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December 07, 1992 - Image 4

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The Michigan Daily, 1992-12-07

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01

Page 4 -The Michigan Daily- Monday, December 7, 1992

be Swctgan 1aijl

420 Maynard Street
Ann Arbor, Michigan 48109
764-0552

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

Edited and Managed
by Students at the
University of Michigan

Unsigned editorials represent a maujority of the Daily's Editorial Board.
All other cartoons, signed articles, and letters do not necessarily represent the opinion of the Daily.
MCC needs support of all schools

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L ately, the Michigan Student Assembly has
been alone in its endeavorto rescue the Michi-
gan Collegiate Coalition (MCC) from almost cer-
tain extinction. MCC is a student lobbying organi-
ztion for students attending any of the public
universities in the state, yet most schools have
ippped the majority of the bill onto the shoulders
of the students at the University of Michigan.
MCC, the only organization of its type, has re-
cently suffered a series of blows, as a growing list
of universities have withdrawn funding. If stu-
dents from these universities are willing to reap
the benefits from such lobbying organizations,
they must also be willing to foot part of the bill.
- MCC's problems first surfaced this summer
when the regents, despite opposition from MSA,
decided to eliminate the MCC line item bill of 35
cents from student tuition.
The Assembly responded by giving approxi-
mately $14,000 out of MSA's treasury to MCC to
insure its survival. Last month, MSA asked stu-
dents to approve a fee-increase to restore funding,
yet students rejected the offer. Without that fee
increase, MSA does not have the resources to
continue the funding indefinitely, unless money is
redirected from supporting student groups, Stu-
dent Legal Services or the Ann Arbor Tenants
Union, all vital local organizations.
Although MCC is in dire straits, largely be-
cause of the decrease in funding from the Univer-
sity, no other Universities have stepped in to bail
it out. According to MCC leaders, the University
is "covering MCC's bare bones operating budget,
and the organization relies on other universities to
support its lobbying expenses.
But that lobbying makes up MCC's most vital
function. It allows different universities to band

together to augment their influence in Lansing.
Without such a special interest group, students
have no concerted voice with which to influence
government.
The implications of this are far from encourag-
ing. Without MCC, students will have no organized
effort to fight the implementation of restrictive
student codes or oppose skyrocketing tuition costs,
for example. In fact, there will be nobody in Lan-
sing to give voice to student concerns.
The MCC debate raises another key issue: should
MS A be solely responsible for keeping MCC afloat?
If other universities would like to reap the benefits
of MCC's efforts, they must in turn pay their fair
portion of the bill.
If other student bodies share the same vested
interest in an active student lobbying organization,
then they must participate equally. If not, MSA
should drop funding MCC and form its own student
lobbying organization, specifically designed to pro-
tect and benefit the students of Ann Arbor.

01

__ _- ... - "i

I

LETTERS

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Legislature takes on Dr. Kevorkian

The Michigan Legislature passed a bill last
week that went well beyond its original intent
of studying assisted suicide; an amendment was
tacked on to the bill that outlawed the practice all
together. That is an action that will have dire
consequences for Michigan residents, who have
now been further stripped of the right to control
their own lives.
The soon-to-be law is clearly designed to find
a way to imprison Dr. Jack Kevorkian. The state
prosecutor has been unsuccessful in prosecuting
Dr. Kevorkian with every charge from first-degree
murder to manslaughter in the deaths of the seven
patients whom he aided in dying. Given the wide-
spread national news coverage of Kevorkian, the
state wanted to respond in some way to the reli-
gious right's disapproval of his actions, which led
to his morbid and sensational nickname "Dr.
Death." This law would make any of his future
assisted suicides illegal, punishable by up to four
years and fines up to $2,000.
Kevorkian's actions are not wrong. He merely
provided terminally-ill patients withthe tools which
they themselves, after careful medical and psychi-
atric investigation, could use to end their own lives
painlessly and quickly.
These patients could have ended their lives
whenever they had wanted to, using everything
from pills to guns, But given the fact that suicide
is illegal, if patients failed in their attempt to kill
themselves, they could technically be fined or
jailed. Kevorkian provided a safe and effective
means to carry out their own wishes.
In the Legislature's rush to pass an anti-

Kevorkian statute, many officials neglected the
fact that this law would outlaw any form of"volun-
tary self termination of life." This term includes
living wills, documents which specify the condi-
tions under which a person would want to be
removed from life support.
Living wills are legal in more than 40 states.
When a person has a living will, doctors have proof
of what to do when a patient is comatose and cannot
express whether to be removed from life-support.
Thanks to the new bill, these crucial legal instru-
ments are now illegal.
Thus, the state of Michigan will take the dubious
honor of becoming one of the few states in the
country that prevents a competent terminally-ill
patient - or even a person simply thinking ahead
toward the future - from deciding if they are to be
removed from life support, even if they have no
foreseeable chance of recovery or are unable to pay
the enormous bills for medical treatment.
Not only is the new bill harmful, it may be
unconstitutional. The amendment criminalizing as-
sisted suicide was contrary to the spirit of the bill
itself - a legislative act which is illegal under
Michigan law. In fact, three of the bill's original
sponsors abandoned the legislation once the amend-
ment was added.
For the sake of all Michigan residents, of all ages
and medical conditions, this paternalistic law de-
serves to be repealed. Additionally, the committee
that was established should do what the original bill
intended: study the issue intelligently and propose
constructive ideas to resolve the Kevorkian ques-
tion.

Everyone must fight
against anti-semitism
To the Daily:
The Board of Directors and
staff at Guild House Campus
Ministry are outraged and grieved
at the hate-generated vandalism
recently perpetrated on the Jewish
community of Ann Arbor.
We are thankful that the police
have apprehended a suspect who
has admitted to the crimes, but we
recognize that the scourge of
antisemitism is far from elimi-
nated in our community and
throughout our world.
Therefore we stand in solidar-
ity with the Jewish community
and all who actively deplore and
resist the violence and injustice of
antisemitism, and we pledge our
hearts, minds and efforts to the
eradication of this plague in our
society.
We urge all our sisters and
brothers in the one human family
to do the same.
Rev. Christopher Atwood
Co-Minister, Guild House
Campus Ministry
Israel: release files
To the Daily:
I believe that the Daily should
have urged Israel to fulfill its
promise by returning to us the
documents that spy Jonathan
Pollard stole.
Israel has not returned these
documents because they contain
information more serious than
those alleged by the Daily - that
the information pertains only to
Palestine Liberation Organization
headquarters in Tunis. Freeing
Pollard is up to Israel.
However, they should return
these documents to us and make a
commitment that they will stop
selling American technologies to
other countries - like Israel's
twin sister in the African conti-
nent, the Republic of South
Africa, China and any other
country.
Only when they do this should
our government think about
freeing Pollard, the spy.
All Bydon
LSA senior
Daily cartoons. news
coverage offensive
To the Daily:
I must wonder exactly how
fair Daily reporters are. From a
student of color's point of view
- not very fair at all.
I have been a student at the
University for two years. During
this time, there has been more
than one occasion where I have
been offended by something in
the Daily. This letter has been
inspired by a letter that I read
written by Emerson Moore,
"Innocent until proven guilty"
(11/23/92). He addressed the issue
of the reported rapes on campus.
He addressed many of my
concerns in that letter.
Along with what he said about
the articles in the Daily I would
also like to refer to the cartoons. I
find the cartoons to be very
offensive. The most recent one
about the cereal 'CheX'. And one
specifically last year about
baseball being the A nerican
naettimn al nalnl h0 nl a nrc,

To the Daily: /
This letter is in regard to
Shehnaz Kahn's letter "Get the
facts on Israel," (11/23/92), Jodi
Jacobson's piece "Cling to hope
for peace in Middle East," (11/11/
92), and all of the letters illustrat-
ing views that have ping-ponged
back and forth in the Daily on the
Israeli-Palestinian issue.
In four and a half years on this
campus I've heard the rhetoric
and facts which pro-Palestinians
and pro-Israelis have to offer.
Each side has presented its facts
and statistics pertaining to this
conflict. As a pro-Israeli, I have
my own opinions and facts and
statistics, and so I am the first to
admit that any fact, in fact all
facts, however true, will always
be used subjectively.
The only incontrovertible fact
is that we are yelling at each
other, not so anyone will see a
point, but just to see who can yell
louder. When you take a step back
and see this, you have to ask who
are we really yelling at? Who's
opinions are we really trying to
change? Is this matter even a
viable "argument" anymore, or
just two sides screaming back and
forth, right past each other?
I think the only question that
can be answered is the last. The
most poignant example I've seen
that substantiates this is Kahn's
statement: "Attitudes need to
change, and Jacobson [indicative
of the Jewish standpoint] is going
to have to be the first to start."
Hypocrisy is a term that has been
having to see our cultures
mocked all over the school's
newspaper.
When things like these are
printed, the publication that is
putting it out knows what kind of
reaction they are going to get. I
wish the Daily would be more
sensitive to minority students,
because whether people like it or
not we are part of this institution,
and we should get the same
respect as the majority students.
Darilis Garcia
LSA junior
Men's opinions on
abortion count too
To the Daily:
Day after day I read letters to
the Daily and, although some-
times mildly offended, let them
fall by the wayside as others hold
differing opinions from my own.
Wendy Stein and Caryn Hebets'
letter "Our rights, our bodies,"
(11/18/92) concerning abortion
opinions seemed no different.
After all, they appeared to me to
believe in a woman's basic right
to choose, with which I couldn't
agree more. But after a discussion
with a friend about women in war
and combat, I have no choice but
to respond.
If Stein and Hebets were
disagreeing with the idea of men
making laws governing what
women may or may not do with
thier bodies, I agree with them,
even though men alone are not
responsible for abortion laws.
But if Stein and Hebets were
making an argument that men.
cannot have an opinion, and more
importantly, have no business in
the issue just because we haven't
"gnent 20 vears menstuatino'

freely slung back and forth since
the start of the uprisings, but
never has it applied more than in
examples like this. Kahn
demands a change in attitudes,
but then reverts to the same old
attitudes - you have to change
first, not us. I admit that pro-
Israelis react the same way.
How do diametrically
opposed factions meet on
common ground? It was tried in
Beirut, the Paris of the Middle
East, up until the mid-seventies,
and look how it fell apart.
Neither side is angelic. The
'who-started-it' question goes as
far back as Turkish rule. Every
few weeks a new incident occurs
in which one side says, 'look
what these monsters did. Here
are my facts!'
As for Kahn's concern about
insight, I don't believe that any
insight exists anymore. We all
stopped listening to each other
about four years ago. The Jews
have killed so many Arabs and
the Arabs have killed so many
Jews. Where do we look from
here? I'm not presenting a case
for either side. I'm urging us to
see this conflict in different
terms. Maybe we should see it in
terms of collective survival, or in
terms of pure political theory, I
can't say. I am sure, however,
that the longer we all bicker past
each other, the quicker Jews and
Arabs both will get sucked down
the geo-political toilet.
Elan Cole
LSA senior
mean they have no say or opinion.
Right at this very moment men
and women throughout the
country are working to change this
law.
In a similar respect; just
because men aren't having the
abortion (or going through the
apparent agony described by Stein
and Hebets in choosing to keep
the child) doesn't mean we are
removed from the experience and
have no right to an opinion. Last I
knew, it took two to conceive a
life, and I hope it would take two
to make such an important
decision, regardless of the
outcome.
Finally, I feel a few bad apples
have given Stein and Hebets an
excuse to make a gross and
misrepresentative-generalization
about men. Unfortunately, there
are men who want nothing to do
with a child. But do you really
think that no man has the desire to
take part in raising a child?
No one, man or woman, has
the right to tell you what you can
and can't do with your body, but
you also have no right to tell a
man his opinion does not matter.
Karl Facher
Engineering junior

Stop bickering; we need change

0

Somalians need multilateral aid

W ith 28,000 troops headed for Somalia,
the United States and the United Nations
have finally acknowledged that they cannot look
on helplessly as hundreds of thousands of Soma-
Hans starve. Armed thugs are preventing desper-
ately needed international aid from reaching the
Somalian people. Sadly, only the military might of
the international community can restore order. It is
encouraging that President Bush has led the U.N.
to take action, and even more encouraging that he
did so for purely humanitarian reasons.
Starvation and famine have become a fact of
life for much of the Horn of Africa. In Sudan and
Ethiopia both government and rebel forces have
encouraged famine for a myriad of strategic, ideo-
logical and religious goals.
The situation in Somalia is even more disturb-
ing. Since the fall of President Said Barre's au-
thoritarian regime two years ago, two leaders of
the guerrilla movement that toppled his govern-

originally meant to feed the hundreds of thousands
of starving Somalian people, have been stolen.
U.N. officials estimate that the two warlords to-
gether have commandeered more than 80 percent
of the food and medicine required to stave off mass
death in Somalia.
The sheer magnitude of the starvation in Soma-
lia mandates that the U.N. act. The United States
and Russia have a particular responsibility to play
key roles in the multi-national operation. Somalia,
under President Barre, was a client state of both the
United States and the former Soviet Union. Soma-
lia was saturated with weaponry during the Cold
War, and the Somalians are now paying the price.
Lastly, it is encouraging that President Bush is
acting in cooperation with the U.N. This is in
contrast to Bush's essentially unilateral action
against Iraq, which then-Secretary of State James
Baker veiled by hastily assembling a multi-na-
tional military force.

0
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