying the defen-
se access to witnesses in an effort

ning the damages and trust back
from your parents, who in the
meantime good willingly, maintain
their faith in you as well.
500 yea-rs ago you could go to jail,
come out and become a farmer or
a town blacksmith. One could earn
respect and a responsible niche in
society. But life moves much too
fast now to expect positive results
from a person after having tossed
10 or 25 years out. I surely don't
propose to turn criminals loose or
to simply slap their wrist, but bet-
ween jail and the rocketing by of
time and progress what more does
a convict have to lose. It is this at-
titude that a prison sentence
fosters and that prison serves to
perpetuate... a sorry cycle and ex-
pensive waste in and out of jail.

I really don't want to have
criminals on the street but current
methods are sorely inadequate. It
is apparent that realistically, in too
many cases, criminals live only
one option; crime, punishmen
crime, punishment, etc. What -
long to see is an elimination of all
these subsequent punishments and
crimes. However, to achieve this
one must literally revolutionize
and update to terms reflecting
modern civilization, that initial
punishment, which is currently
ineffectively manifested by
Prison.
-Micah Schm
January 2
as insulting
womb, Jesus. Hail Mary,
Mother of God; pray for us
sinners now, and at the hour
of our death. Amen.
This is a centuries old prayer
which most Catholics know.
Such are the motives behind
the prayers and protests of the
film Hail Mary. May God have
mercy on us for insulting His
loving Mother, and breaking Her
Immaculate Heart.
-Jon Sussman
January 27

tifles

dissent

a0

to convict the protestors, the
university also lied to get the
police there in the first place. Leo
Heatley, the director of campus
safety, told the police that the
Spartacus Youth League, a group
known for disruptive protests,
was planning the protest at the
CIA recruitment, even though
they have had virtually no
presence in Ann Arbor for
several years. Mr. Heatley made
a similar misrepresentation to
get the police to The Today Show
protest.
That the university would
ecomeenmeshed in a web of lies
and deceit in order to stifle legal
dissent, demonstrates the danger
for an institution of higher
education when it makes itself a
recruiting ground for a terrorist
organization such as the CIA. The
brutal terrorism that the CIA has
sponsored throughout the world,
and is currently sponsoring
against the Nicaraguan people,
has no place in a civilized society,
and least of all in an institution
committed to the unfettered ex-
pression of ideas.
-Dean Baker
January 304

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