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October 26, 1990 - Image 4

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1990-10-26

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Page 4 -The Michigan Daily - Friday, October 26, 1990
EIbr Midiigau iaiO
420 Maynard Street
Ann Arbor, Michigan 48109

V yp'1 '


Editor in Chief

Opinion Editor

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.
Broken Record
U' propaganda distorts minority enrollment data...
IT'S NO SECRET THAT THE UNI- sus Bureau, compared to 7.2 percent of
versity administration established the the student body.
University Record to put a positive The University also congratulates it-
spin on the University and the bureau- self for increases in Hispanic and
crats who run it. So it should come as Asian-American enrollment, which cur-
no surprise that its recent coverage of rently stand at 3.2 and 7.5 percent re-
University minority enrollment - spectively, the highest figures since the
which consists of the verbatim reprint- University began compiling statistics.
ing of the administration's press release However, the University doesn't break
on the topic - doesn't tell the whole these umbrella categories down, a
story. practice which hides the under-repre-
The.University boasts that minority sentation of Chicanos and many Asians
enrOllment has increased for the tenth from countries in Southeast Asia.
consecutive year and has reached its The University's record on Native
highest level in 16 years. However, fo- American enrollment is particularly
cusing on minority enrollment as a deplorable. The enrollment total of 157
whole, without breaking it down into is only one more student than in 1985.
its component parts, results in a very Native Americans make up only .47
incomplete image. Similarly, the Uni- percent of the University student popu-
versity's policy of stressing rates of in- lation, as compared to 2 percent of the
crease distorts the extraordinary degree U.S. population of student age.
to which students of color continue to The University conspicuously fails
be under-represented at the University. to mention these facts while it high-
lights the enrollment increases of the
African-American enrollment, in last 10 years. That such "dramatic"
both raw numbers and as a percentage gains could be experienced and such
of the student body, is lower today enormous under-representation should
than it was in 1976. Twenty years after continue only demonstrates the woeful
the University promised Black Action condition of minority enrollment 10
Viovement (BAM) protestors that it years ago.
would achieve 12 percent Black en- The University has repeatedly en-
rollment, the figure stands at 7.2 per- gaged in nickel and dime efforts to in-
cent. But in the Record, the University crease student of color enrollment. As
uses current African-American enroll- Charles Moody, vice provost for mi-
ment figures and statistical manipula- nority affairs, said, "It's worth remem-
®.tion to laud its efforts at promoting di- bering that in the mid- to late-'70s, mi-
versity by only highlighting the 10.2 nority enrollment had increased to
percent improvement in the last year. around 10 percent... Then the numbers
African-Americans now represent ap- started going down until they reached a
proximately 12 percent of the U.S. low of 4.9 percent Black enrollment in
.population, according to the U.S. Cen- 1983."
.. and the University avoids making real change

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Chait should learn to be more sensitive

To the Daily:
I must express my extreme discomfort
and anger about Jonathan Chait's column,
"Celebrate 'Daily Editorialist Appreciation
As a resident director, I am constantly
on the front lines of many issues that con-
front our campus. I have had many won-
derful experiences as I, along with the res-
idents and other staff members, grow in
our understanding and appreciation of the
many concerns that our student body and
our world face.
But never have I had such a negative
reaction as I did when I read Chait's.arti-
cle. It saddens me that even someone with
the attitudes of a Cro-Magnon man can
find his racist, sexist, homophobic, and
generally unfeeling words in print in a pa-
per that has taken pride in some of its
progressive positions.
Before losing focus, let me deal with
each issue in its own light. Should Chait
choose not to challenge the prejudices and
insensitivities that were so apparent in his
column, that is his choice, and millions of
others have made the same one. But to let
them go unchallenged is to harm every
man, woman, and child on this planet in
both big and small ways.
I will take the issues in the order they
appeared in the article:
My sister suffers from bulemia. I
know the pain that it causes her and has
caused our family. Eating disorders can be
very frightening things, and many who
suffer from them are completely unaware
that they have them.

People die from such things, and I ap-
plaud all those involved with Eating Dis-
order Awareness Week. And I hope that
their efforts will not go unrewarded -
even if by only touching one life.
Sexual assault plagues our campus
and our nation. Understanding the depth of
the pain that a survivor of sexual assault
goes through is beyond me. The fact that
one in three women is sexually assaulted
at some time confuses me and angers me
at the same time.
Perhaps bringing it closer to home
may make the weight of this issue a little

out the violence that lesbians and gay men
face due to the ignorance of so many.
Blue Jeans Day has been used as some-
thing to make people think about these is-
sues rather than a chance to "vote" for
which side you are on. It sounds as if the
fact that there was a Blue Jeans Day dis
turbed Chait, and I think that was parto
the purpose. The next step is to deal with
that discomfort.
And last, but by no means least, is
Chait's comments regarding the shanties.
The shanties are not meant to be beautiful
- they express the ugliness of racism.

Intoleration is intolerable. There is room to grow for
all of us.

committed to diversity as it claims to
be, it must cease its efforts to hide the
University's institutional racism with
smoke screens like the Record's recent
article. Instead, it must commit itself to
fundamental institutional changes in its
retention efforts, the curriculum, and
the atmosphere of thetUniversity,
which remains hostile to people of
color and other subordinated groups.
Lack of adequate financial aid and
outrageous tuition continue to be the
major obstacles to minority recruitment
and retention. More than 10 percent of
the minority students enrolled for
Winter term have not returned the fol-
lowing fall in every year since 1980.
i A 1987 University Executive Offi-
cers' discussion paper reported that the
University's formula for determining
financial aid was negatively biased
against minorities. The University has
yet to implement the report's recom-
mendations to correct this problem.
Rising tuition contributes to re-
stricted University access for people of
color, who are disproportionately from
lower-income families. And the ex-
pected tuition hike of 6.5 percent for
instate students and 9.1 percent for out-
of-state students will only exacerbate
the problem.
Other institutional changes must in-
clude broadening the University's cur-
riculum to reflect the experiences of
people of color. The Center for
African-American studies and programs

in Latino studies should be upgraded to
full departmental status. Departments in
Chicano, Native American, and Asian-
American studies must also be
The administration must also commit
itself to changing the University's
atmosphere, which is often hostile to
people of color. The regent's estab-
lishment of a campus police force -
when people of color are dispropor-
tionately targets of police brutality -
will do nothing to address this prob-
lem. Also, the administration's refusal
to investigate the recent distribution of
racist flyers in the Law School is a par-
ticularly galling example of administra-
tive contributions to campus climate
hostile to people of color.
The administration must follow the
lead of students and faculty of color,
who are best prepared to recommend.
effective and meaningful institutional
changes. It should be noted that both
periods of increased minority enroll-
ment in the last two decades followed
student anti-racist efforts led by BAM I
(1970) and BAM III(1987).
Until students push the University
to eliminate financial barriers that limit
its accessibility to people of color, and
until the curriculum and character of the
University are changed to reflect our
society's multi-culturalism, the enroll-
ment of students of color will continue
to be unrepresentative.

easier for Chait to understand. Out of your
mother, your sister, and your girlfriend,
one of them will be sexually assaulted dur-
ing her lifetime.
Discounting Pride, Awareness, and
Commitment Week shows an insensitiv-
ity to the plight of lesbians and gay men
in our community. Regardless of your
feelings on the issue, those involved in
organizing the activities of the week
showed bravery in confronting a topic that
few choose to face.
The hatred that is expressed by so
many individuals on a daily basis towards
those whose sexual orientation is either
homosexual or bisexual is not a trivial
matter. All persons deserve the right to
live peacefully and comfortably here with-

Impersonal lawyers
may side with rapists
To the Daily:
"Stop rape on campus," the man read
aloud from the message on the Sexual As-
sault Awareness Week balloon. "Does that
mean we can rape everywhere else?"
The group of men broke into laughter
as they continued on their way Wednesday
afternoon. The man's comment would be
disturbing in any context, but these well-
dressed men were descending from the
towers of the Law School. These are the
people who shape our legal system; the
last recourse for justice available to rape
victims and the final arbiter of right and
wrong in our society.
In the last issue of The Res Gestae,
John Ogilvie wrote of his criminal law
course: "In our discussions of rape, the
victim was depersonalized." He suggested
this- results from the necessity of emo-
tional distance in legal practice.
Perhaps it isn't the efficient practice of
law which makes Ogilvie's colleagues and
professors so unfeeling in their discus-
sions of rape victims. Perhaps it is their
underlying sympathy with the perpetrators
of rape which makes empathy for the vic-
tims so difficult and which would lead this
man to use the first person plural, "...we
can rpe..
Karen Akerlof
LSA senior
'E. Detroit' doesn't
mean 'East Detroit'
To the Daily:
I would like to point out a correction

side of Detroit" as if they were inter-
changeable - they are not. The first and
third are not the same, as I already pointed
out, and the second does not exist, at least
in common "Detroit terminology."
Michael Kamprath
Where is Meiland?
To the Daily:
It is admirable that cities in Michigan
are now trying to do their part to save the
environment. Everyone should work to
save the Earth, and Meiland, Michigan
ought to be proud to be leading the way.
One point, though: where is Meiland?
Maybe you mean Milan, Michigan?

They have stood for years, and I suspect
will continue to stand for many years to
come, because racism is not only in South
Africa, it is right here in the good old US
of A, and believe it or not, on this
"liberal" campus.
To demean the shanties, to deny that
we all share in the burden of confrontin
racism of all forms is to justify the exit
tence of racism.
Intoleration is intolerable. There is
room to grow for all of us. It is Chait's
first year here, and I hope he takes advan-
tage t the opportunities here to challenge
Whit Shiller
Rackham graduate student
South Quad resident director
Cartoons are deplorable
To the Daily:
Exactly what barrel does the Daily
scrape to find its cartoonists? Day after
day, the cartoons (Nuts and Bolts, espe-
cially) are packed with spelling errors a
dyslexic toad would be ashamed to let by.
Neither Nuts and Bolts nor Russell
Baltimore's refrigerator-magnet-caliber p4
scratchings have even threatened to evoke
the slightest hint of mirth or enlighten-
ment from myself or anyone I know. .
What would be the-feasibility of per-
haps printing empty space, another edito-
rial, or even (god forbid) a legitimately
humorous national cartoon in place of Bal-
timore's embarrassing tripe?
Stephen Sheridan

Douglas Whittington

High Steppin'
Don' t compromise Michigan Band tradition

Students' Rights Week
Sponsored by the Michigan Student Assembly
Rally forStudents' Rghs :
1:00. PM-On the Drag....:
Party for Students' Rights
Featuri ng the msic of Rtythm McFeud
8:0P -..Quad Half Way Inn...::. _:>.::<

Marching Band is not what it used to
,be. Recently, a most egregious policy
-has been implemented by new band
~Director Gary Lewis, which will go a
long way toward erasing decades of
half-time tradition.
Lewis, who took over this year for
interim band director Jerry Luckhardt,
has introduced several innovative rou-

this move has been overshadowed by
newer, corps-like revues such as the
Miami Sound Machine performed at the
Michigan State game... no wonder we
This move away from tradition is
alienating the legacies left by former
band directors such as Dr. William
Revelli and Dr. George Cavender.
These men are responsible for the high

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