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February 09, 1990 - Image 4

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Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1990-02-09

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Page 4 - The Michigan Daily - Friday, February 9, 1990
&be £ibigan fai1y
EDITED AND MANAGED BY STUDENTS
AT THE UNIVERSITY OF MICHIGAN
420 Maynard Street
Ann Arbor, Michigan 48109
NEWS 313 764 0552

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OPINION 747 2814

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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.

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South Africa

Reforms are necessary,
F.W. DE KLERK'S ANNOUNCE-
ment last week that South Africa would
lift the decades-old ban on the African
National Congress and other anti-
apartheid groups has elicited a chorus
of approval from world leaders. Even
Nelson Mandela, the still-imprisoned
leader of the ANC, hailed the decision
as a "bold and courageous" first step as
it sparked off a surge of Black celebra-
tion and political activism throughout
the country.
Yet these reactions must be seen in
the context of the apartheid system of
minority rule in South Africa. While
any move toward racial equality must
be supported, the euphoria following
de Klerk's announcement must not
cloud the fact that Blacks still are a long
way from having an equal voice in the
South African political system.
De Klerk's boldness is from a man
"who has been brought up to believe in
:the inherent superiority of his race, and
who, under overwhelming international
pressure, is beginning to challenge the
precepts of that ideology. The celebra-
tion is of a people force-fed on a diet of
violence and repression for genera-
tions, conditioned to expect no respite.
In reality, the concessions are far
from what the majority of South
Africans have demanded, although they
may prove to be a catalyst to meaning-
ful negotiation. Most political prisoners
have not been released, the state of
emergency in South Africa has not
been lifted, and detention without trial
will likely continue.
There also remains a vast chasm
between what de Klerk says and the
reality of the situation in South Africa.
His recent warning to police officers
not to involve themselves in political
activities has been greeted with a surge
of brutality. Peaceful protests against
the arrival of an all-white English
cricket team brought out the whips,
snarling dogs and tear gas that have be-
Armenian

but only a first step
come so commonplace. And only last
week, de Klerk was obliged to order an
inquiry into the death of Clayton Sit-
hole Twala, whom the police allege
committed suicide by hanging in his
cell. The announcement of the partial
lifting of media censorship - pho-
tographs and television pictures remain
under government control - is ironic
after the expulsion last week of two
British journalists, who are alleged to
have "distorted" the reporting of the
events surrounding the cricket tour.
De Klerk may have shown a wel-
come willingness for change, but the
police force and legal system, soaked
in prejudice, continue with business as
usual. The Group Areas Act, the Iden-
tities Registration Act and the Land
Acts, the cornerstones of apartheid,
still remain firmly in place. As de Klerk
continues to talk of "group" - in ef-
fect "race" - rule, and opposes the
democracy and majority rule favored
by the ANC, he betrays his desire to
cling to the order which maintains the
wealth and privilege of the white elite.
Apartheid cannot be reformed away; it,
and the institutions which support it,
must be eliminated.
The immediate effects of de Klerk's
speech have been to boost the South
African Stock Exchange and invigorate
debate on the lifting of economic sanc-
tions against South Africa. British
Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, who
has been a faithful advocate of keeping
economic links to South Africa, im-
mediately extended an invitation to de
Klerk for talks in the United Kingdom.
The unanimous condemnation by anti-
apartheid organizations within South
Africa of this carrot-dangling should
serve as a warning to the U.S. gov-
ernment. Economic pressures have al-
ready forced South Africa into cosmetic
changes; sanctions must be maintained
until apartheid falls, and a representa-
tive government takes power.
studies

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1

Jewish theologian Let s an ti-SeitiC

To the Daily:
I have to take issue with William R.
Horwitz's letter (2/5/90) charging Marc
Ellis with racism and anti-Semitism. He
accuses Ellis, a Jewish theologian, of de-
nouncing "the world's entire Jewish popu-
lation."
If Horwitz has had the benefit of a reli-
gious education, he must know that it is
well within tradition for rabbis and reli-
gious teachers to discuss the collective
consciousness and responsibility of the
Jewish people. In so doing, there is noth-
ing anti-Semitic about expressing concern
over how the State of Israel and its poli-

-4I
tlIrii j i. 1'p 'TO1 i w
0 4c ;. _, t- 4 4 'Wt3o
EFise~5h[ 045 ~ ~ ut\ ti

ing views is to discourauc thi in' mlusive
dialogue that is so r yeessary to
the pursuit of peace and ins ice in the
Middle East. I ant sure that : me Who
carefully read the excellent m - 'w with
Ellis (2/l/90) would apprc l.e his in-
sights for what they arc:A thoughitil and
self-critical discussion + Jch identity,
by someone who is obviously proud of
his heritage, culture, and rtlion. I hope
that those who missed the it rc,.view will
not be misled by Horwitz's etter.
Mark Weisbrot
Rackham graduate student

Jacksonville resident de£ries notion of 'smelly city' .

To the Daily:
I was filled with disgust when I read an
article in the Daily which proclaimed that
my hometown for 20 years, Jacksonville,
Fla., has an odor problem ("Court reveals
smelly verdict," 2/7/90). "Jacksonville
smells," according to the article. I am sick
and tired of all the anti-Jax propaganda that
has been promoted by the Daily. I feel like
spittin' grits!
Smell or stench is a relative term.
When you have been nurtured on cow ma-
nure all of your life then maybe the paper

irIs d1 smnv ~l ib aiid Its Awen you
hyvp'critici 'nkos Nirt appivin" your
Cdloubke tMr ars to u h a1 n tx as Jax
that d - 11 "t WVII) On,,I you fix your
why noTic degad mu aher scuruny
city such a G Ind., or Dayton, Ohio,
or even N w York, N.Y.? Is it because
I Hitler's privae y'acht was stored in Jax for
years or bcausea Navy F-14 was dt-
stroyed wh n it collided with and slaugh-
tered a 60b-pound sow on landing at the
Jax airport or because those monster truck

pulls are more common than gators?
Sure Jax is called the "Armpit of
Florida," but so what it' w- don't value
deodorant as much as Northerners. We like
our stench! I can envision future articles
such as "Jax chaws" " Jax hawks (spitting
phlegm)," or "Jax hunt' I only wish the
Daily would keep its biased opinions con-
centrated on the more trivial issues such as
the Middle East, South Africa, or Central
America.
Andrew Jaffa
LSA junior
Jacksonvill- resident

.o
Daily story mistakes purposeof Farrahan.v=t

University should devote
THE UNIVERSITY OF MICHIGAN
is one of only two universities in the
country which can boast significant
possibilities for study of modem Ar-
menian history. The University's pro-
gram provides both graduate and un-
dergraduate courses in Armenian his-
tory, language, and literature, including
a summer intensive language program
in Soviet Armenia.
The University also boasts one of
the largest collections of Armenian lan-
guage books in the nation. Eight
months agQ; six graduate students
complained that the University's library
system would soon lose its only librar-
ian who catalogued Armenian language
books. The concerns of the students
were never addressed, and the Gradu-
ate Library has not catalogued Arme-

more to the program
nian books since last September.
Though the University seems pre-
pared to accept millions of dollars in
donations from Michigan's Armenian
community, which numbers more than
70,000, it is not prepared to make even
a minimal commitment to creating an
Armenian studies center on campus.
The University, at the very least,
should hire a librarian with a working
knowledge of Armenian in addition to
other "mainstream" languages.
This issue raises many questions
about the University's priorities and
commitment to academic excellence.
Though Armenian studies may not be
the largest program on campus, it cer-
tainly merits more attention from the
University.

To the Daily:
The Daily's article concerning Minister
Louis Farrakhan's visit to Michigan State
University (2/5/90) contained a few major
errors that must be addressed.
The initial protest by 12 Jewish stu-
dents wasn't over the use of public funds
for the event but over their desire to just
bar Minister Farrakhan from the Univer-
sity. The MSU Board of Trustees has

since voted tn nimousiy to limit honorar-
ium payments to S $,000 and they are try-
ing to stop As One from receiving any
further hind inc
I say that h i not only censorship
but rayist A J a 0 tis p1chlim
thcsem ves to mnst Ouions where ffree
ad open i uon any subject iiay
take place. I w lid snture a guess and say
that this last Opinio ishared by many

students here, seeing how the majority of
students are against a Code of Academic
Conduct.
I would urge all studenis of all races to
attend the event at MS' U/s/,'90) and de-
cide for yoursef what Minister Louis Far-
rakhan is all about. I kn.w you are tired of
others making decisions for you.
Danny Peterson
Engineering graduate student

Memory hole

U.S. should not forget the
INTO THE ORWELLIAN MEMORY
hole goes the 1915-1917 Armenian
genocide, in which one million Arme-
nians perished at the hands of the
Young Turk Ottoman government. Be-
cause modern Turkey is a NATO ally
;:and a trading partner, it is official U.S.
"policy that the event never happened.
4 Sen. Robert Dole, responding to re-
quests from constituents, last month
:proposed a federal commemoration of
the genocide. He had 62 co-signers and
the bill was set to sail through the Sen-
ate - until lobbyists on behalf of
Turkey and the U.S. State Department
got wind of what was happening.
Deals were made, the Senate floor
:'slowly emptied, and Dole watched his
- iinncirt fade-

Armenian genocide
The desire to cover up the atrocities
has caused the record of the Armenian
genocide to disappear from history
books. Fearful of analogies which
could be drawn to the present, the
Turkish government silences criticism
of its past. Amnesty International re-
ports that "unpatriotic" scholarship is
punishable by five years' imprison-
ment.
Speaking before an Armenian audi-
ence, Reagan swore in 1981 that the
Armenian genocide would "never be
forgotten." Bush made similar pro-
nouncements while campaigning, but
Realpolitik took over once he reached
office, and he has now thrown his
support behind the government's
"trusted and value~d" - and.alas.

W ,-44-V1' -- -""4'-;a

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