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October 15, 1992 - Image 4

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1992-10-15

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Page 4-The Michigan Daily - Thursday, October 15,1992

Giw Lrbigan &tlt

420 Maynard Street
Ann Arbor, Michigan 48109

Editor in Chief
Opinion Editors

Edited and Managed
by Students at the
University of Michigan

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Unsigned editorials represent a marjority of the Daily's Editorial Board.
All other cartoons, signed articles, and letters do not necessarily represent the opinion of the Daily.
'U' stonewalls DPS contract

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A fter a year of fruitless negotiations, members
of the University's bargaining committee and
the campus police union began another round of
contiact negotiations last Tuesday. The first eight
hours yielded no progress, as expected. Thanks to
the University's contempt for its union employees
and its refusal to negotiate on key points, a police
strike is a distinct possibility. There is, however, an
easy way to solve the problem. According to
Regent Veronica Smith and others, the University
would save at least $1 million a year if it returned
its policing responsibilities to Ann Arbor. Since
the University is unable and unwilling to dedicate
the necessary resources to pay for its police force,
the only fiscally sensible thing is to disband it.
'The University police contract expired last
November. Since then, the police have been work-
ing under an extension of the old contract. The
negotiations have dragged because the University
is'still unwilling to change its basic position, which
doesn't even include a cost-of-living salary in-
.This is the same administration that demon-
strated its lack of commitment to fair bargaining
last summer by announcing that all employees,
including union employees, must forgo a pay
increase. This was a clear violation of the Michi-
gan Public Employee Relations Act, which de-
m4nds all state employers at least negotiate with
their unions.
The police union has come forward with damn-
ing charges. According to union officials, DPS
often gives preferential treatment to non-union
employees. Union members complain that active
union officers are promoted less frequently,, are
allowed fewer opportunities to work overtime

shifts, and work poorer shifts than do non-union
employees. In addition, employees are subjected to
"illegal surveillance, illegal eavesdropping, union
busting and an anti-union attitude," said Chelle
Matellic, president of the union that represents
DPS. The University naturally has the responsibil-
ity to at least address the concerns of the union. But,
because the University ignored the students who
opposed deputization in the first place, there is a
certain poetic justice and irony about the situation.
One negative and noticeable consequence of
the University's contempt for its police union is a
high turnover rate for its police officers. The high
turnover would continue to bring less experienced
- and less effective, if not dangerous - police
onto campus. That is, unless you subscribe to the
viewpoint that a high turnover rate isn't so bad,
considering the best thing all University police
could do is leave.
In this era of "Shared Sacrifice," when the
University raises tuition by 9.9 percent and cuts
$12 million from University budgets, it is clear that
the University does not have the resources to pay
for its police force. It's time for the University to
return the policing duties to someone that will treat
its union employees fairly, pay them a living wage,
and negotiate fairly - specifically, the city of Ann
When the entire police force meets on Hallow-
een to discuss its ongoing contract problems, they
should give serious consideration to striking and,
after a few days, finding ajob elsewhere. That way,
the University doesn't have a union problem, the
union doesn't have a contract problem, and the
students don't have to worry about cops with 9mm


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LET.ERS ..............

Flint mandates 'drive American'

F lint Mayor Woodrow Stanley took the Buy
1American trend to an absurd level this month
when he decided to exclude "foreign-made" auto-
mobiles from a city garage in Flint. His reasoning
is that city employees, whose salaries are paid by
tax revenues, should show support for General
Motors, a major taxpayer in Flint, by driving only
American cars. ,Not only is the concept of "for-
eign-made" ambiguous and xenophobic, but this
decree violates the right of city employees to drive
whatever car they wish.
Stanley points to GM's heavy tax contribution
as a reason for the new rule. Granted, GM has long
been the driving force behind Flint's economy. But
a city garage is also funded by taxpayers, some of
whom have nothing to do with the auto industry.
Furthermore, Stanley's failure to understand
the closely intertwined relationship between do-
mestic and international automobile industries is
symptomatic of the parochi alism ofthe Buy Ameri-
can movement. Today, "American" cars are often
assembled with Japanese blueprints, Canadianparts
and Mexican labor. Conversely, U.S. workers, like
those in Toyota's Kentucky plant - often as-
semble Japanese vehicles. If the Buy American
novement truly seeks to preserve American jobs,
it mightencourage its workers to buy a Honda built
in Ohio or a Mazda built in Michigan. When
confronted by this complexity, Stanley said, "If
anyone has any doubt whether they are driving an
American-made vehicle, they probably shouldn't
be parking in the garage." If this is representative
of the way Stanley usually thinks, he probably
shouldn't be mayor.

The message this action sends - that the city
must bend over backward to please its key indus-
tries at the expense of its citizens -is also absurd.
Should residents of Vermont be required to toss
down gallons of Ben and Jerry's ice cream, and be
prohibited from eating Baskin Robbins? Should
vegetarian lunches be banned from the lunchroom
refrigerators of Chicago meat-packing plants?
Punishing the consumer for the decline of the
U.S. auto industry is bad enough. But holding
Japan and other foreign economic competitors
accountable for the United States' economic woes
is even worse. Such scapegoating will do nothing
to revitalize the auto industry. Advocates ought to
remember that foreign-based corporations - like
domestic ones - pay federal, state and local taxes,
in addition to providing jobs for Americans.

Racist flyer unsigned
To the Daily:
Recently, a flyer purporting to
"Tell Someone About Racism"
was left in various History T.A.
mailboxes. The unsigned flyer
spouted spurious assumptions and
tortuous logic in its polemic
against multicluturism and
affirmative action.
Those of us who advocate
multiculturalsim welcome serious
debate over the merits of 'opening
up' or 'moving away' from the
traditional canons of academia;
and those of us who support the
goals of affirmative action
welcome intelligent discussions
about whether or not democracy
demands open access to quality
education. But, we cannot engage
in a dialogue with people who use
such cowardly tactics as stuffing
mailboxes with unsigned dia-
Perhaps the people who
produced the flyer were embar-
rassed by their own inadequate
arguments and decided to let their
racist ideologies remain un-
Corey Dolgon
History teaching assistant
Rape also effects men
To the Daily:
I was just reading about the
Michigan State University (MSU)
fraternity brothers who were
sexually assaulted by one of their
"brothers" while extremely
intoxicated ("MSU student
detained on bond," 10/8/92). This
is a most unfortunate, yet ironic,
event. It is usually women who
are considered "fair game" when
they are intoxicated.
I always thought this was so
unfair that men could drink to
excess without such repercus-
sions, while women who did this
were considered easy. I certainly
do not condone drinking to
excess for anyone. However, next
time you see some women
intoxicated, maybe you will
consider how you would like it if
someone took advantage of you.
Nancy Walker
LSA senior

To the Daily:
I found it quite remarkable
that in describing the first-year
record of Supreme Court Justice
Clarence Thomas, the Daily
editors would conjure up the
image of the Justice as a servile
footman to (Master) Justice Scalia
("Thomas-Hill, one year later",
Many thought it an inappropri-
ate charge last year during the
Anita Hill fiasco when Justice-
Designate Thomas suggested that
the proceedings were the "high-
tech lynching" of an "uppity
Black man".
Evidently he was on the mark,
and the Daily has now joined the
lynching party with its description
of him as a "lackey" to Justice
The editors of the Daily do not
level their criticism of Justice

Bosnia-Herzegovina bloodshed

Thomas at his conservatism;
rather they imply that he is
incapable of drawing his own
conclusions in the cases presented
before him on the court. Never
mind that Chief Justice Rehnquist
is also usually in accord with
Justice Scalia or that Justice
Marshall was generally of the
same mind as the liberal bloc on
the Court, it is the conservative
Black Justice who is singled out in
racist terms by the self-appointed
champions of diversity.
It is sad to realize that more
than two decades after Dr. Martin
Luther King Jr. gave his life for
the cause of freedom, a Black man
can be treated so viciously if he
strays from the liberal plantation.
Victor J. DiRita
Medical School, Assistant

Thomas criticism unfounded

To the Daily:
The CIA has estimated the
number of possible deaths in the
coming months due to the
fighting and harsh winter
conditions in Bosnia-
Herzegovina. A worst case
scenario envisions 217,000
deaths. An optimistic assessment
estimates 30,000 deaths. Trans-
late these numbers into suffering
caused by barbaric atrocities,
repeated rapes and the abhorrent
practice of ethnic cleansing and
your mind quickly numbs.
Humanitarian aid alone, while
needed, will not end the rape,
destruction and ethnic cleansing
of innocent non-combatants,
women and children. These
people are still at the mercy of
certain fanatical bands of Serbian
nationalists supported and
sustained by the Belgrade
Witnesses and reports
corroborated by the U.S. Govern-
ment of large-scale systematic
executions and torture at the
Serbian-run concentration camps
are prevalent. One camp survivor
testified to the U.S. Senate of
seeing rows of mutilated bodies

with their genitals cut off. Only a
handful of concentration camps
have been inspected by outside
agencies. It is utterly naive to
assume that more of these'camps
do not exist. The U.S. Govern-
ment, meanwhile, has been
astonishingly feeble in pursuing
President Bush's stated goal of
finding and closing all the camps.
The human misery in Bosnia-
Herzegovina is a symptom and
nationalistic Serbian aggression is
the cause. No one has doubted the
moral issues concerned with the
ethnic cleansing of Jews by the
Nazi's fifty years ago. History will
judge the practice of ethnic
cleansing in Bosnia-Herzegovina
in the exact same light. Serbian
nationalists must be threatened
with force and shown that the U.S.
has the will to use it. I urge
readers to call or write the
president and their congressmen.
Let them know that 30,000 or
more people, my family among
them, need not become victims of
ethnic cleansing in the coming
Damir Juric
Mechanical Engineering
graduate student


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Abortion debate, on whose terms?


Debate spat made everyone dirty

he vice presidential debate Tuesday was, to.
T .1say the least, more heated than the presiden-
tial debate on Sunday. Excitement, however, is no
alternative to substance and poise. The three po-
tential presidential sidekicks only managed to
convince us that they ought to have been coached
on maturity..
The non-debate can't be blamed entirely on the
-vicepresidential candidates. Thecampaigns clearly
set Vice President Dan Quayle, Sen. Al Gore and
Adm. James Stockdale up to do the presidential
-campaigns' dirty work. All they succeeded in
-doing is convincing viewers that Harry Truman's
vice president, John Nance Garner, wasn't off the
mark when he said, "The vice presidency isn't
worth a bucket of warm shit."
Adm. Stockdale, although he's clearly a friendly
old man and dedicated officer, revealed his utter
1lack ofunderstanding of economic and health-care
:issues. Asked about possible solutions to the health
care crisis, the admiral remarked incoherently,

The vice president didn't fair much better, al-
though he completed more of his sentences. If the
president wanted to sick his bulldog on the Demo-
crats, it worked. But the vice president appeared
childish, amateurish and sophomoric. Moreover,
Quayle was caught in some out-and-out false-
hoods. Despite the vice president's claim other-
wise, the Bush administration did spend $100
million to encourage companies to move to El
Salvador, among other countries.
Gore, who looked and sounded like a candidate
for senior class president, appeared equally silly,
telling Quayle to "lighten up." To his credit, the
senator managed to call the vice president on a real
issue, between snipes. He reminded Quayle that
the START II arms-reduction treaty agreement
between President George Bush andPresident Boris
Yeltsin has fallen apart, while Bush touted the
agreement as a foreign policy triumph.
The only really humorous part of the evening

Senior year of high school,
American Government class: The
teacher is describing the philosophi-
cal debate between "pro-choice" and
"pro-life." A student - not me -
shoots his hand into the air. He asks
the teacher to use a term other than
"pro-life," such as "anti-abortion."
T h e
teacher re-
plies: "In
order to be
objective, I
use the L ~ *
names that
the groups
use for
t h e m -
selves. By asking me to use other
terms, you are asking me to be more
biased. So to answer your question,
no, I will not be more biased."
What exactly does it mean,
though, to be objective? More spe-
cifically: In choosing Terminology
to refer to each siuc in the abortion

use of the term "pro-life" makes
certain assumptions about this ques-
tion which are not found in the term
"Pro-life" implies not only that
opponents of legalized abortion
support life, but that the other side
does not. If you were to ask a mem-
ber of the pro-choice movement
whether they oppose life, they
would, of course, say no. In other
words, by using this term, you tac-
itly accept the premise that abor-
tion is murder. It is impossible to
refer to opponents of legal abortion
as "pro-life" without abandoning
objectivity on the issue.
"Pro-choice," on the other hand,
carries no such implication. Noth-
ing in the phrase implies that abor-
tion is not murder. The only conno-
tation in the term "pro-choice" is
that foes of legal abortion do. not
support a woman's right to choose
abortion, which is factually true
whether or not you accent the aran-

ogy is still slanted toward the anti-
abortion rights perspective. By re-
ferring to one side as "anti-abor-
tion," you imply that the other side
is pro-abortion -which, of course,
is not necessarily the case.
To be truly objective, one must
use terms which neither accept nor
deny the premise that abortion is
murder, and also accurately de-
scribes the position taken by each
On the one hand, we have those
who claim that regardless of whether
abortion is wrong, the determina-
tion should be made by the indi-
vidual woman. On the other hand,
we have those who argue that abor-
tion is murder'and should thus be
illegal. The fundamental question
dividing both sides of the issue, in
sum, is whether or not abortion
should be legal.
My solution is this: Refer to one
side as "pro-abortion rights" and the
other a "anti-ahnrtion right." It

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