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November 16, 1992 - Image 4

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The Michigan Daily, 1992-11-16

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Page 4-The Michigan Daily- Monday, November 16,1992

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420 Maynard Street
Ann Arbor, Michigan 48109
764-0552

Editor in Chief
MAT'IHEW D. RENNIE
Opinion Editors
YAEL CITIR()
GEOFFREY EARLE
AMITAVA MAZUMI)AR

Edited and Managed
by Students at the
University of Michigan

Unsigned editorials represent a maujority of the Dlaily's Editorial Board.
All other cartoons, signed articles, and letters do not necessarily represent the opinion of the Daily.
FROM THE DAILY

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MSA candidates
o small percentage of students will march to
the polls tomorrow, in almost complete igno-
rance, for the Michigan Student Assembly elec-
tions. Even the most careful observers remain
unaware of the qualifications of the candidates,
and in fact, many of the candidates themselves do
not know what they stand for. In light of this, we
cannot endorse a specific slate of candidates.
However, two of the candidates have shown
dedication to the Assembly, and deserve reelec-
tion. Roger DeRoo, a Progressive Party candidate,
has been one of the more productive members of
his party. Last summer, when MSA President Ede
Fox excluded herself from the June regents' meet-
ing to avoid a conflict of interest, it was lDeRoo
who stood in. Last week, DeRoo successfully
represented the Assembly against groundless ac-
cusations of discrimination by the NEEDS ser-
vice.
Brian Kight has also worked tirelessly on be-
half of students. His outspoken opposition to the.
University's Statement of Student Rights and
Responsibilities, and his dedication to improve
the document have yielded positive changes that
will benefit students for years to come.
The Assembly's greatest handicap has tradi-
gionally been the political bickering between left
Vand right. The Progressive Party and its predeces-
sors have sought to use the Assembly as a vehicle
to advance its political agenda.
It has focused on international issues rather
Vote against the c
Students will have the opportunty to vote on
two key refferenda in tomorrow's Michigan
Student Assembly election; the ballot questions
may be more important than the election itself.
The first represents the only opportunity students
will have to make their views on the current draft
of the Statement of Student Rights and Responsi-
bilities known. The second would reinstate fund-
ing to the Michigan Collegiate Coalition (MCC)
a valuable student lobbying group, since the re-
gents cut MCC's funding last summer.
The code refferendum is especially impor-
tant. For the past three months, the admninistation
has made benilcial, though piecemeal changes to
the code. But administrators have refused to yeild
on key points. Last week, they tacked on an
amendment procedure that lets students propose,
but not rule on, amendments to the code. That
leaves the document open to adminsitrative ma-
nipulation,something astudent code should avoid.
The code still favors the complaintant, allow-
ing third parties such as administrators to act as
counsel in some instances. But accused students
have no such rights. Their counsel will be gaged,
so students who are not instinctively Perry Ma-
sons will be at a distinct disadvantage.
Students may be interested to know that the
Office of Student Affairs has been lobbying in
favor of the code this week. It has issued a pam-
phlet defending the code and scheduled code
forums in five residence halls the day before the
MSA election.
This cynical use of University resources lor
political goals should outrage students and tax-
payers. But there is an advantage: by doing so, the

remain a mystery
than students' concerns, and tried to exclude stu-
dent organizations which did not reflect its ideol-
ogy. The Conservative Coalition has opposed all
these moves, but never articulated any sort of
positive agenda for the assembly.
But if this semester is any indication, the two
giants are dying. Both parties have been reduced to
combing through the student body seeking to fill
their ranks with anybody willing to besmirch their
reputation by affiliating themselves with such a
universally scorned organization.
This year, the number of independent candi-
dates has increased dramatically. This is a mixed
blessing. Political parties help define the issues and
bring more students into the process. However, the
demise of these particular parties should prove an
unqualified boost to the Assembly.
For this reason, voters should vote indepen-
dently, and this often entails voting for indepen-
dents. Party candidates often get too caught up in
political divisions.
This limits their contributions to the Assembly.
Usually, a few hard-working and independent rep-
resentatives transcend these divisions and do the
import ant work.
In addition, independent candidates often seek
a position on the assembly by their own initiative,
rather than at the urging of a party leader. Thus, they
are more likely to attend meetings and do work, and
not skip out once the glamour o iholding an Assem-
bty seat fades.
ode, for MC
admirnistration has acknowledged the legitimacy of
the ballot question. Students should be sure to hold
the administration accountable to whatever out-
come is decided.
We suggest they vote against the current draft of
the code, and against any code the adminsitration
irnpliments without first submitting it to a student
vote.
° Students will also have the oppoutuuty to
restotre funding to MCC. T'he egents cut MCC's
funding, which used to be a linte item on students'
tuition bills, because of the goups support for state
legislation that would cap a tuition increase.
The ballot question would instruct MSA to ask
the regents to increase MSA's fee by 35 cents (an
unlikely occurence), which the Assembly would
then pass on to MCC. That is the proper and legal
way to appropriate funds, and MSA should be
commended for staying truc to the ballot measure
students passed last year mandating any fee-in-
crease be put up to a student vote.
MCC has lobbied for such valuable legislation
as the Public Wor k Study Amendment and the
Campus Sexual Assault Victims' Bill of Rights. It
augments students' power in L ansing by pooling
the resources of many state schools. Michigan used
to be a prime contributer, and students should tell
the regents they want to maintain that [ole.
By voting for the MCC increase, and against the
code.students may not influence University policy
one bit. But they will at least send a [[essage to the
University that they oppose both of tthese summary
decisions. and pielei to chose lo themselves what
rules govern their behavior, and what organizations
they fund.

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ROTC thanks you
To the Daily:
I would like to thank the Ann
Arbor community for their record
breaking attendance at the Tru-
Service ROTC Haunted House.
Over 1800 people went through
the house.
As a result, several thousand
dollars will be donated to
Safehouse and the Washtenaw
County Veterans Memorial. I
apologize to those people who
were turned away and encourage
them to arrive early next year.
Finally, I would to thank all of
the cadets and midshipmen for
their hard work which made this
event such a success.
Captain Richard Duffy
Officer in Charge
Tru-Service ROTC Haunted
House
Ban DefbLeppard
To the Daily:
I think it's just sad that the
state of music has sunk to new
levels. The new Def Leppard
album, "Adrenalize," is degrad-
ing to everyone. Although I
haven't personally listened to it, I
have seen words to "Make Love
Like A Man," and i stop and
think how someone can come up

with these disgusting lyrics. This
song contributes to the diminish-
ing morals of today's youth. The
thought that woman should act in
such a way to glorify sadism is
terrible.
The lyrics of "W.O.M.E.N."
from Def Leppard's "Hysteria"
album are even worse. The title
tells the whole story -- We honor
Our Master Every Need. This is
certainly very sexist in nature. I
don't see how they can write
songs like that.
Def Leppard is not the only
"music" group to create such foul
music. At least it is one of the
album's blacklisted by the
Parents' Music Resource Center
(PMRC). This music has and will
cause greater deterioration in our
society, that's why i think Def
Leppard's music should be
banned.
Edward Donnelly
LSA sophomore
Socialist dream dead
To the Daily:
I was amazed when I read the
editorial "Stempel falls...like a
rock," (11/6/92). You wrote,
"G.M.'s highly centralized control
of its ... subsidiaries has inhibited
domestic competition and hurt the
competitiveness of U.S. automo-
biles ... G.M. representatives went

on to say [that the Saturn divi-
sion] ought to be centralized ...
That may be the wrong idea. The
plague ailing the U.S. auto
industry is not just ... burdensome
size and bureaucracy ... [but also
is due] to the lack of incentive to
improve..."
Since when do the editors of
the Daily believe in the ideas of
competition, decentralization and
incentives to drive people to
perform better than they currently
are performing?
The editors certainly do not
apply such logical thinking to
issues such as public school
reform, welfare, government
regulation and economic policy.
G.M. is a paradigm for what
is wrong with the federal govern-
ment of the United States. I wish
the editors of the Daily would
realize that incentives, competi-
tion and decentralization are
ideas that not only work for
companies like G.M., but for all
of society --especially govern-
ment.
Until then, the mere fact that
Daily editors are writing about
the ideas of incentives, decen-
tralization and competition in a
favorable light gives me hope that
the socialist dream is really on its
death bed.
Matthew Ciaravino
LSA senior

6

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by Ingo Seidler
The following should be read as
a contribution to the debate, started
by Carl Cohen, on affirmative ac-
tionand "racial preference." Slightly
simplified, the argument ran like
this: Giving preferential treatment

among them will tell youevery test
essentially tests a candidate's abil-
ity to do well in this particular test.
But even serious advocates of such
tests do not claim that they yield
reliable results about intellectual
capacity ("the intellect, the whole
intellect, and nothing but the intel-

Affirmative action does not seem to me to be
saying Blacks have inferior intellects and
therefore need a little help. It is saying that
many - in fact, most of them - have had a
history of inferior opportunities.

Pardon my French, Mr. President

M embers of the Republican party, including
some in Congress, are encouraging lame-
duck President George Bush to pardon Reagan
White House officials implicated in the Iran-contra
scandal. Bush has been persistant in his claim that
he was "out of the loop" during cabinet discus-
sions of the arms-for-hostages deals and the funds
the Reagan administration discretely channelled
to the contra rebels in Nicaragua. Independent
Prosecutor Lawrence Walsh, however, continues
to produce evidence that shows this to be a blatant
mistruth. .Iustice will only be served if Walsh is
allowed, without presidential interference, to bring
indicted former Reagan Secretary of Defense
Casper Weinberger, and any other high-ranking
officials associated with the illegal operation, to
trial in federal court.
The American people and their representatives
in Congress should not condone, tolerate or
marginalize the wanton recklessness, super-pa-
triotism, and disdain for the law that characterized
the 12 years of Reagan-Bush control of the execu-
tive branch. The broad executive pardons pro-
posed last week by Senate Minority Leader Bob
Dole (R-Kansas), and by other departing Bush
White House aides, is a ridiculous repudiation of
the inherent American ideal of fair and equal
justice and should be resoundingly rejected by
those concerned with the maintenance ofconstitu-

IT'S n00D ro I L
4 - (tv g
.
cans. Walsh is a life-long member of the Republi-
can Party and one of a few respected members of
the Nixon White H ouse. It is truly the mark of
desperation that Dole and other like-mmiided politi-
cians would stoop so low as tv imply that Walsh wasy
a tool to tarnish Bush's improving image so close to
the general election.
Both Dole and Bush Have a history with pre-
emptive pardons. Bush was chair of the Republican
National Committee and one of only a few ardent
supporters of President Nixon. President Gerald
Ford chose Dole as his vice presidential candidate
in 1976 and similarly supported the pardon.
The calls for pardons are most likely an attempt

to minorities, especially Blacks, is
unfair to white candidates who,
though they may have somewhat
higher credentials, are denied ad-
missiontoprofessional schools. And
favoring borderline Blacks also
turns out to be unfair to other Blacks
who would have gained admission
on the strength of their record, for it
stigmatizes all Blacks as needing
preferential treatment to make up
for intellectual deficiencies. Thus
racial preference is doublyharmful
and should be abandoned.
The attitude implied by this
mightbe called elitist, but that is not
what troubles me. Universities are
by definition elitist, and they should
be. What must be questioned are
some of the assumptions that lead to
this particular brand of elitism.
Intellectual potential is indeed
the single most important criterion
for admission to a professional
school. But it is not the only one,
nor should it be confused (as schol-
ars tend to) with scholarly aptitude.
After all, how many of our profes-
sional school graduates turn into
scholars?
Yet even scholarly aptitude is
not something we carry on our fore-
heads for admissions officers to
read. What we have to deal with,
instead, are grades, test scores, let-
ters of recommendation (which of-
tensay more about the recommender
than about the nerson recom-

lect," as it were). Nor do they do the
job for scholarly promise.
What they do produce is both
more and less than what they aim at
and what we need. The results con-
tain impurities of various kinds: the
work habits of a candidate's grade
school teacher, the books available
at home, the tone and the subjects
of conversations around the dinner
table and countless other
ponderables and imponderables.
None of these are functions of a
candidate's intellectual potential,
nor are they of his own making;
still, all of them enter into his grades
and test scores. Why then not look
at these figures with a healthy
amount of skepticism?
On the other hand, the road to a
professional school is different de-
pending on whether you start from
the inner city of Detroit or from,
say, Grosse Pointe. The former is
likely to be longer and not nearly as
well paved. Is not, therefore, the
actual achievementof arriving there
much greater for that inner-city
candidate? I, for one, should think
so - even if his grades or scores
should be slightly below those of
his GrossePointe competitor. What
we should marvel at, is, in fairness,
that the gap between the two is not
much greater.
Affirmative action does not
seem to me to be saying Blacks
have inferior intellects and there-

ing point of each respective candi-
date. It is unrealistic, because by
ignoring the actual achievement a
given score represents it will also
fail to predict the true potential for
future excellence. This dimension
includes not only a candidate's per-
sonal history but also that of his
family, his clan, his race. And since
every slave "needed" a master, their
history is also our history.
Admittedly, not all underprivi-
legedare Black, nor even all Blacks
underprivileged. But the probabil-
ity that a Black candidate is judged
negatively for shortcomings over
,which he had no control - and for
which he can later compensate -is
overwhelmingly higher than in the
case of the average white, middle-
class student. That is why we need
affirmative action.
Let me end with a historic anec-
dote. At the beginning of the 19th
century, in the Austrian country-
side, the question arose whether a
And since every slave
"needed" a master,
their history is also
our history.

0

6

certain bright village lad should be
admitted to a private elite school
traditionally attended by the sons of
the landed aristocracy. It was clear
that the boy lacked three things:
money, appropriate manners and
Latin. His competitors, needless to
say, had all of these.
Knowing that the boy could not
possibly pass the usual entrance
exam, the principal called him in
and spent a few hours talking to him
about his village, the seasons, the
neighbor's cows, etc. Against the
advice of his board "No money,
no manners, no Latin" -this intel-
ligent and progressive man (175
years ago, and in an ancient monar-
chy) accepted the boy on a scholar-
ship. Not only did the kid turn out to
be very successful at school, he later

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