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January 29, 1988 - Image 4

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The Michigan Daily, 1988-01-29

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4

OPINION

Page 4

Friday, January 29, 1988

The Michigan Daily

_ _

SIii 3idhigant DUIIQ
Edited and managed by students at The University of Michigan
Vol. XCVIII, No. 83 420 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.

S capegoating
T HE RECOMMENDATIONS of Law adminis
Prof. Sallyanne Payton and Vice sexism,
President for Government Relations discrimi
Richard Kennedy to Interim Uni- The r
versity President Robben Fleming calling it
for the two students who aired the sma
racist jokes on campus radio station station
WJJX last year, constitute a code of airing o
non-academic conduct. The Uni- the FCC
versity administration is attempting pus radi
to cover up the inadequacies of its a good
own record on fighting racism by disc joc
blaming two students and a student discrimi
organization for the larger problems tion has
of institutional and administration pendent
racism. dent: th
The University does not have the ciplined
paternalistic right to intervene in The st
student actions outside the class- the adm
room and enforce its verdicts with training
academic threats or sanctions. a relativ
Certainly while it is harboring ad- ers. Chc
ministrators who make racist, sex- organiza
ist, and homophobic policy deci- and crit
sions, the University is not in a po- less tha
sition to become the arbiter of dis- the onl
crimination of which it is guilty. conside
Payton and Kennedy make a rights to
mockery of the existing informal The as
legal system by demanding that revoke
LSA senior Ted Sevransky and over irr
LSA junior Peter Gonzalez publicly WJJX i
apologize, perforn community ser- logical.
vice, and be placed on probation. (which
Not only have both students pub- tions's 1
licly apologized at a forum on reviewe
racism at West Quad and begun and not
community service such as partici- Punish
pating in teach-ins, but they have or other
been disciplined by WJJX and os- in the e
tracized by the national media atten- with wh
tion that was given to their case. not agre
The report from Payton and of the re
Kennedy desires to establish a versity'
policing system where the Univer- "structu
sity would try and punish students access to
who used racist speech or commit- Racisn
ted other acts considered offensive not be t
by the University community. A Howeve
University run kangaroo court is a authorit
facade of the real justice system and with the
would be incapable of dealing im- name of
partially with students. ready ha
The University holds too much and inf
leverage over students - complete racism.
nontrol of their academic records - The sv
to be allowed to judge whether their munity a
non-academic conduct is acceptable the code
to the community at large. Though propose
Fleming, Payton, and Kennedy Kennedy
have all issued statements indicating shot at st
a desire to punish students who zations i
commit racist acts, there is no rea- Universi
son to assume that the University its victim

wJJx

tration understands racism,
or homophobic forms of
nation.
eport also attacks WJJX
t a "marginal activity" due to
all number of listeners the
has and claiming that the
f the jokes might jeopardize
licences of the other cam-
o stations. While it might be
idea for WJJX to train its
keys, raising awareness of
ination and bigotry, the sta-
already taken correct inde-
action to deal with the inci-
e people involved were dis-
1.
tation is only "marginal" to
iinistration in that it is a
ground for students and has
!ely small number of listen-
oosing WJJX, a student run
ation, as a target for the code
ticizing its training role as
n professional, shows that
y area the administration
rs "marginal" is student
free speech.
ssertion that the FCC might
other University licences
esponsibility on the part of
s neither substantiated nor
Even if the FCC said this
it has not), the radio sta-
licences would have to be
d on a case-by-case basis
by owner of the licence.
h students for radio shows
forms of speech will result
censorship of all opinions
ich the administration does
e. The dictatorial language
eport makes clear the Uni-
s desire to "control,"
re," and "format" student
o media.
m and discrimination will
olerated by the community.
r, students cannot tolerate
arian decisions enforced
ir academic records in the
fighting racism. People al-
ive the formal legal means
ormal methods to fight
wift response of the com-
nd WJJX demonstrates that
s of non-academic conduct
d by Fleming, Payton, and
are nothing but a cheap,
tudents and student organi-
n an attempt to blame the
ty's institutional racism on.
s rather than its causes.

LETTERS
Editoria
To the Daily:
I am writing to you
concerning your editorial enti-
tled "Free Palestine," which
discusses the present situation
in Israel. (Daily 1/18/88)
'You mention that the Israeli
troops have used "live
ammunition," while t h e
demonstrators are "armed with
little more than rocks." I
assume that the "little more"
you are referring to is the
firebombs that groups o f
thousands of Arabs bombard
handfuls of soldiers with.
Although you say Israel has no
justification for shooting, I
have a feeling that you would
try to defend yourself if your
life was being threatened.
It is not a"racist concept" to
expect Jordan to absorb the
Palestinians. In fact, more than
50 percent of Jordanian citizens
are Palestinians. Therefore,
Jordan would not be absorbing

i only c
"ethnically and culturally dif-
ferent Palestinians." Not only
are both Arabs; both are Pales-
tinians.
You argue that the PLO
should "be recognized by Israel
and the U.S. as a representative
of the people." Then later you
say that the PLO will not nec-
essarily run the territories;
"rather, this question should be
decided by the Palestinians
themselves." Once again,
please make up your mind -
does the PLO represent the
people, or have the people not
yet decided?
The PLO cannot be consid-
ered the sole representative of
the Palestinians due to a severe
lack of political unity . And
because no responsible leader
has come forward, Israel cannot
simply cease its occupation of
the territories. Israel does not
need an anarchic haven for ter-
rorists on her doorstep. Until

someone else is willing to take
responsiblity for the territories,
Israel has a legal obligation to
keep them under control.
Finally, in reference to the
PLO, you say that "some fac-
tions have brutally killed
civilians." But not all the fac-
tions, so the PLO isn't all that
bad, right? On the other hand,
Israel "employs indiscriminate

I

irgues one side

bombings of highly populated
areas." Indiscriminate?! The
bombings are always directed at
bases of terrorist activity, and
occur because Israel will not
tolerate terrorism. Even if the
terrorists have commanded the
public's sympathy.
-Jack Nahmod
January 20

Knowing a different Steiner

Don't boycott education

To the Daily:
On January 18, I sat in a
lecture hall filled with two
hundred disappointed students.
The class was Persuasive
Communication, cancelled in
recognition of Martin Luther
King. If my professor were so
concerned about racial
inequality, why didn't he give
an alternate lecture? For those
who wanted to stay, he could
have demonstrated the
techniques of persuasive
communication in the context
of the contemporary issue. If
the principles taught in the
course have 'any practical
validity or merit, maybe he
could have softened a few
hearts or changed a few minds.
Instead, he just didn't show up
and the two hundred students,
I'm certain, did not use the
time to attend alternative

events. They probably went
and had an early lunch.
By blocking the entrance to
the Fishbowl and Angell hall,
they are attempting to deny the
students' rights to go to class.
What good is it to further the
rights of one group of people
by denying the rights of
another? Martin Luther King
.would shake his head in shame!
Supporting the Black cause by
boycotting education? What
kind of statement does that
make? A lot of the professors
didn't let us know they were
cancelling class until we
showed up and they weren't
there. Exuding a sense of
responsibility, weren't they?
The principle is wonderful, but
the method stinks.
-Heidi Tolliver
January 19

To the Daily:
The recent caricaturing on
campus of Dean Peter Steiner
as a racist does not match with
the Dean Peter Steiner I have
known for a decade and served
with on the College Executive
Committee in the early 1980s.
The Peter Steiner I know
stands firmly for judging peo-
ple people on their merits; for
equal opportunity for all; and
for fairness, decency, and jus-
tice. The Peter Steiner I served
with gave particular time and
support to issues like the
strengthening of the Center for
Afro-American Studies, the
improvement of efforts to re-
cruit minority faculty, and the
importance of attracting mi-
nority students to the Uni-
versity of Michigan.
I do not recognize the com-
Reader upset
To the Daily:
Your editing or typographi-
cal errors associated with one
sentence of my recent letter to
the editor "University needs
code for order," (Daily 1/15/87)
resulted in implying the oppo-
site of what my letter clearly
stated.
The sentence originally stat-
ed
"Such a group will act
quicker than the former
University Council because it
will be faced with the knowl-
edge that Fleming's draft will
be left unchanged unless they
can propose amendments with
widespread support among stu-
dents and that are also tolerable
to the University administra-
tion."
You, instead, printed:
"Such a group will be left
unchanged unless they can

plex and admirable man I know
in the brandishing of unde-
served labels, of quotes torn
from their context, and of un-
founded accusations by some of
his detractors. We have all on
occasion uttered phrases that
are open to misinterpretation.
But to jump to the conclusion
that this idealistic man is a
racist is wholly unjustified.
Indeed, however admirable their
intentions may be, those who l
use that label so indiscrimi-
nately are helping to create a
climate of intimidation and de-
struction of reputations in
which the true dialogue and
thoughtful concern necessary to
solve the racial tensions in our
society cannot take place.
-George Bornstein
Professor of English
January 151
over editing
propose amendments with
widespread support among stu-
dents and that are also tolerable
to the University administra-
tion."
Obviously, this changes the
meaning of the sentence from 1
changes in Fleming's draft to
changes in the group's compo-
sition. Further, it implies that
a group offering amendments
with widespread student sup-
port and University adminis-
tration support would in fact be
modified or disbanded. Of
course, this is contrary to the
clear letter and intent of my
statement. Also, in the third
paragraph, thetword "permit"
was changed to "promote,"
which says something differ-
ent.
-Mark R. Soble
January 15

More than a student activity

Denying ab
THIS WEEK, PRESIDENT Reagan is
planning to announce a new set of
guidelines for family planning pro-
grams receiving federal funds.
Counseling agencies will no longer
be able to advise women that abor-
tion is one of their legal rights.
They will also be prohibited from
referring women to doctors who
perform abortions and from lobby-
ing for abortion funding legislation.
Federal funding to family plan-
ning clinics was established in 1970
with Title X of the Public Health
Service Act. Because abortion was
illegal at the time, a stipulation was
included in the law prohibiting
Federal funding of family planning
programs where abortion was used.
Currently, Reagan is attempting to
use this legislation when abortion is
legal to back his new guidelines.
Presently, clinics receiving federal
funds are required to counsel
women on all their options. If a
woman requests it, the clinic will

ortion rights
regulations they will lose most of
their funding and, thus, their ability
to counsel women on family plan-
ning options altogether. Compliance
would be clear violation of the
clinic's freedom of speech. As well,
women who cannot safely carry a
child to term face complications and
possibly death without proper
referral and counseling.
Reagan's reapplication of Title X
is unconstitutional. The intent of the
N1970 law is irrelevant now that
abortion is the legal rightnofwevery
woman. His earlier attempts at pro-
hibiting abortion have failed; with
his final term in office coming to an
end, he is groping for a way around
the law to make abortion regulations
congruent with his morality.
Women who will be hardest hit
by this new policy will be those
who need it the most: the poor.
Reagan has already succeeded in
cutting off aid to international plan-
ning organizations which counsel
wnmennn ahnrtinn_ vet 40.000

To the Daily:
The threat of losing the
unique programming offered on
WCBN-FM prompts this letter
of support for community
members (classified as non-
students) who make the radio
station the vital cultural force
it is and has been for so many
years.
WCBN is far more than a
student activity. It is an en-
during community resource,
providing music and informa-
tion otherwise unavailable in
Ann Arbor and a scare com-
modity nationally. The station
is a necessary component in a
successful arts community in
this area, and has contributed to
local activities through the
years in large part due to com-
munity members who work at
the station and are in touch
with people doing all kinds of
things in Ann Arbor.
WCBN cannot be sustained
as a dynamic media force in
Ann Arbor without the dedi-
cation of the community
members who work there.
These people devote their tal-
ents, time and energy to en-
lighten and entertain people in
Daily needs to
To the Daily:
I was surprised by a front-
page article "Pro-Palestinian
protesters mar Israeli consul
general's speech" in the Daily
referring to a speech by Zvi
Brosch on 11 January. (Daily
1/12/88)
The article stated that the
protest was sponsored by "a
coalition of student and
community groups." Some of
the groups mentioned by mane
in the article may indeed be pro-
Palestinian. However, I suspect
that the New Jewish Agenda,

Ann Arbor. WCBN builds a
positive relationship between
the University and Ann Arbor
because it 'is a cooperative ef-
fort of students and working
people. Much of the benefit
derived by students involved at
the station comes from
interaction with fellow
'CBNers from the community.
At a. time when the Uni-
versity is seen as increasingly
divided between students and
administrators, students and
workers, Black people and
white people, the unique cul-
tural bridges offered by the
programming at WCBN are
extremely important. Pro-
hibiting community members
from working at WCBN would
burn these bridges, disabling
the station from effectively
serving the community as a
whole.
support the programming at
WCBN and urge the University
to keep the bridges open. Bring
your written comments to:
Program Director, WCBN-FM,
530 SAB.
-David Schon
January 18
exercise care
indicated a frightening regard for
order on the part of the authors.
A careful reading of the article
makes it clear that the defense of
human rights in a democratic
state is, according to the
authors, equivalent to an attack
on that state. None or the
remarks cited in the article could
be construed as an attack on, for
example, Israel's right to exist.
Rather, they protested human
rights abusesthathave been
condemned by the UN.
Sweeping generalizations
such as these may be the result
of h, nt-a anti na-rat acna a on(l, an

To the Daily:
If groups such as UCAR
would devote as much time and
energy to improving the
quality of education for Detroit
for inner-city Blacks as they do
to staging their childish,
pretentious sit-ins and rallies,
the most prominent symptom
of the alleged racism at the U
of M - low Black enrollment
- would soon cease to exist. .
Even the very liberal Nickie
McWhirter of the Free Press
found UCAR's charges of
racism directed at LSA Dean
Peter Steiner to be unfounded,
resulting from hypersensitivity
on the part of that
organization.
For a dean to state that his/her
university will not go out of
its. to recruit minorities is to

McCarthyite labelling tactics

say that that university will
judge its applicants according
to their abilities, not according
to the color of their skin.
In essence, then, Steiner
affirmed Martin Luther King's
dream. Alas, at the U of M,
Steiner and the others like
myself run the danger of being
unjustly labelled as racists,
solely for our own belief in the
color-blind society which was
Dr. King's dream.
We who hold this dream dear
owe noone an apology. The
apology is owed by UCAR for
its McCarthyite labelling
tactics.
-Glenn H. Kotcher
Chair, College
Republicans Issues
Committee
January 18

The Daily welcomes letters from its readers.
Bringing in letters on personal computer disk is the
fastest way to publish a letter in the Daily.
-U-M
n -

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