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October 14, 1991 - Image 4

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1991-10-14

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Page 4-The Michigan Daily- Monday, October 14,1991
Wbe aijthgrn &i1

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

Editor in Chief
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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Thomas hearings
Anita Hill, Thomas were both treated unfairly


N o one would argue that sexual harassment is a
trivial issue, and one that could potentially
disqualify a nominee from serving on the Supreme
Court of the United States. Professor Anita Hill's
charge of sexual harassment, however, should not
have been the center of the three-ring circus tele-
vised nationwide on five television networks.
Clarence Thomas sat stoically during a week of
Senate inquiry artfully dodging questions con-
cerning every serious civil liberties issue this na-
tion will face in the coming years. Abortion rights,
affirmative action, and natural law discussions
were treated as minor roadblocks to Thomas'
confirmation that needed only to be avoided rather
than directly addressed. The Democrats in the
Senate, including the ardent liberals, let Thomas
tap dance all over their silk ties.
Now, with the confusing accusations against
ClarenceThomas, an ardent and violent opposition
has appeared, demanding the public investigation
of very torrid, personal, embarrassing and hurtful
issues. Hill has had to tell her story to an audience
of 100 million people, while Thomas has had to
prove his innocence before the jury of American
Where was the violent opposition a week ago?
The people who are prolonging this fiasco should
have been screaming on Capitol Hill when the
Senate, hourafterhour, was failing to learnanything
new about Judge Thomas. It took an illegal leak to
get the Senate into action. It took a story of penises,

pubic hair, pornographic films and a can of Coke to
inspire the American people to oppose what was all
along an irresponsible nomination.
The primary argument prolonging this Wash-
ington tragedy/comedy is the question about how
an Associate Supreme Court Justice would func-
tion in cases that deal with the rights of women.
Why was Thomas'dodging of the abortion issue or
his interest in natural law not threatening enough?
If the accusations of sexual harassment prove to
be truthful, certainly Clarence Thomas' nomination
should go the way oftheTitanic. But, the nomination
should have been killed long ago. The members of
the Judiciary Committee knew long ago about
Anita Hill. They saw fit to overlook the incidences
of sexual harassment, and must be condemned for
failing to treat the allegations as a serious matter. If
the issue of harassment were dealt with behind
closed doors, in an orderly and responsible fashion,
the charges - if proven credible - could have
been used to kill the nomination fairly and with
little embarrassment to the Senate, Prof. Hill or
Now, the affair has turned into a circus. The
people's distrust of Washington politicos has turned
to out-and-out disgust. Even if Thomas is innocent
of these charges, his life is permanently scarred.
True or not, Prof. Hill was subject to a cruel public
spectacle she shouldn't have been a part of. Place
the blame where you will. Next time, things need
to go differently.

-: Q _ a14.





'U' isn't issue

' Research audit
'U' was cleared of formal charges, but isn't totally innocent

T he University concluded negotiations with the
federal government this week concerning al-
leged mis-billings of the government for overhead
costs related to research. The government decreased
the amount of overhead funds that it would cover
from $7.9 million to $1.9 million. The original
audit was conducted in part because other univer-
sities - notably Stanford - had been counting
questionable expenditures as overhead research
costs in requests for federal research grants.
But the government's dropping of $6 million
from the University's requested funds does not
totally exonerate the University from blame. Ethical
violations certainly took place. Christmas tree bulbs,
first-class airplane trips, and a Rose Bowl halftime
promotion were all initially billed to the federal
government as research. Such practices are still
The Office of Management and Budget (OMB)
announced that it will begin stringently regulating
research costs at Universities nationwide, includ-
ing Michigan. The Department of Health and
Human Services is also going to place a cap on the
total amount of administrative and overhead that
universities can charge. The U.S. House of Rep-
resentatives, under the leadership of John Dingell

(D-Mich.), has also pledged to continue investigat-
ing abuses by universities.
The State of Michigan announced that it too
will audit Michigan for use of state grants and
appropriations. The University finds this unnec-
essary because it claims to have state auditors here
"all of the time anyways." But this isn't true.
Auditors have been here twice since 1984 and the
last full audit occurred five or six years ago. This
state audit is needed to investigate current spend-
A pattern of mismanagement of funds at
Michigan has emerged. The University may pos-
sibly be rocked by financial allegations after the
next audit. But all of the audits cry out for sound
accounting procedures, which would inevitably
expose waste.
Unless the University is willing to employ
sound accounting procedures itself, then both the
State and Federal government must withhold
The State of Michigan cannot simply hand over
a check for $275 million with no assurance that it
will be wisely spent. Only with a threat of losing
funding will the University act to prevent waste
and mismanagement.

To the Daily:
It strikes me as though a
crucial issue has been left out of
the debate regarding University
housing and sexual preference!
orientation. That issue is, where
does this end?
The idea of the slippery slope
or the snow-balling phenomenon
is not unfamiliar to many people,
but few at this University seem to
realize how it applies to this
housing issue.
The University must set limits
for University-operated housing.
Clearly, the easiest limits to set as
those recognized by the law of the
nation or the state. These laws are
recognized by the majority of
citizens and provide a clear line to
guide the University.
To the best of my knowledge,
the law does not recognize
homosexual couples as legally
married. Whether or noth"we are
family" is not the issue. The fact
remains that the University must
have definable terms by which to
establish family housing.
If the University were to open
the family housing to all, regard-
less of legality of the marriage, it
would no longer be the family
housing it was designed to be.
Presumably, if non-legally
married couples were allowed to
live in the Northwood complex,
what would stop students who are
dating, engaged, just friends, etc.
from taking part in trying to
obtain family accommodations?
There would be no where to
end this cycle.
In conclusion, the University's
policies on marital status are not
there to be bigoted restrictions
against homosexual couples, but
exist to maintain the stability in
family housing. There is no
slippery slope at present because
the University regulates entry into
these accommodations on a legal
So, I believe that the problem
these radicals claim to be fighting
is existent on a higher level - the

legislative level. The regents of
this University are not bigoted
toward this cause, but must stop
somewhere. And the law provides
a concrete and easily recognized
point at which to stop.
The radicals' problem is not
with the policy of this school but
with the law of this land.
Sarah Carlson
RC senior
Gays not normal
To the Daily:
I just wish to express my
disgust about all of the publicity
the gay and lesbian community
has been receiving lately. I have
always thought that homosexual-
ity is not normal, nor should it be
treated as such.
Furthermore, I don't think I
should be looked down upon as
"homophobic" simply because I
hold the popular opinion (I should
remind the gay community that
they are the minority for a
reason). May I also be so bold as
to suggest that maybe it is the gay
people who suffer from
"heterophobia," which poses a
greater threat to normal family
values than homophobia.
I don't expect that this letter
will ever be printed in the Daily,
because experience shows that if a
person is not gay, democratic, or
does not hold an extremely liberal
opinion, the Daily will not have
anything to do with him or her.
Then again, maybe the Daily will
surprise me...
Jeff Luther
Engineering senior
Source misquoted
To the Daily:
I would like to respond to the
Daily article, "Students question
police use of weapons on Diag"
that appeared in the Oct. 7 issue. I
was interviewed by the Daily, and
was asked questions about the

event and article on black students
being harassed by University and
Ann Arbor police, Oct. 4, 1991.
The Oct. 7 article quoted me
incorrectly on two points. The
first: "history shows that security
agencies like the University and
Ann Arbor Police don't know
how to deal with Black people
..." The correct statement that
was given to the reporter was:
"The history of security agencies,
from government to local, with
relation to Blacks has not been a
positive one, but a racist and
repressive history. The Univer-
sity/Ann Arbor 'connection'
seems to be a 'service' no
The second point was not "that.
police don't know how to deal
with Blacks," but rather, "We as a
people will have to learn to
handle and deal with them (the
police)." The simple fact is that
the issue at hand is the new
service and presence of the U-
Police, which is a in and of itself,
and not the presence of students.
They can very well be disbanded
as they were formed. That won't
and can't happen with students.
The University police are first
and foremost a "service" that can
be utilized or ignored. We, as
Black people, are not to be "dealt"
with in any matter as though we
are objects or animals or outside
our own respectful place in
society. We will deal accordingly
with those who deem to disrespect
our Blackness and our basic
human rights as we see fit.


Devlin Ponte
LSA senior

The Daily encourages reader
responses. Letters shold be 150
words or less and include the
author's name, year in school
and phone number. They should
be mailed to:420 Maynard, Ann
Arbor 48109. Or they can be
sent via MTS to: The Michigan
Daily Letters to the Editor. The
Daily reserves the right to edit
letters for style and space

Gay soldiers

Canada has taken a bold step,
The Canadian Defense Ministry will end its
long-standing policy which bars homosexuals
from military service. This is a momentous step
that is long overdue. The policy was clearly dis-
criminatory - it punished individuals simply by
virtue of their sexual orientation. The United States
military should follow Canada's lead and similarly
revise its discriminatory regulations barring ho-
mosexuals from the military.
"Security and decorum," are two typical excuses
made by theAmerican military for its discriminatory
policies. Military officials have often claimed that
allowing homosexuals into the armed forces would
undermine their traditional values of order. But
they have failed to make a convincing argument
that explains why heterosexual and homosexual
soldiers could not work side by side.
It is absurd to think that gays and heterosexuals
- who work together in the rest of the work force
- could not do so in the military. Furthermore,
allowing homosexuals to enter the military in-
creases the number of able-bodied soldiers avail-
Standards need not be lowered to employ ho-
mosexuals in the military.
The United States should take this opportunity

America should follow
to re-evaluate its own policy outlined by Defense
Secretary Dick Cheney. Cheney claims, "homo-
sexuality is inconsistent with the military." Canada
has a much smaller and less active military than our
own, but its government still took the time to
identify the discrimination and begin steps to re-
move it.
With one of the largest military establishments
in the world, the United States is obligated to
reverse its widespread discrimination. With all the
thinking the Pentagon is supposed to be doing,
some introspection on its discriminatory policy
barring homosexuals should be easy.
Othernations have taken this step as well. Great
Britain's Ministry of Defense said last spring that
it plans to do away with the restriction on homo-
sexuals, saying that it was losing too many good
and able men and women because of the policy.
France has no such anti-gay policy, and has had
none of the problems that the Pentagon envisions
with the admission of homosexual soldiers.
If the United States is to be a part of this "new
world order," it has created, it must join the rest of
the world in ending the discrimination against gays
by the military establishment. If the Mounties can
do it, so can we.

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Anita Hill challengf8s norms

by Julie Steiner
Thank you, Anita Hill!
Thak you from all of us
women: women of color, white
women, women who work in our
country. Women who know in
their gut what you have been
through when you worked with
Clarence Thomas, what you are
going through now as you
confront the most powerful white
men in our country -including
the president. And what you will
go through in the future, as you
continue to tell the truth about not
just your experience, but all of our
experiences as working women.
Thank you for speaking out!
Thank you for raising the issue of
workplace sexual harassment to a
new level of public awareness, in
spite of the fact that you knew
you might be ignored, and that
you surely would be vilified,
disbelieved and threatened. All of
us who have shared your experi-
ence know the pain you are

their chambers to-talk with them
about this issue!
Shame on those men who
stood on the Senate floor making
empassioned speeches about how
horrific it was that the Senate

embarassed into action. It could
not ignore the public outcry of
sexism at work in the Senate.
Now their challenge as they hold
hearings to "get to the bottom of
this" will be to be able to hear


Shame! Shame on the white men in Senate
Judiciary Committee who ignored Dr. Hill's
statements about the behavior of the Su-
preme Court nominee.

rules and procedures were not
being followed - not about how
horrific sexual harassment is.
The most shame should be felt
by those who set the stage for
others in power to ignore, dismiss
and deny any woman's charge of
sexual harassment.
How absurd this "debate" has
been. On one side sit these men
- who could also be our bosses,
the regents here at the University,
or any man in power - wonder-
ing aloud in emphatic voices, why
"this woman" did not come

Hill's answers to their questions
with the ears of someone who
understands the abuse of power
that sexual harassment is, as well
as someone who understands the
position of double jeopardy in
which Hill finds herself - not
only a woman in the workplace,
but an African-American woman.
Fighting not only sexism, but
racism as well.
No, there are not likely to be
any witnesses to Clarence
Thomas' actions; few sexual
harasers are stupid enough to

Nuts and Bolts


by Judd Winick
~NBOW -%0& 4Er:s1ET


I HG44
F_ HEHEE Y JlY/ l/fi

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