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October 14, 1992 - Image 4

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1992-10-14

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Page 4-The Michigan Daily- Wednesday, October 14,1992-0

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420 Maynard Street
Ann Arbor, Michigan 48109
764-0552

Editor in Chief
MATTHEW D. RENNIE
Opinion Editors
YAEL CITRO
GEOFFREY EARLE
AMITAVA MAZUMDAR

Edited and Managed
by Students at the
University of Michigan

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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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Is DPS watching you?

ichigan football fans pile into Michigan Sta-
dium for each home game with an assort-
ment of bags, bottles and beer. Apparently the
University's Department of Public Safety (DPS)
considers this a problem. This football season,
DPS implemented a new policy of using video
equipment, cameras andplain-clothes police look-
outs to try to curb student drinking. This wrong-
headed approach violates students' rights, and will
be ineffective anyway.
During the games, uniformed officers as well
as plain-clothes officers patrol the stadium, scout-
ing for drinkers. If they find a "rowdy" drinker,
they call a camera crew, approach the violator, and
inform the
person that
they are on
Ann Arbor
Police De-
partment
has an of-
ficer sta- .
Hioned in
the stadium
press box
who is film-
ing at all.
times.
Other cam-
eras are sometimes placed in conspicuous loca-
tions to ward off would-be drinkers.
This type of subterfuge cannot be tolerated.
First of all, the events in the stadium, despite its
large size, prevent few problems each football
Saturday. Students are relatively well-behaved,
and even student drinkers usually keep to them-
selves. Trying to eliminate student drinking will be
an uphill battle - one not worth fighting.
Second, there is simply no feasible way to
control student drinking in a stadium of more than
100,000 people. Anyone can slip a bottle in at the
gate, and if DPS really wanted to target drinkers -
not make a show of force - it would concentrate
its energy there.
Lastly, this sort of high-tech surveillance is
disrespectful to fans and a tad totalitarian. When
students go to a football game, they should be able

to focus their attention on that game, and should not
have to worry about dodging "Big Brother," who
may be staking them out from the press box.
Unfortunately, stadium officials are targeting
more than just student drinkers. They are also
cracking down on other stadium "rowdies." Last
week, an officer scolded a young woman who was
being passed up over the heads of fans in the
student section. The officer told her if she were
passed up once more, she would be thrown out of
the stadium. It probably would have been fairer to
eject the other thousand fans who passed her up.
When the ritual marshmallow fight erupted, an
Ann Arbor police officer followed typical proce-
dure - he
picked out
one random
student and
made an ex-
ample ofhim.
This policy is
neither a de-
terrent to the
food fights,
nor an even-
handed sys-
tem ofjustice.
Another
problem ex-
ists. Judging
from students' moronic and wild reactions to na-
tional television cameras, it is likely that video
cameras will actually encourage students to act in
a rowdy fashion. This is a convenient way for DPS
to make its point - that student drinkers are a
nuisance or even a danger to themselves.
The department's obsession with breaking up
harmless traditions seems to be the officers' way of
keeping busy to justify their free pass into the
stadium. If they succeed in stopping marshmallow
fights, perhaps they will move on to other danger-
ous stadium traditions, such as when the cheerlead-
ers abductthe enemy mascot and ram his groin into
the goalpost.
The police have a serious obligation to prevent
serious violence. But truly dangerous activities,
such as fighting, are rare. We do not need the police
to crack down on fun.

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Early drop/add date inconvement

It is no secret that students often have difficulty
selecting their courses by the University's dead-
line. Even after students first register at CRISP,
many choose (for various reasons) to make changes
in their schedules. Current policy, however, allows
students to drop or add courses without penalty
only within the first three weeks of classes. While
it may be impractical to enter a class after the first
three weeks - when tests and papers have already
been turned in and corrected - the University
should give students greater freedom to at least
drop classes without penalty. Extending the drop
date by an additional two weeks, for example,
would allow students to make the proper decisions
regarding their academic records, class loads and
stress levels.
As it stands right now, not only does a student
have to pay additional fees after the three week
deadline, but a "W," meaning "withdrawn," is
placed on their transcript. Employers and graduate
schools may view a "W" as an indication that the
student dropped a class that they deemed too
challenging, which may or may not be the case. As
judgement-neutral as the "W" is meant to be, in
truth, it is a blemish on students' transcripts.
Moreover, the logistics of class schedules early

in the semester make the three-week period unrea-
sonable. This semester, classes started on Septem-
ber 10, and the final day for unpenalized drop/adds
was September 30. In some situations, depending
when the first discussion section is scheduled,
students are forced to make a decision based on
only one discussion, and six hours of lecture. This
is simply not enough time.
The Jewish holidays Yom Kippur and Rosh
Hashanah, both of which take place in the fall,
further complicate the situation. Many students
must miss up to three days of class during the
holidays, which lasted for three weeks this year.
For these students, the task of perfecting a schedule
becomes that much more difficult, especially be-
cause some professors and TAs remain insensitive
those observing religious holidays. It would be
impossible to know about a course after such
limited exposure to the content and schedule of a
class.
The three-week period is stipulated in the fac-
ulty code of LSA, but most of the other schools at
the University comply with it. A five-week drop
period would be far more convenient. The Univer-
sity should offer students greater flexibility in
planning their academic future.

Daily story promotes
underage drinkng
To the Daily:
Cloaking irresponsibility in an
attempt at humor, Daily reporter
Andrew Levy promotes underage
drinking in his story "A guide to
Ann Arbor bars (for 24 year-
olds)" 9/10/92. No matter that
this is contrary both to state law
and to University policy. In a
year that began auspiciously with
the hospitalization of two
undergraduates who were
comatose from alcohol poisoning,
such buffoonery rings particularly
false. Well, what can one expect
from a savant who believes that
his pet watering hole "embodies
everything that the University is
all about." Evidently, this is civil
disobedience, 1992 style.
That noise you hear is Henry
Thoreau spinning in his grave.
Frederick B. Glaser,
M.D.,
Univeristy of Michigan
Initiative on Alcohol and Other
Drugs Coordinator
Give Elvis a break
To The Daily:
For a writer who pontificates
as though he were an omniscient
gridiron god, Albert Lin's attack
on Elvis Grbac ("Why doesn't he
learn from his past mistakes?" 9/
14/92) egregiously disregards the
spirit of college football. College
athletes are not meant to be
chastised for their mistakes
(that's why college officials,
unlike their NFL counterparts, are
not allowed to announce the
uniform numbers of penalized
players). Singling out individual
athletes, as Lin does when he
says "Michigan didn't give the
game to Notre Dame; Elvis
literally threw it away," unjustly
pressures collegians to perform
flawlessly. As an amateur
himself, Lin should know better
then to demand perfection.
Paul Cohen
RC senior
Gabriel Feldberg
RC senior
Reckless bikers
To the Daily:
I recently moved to Ann Arbor
from the San Francisco Bay area
to attend graduate school at the
University. I like it here and have
no major complaints except for
one - Ann Arbor cyclists.
What peeves me most is the
number of cyclists that they ride
on sidewalks and shout no
warning of their approach. First of
all, the sidewalk is just that, a
walk, and I'm not sure that bikes
even belong on them in the first
place. But perhaps it is safer for
cyclists to avoid street riding and
the dangers of parked cars.
However, comes at the expense of
pedestrians.
I think there is a real need for
bicycle-riding guidelines that
might provide a safer environ-
ment for pedestrians and cyclists.
Maybe the University could try
banning riding through parts of
campus with the most pedestrian
activity. Bike lanes might be
another alternative. If nothing
else, cyclists should shout a
warning and let pedestrianssknow
on which side they w1 rpass.
Rita Berberian

r
4

Unborn do not deserve to die
To the Daily: Did they do anything to
Imagine a hysterical killer deserve such a brutal death? Did
invading the privacy of your the Jews who were killed in the
home and butchering you with a Holocaust deserve that treatment
knife while you were peacefully by the Gestapo? God have mercy
sleepingz This is exactly what on our souls.

Code stifles students' rights

happens to those dear sweet
children that are aborted.

David Dougherty
Flanders, NJ

To the Daily:
As theMichigan Student
Assembly's Student Rights
Commission (SRC) Chair last
year, I worked extensively with
the University administration to
reform the now defunct speech
code. Unfortunately, after months
of hard work and wide-based
student opposition to the illegal
speech code - the code was
indirectly ruled unconstitutional
by the Supreme Court this past
summer - the University reneged
on its pledge to enact a student-
drafted and student-supported
statement. I resigned in protest.
I wish to set the record
straight. The University has
implied that this current proposed
code is a product of my Commis-
sion. This is a lie. Only three
words, of 10 or so pages, origi-
nated from our last proposal. The
University drafted the new code
over the summer and totally
rejected the premise and function
of our proposal: to protect
students' constitutional rights.
The new code is a thinly
veiled attempt to suppress
unpopular opinions and politi-
cally incorrect speech. The code

is vague and overbroad, allowing
any unpopular speech to be
suppressed at the whim of the
University. Fundamental political
speech, especially emotionally
charged speech centering around
such controversies as abortion,
Israel, military intervention, gay
rights and drugs could all fall
under the ambit of the code. The
University has used prior codes or
other regulations in attempts to
suppress rallies on the Diag, the
display of flags, pro-Israeli
messages, and other political
speech. They will again.
Moreover, the new code
encompasses every aspect of
student life. The University can
academically sanction students for
such non-academic activities such
as traffic tickets, graffiti, drinking
and noisy parties.
Obviously the University will
only be content when they have
become your "Big Brother." I
strongly encourage all students to
vigorously protest this illegal,
unconstitutional and unwise
policy.
Michael David Warren
SRC Chair, 1991-92

Only votes effect true change

To the Daily:
If we on the left have learned
nothing else in the last 12 years,
we should know by now that
dreams of running the country
from the streets are nothing but
romantic nonsense.
The unbroken Republican
hegemony has left our move-
ments weaker and our constituen-
cies more confused and demoral-
ized. Our opposition only makes
the right wing stronger. We need
at least a moderately liberal
government in power to respond
to our pressure.
Don't be fooled by attempts to
rewrite the history of abortion
rights.
Ronald Reagan did not sign a

liberal abortion law in California
because of the overwhelming
power of the feminist movement.
He signed it because, like George
Bush at that time, he was pro-
choice. And if Bush is re-elected,
reproductive rights will be lost for
quite a while. Anyone who tells
you that "women will rise up" and
prevent that is smoking funny
cigarettes.
Women and men will preserve
reproductive rights by voting on
November 3, and not otherwise.
We need a change at the top.
Eric A. Ebel
Ann Arbor Democratic
Socialists of America Chair

0

A

Condom Sense total nonsense

Jury calls self defense consent

f a knife-wielding man were about to rape a
woman, and she asked the attacker to wear a
condom to protect her from the AIDS virus, would
that constitute consent? According to a Texas jury,
it would. This bizarre ruling sets a dangerous
precedent, adding even more difficulties to the
prosecution of rape, already one of the most under-
reported crimes in the nation.
Actually, this sounds much more like self-
defense than consent. It appears that the woman
judged, quite correctly, that there would be little

to - be indicative of consent. Because rape trials
rarely result in convictions, a significant propor-
tion of rape cases never reach the court room. Rape
prosecution, thus, goes from nearly impossible to
ridiculously so.
Problems arise in the prosecution of these cases
primarily because of the defendant's attempt to
paint the victim as promiscuous and willing. Ac-
cusers must submit themselves to intense scrutiny
concerning past sexual history, describe in detail
what they were wearing, and itemize the alcoholic

To the Daily:
The ultra-liberals in Ann
Arbor annually amaze me with
their non-inspiring ability to
creatively do the wrong thing.
Without a doubt, the store
Condom Sense must top the list
this year.
Now, conservatively speaking,
this is not to say all condom use is
wrong or erroneous. Condoms are
not at fault here, but rather the
method and mindset of those who
use them.
If one wishes to engage in
spontaneous, promiscuous sex
certainly a condom should be
*used. But do we actually need a
specific store downtown that
parades and triumphs the use of
condoms (in a variety of shapes,

Condoms are extremely easy
to obtain from any number of
places for little or no charge. We
do not need the perverse parading
of glow-in-the-dark prophylactics
on South University.
Somehow in all this hype and
paraphernalia, we have not been
warned that AIDS and other
sexually communicable diseases
may still invade our systems.
Only the chances are decreased.
Not only do condoms break
upwards of 15 percent of the
time, but recent studies have
questioned whether some
condoms can even halt the AIDS
virus entirely.
Are the short-lived pleasures
of a spontaneous sexual interlude
worth this potentially long-term
TA T ' A} AfTL11 1tIt ' \

I

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