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March 18, 1992 - Image 4

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1992-03-18

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Page 4-The Michigan Daily- Wednesday, March 18, 1992
e Srcirguin aiy
Fditor in Chief

420 Maynard Street
Ann Arbor, Michigan 49109
764 - 0552

Opinion Editors

Edited and Managed
by Students at the
University of Michigan

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.
R OT EAI ................................*****.*......* ... . . . .
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . ..M.* *.* . ~ ...~ ~ ... . . . . . . .

Politicos on the I
F or a short time last week, it appeared that
students would be choosing between three
parties when voting for president and vice presi-
dent in the next Michigan Student Assembly elec-
tions. One day after announcing its candidacy,
however, the Michigan Moose Party, a newcomer
to MSA politics, withdrew its presidential and vice
presidential candidates from the election. It is
unfortunate that students will not get a break from
bipartisan politics in MSA elections.
For the last several years, the Conservative.
Coalition (CC) and the Progressive Party, along
with a scattering of independent candidates, have
dominated MSA's political landscape. The left vs.
right ideological struggle which these aspiring
politicians have carried out has been a model of
inefficiency and voter dissatisfaction. The two
parties have engaged in endless squabbling and
histrionics, and seem to be primarily concerned
with imitating their national counterparts in Con-
gress, who have already demonstrated their inabil-
ity to respond to constituents' concerns. Indeed,
voter turnout in the last MSA elections was six
percent, revealing a level of student apathy more
;widespread than the national electorate.
The Moose presidential and vice presidential
4andidates, current MSA Reps. Robert Van

Houweling and Brian Kight, said that they with-
drew because they could not match the funding and
organization of the two established parties. Here
again, the parallel with national politics, which is
biased heavily in favor of the two major parties, is
unmistakable and disturbing.
Despite these parallels, there is no excuse for
MSA politics to suffer the same flaws as national
politics. There is not an impassable tangle of red
tape and ballot requirements facing new parties. It
is relatively easy for a group of students to form a
party, and with a campaign that focuses on key
student issues, a new party has a good chance of
Perhaps such a party would even increase
student interest and consequently increase voter
turnout in MSA elections, making the institution
more credible and effective in representing student
While the Michigan Moose Party may not have
been the solution to MSA's problems - it is
difficult to judge a party who's two top candidates
existed for only a day - it at least represented a
chance for students to say no to bipartisan politics
as usual. We can only hope that for the next MSA
elections, other students will catch the spirit and
form new parties which will endure.

0O - MX''1ST L L D t~N ,. .


Condoms in the classrooms

ICP offers LSA
To the Daily:
As the academic adviser for
the mainstream LSA Individual-
ized Concentration Program
(ICP), I was pleased to see an
article about the ICP in the Daily
("Program allows students to
create majors," 2/12/92). But, I
wish more information had been
included and that greater care had
been given to the distinction
between variously administered
ICP programs.
Readers might have been
interested to know that the
mainstream LSA ICP is the eighth
largest concentration in the
College, and that the Honors
Program and the Residential
College (RC) administer com-
pletely separate ICP programs and
counsel their own students. The
College Faculty Committee on

Interdisciplinary Studies reviews
only the ICP proposals from
mainstream LSA students,
represented only by Dean Tsai in
your article. The two other
students quoted, Eric Lai and
John (Jack) Bransfield, are
Honors students and not repre-
sentative of the vast majority of
mainstream LSA ICP students
whom I counsel.
In any case, the ICP can be a
very valuable degree option to
LSA, Honors and RC students
who wish to pursue an under-
graduate concentration which is a
coherent, comprehensive aca-
demic program not currently
available in the college as an
established concentration.
Liina M. Wallin
LSA ICP counselor

O n Valentine's Day, members of the campus
group ACT-UP (Aids Coalition to Unleash
Power) went to Ann Arbor Pioneer High School to
distribute condoms. One outspoken member,
Pattrice Maurer, was eventually arrested for dis-
tributing specially packaged condoms to students.
Maurer is cur.
rently awaiting
pial for trespass-
gig. By distrib-
uting condoms
ACT-UP made it
political state-
ment alerting the
community to
the AIDS cnsis - .a,
and the impor- n
tance of using
condoms to stem ..
transmission of
.the disease. It .
was right to tar-
get a school rep-w
resentative of a
district that preaches abstinence rather than birth
control. Regardless ofherpolitical motives, Maurer
-was trespassing, and her removal from school
grounds was justified.
This is an age of skyrocketing teenage preg-
nancy rates and an AIDS epidemic that is rapidly
spreading. In order to keep pace with an age where
divorce is common, both parents in a family often
work, and students engage in high-risk activities at
an early age, schools must pick up the slack and
educate students in subjects beyond reading and

math. Schools need to teach students about AIDS,
prevention of sexually- transmitted diseases, sex
and birth control.
ACT-UP asked Pioneer High School adminis-
trators to update the school's health-education
program, which is currently taught as a unit in
driver education classes, and emphasizes absti-
nence rather that birth control, but was turned
down. While the school does address issues of sex,
prevention of sexually-transmitted diseases, and
birth control, the emphasis on abstinence displays
a fundamental misunderstanding about the behav-
ior of young people.
The organization should be commended for
recognizing that Pioneer needs to restructure its
sex education program. Preaching abstinence is
not a viable solution to teen pregnancy or prevent-
ing sexually-transmitted diseases. The school
should institute a comprehensive educational pro-
gram about the dangers of AIDS and how to avoid
it. It is naive to pretend teenagers do not get AIDS
and that they do not have sex.
ACT-UP had the right idea but could have gone
about it differently. The best way for a teenager to
learn about sex and AIDS is in the classroom from
a teacher, not in a school parking lot from a total
stranger. Moreover, parents have a right to be
aware of what their children are learning while in
school. ACT-UP's stunt effectively cut parents out
of the process.
The topics of AIDS, sex and birth control must
be addressed in school. But the answer is to incor-
porate them into every school's curriculum. Total
strangers handing out condoms to young students
just doesn't cut it.

Tyson unlike Thomas, Smith

To the Daily:
In Jeff Sheran's article "Tyson
isn't the only one on trial," (2/3/
92) Sheran compares this trial to
the confirmation hearings of
Supreme Court Justice Clarence
Thomas and the rape trial of
William Kennedy Smith. Sheran
states that the Smith trial and the
Thomas-Hill hearings have left
Americans seeing their country in
a different light. He states we that
can not forget the images of the
cheering crowd following the
Smith trial, and that "we may
never be able to esteem our
Senate as highly after witnessing
the hearings." Sheran seemed to
be indicting our judicial system in
this article, and in this area I must
respectfully disagree with Mr.
My disagreement stems from
two areas. Primarily, because I
feel that Sheran does not even
consider the fact that thesetwo
cases were extremely weak.
Sheran seemed to imply that the
reason that Thomas was con-
firmed and that Smith was
acquitted was not because they
were innocent, but rather because
they were famous. I do not see
this as being the case. I was under
the impression that the whole

premise of our judicial system
was that a person was innocent
until proven guilty. Many people
waited for Thomas and Smith to
prove themselves innocent,
instead of waiting for them to be
proven guilty "beyond a shadow
of a doubt. "
It is my opinion, in both the
cases of Thomas and Smith, a
shadow of a doubt existed. There
were simply too many questions
that Anita Hill and Patricia
Bowman were unable to answer
for any jury to convict Smith or
for the Senate to deny Thomas'
Some complain that media
focus allows prominent members
of our society to walk away from
their crimes. Do these people
think that people of status should
have a harsher treatment because
the media find it necessary to
overpublicize their cases?
I hope not. Next time Sheran
wants to make an indictment of
one of our social institutions, he
should make sure he places the
blame where it belongs. In this
case it should be on the media,
not our judicial system.
Jenni Sinacola
LSA first-year student

Cartoon controversy
To the Daily:
In response to the letters
regarding the cartoon on 2/6/92, I
would like to emphasize that the
cartoon was simply meant to
comment on the statements of one
Japanese official, and was not
meant to imply that all Asian
Americans share his opinions. The
cartoon was not intended to be
interpreted as being hostile toward
Asian Americans. My apologies
for the confusion.
Greg Stump
Daily cartoonist
Appropriate words
To the Daily:
I find the level of profanity in
the Daily somewhat amusing and
somewhat disturbing.
One mark of a well adjusted,
intelligent person is the ability to
express oneself without resorting
to expletives. There are situations
in which such words are appropri-
ate, such as direct quotations.
However, even in that case, major
newspapers often blank out words
deemed no appropriate for
everyday speech. Free speechiis
not the issue. The Daily is
perfectly free to print what it
wants. However, if it wishes to
maintain some air of credibility, it
should avoid sensationalist and
inappropriate choices of words.
Dante Stella
LSA sophomore
I am not a woman
To the Daily:
In regards to Jeff Muir's piece
on the editorial page on the Daily
(3/6/92): I find it interesting the
Muir assumes I am a woman.
Let's talk about bias.
Kingii Hinterland
Film Projection Service
The Daily encourages responses
from its readers. All letters should
be I50 words or less. Send all
letters to: The Michigan Daily,
420 Maynard, Ann Arbor, MI
48109. Or via MTS to: The
Michigan Daily, Letters to the



MIP fines still too stiff

L ast Thursday, the Michigan House of Repre-
sentatives approved aversion of an earlier bill
that would increase the penalties for minors in
possession of Alcohol (MIPs), but not without
some significant changes. The mandatory driver's
license suspension, the most punative measure of
the bill, has been removed. But the large fine
increases remain. Though this bill is a definite
improvement over its earlier form, these new pen-
alties are still extreme considering the pettiness of
the crime.
The fines, originally $25 for first offenders and
$100 for repeat offenders, have been raised to $100
and $500. In addition, courts would require com-
munity service and substance abuse treatment for
Originally, this bill would have mandated the
suspension of the offender's driver's license for up
to 90 days for the first offense, 180 days for the
second offense, and up to a year for the third
offense. The greatest fault of these penalties is that
they would have been used as punishment for a
crime that is completely unrelated to a person's
driving. When dealing with an offense like drunk
driving, a driver's license suspension may be an
appropriate punishment. Fortunately, the House
had the foresight to elliminate this provision from

the bill.
Augmenting the amount of the fines may have
been a necessary compromise to get rid of the
driver's license suspension, but these fines are still
excessive. If the House thinks raising these fines
will keep minors from drinking, then it has little
understanding of the way young people think.
Supporters of this bill should consider the group
they are targeting. Most people under age 21 have
low-income jobs, and many work only part time. A
$100 fine, in these cases, is too severe. Yet it will
still fail to be an effective deterent against a prob-
lem that always has, and always will exist.
Though community service is generally a con-
structive punishment far preferable to jail time,
requiring it for MIPs is unnecessary. By drinking
before state law allows, minors are endangering
themselves, not the community.
Substance abuse treatment is equally absurd. It
is foolish to assume that every minor caught drink-
ing is an alcoholic.
The House should be commended for striking
the driver's license provisions from the bill. People
under 21 who drink can only hope the Senate
doesn't tack it back on. Both houses would do well
focus on drunk driving and alcohol abuse and leave
the minors alone.

C OIN rm s NT ...g.'. ..h...h.......ti tin.......................................
Group forms to fight deputization

by Janelle White and
Todd Ochoa
The following is the official
public statement of the Coalition
of Students Against Deputization
CSAD is composed of the
following organizations: Black
Student Union (BSU), Progres-
sive People of Color (PPC) and
S.H.I.T. (Students Halting
Institutionalized Violence)
In the three weeks since the
rallies organized by CSAD
against the University's first steps
to implement their police force,
CSAD has reflected on the callous
and anti-democratic actions of the
University administration which
has caused students, faculty, staff
and community members frustra-
tion and demoralization. Two
hundred students experienced the
brutality and repression of the
Department of Public Safety
(DPS) on Feb. 20, 1992 when
DPS mishandled students

police are exactly what CSAD
hoped to prevent. The
Administration's intolerance
toward student opposition to
University policy has been
dramatically revealed. CSAD can
only view the University's
actions as an ominous foreshad-
owing of the potential harm that

dominantly Black students as a
"mob," reflects the underlying,
institutionalized racism at the
University - this in light of the
fact that similar gatherings of
white students are never thus
characterized. The hearings she
now defends were never founded
on the principles of free speech or


CSAD is determined to expose the
University's blatant disregard for democracy
currently manifested in the way decisions are
being made by administrators on the
deputization issue.


Nuts and Bolts

4 i

WW4AT 1 15 Hi? 'SAMJiY?
tC.70.S1S2T C0UUN'7

by Judd Winick
COULt SEE ~so' x. v?

will result from having a police
force that is not accountable to
the population that it is supposed
to serve.
Statements made by Maureen
Hartford in her letter to the Daily
(3/5/92) illustrate the University
administration' spatronizing and
condescending attitude toward
students. With such attitudes it is
impossible for her to fulfill her

free assembly. Therefore, it is
Hartford who should apologize to
CSAD is determined to expose
the University's blatant disregard
for democracy currently mani-
fested in the way decisions are
being made by administrators on
the deputization issue. Education,
community outreach and mass
mobilization are the means

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