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February 08, 1990 - Image 4

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1990-02-08

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Page 4 -The Michigan Daily -Thursday, February 8, 1990

Wbz £airbigan aiIy
420 Maynard Street
Ann Arbor, Michigan 48109
NEwS 313 764 0552

ARTS 763 0376
OPINION 747 2814


747 3336
747 4630


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.


Public universities must take a moral stand

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M i



State University provost made $5,000
in University funds available to a stu-
dent group for the express purpose of
bringing Louis Farrakhan, the leader of
the Nation of Islam, to speak at the East
} Lansing campus. The MSU Board of
Trustees, after a protest by outraged
students last Friday, decided to restrict
funding for all speeches to $1,000 until
the university implements guidelines
for deciding which speakers to fund.
The MSU student group As One in-
vited Farrakhan, an outspoken critic of
the Jewish religion, to speak on cam-
pus, and secured funds from MSU
Provost David Scott. The funding by
the university angered Jews at MSU
and around the state, who complained
that state money should not go to anti-
Semitic speakers.
Farrakhan's record of anti-Semitism
is clear. During the 1988 Presidential
campaign, Jesse Jackson used the
word "Hymietown" to describe New
York City; under protest, he apolo-
gized. Farrakhan criticized Jackson's
apology, and said Jackson only re-
lented to placate the "rich Hymies" who
supported his campaign. This is but
one of many examples of Farrakhan's
offensive treatment of Jews and Ju-
daism, which Farrakhan has termed a
"gutter religion."
Though his views are offensive,
Farrakhan's right to free expression
should not be curtailed. At the same
time, taxpayers' money should not be
used to bring him to speak at Michigan

State. As many of the protesters said
Friday, it's fine to let Farrakhan
espouse his views, but the citizens of
Michigan don't have to bankroll his en-
Though the MSU trustees reversed
the provost's decision and withdrew
funding for Farrakhan's speech, they
have not come up with an adequate
mfethod to decide which speakers or
groups to fund. Limiting funding for
all speakers to $1,000 only restricts the
quality of people the university can at-
tract, and doesn't solve the problem of
deciding who should not receive state
The $1,000 moratorium is not a so-
lution, but a cowardly method to avoid
addressing a potentially embarrassing
problem. Public universities, as exten-
sions of the state, cannot shirk the re-
sponsibility of determining who should
and who should not be invited and paid
with taxpayer dollars to speak on col-
lege campuses.
If student advocacy groups choose
to bring controversial figures to uni-
versities, that is their business, and
they are more than entitled to do so.
But the money used to pay racist, sex-
ist, homophobic, anti-Semitic, or other
antagonistic visitors should not be
provided by the state, or even by state
institutions. Universities must take
moral stands; when Michigan State or
other public colleges dole out money
for offensive speakers, it is a slap in
the face of those who pay taxes in the
state of Michigan.

Daily is narrow-minded and abusive


Daily responds to vandalism of advertisement

At some point lastT
a vandal -- most likely
the Daily's staff - pl
and lesbian sym-
bols on a display -
paid for by the
Army Reserve Of-
ficer Training
Corps (ROTC)
that appeared in
the Friday, Feb. 2j
edition of the
The Daily!
apologizes to our
readers, our adver-
tisers, and espe-
cially the Army
ROTC for the de-
facement of the
The action is un-
precedented at the Dail
We are extremely e
the credibility of the en
we have taken steps t

hursday night,
y a member of
aced gay men

such an occurrence never happens
again. In the future, Business Man-

ager David Eding

er and I will accept
full responsibil-

00 1
AryRYOTC un ,W,,rdnso
-,d4p1 k, .r01 .J lo x rIC extomko
1,t01out1mu111 (01,1001Captain kl0' ,0 ,/
M N1 ,1 1f 6a -[10 400

ity for any simi-
lar problems.
of an advertise-
ment is not toler-
ated at the Daily.
If an advertise-
ment is ever de-
faced in the fu-
ture by an em-
ployee, that em-
ployee will be
fired or legal
action will be
Again, we
apologize and we
promise nothing
of this sort will
Noah Finkel

To the Daily:
Being an American Jew who believes
in the Palestinian right to self-determina-
tion, I've not responded to any of the edi-
torials this last year because I realize that
the entire Palestinian people are not as
narrow-minded and abusive as the Daily.
To interview Marc Ellis (2/1/90) and
compare the treatment of the Palestinian
people to that of the Jews during the
Holocaust is insensitive, confrontational
and a slap in the face to anyone who lived
through the systematic slaughter of more
Wrong on Poland
To the Daily:
What a disingenuous Daily editorial
about the crisis in Poland ("Buying out
Poland, 1/26/90)! After a decade of agita-
tion by Solidarity for capitalist restora-
tion, backed by substantial U.S. govern-
ment and Vatican funding and whole-
hearted support of American newspapers
from The New York Times to The Michi-
gan Daily, you now discover that the Pol-
ish movement was all along really a
"workers and stockholders" uprising, one
that is only lately being waylaid by the
designs of some Harvard consultant work-
ing on behalf of German and U.S.
Yes, like their East German counter-
parts, the Polish workers are starting to
rise again. And this time apparently as a
class, instead of as part of a clerical-na-
tionalist alliance with the peasantry and
intelligentsia, that which Solidarity has
been since 1981. Hopefully that rebellion
will generalize and lead to a government
based on workers and soldiers councils that
can rebuild Poland's decimated economy.
Such a mass-based communist gov-
ernment could rid Poland of Stalinism, as
well as undercut the Catholic Church's
hold over the peasantry by collectivizing
Toward that end, Polish workers need
to revive their revolutionary international-
ist tradition in the spirit of Rosa Luxem-
burg and Lenin, and in so doing link arms
with their East German comrades and So-
viet soldiers, many of whom are also start-
ing to oppose Gorbachev's "market-ori-
ented" capitulation to imperialist bankers
and European social democrats.
After a decade of infection by Polish
nationalism, that would be a welcome
Gene Goldenfeld
Ph.D. candidate in
Sociology and Psychology

To the Daily:
In the Feb. 2 edition of the Daily
("Last words from the Opinion Editors"),
outgoing Opinion Page editors Betsy
Esch and Amy Harmon asserted that in
September, 1988, "we met to discuss the
possibility of closing down the Daily for
a few days."
We write to correct the record, out of
concern that an incorrect assertion left
uncorrected can grow, into an article of
We participated in no such meeting.

We never discussed such an idea. Indeed,
we three have never met together nor held
conversations together, whether about the
Daily or about other topics, until it be-
came necessary to discuss rebutting the
inaccurate charge by Esch and Harmon.
James D. Duderstadt
University president
Philip H. Power
University regent
Amnon Rosenthal
chair of the Board for
Student Publications

than 11 million people.
It's rather amusing that the bitch ses-
sion compiled by Betsy Esch and Amy
Harmon (2/2/90) angrily argued that their
attitudes and actions of the last year are
justified given the behavior of their peers.
Even if their self-justification is accurate
and legitimate, it doesn't solve problems
or help people understand the Middle East
Yes, sometimes extreme situations de-
serve extreme measures. But to carry the
sensationalistic and confrontational edito-

rials to the extremes they have gone this
last year only adds to the hatred and confu-
sion. To anyone who has experienced the
confrontation first hand, it is the extrem-
ism on both sides that is causing the prob-
lem to escalate out of control. Esch and
Harmon, if you really cared about the*
Palestinians, wouldn't it behoove you to
make friends, and not enemies, of people
like me?
Jonathan E. Greenberg

Officials respond to Daily attack


mbarrassed for
tire paper and
o ensure that

Poniewozik off track
on Marxism critique
To the Daily:
Jim Poniewozik, in his piece "Marx is
dead, Marxism isn't" (1/30/90), displays a
similar simplicity to which he claims to
be aloof when he claims "we have been
trained to view (Marxism) as Uncle Sam's
greatest antagonist of the twentieth cen-
tury" and that "most of us are damned if
we know what communism is."
Who is this "we" Poniewozik refers to?
I certainly cannot find myself in this "we."
My experience since I was young has been
precisely the opposite as that which he de-
scribes. My high school had no "civics"
class. Instead, it had classes whose sole
purpose seemed to be to reduce any pres-
tige America and capitalism might have in
the students' young minds.
The faculty at my school, like the fac-
ulty here, had many teachers highly sym-
pathetic with Marxism and some who
were avowed Marxists. My hometown is
one of the wealthiest communities in the
country, home to many snivelling, greedy
capitalist oppressors, yet right under their
noses the teachings of revolution and lib-
eration were, and still are, being inculcated
to the their very own daughters and sons. I
know I am not the only one with this
background, so Poniewozik is clearly

simplifying the conditions of brainwash-
ing in this country in order to both
strengthen his argument and make himself
look smarter than the rest of "us."
Another of Poniewozik's errors con-
cerns his statements about the death of
communism in Eastern Europe. He is.
wrong when he says that "there is nothing
inherent in communism's nature that says
a communist government cannot have
free elections or free expression." He be-
trays here his own ignorance of commu-
nism, because in fact every theory aIvocat-
ing communism, beginning with Marx all
the way to the present, has regarded free
elections and free expression as bourgeois
institutions, to be associated strictly with
liberal democracy, which is an antecedeno
to communism, doomed to extinction
once the revolution takes place.
True communists today will still abhor
these institutions. Those who embrace free
elections and free speech and still claim to
be communists are not really communists;
they are socialists. Few maintain that cap-
italism has won the day in Eastern Eu-
rope. But communism, which is totalitar-
ian both in theory and practice, is dead,'
and socialism has won the day.
Ian Beilin
LSA senior

be repeated.

I'- t

Daily Editor in Chief

Agree? Disagree?
What's your opinion? The Daily wants to hear from you. Send or
bring letters to the Student Publications Building at 420 Maynard
Street. Or, you can bring in letters on Macintosh disk or send
them via MTS to "Michigan Daily."

Ann Arbor's homeless need

help from residents, students

By Peter Nicolas

When I climbed the steps and walked
through the door of the homeless shelter
where I had recently volunteered to work, I
felt myself entering a different world: a
dark world, hidden from the. eyes of most
people in Ann Arbor, and certainly from
most students at the University of Michi-
As the night proceeded, I observed the
different types of people who lived in the
shelter. I found Vietnam veterans, battered

situation rather than a cause.
Nearly half of the people in the shelter
have some sort of mental, physical, or de-
velopmental disability. Furthermore, sev-
eral of the men are veterans of either
World War II or the Vietnam War, and
many of them have suffered as a result of
their service. Figures compiled by the Ann
Arbor Shelter Association cite that 25 per-
cent of the people served by the shelter are
veterans, and 47 percent have disabilities.
Reading throunh the volunteer manual.

aid works for the young and healthy, but
its effects are limited for the elderly and
the disabled, who tend to suffer the most.
We live in an age in which Social Darwin-
ism prevails. This is no way to thank our
preceding generations; nor is it a way to
repay those who defended our nation.
These people are not inanimate objects
which one uses once and throws away.
They are living, healthy human beings
who deserve a place to live as much as, if
not more than. anyone else.

the homeless.
Private donations - such as those
which come from the residents of my
dormitory - can help, but public support
is necessary. Cities such as Ann Arbor are
notorious for their "profit maximization"
agenda: choosing to invest only in those
projects which yield the highest returns.
While such a form of investment is the
"sensible" option for private investors, it
is not so for a community. Profit maxi-
mization goes hand-in-hand with the no-

catch up with the faster developing sec-
tors, and then all should be treated equally.
One cannot ignore the homeless. Cities
like Ann Arbor do not allow people who
are on their own to live on overtime
wages from a service-oriented job. Many
argue that if people can't afford housing,
they should go somewhere else. This just
shifts the problem to another city. Even-
tually, someone has to deal with the prob*

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