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March 23, 1987 - Image 4

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1987-03-23

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Page 4

Monday, Mardh 23, 1987

Mb 3idii & ah1Q
Edited and managed by students at The University of Michigan

Academic freedom


No. 111

420 Maynard St.
Ann Arbor, MI 48109

Unsigned editorials represent a majority of the Daily's Editorial Board
All other cartoons, signed articles, and letters do not necessarily represent the opinion of the Daily.



MSA president has been
characterized by acrimony and
ineffectiveness. After his party
won a minority of the assembly
seats, Muenchow never brought
MSA together behind a common
While Muenchow was not a
strong leader, he did have
successes. He prevented the
University planner from limiting
the number of banners on the Diag
to three. By some accounts he has
worked diligently on minority
issues and is sincere in his-
opposition to the code.
Other issues have not been dealt
with in such a constructive
manner, however. Most notably
mishandled was funding for the
Public Interest Research Group in
Michigan. Muenchow's opposition
put him in the minority. Rather
than give way to the will of the
assembly, he was 'reduced to such
tactics as walk-outs (attempts to
deny quorum by leaving the
assembly chambers with his
supporters) and late quorum call
votes when opposition members
were gone.
Conflict between Muenchow and
his adversaries was apparent from
the beginning of his term. As a
result of Muenchow's
unwillingness to pay MSA
employees who had opposed him
in the campaign, MSA was forced

to hire a mediator to resolve
conflicts within the assembly - a
tremendous waste of money.
Muenchow and his opponents
on the assembly progressed from
this point. At first, bitterness over
mudslinging tactics from the
campaign almost tore the assembly
apart. Eventually Muenchow
appreciated the work of the Student
Rights committee and other internal
MSA committees while his
opponents learned to work with
him. This decreased the adversarial
atmosphere within MSA.
Although Muenchow became
less partisan, he never was able to
unite the assembly. Perhaps,
Muenchow was faced with an
impossible task; uniting a diverse
group behind a single program.
Muenchow, however, could have
done direct consitiuent contact and
used this as means to bring MSA
together as Ken Weine did by
going into the dorms to discuss the
It is the responsibility of
Muenchow's recently elected
successor as president, Weine, as
well as his running mate, Becca
Felton, to insure that MSA
reestablishes its ties to the students
The assembly president should do
more than merely act as a mediator
between conflicting groups. -He or
she should unite the assembly so
that he can effectively speak both to
and for the students.

By Daniel Axelrod
I wish to correct a serious mistake in
your front-page article "Teach-in educates
students about 'U' military research"
(Daily, 3/13/87) on the MSA teach-in on
military research, at which I was a
speaker and attendee. The writer said that I
blasted academic freedom. This is
completely untrue. I did say that freedom
- indeed any freedom -has limits.
This idea that freedom has limits is
nothing new or remarkable. It is an idea
agreed upon by everyone who has
commented on the University's military
research guidelines controversy. Oliver
Wendell Holmes once put it best:
"freedom to swing your arms stops where
someone else's chin begins." The only
question to be resolved is where those
other chins are relative to one's arms.
The idea that freedom has limits is
even accepted by the University
administration. President Shapiro, as I
pointed out in my speech, publically
declared that recent racist remarks on the
campus will not be tolerated. Although
racist students gleefully exercised their
"freedom of speech" in insulting whole
races of humans, that form of freedom
goes beyond the limit - a limit set
because that freedom begins to infringe
upon other social values, such as peace,
security, and other people's freedoms.
Axelrod is professor of physics.

The fundamental point of my speech
- quite explicitly stated many times,
although entirely missed by your reporter
- was that military research has, as its
ultimate potential goal, the creation of
weapons designed to inflict violent
damage on other humans, and that this
fact should also put it outside the realm
of "freedoms" allowed on this campus.
The debate is not whether limits exist,
but on which side of those limits
University research should be placed. I
argued at length (again, totally ignored by
your slumbering reporter) that the Star
Wars program has absolutely nothing to
do with the defense of the American
people, but rather can only function as a
backup for a nuclear first strike. It works
'in much the same way as a bullet-proof
vest donned by a bank robber before a
heist, or the heavy metal armor donned by
the knights of old before embarking on a
campaign of pillage in some far-off lands.
The relevent information is that the
US government has had a long history of
developing nuclear first strike plans
against non-nuclear "adversaries," as
discussed in detail in my recently
coauthored book (with physicist Dr.
Michio Kaku), "To Win a Nuclear War:
the Pentagon's Secret War Plans" and
emphasized in my speech at the teach-in,
again somehow slipped by your reporter.
The fact that research on first strike
weapons - Stars Wars and others -
aims toward the destruction of human life
and indeed the obliteration of all that we

The Michigan Daily
know - makes it no more acceptable
than racism.
It is remarkable that essentially all the
points of substance presented at the teach-
in, both mine and several others, entirely 4
passed over your reporter. Remarkable,
but nonetheless entirely typical of the
Daily, since virtually every newswothty
event on this campus with which I have
been familar in the past few years has
been routinety misunderstood,
misreported, and misquoted by the news
staff. The news staff appears to be
unimformed and uninterested in the
subjects about which they write.
"Neutrality" in reporting is not 4
synonomous with ignorance and
distinterest. The result is usually a
mechanical, sloppy, inaccurate, rush job.
It pains me to say, not because it is
true, but because several months ago I
resolved to totally ignore the Daily in
favor of the University Record and the
Ann Arbor News. This resolution was in
response to another even more egregious
case of amateurish misreporting last
November over the tragic death of a
fellow physics faculty member. (In that
case, you did not even print the letter of
objection I had sent in.) But your error
here again needs public correction. If I
ever "blast" something on this campus, it
is much more likely to be the poor
quality of the Daily rather than something


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Sexism is prevalent

in advertising



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To the Daily:
Mark Kulkis argues in his
article "Flesh for fantasy,"
(Consider, 3/6/87) that sexism
in advertising is nonexistent,
but then concedes that if
sexism in advertising does
exist, it is "unavoidable or
Intentional and avoidable
sexism does exist in advert -
ising. To claim that sexist
advertising is unintentional is
to ignore the multi-billion
dollar advertising industry
which employs high paid
professionals, often psycho -
logists, to appeal to our un -
conscious insecurities, fantas -
ies, and fears to convince us to
buy their products.
, Advertisers understand that
all women live with the threat
of sexual assault. Women are
often shown gagged and tied
up, bruised, wearing tattered
clothing, or in dangerous situa -
tions. Advertisers are aware
that a woman is beaten every
eighteen seconds and that one
out of three will be rape
victims in this country.
Advertisers trying to reach
vulnerable women may depict
husbands as disapproving or
upset with something trivial
the wife has done. They know
that one in three marriages is
violent and that one in seven
wives is raped by her husband.
Advertisers who use abuse
tactics to promote products are
manipulating and terrifying
Sexist advertising as a tool
to harass and invoke fear in the
Kulkis makes reference in
his article to the "dark ages"
when women were considered
the property of their husbands.
Today in Michigan and twenty-
six other.states, marital rape is
considered legal. Though the

The more we devalue each
other as people, the less likely
we are to have honest
communication and meaningful
relationships. Though men
and women both suffer from
objectification, sexist advert -
ising perpetuates the role of
women in the unequal end of a

dominant power relationship.
Advertisers are targeting us
as consumers. If we don't buy
their discriminatory methods of
selling products, they can't
profit at the very intentional
and avoidable expense of
women and children in our


-Karen Klein
Jill Holbert
Ruth Gonzer
David Collins
Members/ Ann Arbor
Coalition Against Rape
March 19

Non-smokers require clean

air for



To The Daily:
As of Jan. 1, 1987,
Michigan enacted a law that
cracked down on smokers and
attempted to give non-smokers
more right to breathe clean air.
In response, the U of M has
restricted smoking in all
university buildings. The law,
on the state level and here at
the univer'sity, has brought
about heated debate. Smokers
have claimed that their
constitutional rights have been
violated and that this is a first
step toward communism. I
would like to add to the debate.
The issue of smoking hits
very close to home with me,
because it deals, ultimately,
with the issue of the heart and
lungs. Smokers have chosen to
decide that they just don't value
these organs that much. The
harms of smoking are not a
controversial issue; rather, they
are scientific facts backed by
phenomenal and horrifying
statistics. Smoking leads to
lung cancer, heart disease and
emphysema, among other
complications. There are
340,000 smoking related deaths
in the United States each
year- 340,000 deaths a year
that could be prevented.
Recently, I was informed by
a heart surgeon that due to
complications arising from
infant open-heart surgery I will
probably only have a few more
years to live before my lungs

This letter is not a bleeding-
heart plea for sympathy. I don't
want you to know who I am,
just to realize I could be
anyone. Someday you will
stand next to me, or sit next to
me or walk past me with your
cigarette and I will be forced to
inhale your smoke for an
instant. I will step aside, but I
will be vexed that I have to go
out of my way to breathe clean


lungs. These healthy organs
they are so willfully destroying
would certainly be more
appreciated by me, when in a
few years my life is drawing to
a close due to lack of these
I don't have any illusions. I
know you smokers will
continue your loud demand for
rights, cry to the Constitution
for support, live under the
assumption that tomorrow
never comes and think that



Y 4O
/~ Mope o~
g H

f t

I will resent seeing you smoking-related diseases are
inhale your filthy smoke not in your future. Your heart
because almost every breath I and lungs will deteriorate
take hurts and my only slowly and you will have the
solution is a highly risky and time to argue for your rights to
statistically highly destroy them. How ironic.
unsuccessful transplant. Your Why should you listen to my
solution? As simple as putting argument? In a few more years
out a cigarette. I know many of I won't even be around to
the smokers out there couldn't present it.
care less about me. Truthfully, -Anonymous
I don't care about them either. February 16
But I care about their hearts and
CDLA newsletter objective
Pinochet's disregard for human
To the Daily: rights in Chile.
I read the first issue of The Based on this first
Democratic Alternative, and newsletter, The Democratic
unlike Bonnie Nevel (Daily, Alternative does not seem like
2/9/87), I didn't find CDLA's the work of what Ms. Neel
arguments "absurd." the news - calls a "right-wing group." I
letter's introduction focused on have never been to a CDLA
recent signs of democratic meeting, and I don't know any
progress in Latin America, of the group's leaders, so Ms.
while acknowledging that there Nevel might have more insight
was still a long way to o. into the group's beliefs than I.

.3 1~


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