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February 18, 1993 - Image 4

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Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1993-02-18

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"

Page 4--The Michigan Daily- Thursday, February 18,1993
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420 Maynard
Ann Arbor, MI 48109
Edited and managed
by students at the
University of Michigan

Josn DuBow
Editor in Chief
YAEL M. CITRO
ERIN LIZA EINHORN
Opinion Editors

I

Unsigned editorials represent the mjority 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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M'~ tA iD~~~a~ LAILY f93

CITY COUNCIL
Hunter shows disrespect for publicfunds

LAST YEAR WAS supposed to be the year
of the "dissatisfied voter." Many Ameri-
cans expressed a desire to clean up gov-
eminent and eliminate special privileges for
incumbents who have grown too comfortable in
their jobs. However, this attitude has had little
effect on Ann Arbor's city government.
City Councilmember Larry Hunter (D-1st
Ward) recently borrowed a city car -without
asking permission from the mayor-and drove
1,150milestoWashington,D.C.,to attendPresi-
dent Clinton's inauguration. He did not even
bother to register a complete description of his
journey in the city vehicle log until several
weeks later when the press exposed the details.
In the face of public outrage, he admitted the
errorof his ways and reimbursed the city, but his
reliability and respect for public funds remains
questionable.
Hunter claims he was invited to attend the
inauguration as a city representative. While he
was there he attended several official meetings,
including one with someone he referred to as a
"finance official."
Hunter did not necessarily break any city
rules, and he did wisely backtrack and pay for the
venture, but without a doubt, he broke the spirit
of the rules. It would have been entirely possible
for him to conduct the meetings by phone, and

his presence at the inauguration did not directly
benefit Ann Arbor.
Elected officials should not use government
property for their own purposes, or to feed their
egos. If they do, it is important they at least
responsibly inform the public without media
prompting.
Unfortunately for Ann Arbor, this is not the
first time members of the Democratic majority
on the council have wasted city funds. Mayor
Brater used city tax dollars to fly to the U.S.
Conference ofMayors in SanFranciscoin 1991.
The conference, a meeting involving the mayors
of larger cities like New York, Los Angeles and
Detroit, discusses large city problems that Brater
- a part-time mayor - does not face. Ann
Arbor also belongs to the Michigan Municipal
League, an association of Michigan elected offi-
cials that meets every other year in Lansing.'The
league handles issues that are more relevant to
Ann Arbor. Brater could have saved money and
better aided the city by staying closer to home.
A city council that uses public funds to take
unnecessary trips all over the United States both
diverts attention from important problems and
drains money from the city budget. Such misuse
of city funds should not be tolerated. The next
city election is April 5.

{ f! Y l l 4
x A

U' students debate "Pussie Rd." sign

0

:

ART ATTACK
Engler's art cuts just don't make cents

"Bush '92" sign
also offevsive
To the Daily:
This is in response to
Mechele de Avila's letter
"Offensive sign in dorm must
go," (2/9/93).
Let us not make issues out
of every little thing that just
pisses us off. Some things are
not worth it. It's time to grow
up. People will do things and
say things just to get your hair
up. They will do things to
draw attention to themselves,
perhaps because they are so
immature that they do not
know or perhaps can not even
conceive of more appropriate
ways to get attention. And it
seems that you have played
right into their childish, little
hands.
Personally, I'm starting a
petition to get the administra-
tion to have those boys
remove that "Bush '92" sign
from plain sight. I find that
offensive!
Candy Jackson
LSA senior

}
t

SHARON MUSHER/Daily

ENTLY, GOVERNOR JOHN Engler'sbud-
get director proposed budget cuts that
would once again take a bite out of
Michigan's funding for the arts. Engler's initial
cutstwo years agohad adrasticeffectonnotonly
the availability of museum exhibits but also
theater productions and art education.
The Detroit Institute of
Arts (DIA)has been forced
to cut back its hours anda
rotate the hours for each
gallery. Small theaters;
throughout the state, such
as the Attic in Detroit and
ThePurpleRose in Chelsea,
have had to seek altema-
tives to state funding in or- KF
der to keep their doors open. Education pro-
gramslike those sponsored by the Ann Arbor Art
Association must rely heavily on private and
corporate donations to keep going.
These cuts are made in the name of saving
money but the problems created by cutting from
the arts run much deeper then financial issues.
Detroit, in particular, suffers from cuts. The DIA
can no longer pull in as many of the prestigious
exhibits needed to draw crowds to the city.
Exhibits of famous artists' work bring in much
needed revenue to the city.
But, because of the funding cut and the reduc-
tion of hours, accessibility to art has become

difficult for Michigan residents as well as tour-
ists. Also, the DIA is now required to charge an
admission fee. This practice limits access to a
more elite group.
But these cuts do not just affect larger cities.
Culture in Ann Arbor will also suffer, said Russ
Collins, director of the Michigan Theater. Fur-
ther cutbacks from direct sub-
sidy funds would jeopardize
the theater's ability to hold
live on-stage programs and
y R show rare films, he said.
It is logical for the state to
cut arts along with other pro-
grams, but the funds diverted
from arts are disproportionate
RISTOFFER GILLETTE/Daily to the benefits the state re-
ceives from cutting them. These cuts seem to
indicate a disregard for the importance of art
throughout the state. The problems stem from
the state government's seeming disregard forthe
significant role it must play in supporting the
arts.
Cutting arts funding is politically easy and
safe, but in terms of dollars and cents, makes
very little sense. In addition, cutting the arts
means eliminating support for programs that not
only bring dollars to our state but also enrich
lives.
As Collins said, "Arts are the only thing left
after a civilization passes."

People are far
too sensitive
To the Daily:
Mechele de Avila ("Offen-
sive sign in dorm must go," 2/
9/93), you are far too sensi-
tive. Reality check -
everyone is not out to get you.
Jodi Wilkowski
LSA junior

W. Quad sign will not be taken
down, matter of principle

Sign reflects sexual immaturity

To the Daily:
Basically, I'll keep this
simple. These West Quad
guys are immature and losers,
there is no questioning that.
Yet, by sensationalizing and
politicizing their sophomoric
behavior, you only complicate
the issue needlessly.
I have never met them, nor
you, but I can tell that they are
just the typical white trash at
this institution of higher
learning, and you (please take
minimal offense) are just sick
and tired of feeling insulted by
general stupidity. The world
sucks, and so do most
undergrads ... I know, I'm
one of them. Unfortunately,
they won't get the point if you

try and force the issue to
become something it is clearly
not. All the sensitivity training
in the world does not equal
stupidity eradication. I'm
sorry that you feel "harassed,"
but focus your energies on
more positive outlets for this
sense of social inequality. Go
hang a sign opposite their
door saying "Dick Rd." or
"12-incher Lane" or some-
thing. Or, smile and laugh
inwardly as you realize that
their sign is only a reflection
of their lack of anything other
than self-induced sexual
gratification.
Russell Gorton
Engineering junior

To the Daily:
I direct my first comments
toward the Daily concerning
the article in the Daily entitled
"W. Quad sign 'offensive' to
female students," (2/9/93).
This must be a rather boring
world if the issue of display-
ing a sign in one's window
deserves front-page coverage.
You placed the article
ahead of such articles as
"Plane crash in Iran leaves no
survivors," and "Experts:
AIDS becomes more of threat
to women." You made it
seem like an insignificant sign
could threaten women as
much as the AIDS virus.
But since you did think the
sign was newsworthy, let me
just say thank you for making
me famous.
Before you wrote the
article, I had considered taking
the sign down. But now so
many people are telling me
how great the sign really is,
that I should never take it

down, and that it is a matter of
principle.
It was not mentioned in the
article that no offended
women had approached or
even called me about the sign.
Their tactics are a bit weird.
They talked to my RA. and
RD who cannot tell me to take
the sign down anyway. They
started a petition and they
even contacted my mother an
my roommate's mother and
asked them to ask us to
remove the sign.
I would like to apologize
to the women whom I have
offended by the sign.
But, my whole point is that
some people take things way
too seriously around here. The
sign will not come down at
this time so just chill out!
Is the other sign in my
window reading "Bush"
equally offending?
Dan Dapprich
Business School junior

S

W.LLOW ,RUN
Ruling on GM plant should be applauded
L ASTWEEK AWashtenaw County courtmade rarely refuse any kind of bargain. It's the same
national news when it ruled that General situation faced by starving people who will pay
otors(GM) must keep open its Willow any price for the food they need to survive.
Run Township plant. The court reasoned that by Most communities - especially those in
accepting tax abatements offered by the local rural areas where jobs are extremely scarce -
government until 2003, GM made a promise to view the opening of a new factory as a boon for
provide jobs to local workers. For a court to hold everyone who lives there. Consequently, local
that the acceptanceoftax abatements constitutes governments are willing to overlook possible
a legal and binding contract is rather novel, but environmental concerns and the long-term ef-
itmakes alot ofsense.Last week's ruling should fects of huge tax abatements on the local
be applauded. Hopefully it will stand up to the economy. This allows for the easy exploitation
appeals that are sure to follow. of depressed communities by big business. Per-
Communities across the nation are in the petually stuck in dire economic straits, commu-
business of buying jobs for their citizens by nities are willing to view tax abatements as the
offering companies tax abatements. Suppos- only road to a higher standard of living. How-
edly, the practice is symbiotic -businesses get ever, a higher standard of living would be less of
lowertaxes and depressedcommunities getmore a pipe dream if cities could attract businesses in
jobs. addition to getting full tax revenue.
But in reality, the company has an unfair Since tax abatements are such an entrenched
advantage because it can relocate whenever it part of the economy and since every company
wants, leaving nothing in its dust but a shut- counts on them, full tax revenue is probably a
down factory and soaringunemployment. Often fantasy. But at the very least, companies should
companies will close a plant as a kind of gamble. stay in a community for as long as they origi-
In the Willow Run case, the Arlington, Texas nally agreed to accept abatements.
plant would have been less cost-efficient than Although some would argue that by requir-
th- m1011.-. ~irn#1anin tav~tn ire 1-- - l1 -- :- A.... 1(.1 l-..A:,.-P-:- Y11tC a M-:

'U' afflicted by continual
protests of insignificant issues,
not worthy of press coverage

Find humor in sexual imagery

To the Daily:
A I wanted to ask Mechele de
Avila ("Offensive sign in
dorm must go," 2/9/93) a few
questions concerning the sign
at West Quad that has
disturbed her so much.
Near my home ,n 1-75
there is a road sign for "Exit
69 Big Beaver Rd." I was
wondering if she would find
this offensive as well? Or is
something offensive only if it
is placed in a window for all
to see. I was also wondering if
everyone named Richard
should change their name.
After all, we would not want
anyone calling him Dick.
Has de Avila ever driven
from Ann Arbor to
Kalamazoo? If she has then

she has been through the fine
city of Climax, Mich. Perhaps
de Avila has heard of Hell,
Mich.
The number of cities,
places and names that happen
to spelled the same way as a
"bad" word would certainly
be staggering if someone took
the time to count them all. If
one can not find the humor, or
at least the harmlessness in
"Pussie Rd." then I feel sorry
for them.
I guess the two gentlemen
at West Quad will have to
stick to their guns, and use
that stupid old First Amend-
ment to protect their rights.
Joseph Tirrell
LSA first-year student

To the Daily:
Apparently Mechele da
Avila ("Offensive sign in
dorm must go," 2/9/93) and
the Daily ("Sign of the times:
West Quad sign is legal but
offensive," 2/10/93) possess
no more fulfilling endeavors
to occupy their time than to
join forces in a collective
effort to defame two West
Quad residents over an issue
so trivial they should be
embarrassed.
The existing image of the
University as this bastion of
liberal thought and action has
apparently influenced some to
such an extent that our school
is afflicted by those few who
believe continual protest of
insignificant issues is a noble
step towards constructive
social action.
The Daily shares equal
guilt with Ms. de Avila for its
nnrt in theelevntirn r thise

window also. It can be
inferred that these two
probably aren't even Republi-
cans but social miscreants
who delight in using street
signs and campaign posters to
demean women.
One can only weep for the
poor souls who actually reside
on this ignominiously named
street.
I wonder if those who live
there believe their address
"says women are second class
citizens." Ms. de Avila, we're
talking about two college
kids' attempt at humor. Ill-
advised? Maybe. Insensitive?
Probably.
But an effort "to create a
hierarchy of power?" Do you
really believe waging a public
campaign against two kids
with dirty minds is the
medium that will vault you to
the status of a champion of
women's rights, a position

Women should fight fire with fire

To the Dly:~u

"His cocvk" suns a re' rive for

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