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February 16, 1993 - Image 4

Resource type:
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Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1993-02-16

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Page 4-The Michigan Daily- Tuesday, February 16,1993

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420 Maynard
Ann Arbor, MI 48109
Edited and managed
by students at the
University of Michigan

11"

Josii DUBOW
Editor in Chief
YAEL M. CITRO
ERIN LIZA EINIIORN
Opinion Editors

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Unsigned editorials represent the majority opinion of the Daily editorial board.
All other cartoons, signed articles and letters do not necessarily represent the opinion of the Daily.

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DIAG POLICY

Selective enforcement makes it worse

SfTUDENTS HAVE GATHERED on the Diag
each of the last three Wednesdays to pro
test the Universities' new Diag policy
restricting political activism. Between noon and
one o'clock, activists chalk the Diag, step on the
grass and do all in their power to break the
repressive rules set by the administration. Pre-
dictably, these protests have been brushed off by
the Uni- r
versity- t
present-
ing this >
policy to"
t h e a
Michigan .
Stud ent ,r S
bly, As- -
sociateDenf
Dean of
Students
Frank
Cianciola
described -
the policy
as "con-
tent neutral," and declared it would "not be
selectively enforced." However, less than 24
hours after the Tuesday night meeting, the Uni-
versity ignored a student protest.
Clearly, enforcement of the Diag policy
against these small weekly protests would be
ridiculous. However, by choosing not to take
action against students who clearly violate the
policy, the University is already practicing se-
lective enforcement.
Students' concern over selective enforce-
ment of the Diag policy is clearly warranted.
Although the regulations in the policy seem
clearly stated, the administration will decide
when to enforce the rules against a protest and
when to let a protest slide. Students have no
concrete way of knowing where and when the
University will draw the line - this is danger-
ous.
When the University feels a protest is "harm-
less" the Diag policy will likely not be enforced.
However, when the University dislikes a spe-
cific organization's platform -- such as that of
the National Organization for the Reform of
Marijuana Laws (NORML), which promotes

Hash Bash - the organization may be prohib-
ited from rallying on the Diag. The selective
enforcement of this policy will allow the Univer-
sity to dictate what activities will be allowed on
the Diag.
While selective enforcement is dangerous,
the most dangerous aspect of the policy is the
policy itself. The weekly protests should not be
: quelled,
k. the policy
iu
M9 While it is
unlikely
that the
currentad-
ministra-
tion -
given its
d is ta ste
for student
rights -
will repeal
this op-
pressive
policy,
MICHELLE GUY/Daily Peide
for Student Affairs Maureen Hartford should
fulfill her promise to confer with students on
possible adaptations in the policy.
At the following MSA meeting, Hartford
acknowledged that some aspects of the policy
were unfair. She conceded that the seven day
advanced notice requirement was extreme, and
admitted she did not understand why chalking
was disallowed.
Furthermore, she expressed an interest in
gathering a small group of student leaders to-
gether to peruse possible policy changes. To
date, no official groups have been formed and
not a single sentence in the policy has been re-
written. HopefullyHartford willfulfillherprom-
ise sooner than later.
If future resembles the past, students can
expect to be ignored as they were in the naming
of President Duderstadt, the deputization of the
police force and the creation of the Statement of
Students' Rights and Responsibilities. With the
selective enforcement of the restrictive Diag
policy, and the lack of student inputon important
decisions, the forecast for student activism on
campus appears bleak.

/y,/,--

PerSpeCtives
Living a both/and life in an either/or world ,

Bicyclists are like bisexuals. They ride
in the street, they ride in the sidewalk, and
both pedestrians and drivers think they be-
long someplace else.
My anthropology reading tells me that
people everywhere in all times struggle to
impose order on the chaos of the world.
Mostly this is done through systems of
classification; mostly, people believe that
through setting up a series of dichotomies
we can understand what goes on around us.
My social psychology reading tells me that

I

On the Fence

I

class into the annoyed Ann Arbor traffic.
On the other hand, it also causes frequent
identity crises when I realize there are no
bike paths on campus, that I am forever
taking over space that is designated for
others.
Sometimes this causes problems in my
interpersonal relationships, especially with
pedestrians. (Drivers just tend to lump bi-
cyclists in with other annoyances, like kids
playing hockey in the street, and then ig-
nore them.) While pedestrians basically
have the run of Ann Arbor, they generally
feel that they are apretty oppressed group of
people most everywhere else.
Pedestrians often have a rather antago-
nistic relationship with cars, probably due
to the number of them that get hit by cars
every year. They often think that since
cyclists can ride in the streets, that they
should stay there, conveniently forgetting
the number of bikers that are hit each year
by cars also. Getting hit by a car on a bike
is not significantly lesspainful ordamaging
than being hit by a car while on foot.
A few pedestrians simply refuse to be-
lieve that bicyclists exist. Many think that
bicyclists are just pedestrians trying to be
cars, and that they should stop pretending
and start walking. But if I pedaled down the
middle of the street yelling"beep"at the top
of my lungs, I wouldn't become a car. I
wouldn't even pass. So also, as I walk my
bike through the West Engine arch, I'm not
becoming a pedestrian, I'm just trying to be
polite and not cause any accidents.
I spend a lot of time and energy talking
to my pedestrian friends about this. Usually
we all decide that we are both really fighting
for the same thing: that is, the right to go
places however we please without having
to worry about being run over.

We talk a lot about sidewalks and side-
walk maintenance, and crosswalks and
fences and lights and things like that. Some-
times I get so wrapped up in talking about
all this that I forget I also ride in the streets,
which could use some repair too.
Sometimes I forget that a lot of people
who drive also walk, and vice versa, and
that it really should all be less about a
cultural identification with sidewalks and
more about actually getting somewhere. Or
maybe more about just wandering around
and enjoying the scenery.
So what exactly am I trying to say here
anyway?
I'm trying to explain what it is like to be
viewed as the Other from both sides of the
fence. I'm trying toexplain whatit feels like
to pick up a newspaper the week before
Valentine's Day and see story after story
about heterosexual courtship and nothing
that reflects the reality of my life.
I'm trying to explain what it feels like to
have a friend say "If two women are dating
each other, it doesn't matter if one is bi-
sexual, it's a lesbian relationship, not a
bisexual relationship." I'm trying to ex-
plain my frustrations with the lesbian and
gay male community (if there is such a
thing) and my fear of discrimination and
violence from the (heterosexual) society at
large. I'm trying to explain how this very
simple thing of being attracted to both men
and women has huge ramifications in my
life.
For everyone who is reading this article
I have two questions: Who is "us" and who
is "them"? What makes you so sure that
you're one of"us"?
Bradley is an RC and School of Art
senior. Her column appears every other
Tuesday.

thinking in dichotomy is adaptive because
it requires less mental energy than trying to
classify every new experience in new cat-
egory. Thinking in dichotomy is supposed
to be easy.
But riding my bike I am neither a pedes-
trian nor a car.
This, according to the social psycholo-
gists, should cause me a lot of mental an-
guish.
It does, to some extent.
By not being a part of the pedestrian-car
dichotomy, I do not have a culturally con-
structed role to play like they do. I don't
have to stick to the street like the cars, or the
sidewalk like the pedestrians. I can pedal
wherever I want to. This can give me a
wonderful sense of freedom, as I swoop
across the Diag and onto State Street, merg-
ing from the mass of students rushing to

IMMIGRANT POLICY
Admission of people with HIV combats fear

Homosexuals deserve tolerance, not endorsement

N A MOVE to fulfill a controversial campaign
promise, President Bill Clinton recently an
nounced his intention to permit HIV-positive
immigrantsto enterthe coun-I
try. Since 1987, when former
President Ronald Reagan is-
sued one of his most offen-
sive Executive Orders,carri-
ers of the AIDS virus have
been refused entry into the
United States. But Clinton'sn
policy change represents a .K :..
long-awaited end to a con-
servative and discriminatory :
law.
The United States is the
only industrialized nation,
with the exception of South
Africa, to implement such an
exclusive law. Moreover,
public health officials have
continually expressed outrage over the ban and
its assumption that contact with AIDS patients
would cause widespread epidemics.
Inreality, the AIDS virus isnotspread through
casual contact, but rather through exchange of
bodily fluids. While AIDS represents a serious
health threat to the nation, people with AIDS do
not.
The policy change represents a clear victory
for those fighting the misperceptions surround-
ing the AIDS crisis. Over the past decade, AIDS
has become an internationally stigmatized dis-

ease associated with rampant fear and discrimi-
nation. Those with the HIV virus are constantly
insulted, threatened and ostracized from main-
stream society as they lose dig-
nity and pride. A national gov-
ernment policy that purpose-
fully limits the rights of the
HIV-infected only serves to
further the intense discrimina-
tion. The soon to be extinct
policy excludes approximately
600 potential immigrants from
t entering the United States ev-
ery year. President Clinton has
helped fight institutionalized
discrimination with the elimi-
nation of the Reagan policy.
President Clinton and the
United States are finally about
to reenter the family of nations
that promote equality and in-
clusiveness through interna-
tional policy.
Just months ago, the 1992 International Con-
ference on AIDS moved to Amsterdam from its
original location in Boston. The reason: the
institutionalized discriminatory policies pro-
moted by the United States.
Hopefully the new administration and U.S.
citizens alike have learned from horrific past
mistakes. The United States, as the nation of
"freedom for all," must promote equality and
inclusiveness in all endeavors.

To the Daily:
I have realized that the
Daily has dedicated during
the last few months a large
number of pages to gay,
lesbian and bisexual issues,
which I believe are getting
more than their share of
press. I, as many people
"out there," am aware of the
existence of these sexual
preferences and/or orienta-
tions. I am also aware of
others preferring masturba-
tion, multiple number of
partners, partner(s) of the
opposite sex, children,
animals, etc.
Now, the question is not
whether one is aware or not
of the different choices, but

if one accepts them as a
positive behavior in harmony
with one's morals, values and
traditions.
I am writing this letter to
balance all the free advertis-
ing that gay, lesbian and
bisexual organizations are
receiving from the Daily, and
to let you and them know that
some of us, at present called
heterosexuals, do not consider
those practices acceptable or
valid in any way.
I do not think that
lesbians, gays or bisexuals
have made any special
contributions to society
because of their sexual
orientation, as some seem to
emphasize. The only recogni-

tion they, as we, deserve is as
human beings and members
of s xciety.
I do not believe in any
kind of discrimination and
intolerance toward individu-
als of such orientations, but
this does not mean that I
ought to find their alternative
lifestyle acceptable, or that
my children should grow up
with such an understanding.
And now I am referring to
the editorial "Teach tolerance
in Birmingham" (12/10/92),
which reflected a clearly one-
sided opinion regarding the
teaching of homosexuality in
schools. I, like these "right-
wing," "closed-minded,"
"pro-family" organizations,

disagree with the Daily in
considering it a "valuable
addition" to the curriculum.
Nature has denied the right
of procreation to lesbian and
gay relationships. I am sorry
for those children of bisexuals
who are asked to understand
the sexual orientation (I would
say disorientation) of their
parents, who probably are
seeking to find a justification.
None of them, lesbians, gays
or bisexuals, have any right to
intervene in the way I want to
educate my children. They can
only expect tolerance, not
open endorsement.
Maria del Coral Reed
Rackham student

Double standard fabricated

To the Daily:
While searching for
another example of double
standards between men and
women, your editorial
"Attorney General: hearings
show nation's double
standard," (2/11/93) concern-
ing the Attorney General
confirmation hearings, did not
focus on the relevant issues.
Although I agree there is a
problem with double stan-
dards, I do not believe one
exists in this instance.

The only double standard
that exists is a different
standard for an Attorney
General and another standard
for the other members of the
cabinet.
However, this standard
would still apply whether the
nominee for Attorney General
were male or female.
What most people do not
know (until now) is that the
hiring of a babysitter, grass
cutter, or other part-time help
w-, earns over $50 in a three

alien while Ron Brown had
employed a legal domestic
worker.
Also important to note is
that Kimba Wood, although
not doing anything personally
illegal, knew that her nanny
was employed illegally since
the employee's visa expired
in 1986, even though it was
reported to authorities.
The editorial's one-sided
representation tries to create
an issue where one does not

Daily headline
misrepresents
Clinton's vows
To the Daily:
I couldn't help but be
puzzled by the headline the
Daily regarding the
President's recent appearance
in our state: "Clinton renews
campaign vows at town
meeting" (2/11/93). For some
reason I thought that during
the campaign he said that he
was going to cut middle class
taxes, not raise them. Appar-
ently i was~ listening to. the

LAST'-M 1 N'.rrE SACE Fi L-LE~j2 y

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