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September 11, 1992 - Image 4

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The Michigan Daily, 1992-09-11

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0

Page 4 -The Michigan Daily - Friday, September 11, 1992

OIir Mitbgau atlg
1-ditur i C(hien
MA'fI IEiW D. RE NNIE,

420 Maynard Street
Ann Arbor, Michigan 48109
764 - 0552

Opinion Editors
YAEL CITRO
GEOFFREY EARLE
AMITAVA MAZUMDAR

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.
FER M TILE DAILY .........i...*...:....i..............-...*..

SA1
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All in the family
A mid widespread criticism, the University de-
cided to hire Anne Duderstadt, the president's
wife, to head a staff of four people as an institu-
tional advancement officer responsible for raising
funds for the University. The controversy that
surrounds Duderstadt's hiring involves her quali-
fications, the manner in which she was hired, and
her proposed salary. Before the regents agree to
allow Duderstadt to remain at her post, the admin-
istration must answer some valid and serious ques-
tions about her selection.
To avoid the appearance of impropriety,
Duderstadt had agreed to donate her $35,000 sal-
ary to the University Center for the Education of
Women. Regent Deane Baker (R-AnnArbor) spear-
headed the attack on the appointment saying, "I
think the symbolism of the hiring was incorrect
and improper." Anne Duderstadt then agreed to
forgo the salary all together.
According to law, any new position must be
advertised publicly, allowing for qualified job-
seekers to submit their applications. Actually,
some 25 applicants have applied for the job. Is it
coincidental that the president's wife received the
position?
Certainly, the spouses of University presidents
are in a unique position to raise needed capital. But
the hiring procedure, in fairness to qualified appli-
cants and in the spirit of the law, should produce a
finalist with demonstrable qualifications. Is it pos-
sible that Duderstadt got the job simply because

she would do it for free?
Whether the University ever intended to con-
sider other applicants is questionable. In fact, the
job seems to have been created specifically for
Anne Duderstadt. Curiously, the University re-
fuses to release the name of any applicant for the
job, and Duderstadt was the only candidate inter-
viewed.
Also, Duderstadt's qualifications seem mini-
mal. She has never managed an office, nor has she
been in charge of personnel. Duderstadt may not
even live up to the specifications ofherjob descrip-
tion. However, her temporary secretary, Barbara
Johnson, coordinator of presidential events, bluntly
stated Duderstadt's fund-raising role. "She is do-
ing the same thing she's been doing. They just
made it (her job) official." Still, it is hard to
swallow that not one of the other 25 candidates
were more qualified.
Administration officials have tried to portray
Duderstadt's new role as a new and vital position
in the Campaign for Michigan - the University's
billion-dollar fund-raising campaign. If the ad-
ministration wanted to pay Duderstadt for her
present work for the Campaign, it could have done
so without the creation of a phony job. The round-
about and clandestine process in which the Univer-
sity hired Anne Duderstadt raises questions about
whether nepotism took place, and whether her
hiring could be fiscally irresponsible in the long
run.

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s
Sexual r a touchy sub ect,

by Katherine Metres
Well-meaning men have often
said to me, "I'm not a chauvinist;
I'm really not," and then proceeded
to say or do something that I found
sexist or offensive.
Still, my high hopes fdr rela-
tions between the sexes are periodi-
cally bolstered by good experiences

Why aren'tmoreof these creeps
locked up?
If a student wears something to
class or office hours you think is
sexy, keep it to yourself. Don't
assume it means she's coming on to
you - or that it's okay for you to
come on to her. Comments on per-
sonal appearance should be made
sparingly, if at all.

"See, my wife is steak. I mean, I love steak,
but sometimes, you know, I like to have pork,
or chicken." I told him, "I'm a vegetarian."

Ns

A n amazing but all too-common story: An in-
coming first-year student was signed up to
live in South Quad. This summer, his parents read
a series of articles in The Detroit News, entitled
"Live and Learn," which attempts to describe
typical student life at the University. The series
butchered the truth so badly that his parents made
him transfer to Bursley.
The News produced this series by sending a
reporter who is a University graduate to live in a
"typical dorm at the University" to discover how
University students really live, and what first-year
students can expect from dorm life.
It is obvious from the article that the reporter
came to the University with his mind made up
about what college is all about. He did not do a
credible job oftalking to different types of students
in different living situations. Basing an entire story
about student life on a brief stint in South Quad is
like basing a basing a study about all of American
culture on the attendants of an Andrew Dice Clay
concert. The News probably could have gotten a
more accurate picture of student morality by lay-
ing on the Diag listening to preacher Mike.
But the article is anything but harmless. The
premise is that the University is not offering stu-
dents the education they pay for, that students have
no interest in learning, and are more concerned
with what brand of beer they drink than choosing
their major. It is not surprising that the reporter
came to this conclusion, considering he never
attended a class.
In order to portray the University as a four-year
party playground, the reporter took extreme cases
of apathetic students and used them to incorrectly
portray the ideals of most students.

Throughout the report, the News blames the
University for not providing students with a "cli-
mate of learning beyond the classroom." While
South Quad may have a reputation of being a party
dorm, this attitude simply does not apply to the
hundreds of the different students who live there,
nor is it an accurate reflection of students through-
out the campus..
Considering this is one of the most competitive
schools in the country, it is possible that some
students might actually want to learn something.
The News' irresponsiblereporting-evidenced
by titles such as "Freedom from Thought" -
paints University students as being shallow at best.
The reporter repeatedly claims that most students
view their classes as mere stepping stones toward
a high-paying career. Such stereotyping does the
student body a grave injustice.
The reporter uses a handful of case studies to
make his case. One student named Michael likened
his first few party-filled weeks at school to a "wet
dream." Apparently, such testimony provides
enough evidence to indict the Michigan student
body for excessive partying and a chronic disinter-
est in academics.
It is true that University students will drink,
have sex, and succumb to all of the distractions that
are a part of dorm life; this has been true for years
- even when the reporter attended the University.
But nearly all students have aspirations beyond
this, taking part in the organizations the University
offers and taking interest in the education they
receive.
The Detroit News does incoming students, the
University and its readership a disservice with
such irresponsible reporting.

that I have with friendly yet respect-
ful male professors and classmates.
The guidelines I am about to
present should be so obvious to you
that you'll feel practically insulted
at being reminded. Remember,
what's really insulting is that these
simple standards are violated every
day.
Don't treat students as potential
bed partners. Sometimes a non-ex-
ploitative romantic relationship can
develop from a classroom-spawned
friendship, but romantic relation-
ships between a current'teacher or
advisor and student constitute a
conflict of interest. It's doubly
sleazy if the professor is married.
Woody Allen, get a life.
And the booby prize - so to
speak - goes to professors who
demand, suggest, or even accept
sexual favors in return for a satis-
factory grade. (The bad news is
you're not scot-free even if it's the
student's idea.) It's hard to believe
this still goes on, but it assuredly
does.
Metres is an LSA junior.

Did I mention how hot your
buns look in those chinos?
Leering, of course, is always
out. Look a student in the face, not
the legs or bosom. Lots of men leer,
but I doubt they know how it feels
on the receiving end. What are you
staring at? I distinctly remember
putting clothes on this morning.
Don't be like the employer who
informed me on my first day, "See,
my wife is steak. I mean, I love
steak, but sometimes, you know, I
like to have pork, orchicken." I told
him, "I'm a vegetarian."
Just because a student takes your
class doesn't give you permission
to manhandle her. A light touch on
the arm or back -that's the upper
back, Bubba - is fine. Anything
else feels intrusive.'
If you're still pinching fannies,
you're hopeless.
Show your female students the
same respect you afford men. Don't
underestimate their competence,
belittle their concerns, or silence
their voices. I remember one pro-
fessor who made wisecracks every
time I discussed my approved re-

search project in class.'The whacked-
out, radical topic? The decision to.
admit women to the University.
Be warm and appropriate, never
condescending or contemptuous.
Give up the "honey, sweetie, baby,
dear" routine.
Don't tell yourself you're just
being fatherly. One father is quite
enough, thank you very much.
While you're at it - and this is
far more serious - stop using mi-
sogynistic terms like "bitch,"
"dyke," and "pussy-whipped."
Anyway, a simple lesson in
anatomy should tell you that it's
pretty hard to whip somebody that
way.
Use gender-inclusive language.
What do you mean, I've used only
feminine pronouns for the anteced-j
ent "student?" What's your point?
Really, it's fine to say "business-.
man" or "Congressman" to indicate
a male person. But if you are speak-
ing of the position in a general way,
it's more inclusive - and more ac-
curate - to say "businessperson,"
"memberofCongress"(eithercham-
ber), or "Representative" (lower,
chamber). I do, however, prefer the
term "involuntarily retired congress-
man" for those guilty of sexual ha-;
rassment on Capitol Hill.
Now, stop feeling put upon be-
cause we (women) are always pick-
ing on you (men) these days.-
Granted, some women are hard to
get along with. But if men had to
contend with as much sexual ex-
ploitation, intellectual stifling, and
plain old disrespect as women do,:
wouldn't they be a little touchy,
too?
P.S. Uppity women unite. Pass it
on.

Throwing America's children away

Book monopoiy should go

by Benyumin Tailor
Several months ago I had the
misfortune of being in the wrong
place during the rendering of the
Rodney King verdict. Caught in the
midst of the Los Angeles riots. I
viewed, first hand, the carnage. The
fury was less a reaction to the injus-
tice of the verdict and more of an
explosion of pent up youthful rage.
The vast number of looters par-
ticipating in the mayhem, including
overwhelming numbers of seem-
ingly angry kids, felt that they had
nothing to lose. Several shared the
sentiment that they took the prop-
erty of others, not for the material
gain; but rather for the momentary
high. By getting the attention of the
world, they were announcing that
they exist, had merit, and must be
dealt with.
It appeared that the exaspera-
tion was to be directed at the sys-
tem. However, it was each member
of the sealed off community that
eventually paid for the final price.
The participants were not solely
of minority heritage. Many were
just children, who lived on the
fringesofpoverty and society. They
were too young and inexperienced
to get work. They came from homes
with only one parent to contend
with the escalating rent, mortgage,
food and education costs.
The kids that I dealt with were of
school age but not necessarily at-
tending. They sensed a general
Tailor is a resident of Wheeling,
IL.

Yet, I fear for the other children because I
sense a growing moral void and public apathy
towards the fate of young people.

worthlessness for life. Many had
time and time again witnesses baby
brothers and sisters aborted before
they came to be; while older sib-
lings and friends were taken by
bullets, drugs or prison. Hearing
the stories, I sadly remembered a
time when children had value in
and of themselves; but, not these
children. For those I interacted with,
the message of hope was a contra-
diction to the reality of their envi-
ronment.
Gradually, I became less afraid

S tudents pay ridiculously high prices for course
books at the beginning of each semester. It has
become a tradition to pay hundreds of dollars for
such classics as Introduction to Fossils at Ulrich's
and the Michigan Book and Supply (MBS).
This may be because Ulrich's and the MBS are
owned by the same company - the Lincoln Book
Company. It is not surprising then, that new books
cost the same amount at both stores, and used
books are priced similarly, regardless of condition.
The Barnes & Noble owns a third "corporate
book store" in the Union. One of the first things
students learn when shopping in Ann Arbor is that
there is about as much competition between the
three book stores as between candidates in an
election against Stalin.
Unfortunately, professors play into this sce-

offered by local used bookstores. Many of them
offer cheap classics, and you can't beat the com-
panionship of the troll-like workers who dwell
among the mildewed shelves in places like David's
Books. The book exchange and the local book
stores save students money and make the process
of buying books considerably more enjoyable. So
even though they don't sell those babes, beer, and
car posters like the large book stores, the student
book exchange and local book stores offer a better
deal on your text books.
'. WJQULD T0(1 [IKE
A [Lf fOR YUR
' PTUITE

exists little chance for upward mo-
bility, and they know it. As a results
kids in poverty are unwilling to put,,
forth repeated honest efforts only to
have their nose rubbed again and
again in the dirt of failure.
The thought of death does not
frighten these children, because it is
acommon occurrence. To them there
is no difference; whether succumb-,,
ing to the effects of a shared needle,
a bullet used to settle a score, to
hunger or hypothermia.
Education, once the key to es-

of the rioters than of the underlying
causes of their discontent. While
we as a nation, have no doubt ac-
complished many significant po-
litical goals worldwide; we are
oblivious to the needs of a signifi-
cant part of our growing popula-
tion. These children do not care
about the lofty goals of a cleaner
environment or the liberation of the
former Soviet republics. Making it
on a daily basis is enough of an
accomplishment.
The thoughtof prison may cause
the establishment middle class to
think twice before going outside of
the law to improve their lot in life.
However, to these children, they
already live in a prison which of-
fers little chance for escape. Our
system is not working for them,
even those with an education. There

cape poverty no longer meets the:
needs of those itis supposed toserve.
The school system fails to teach, it-
intimidates without providing a re-
alistic assessmentofability,andmay
actually be contributing to the exist-
ence and perpetuation of the grow-
ing subculture of poverty.
The system may offer an outlet
for some, within the warmth and
safety of the rare secure family. Yet,
I fear for the other children because
I sense a growing moral void and
public apathy towards the fate of
young people. I wish to plead for
someone to champion our cause.
Will the seriousness of young.
people's problems be recognized or
will our youthful appearance con-
tinue to distract adults? Must we
forever be forced to violence in or-
der to prompt public attention?

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