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October 11, 1991 - Image 4

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The Michigan Daily, 1991-10-11

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Page 4-The Michigan Daily- Friday, October 11, 1991

01

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420 Maynard Street
Ann Arbor, Michigan 48109
Edited and Managed
by Students at the
University of Michigan

ANDREW K. GOTTESMAN
Editor in Chief
STEPHEN HENDERSON
Opinion Editor

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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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Yesterday, undeclared Democratic Presidential
1 candidate and former Governor of California
Jerry Brown spoke to a crowd of students in the
Michigan Union. While we do not yet have an
entirely clear idea of his campaign message, we are
encouraged by his efforts to restructure political
debate in the United States.
Brown's speech concentrated on what he sees
as the bankruptcy of the electoral process, and the
lack of true political dialogue in all levels of
government.
The goal of those in government, he argued, is
simply to gain enough moneyto achieve re-election.
This, he added, serves to exclude the majority of
the voting public from the political process.
Brown also believes that there is no distinct
separation between the "two" political parties,
claiming that they are both funded by the very
some political action committees and rich lobby-
ists representing the most privileged elements in
American society.
Brown, it seems, has his finger on the pulse of
the shortcomings of what is often referred to as
"The System" in the United States.'
Indeed, itis the time forconstructive and definite
reform in the political process. Unduly high re-
election rates in Congress and decreasing public
Congressional support tell us that. And it appears
as though Brown has risen to the challenge of
hashing out what those reforms should be.
Brown has announced that he will accept no

campaign donations higher than $100 from any
group or individual. This is a positive step, and
should serve as a wake-up call to the voters who
have been duped by politicians who focus on the
Pledge ofAllegiance rather than the corruption and
money-grubbing that is so prevalent in Washing-
ton.
Voters must come to realize that politicians who
mortgage their campaigns must eventually pay
back the bank - at the expense of their constitu-
ents' needs.
Students have a stake in all of this as well.
As Brown pointed out yesterday, the very same
Congress that voted itself a pay raise with no public
debate whatsoever refuses to allocate a sufficient
amount of money to the nation's crumbling sec-
ondary education system.
As tuition rises every year, students need more
and receive less in federal aid. And those who do
receive enough in government loans to afford a
college education are forced to spend years digging
themselves out of debt.
Perhaps in future campaigns, there will be more
than one candidate who has the courage to appeal
to the voters, rather than the interest groups. And
perhaps in the future, we will again see the emer-
gence of two political parties - not just two
identical divisions of Political Party, Inc. But if
nothing else comes out of Brown's campaign, he
will have made Americans think about what the
role of government is - and what it could be.

Distributed by Tribune Media Services

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Police with
no badges?
To the Daily:
This past Sunday, I witnessed
the protest against the employ-
ment practices of the Cracker
Barrel restaurant in Belleville.
The national office had issued a
memorandum that all gay and
lesbian employees should be fired
from their jobs, because such
individuals were inconsistent with
the chain's family "image."
The police were ostensibly on
hand to maintain the peace
between the protesters and the
anti-gay counter-protesters
carrying signs exclaiming, "We're
the Gay Bashers."

But the police forces on hand
were following a very dangerous
policy for a public force function-
ing in a democracy. None of the
100 or so police officers onhand,
all in full riot gear, with their billy
blubs raised, were wearing their
police badges.
The law and the public
demand that individual police
officers maintain personal
responsibility for their actions. It
is important that the police
confine their behavior to action
permissible under the Constitu-
tion, the laws of the country and
the policies of the police depart-
ment.
The removal of police badges
is dangerous, because it makes the
officer anonymous in dealing with

the public and strips them of their
actions. The public remembers the
police brutality that occurred
when the police were acting
without being personally identifi-
able during the Civil Rights
protests in the 1960s.
More recently, the public has
seen the action of the police in
Los Angeles when the officers
thought no one was watching. Our
elected officials must insist that
the police remain individually
responsible and accountable to the
law and the public.
Ronald Holzhacker
Rackham graduate student

Open the door
Gays move out of the closet, and into the streets!

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Football With a writer's twist

oday is National Coming Out Day forlesbians,
bisexuals and gay men. It is an important day
of education, support and celebration for the gay
community. Most importantly, the day encourages
gays to take pride in themselves. Starting at 7:30
a m., purple ribbons will be distributed throughout
the University, from parking structures to the Diag.i
Members of the University community have a
responsibility to support one another, including
homosexuals coming out for the first time.
There are two rallies scheduled - one to sup-
port those who are coming out, and one for those
who are already out. The first is a pro-active rally
that will commence on the Diag at noon. It will
center around local issues of discrimination -
notably the University Administration's blatant
refusal to include sexual orientation into the Uni-
versity bylaws. The rally will also discuss the
University's refusal to acknowledge same-sex
couples right to live in family housing.
The main rally takes place at 7 p.m. on the steps
of the Rackham building and discusses general
issues of coming out day. The rally ends with a

march around Ann Arbor and at 10 p.m., a dance
will take place at the North Campus Commons.
The administration's treatment of homosexuals
on this campus sets a poor example for the rest of
the community. President Duderstadt and Regent
Deane Baker (R-Ann Arbor) do more to hinder the
~advancement of lesbian, bisexual and gay rights on
campus than to help them.
In the past few years, the regents have consis-
tently refused to am mend their non-discrimination
bylaw. And more recently, the regents thwarted
proposals to change their family housing policy to
include unmarried gay and lesbian couples.
It would be a welcome gesture for President
Duderstadt or the regents to come out in support
with a purple ribbon today - but it's highly
unlikely. As Duderstadt likes to say, it is up to the
students at the University to lead themselves into
the twenty-first century. By wearing a purple rib-
bon or attending the rally students can educate
themselves about the issues of lesbian, bisexual
and gay rights.
So, go ahead, put on that ribbon!

by Jon Chait
I really hate Michigan State.
Lots of people here say that,
but they don't truly mean it. I do.
I take pleasure in watching them
suffer. I personally would support
unannounced above-ground
nuclear testing in East Lansing.
My friends tell me that this all-
consuming hatred has become an
unhealthy obsession. They are
probably right. I root passionately
for MSU to lose, in every sporting
event. (The only exception is the
MSU-Notre Dame game, when I
root for injuries)
The absolute low-point in my
life was last year's football game,
when Desmond Howard was
brutally and flagrantly tackled in
the endzone during the winning
two-point conversion. When I
didn't see a penalty flag at first, I
assumed that the referees had
decided that pass interference was
not a severe enough penalty, and
were confering to decide whether
capital punishment was appli-
cable.
But not only did they fail to
execute the offender, they didn't
even call a penalty. And even the
Big Ten later apologizing for the
call did not heal the scars.
And then there are the
allegations of massive steroid use
in the MSU football program.
Chait is an LSA sophomore and a
columnist for Weekend magazine.

At first I had my doubts. Just
because their players have
reported annual weight gains of
up to 80 pounds along with loss
of hair, and acne covering 95
percent of their body surface, just

quarterback's problem, not mine.
I figured that on each play this
person - we were never formally
introduced, so I'll call him Butch
- would toss me aside and maim
whoever happened to have the

f
P.

I spent the game playing offensive line,
blocking a person who was, literally, 6'6" and
240 pounds, with virtually no hair.

because even their mascot,
Sparty, has biceps the size of farm
animals, just because the entire
State line has joined "The Hair
Club for Men," that doesn't mean
that they take steroids.
What clinched it for me is the
fact that their newspaper staff is
on steroids.
This discovery came during
the annual Michigan Daily-
Michigan State News football
game. Every year, we have a
friendly game of football with our
counterpart student newspaper,
which happens to weigh more per
capita than the football team.
I spent the game playing
offensive line, blocking a person
who was, literally, 6'6" and 240
pounds, with virtually no hair. I
have a hard time believing that
this guy wrote for a newspaper,
even a Michigan State newspaper.
I have a hard time believing that
he could read a newspaper.
But O.K, as far as I was
concerned, this was the

ball. We would lose, but at least I
would survive.
But that wasn't good enough
for Butch. He didn't want to sack
the quarterback. He wanted to
hurt me.
On the first play, Butch
grabbed my shoulders and drove
his knee into my crotch. I fell to
the ground and gasped, "Why did
you do that?" Then he spat on me.
I didn't want to say anything,
because I don't believe in
fighting, especially with persons
who weigh more than my entire
family. But later in the game
when Butch kneed my crotch
again, I was determined to stick
up for myself. I struggled to my
feet, looked him right in the eye,
and said: "Eep." Then I collapsed.
I maintained my dignity,
however, by crawling off the field
without assistance.
This year will be different,
however. We've picked up some
large new writers. And I'm going
to wear a cup.

i'I
zI

'Rubbergate'

Bounced checks point to larger
Members of Congress often prove that they are
irresponsible with federal money. Now it ap-
pears that many are equally irresponsible with
their private funds.
U.S. House of Representatives bank records
show that more than 8,000 checks were written on
insufficient funds. It was later publicized that hun-
dreds of thousands of dollars in House restaurant
bills were also unpaid.
Shortages of funds are covered by other bank
depositors - all of them representatives - with-
out penalty. This privilege of no penalties for
overdrawn checks constitutes the current contro-
versy attracting national attention.
.House Speaker Thomas Foley (D-Washington)
assures us that the Ethics Committee is investigat-
ing whether"significant, substantial, and repeated"
abuse of the privilege was involved.'
Regardless of whether or not the privilege was
abused, this fiasco is further evidence of the gen-
eral ineptitude of the Congress.
The public outcry over such perks as free Con-
gressional parking and discount haircuts is sym-
bolic of the general distrust of an institution that
has become, for the mostpartunaccountable to the

Congressional problems
very electorate that rubber stamps 98 percent of its
members in every election.
Many have argued that, while this is an abuse of
Congressional privileges, this issue does not merit
the media attention that it has received.
But the flurry of attention has raised an impor-
tant issue. How can the public be expected to trust
its representatives in Washington with billions of
dollars if people such as representative John Dingle
(D-Michigan) can't even balance theircheckbooks?
Congress has an undeniable image problem.
And that problem is spurred by the abuse and
incompetence practiced by many of its members.
These inefficiencies must soon be addressed.
Speaker Foley has announced that the House
bank will close at the end of the year. This is a
positive step.
The bank's operating costs alone are an un-
necessary burden on the taxpayers.
And while Foley's at it, there are a few more
privileges that could be put on the cutting block.
But while closing the bank is a positive step,
simply taking away privileges will not address the
larger problems that are afflicting a Congress that
is clearly out of control.

"0

Celebrate national 'Coming Out' day

by Carrie Bree
Around the country today,
lesbians, gay men, and bisexual
people are "coming out of the
closet," breaking down the
barriers that keep us from living
full and productive lives in this
supposedly open society..
On this day, we recognize that
our strength is drawn from each
other in the gay community. On a
daily basis, we confront a society
that silences us, discriminates
against us, and threatens us with
violence. We recognize the
courage involved in coming out.
By coming out, we place
ourselves in danger of harass-
ment, rejection from our families,
and physical violence. But, unless
we come out, and announce our
presence as members of this
community, the University will
continue to ignore us.
Many of us came to the
University of Michigan believing
the advertisements of a safe and
"diverse" community. What we

and bisexual people on campus.
This is clear in the most recent
bigotry displayed by the
University's Board of Regents.
As many know, the regents

denied our civil rights. We will no
longer stand for our status to be
less than equal.
This issue is only one piece of
the University's long history of

By coming out, we place ourselves in danger
of harassment, rejection from our families,
and physical violence. But, unless we come

out, and announce our
of this community, the
tinue to ignore us.

presence as members
University will con-

Nuts and Bolts
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by Judd Winick

recently voted to reaffirm the
current definition of "family" in
the University's Family Housing
as it now stands, a definition that
excludes same-sex families, as
well as extended families and
unmarried heterosexual families.
Their action silenced and sup-
pressed three separate internally
commissioned reports which
touched on this issue and two
proposals solely addressing this
issue.

discrimination directed toward
lesbians, gay men and bisexual
people as well as other
marginalized groups. Action must
be taken against all areas of
discrimination on this campus.
If you support lesbians; gay
men, and bisexual people in their
struggle for civil rights, come to
the next meeting of persons
working toward the inclusion of
lesbian and gay male families in
Family Housing on Tuesday. Oct.

.
0

I

I

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