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October 13, 1992 - Image 4

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The Michigan Daily, 1992-10-13

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Page 4,-The Michigan Daily-- Tuesday, October 13,1992

GbE fLitrlgau &ilu

420 Maynard Street
Ann Arbor, Michigan 48109

Editor in Chief
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.
A R O.. : :: :1 M . ' 1 . .I.. ...LY .....1......1:. ................. .. .................... ........... .. . ............. .1'*.. . . . .... .... . . . . . ......... ...:::.. ......... .
Columbus, finding middle ground

Yesterday marked the 500th anniversary of
Christopher Columbus' voyage to the West-
ern Hemisphere. The Michigan Student Assembly
proposed changing the name of the holiday to
"Indigenous Peoples Day," to commemorate Na-
tive Americans victimized by Columbus and his
successors. Elsewhere, movement is afoot to elimi-
nate the holiday altogether. The debate has be-
come a sensitivity litmus test, and the rhetoric on
both sides of the debate has become so extreme
that a reasonable middle ground scarcely exists.
The conventional Western interpretation of
Columbus glosses over his many faults and com-
pletely ignores the implications of his voyage on
Native Americans. To view Columbus Day simply
as the "discovery" of America denies the existence
of cultures who had discovered the Western Hemi-
sphere thousands of years before. To them, Co-
lumbus represented not a discovery but an inva-
sion - an invasion which set into motion the
tragic process of European genocide.
The revisionist argument examines Columbus
in this critical light. In its extreme form, Columbus
has been transformed into a 15th century Hitler.
However, Columbus cannot be judged by mod-
ern standards. He pre-dates the development of the
philosophy of liberalism. The concept that all
human beings have certain inalienable rights sim-
ply could not have occurred to Columbus. Granted,
the unrighteousness of murder is a moral bedrock
that transcends time. Still, that Columbus mur-
dered and stole merely put him on a level with
other men of his era; his remarkable voyage sets
him apart, and for this he should be primarily
f It is just as inaccurate to say that Columbus
brought civilization to primitive natives as to claim

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that he imposed racist Western values on an ad-
vanced, cultured people. True, 15th century Eu-
rope - with its religious wars, and oppressive
feudal system - was no bastion of high culture.
However, it was Europe that discovered America,
not vice versa, and this represents some degree of
societal advancement. The tragedy is that, rather
than develop a mutually beneficial cultural ex-
change, the Europeans generally chose to destroy
the societies they encountered.
1492 marked the beginning of European colo-
nialism in the New World. This led, inevitably, to
the slaughter of Native Americans to whom the
land rightfully belonged. It also led to the creation
of the United States of America, which is a monu-
mental historical event. We must celebrate Colum-
bus' voyage as well as mourn it. But as Americans,
native or immigrant, we cannot ignore it.

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RU 486: politics hurting women

Abortion is murder
To the Daily:
I think it is time for abortion to
be put back into its proper
context. It is not a matter of one
side being pro-women and one
side being anti-women. Pro-life
supporters are more pro-women
than pro-choicer supporters are.
Pro-choice supporters do not
inform women of alternatives.
They do not tell them to seek a
second opinion. Pro-life organiza-
tions are there to provide clothing,
cribs, food and other areas of
support for true women who take
responsibility for their actions.
The true context of abortion is
that 1,500,000 babies are slaugh-
tered each year. Pro-choice
supporters say that what they are
terminating is not life. It is never
stated that at seven weeks both
heartbeat and brainwaves are
recorded. It is never stated that at
three months all organs are
present and functioning. From
seven weeks and out, the baby
sleeps, wakes and just continues
to grow. At the time of concep-
tion, all DNA is there.
To die at the hands of another
man is shameful. To die at the
hands of your mother is a disgrace
to what we stand for.
Michael Suhy
LSA first-year student
Term limits bad idea
To the Daily:
On October 6, 1992 Senator
Alfonse M. D'Amato (R-NY)
staged a 15-hour filibuster,
attempting to save his constitu-
ents' jobs. If there were term
limits, and he was ineligable for
re-election, what incentive would
he have had to stay on his feet
talking (and occasionally singing)
for 15 hours?
Very little.
John R. Rybock
LSA junior

You've failed.
The basketball ticket-distribu-
tion process is not only ineffi-
cient, but dangerous.
Allowing sales only for a
three-hour period encourages
waiting in line concert style. This
is both unfair, as people reserve
places for hordes of friends, each
of whom carries 15-20 student
IDs, and unsafe, as people stay
out in the cold, risking exposure.
Both of these problems could
be solved by changing the
distribution process; the first
alone could be solved by having
Campus Safety regulate and
monitor the Crisler Arena area on
nights before ticket distributions. I
was at Crisler Arena from 1:00
a.m. on October 11, and saw no
representatives of Campus Safety
until 12:05 p.m., after it was too
late to control the crowd that had
The crush of the mob as the
doors opened evidenced the
second danger. Someone from
ticket distribution caused chaos at

11:30 a.m. by handing out
informational flyers. People
thought they might be voucher
claim forms, and pressed forward
to get them. The Campus Safety
people on the scene, rather than
restoring order, simply pushed
back, crushing anyone in the
middle, and injuring some
For Assistant Ticket Manager
Bria Klemz to declare that they
"were braced for up to 6,000
people" is ludicrous. Three
Campus Safety officers could
never control 6,000 people. Even
if they had arrived before the
problem developed.
A system like that at Indiana
University, where claim cards
(vouchers) are purchased at
registration, distributed during a
two-day open-claim period, then
resubmitted into the ticket lottery,
should already be in place at a
school like the University of
Alexander LeDonne
Rackham graduate student

Basketball ticket-sale flasco
An open letter to the University of Michigan Athletic Department
and to Campus Safety:

Although researchers throughout Europe have
ICI declared RU486 asafe drug, the U.S. govern-
ment continues to bar anyone - including re-
search scientists - from importing the drug. Op-
position to the French pill comes primarily from
anti-abortion activists and the far right, who claim
thatthe so-called "abortionpill" is as "immoral" as
a typical abortion operation. Instead of succumb-
ing to the anti-abortion rights lobby, the adminis-
tration should realize that the health and well-
being of American women is far more important
than the president's political concerns.
New studies show that the drug can be an
effective and safe birth-control pill, and women
can take the drug up to nine weeks into a preg-
nancy. Scottish researches last week released the
results of an experiment involving 300 pregnant
women taking RU 486. The report stated that all
300 pregnancies were safely terminated. Despite
such early successes, federal law still prohibits
American scientists from conducting basic re-
search on the pill.
In addition, RU 486 has been proven to be
equally safe as a "morning after" pill. Taken after
sexual intercourse, the pill prevents the fertilized
egg from implanting itself into the wall of the
womb, thus preventing pregnancy.
Consumption of RU 486 is less intrusive than
an abortion operation and poses fewer safety threats

to pregnant women. Furthermore, anti-abortion
rights activists should be appeased by the fact that
RU 486 would actually reduce the number of
surgical abortions.
Besides serving as a safe "morning after" pill,
RU 486 would facilitate abortions for victims of
rape. Rape is horrific enough without the added
trauma of an abortion operation. Research also
indicates that RU 486 may be helpful in treatment
of breast and adrenal cancer. The drug would not be
available for consumer use in the United States
until the Federal DrugAdministration(FDA) could
test it. Until the import ban is lifted, however, the
FDA cannot even begin researching the drug. The
fact that RU 486 is legal in China, Britain, France
and Sweden is more evidence that it should at least
be tested in the United States.
Abortion, for the time being, is a legal proce-
dure in the United States. For the government to
prohibit experimentation of a drug that may make
abortion more safe, and potentially help treat many
diseases, is morally unacceptable.
Ignoring the usefulness of RU 486 is pointless.
Rape and unprotected sex will occur, whether or
not the government recognizes it. This drug would
allow women to abort fetuses without the emo-
tional, physical and possibly new legal problems
that an abortion entails. RU 486 could make life
easier and it's ban should be lifted.


Hill: guilty then, guilty now
To the Daily: country, charging $10,000 for
Last year at this time I wrote every speech. She also can be seen
in response to your newspaper's on the news frequently, trying to
biased and unfounded attacks on get her agenda realized. If she lied
Clarence Thomas and your about using her exposure, did she
blanket acceptance of all that in fact lie about Thomas? I
Anita Hill said or did. Lo and happen to believe yes.
behold, in your editorial "Tho- I am a registered Republican
mas-Hill, one year later," (10/6/ and a supporter of George Bush,
92) you again come out against Dan Quayle and Clarence Tho-
Thomas solely because of the fact mas. It only pleases me more to
he happens to be conservative, know that my support of these
One thing for you and the people galls the members of your
liberal-campus majority to think editorial staff and the majority of
about: Hill said she was not students on this campus.

coming forward about Thomas in
order to gain fortune or recogni-
tion, however, she now tours the

James F. Long
Engineering sophomore

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Clinton.... .1.puts"A w om en: on .. politica..: :"9 ": L r agenda1:":". :.:: .?

An rn-depth analysis of the debate

While Ross Perot got the best laugh of the
night when he uttered the truism "I'm all
ears," there were many other comedy highlights at
the first presidential debate. They ranged from
Gov. Bill Clinton thanking all the people who
"have touched me" over the years, to President
George Bush declaring his concern for "a tax on
Muslims" (attacks on Muslims). Ifthethreecandi-
dates didn't offer any new suggestions on how to
fig the country or actually sway any votes, at least
they gave the American electorate a good laugh.
One of the better sight gags took place when
Bush, the man who launched the drug war by
playing rock music outside Panamanian dictator
Manuel Noriega's door, proudly asserted that "co-
caine use is down," and simultaneously rubbed his
But Clinton was not content to let Bush mo-
nopolize the drug issue, boasting that "I know
more about this, I think, than anybody else up
here." Tell us something we don't already know,
Gov. Clinton.
Perot didn't say much about the drug issue.
That's probably because he knows everything

lation" - this coming from the man who, as a
member of Congress, vetoed the landmark 1964
Civil Rights Act. But Bush's civil rights record has
markedly improved since then, or so he says. "I
have tried to use the White House as a bully pulpit,
speaking out against discrimination." The presi-
dent must be referring to his infamous Willie Horton
campaign ad.
And there was this curious exchange between
Perot and moderator Jim Lehrer. (Following an
extended Perot answer):
Moderator: Your time is up.
Perot: Your time is up.
Moderator: Time is up.
Perot: Time is up.
Maybe the parrot caricatures drawn of Perot had
a seed of truth.
President Bush was the first to concede that he
couldn't articulate his health care plan during one
question. "I don't have time in 30 seconds or
whatever - minute to talk," he said. Judging from
his speech pattern, the president would have diffi-
culty articulating anything.
Moreover, the only point he mentioned was

by Yael Citro
God, family, motherhood, drugs,
war and a few one liners courtesy of
Ross Perot made Monday night's
presidential debate a three-ring cir-
cus. America's women hold a par-
ticular interest in the debate, be-
cause for the past 12 years the fed-
eral government has been slowly
chopping away at women's rights.
Although specific issues like abor-
tion went
u n a d -
dressed, it
was not hard
to tell which
candidateIS r
understands FEMIN T
the America
of today. As
a women, it was clear that, by a
simple process of elimination, the
only viable Presidential candidate
is Gov. Bill Clinton.
President George Bush: The
most that can be said about Bush's
performance was thathe didn'tlook
like as big afool as everyone thought
he might. Even someone who sup-
ports Bush must have been sur-
prised at how insubstantial his com-
ments were.
When thecandidates were asked

doesn't know what today's fami-
lies look like. His "family-values"
campaign implies that only tradi-
tional two-parent families can pro-
vide a healthy living environment
for children. There are many women
today who choose tobe single moth-
ers and who are quite successful at
it. Their children are not necessar-
ily selling drugs or toting guns.
When pressed to the wall for
substantial solutions, Bush always
handed the ball off to someone with
more public respect. His strongest
claim on the AIDS crisis was that
Mary Fisher, chair of the National
Commission on AIDS, is going to
do a great job and Barbara shows
great empathy when she holds an
AIDS baby. When asked about the
recession, Bush promised to put
Secretary of State James Baker to
work devising an economic policy.
Bush gave the impression that if
the White House were a football
team he would be less like a run-
ning back and more like more like
a quarterback. There are already
too many people in Washington
handing off responsibilities.
Ross Perot: It is nice to have a
third candidate running and if not
for Perot, the debate would not have
been nearly as funny. The best part

try. Underlying all the jokes, Perot's
comments were almost completely
void of any concrete plans.
However, there is one area where
Perot hit the nail on the head. Wash-
ington is completely ineffective -
bogged down under the weightof its
own red tape.We do need apolitical
revolution -- of sorts.. However,
this revolution should notbe lead by
a man who has no political experi-
ence, no concrete ideas, no respect
in Washington and a severe case of
And then there was one.
The changes in Washington must
come from rebuilding the social di-
saster created during the Reagan-
Bush years. It is time to elect Gov.
Bill Clinton, the right man and the
right party. Clinton didn't say any-
thing spectacular in Monday night's
debate, however it was clear that he
was addressing an America of to-
Clinton is a man who knows that
America's families consist of both
single parents and two parents. He is
not prone to political-patriotic
dogma about war and the love of
one's country. -He supports a
woman's right to reproductive free-
dom and the family-leavebill. These
are all areas in which America's

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