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March 30, 1993 - Image 4

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1993-03-30

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Page 4-The Michigan Daily-- Tuesday, March 30,1993

~b~ irigi OaI

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

Editor in Chief
Opinion Editor

CA I- rd/A
---~.6o ,H&,4

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.

Students need to vote to

have a voice inA2

IS MAY NOT be shocking news, but stu- however, fewer and fewer students have both-
dents have no power in this city. When the ered to notice election day. By 1984, the number
Ann Arbor City Council votes on a mea- of students voting had dropped by 50 percent, by
sure, members temper the interests of business, 1988 more than 70 percent, and last year, student
unions, homeowners and top financial backers. votes were only 10 percent of what they once had
Students generally are not considered. been.
We are notoverlooked because we only exist The city has used student apathy to increase its
in this city eight months during the year.We are power. After the 1980 and 1990 redistricting, the
not overlooked because we tend to be broke or City Council manipulated ward boundaries so
because we drink more beer and play lounder that the five city wards, which branch out in a pie
music. We are overlooked simply because, for shape from the center of the city (the Diag),
the mostpart, wedo notpay attentionto would evenly distribute student areas.
city government and do no vote. While University students could
In barely aweekstudents will musterenoughstrengthinthefirst
most likely relinguish any two wards during the seventies
power we could have mus- EN to consistantly elect student
tered. On April 7, Ann representatives to city
Arbor will hold elec- government, due tore-
lions to choose five THE ENVIRONM ENT districting in the
caty councilmembers TH ERE IS NO EXCUSE eighdesand nineties
trends hold, few stu- Now we have only a
dents will take part. littlebitofapowerin
Andourinterestswill each of the five
beignoredforanother wards. Still, it's a
year. littlebitofpowerthat
Due to ridicu- we don't bother to
lously antiquated take advantage of.
laws designed to C Withthis apathy,the
eliminate brothels in next redistricting
a college town, no more than six non-related will likely see no change.
people are permitted to live together in a house. With poor city council participation, and the
This law does not inherently target student all time low voter turnout of 8.8 percent in
housing,butmore-permanentmiddle class resi- Michigan Student Assembly elections, students
dents generally do not have a need for a home are demonstrating an apathy toward local gov-
with more than six non-relatives. As a result, ernment which verges on the frightening. For
many students have to lie to their landlords or each time one does not vote, he or she takes one
struggle to convince the city inspector that the step closer to losing his or her rights.
four rooms on the third floor are used only for It's time that students reclaim this right. Last
study purposes. November's election saw one of the largest turn-
Also, due to a similar student-specific law, outs among voters age 18-25. There is obviously
fraternities, sororities and student cooperatives awill for change. Yetit makes no senseto vote for
do not exist by their own right in Ann Arbor. change nationwide, and not in one's own neigh-
When members want to expand their homes or borhood. Voting is not something to do only once
buy a new house, they must petition for a special every four years, but something which must be
exception permit from the city planning com- done again and again whenever we are given the
mission. Three times in the past two years, opportunity. Otherwise we will always be in
student groups have been refused permits due to threat of losing our rights, and tomorrow it might
neighboring long-time residents who lobbied be something we have to care about.
the commission. The three Greek houses had to It might seem like little, but the next time you
spend time and resources on lengthy lawsuits to get a ticket for having a noisy party, remember
improve their living conditions. No student that you had no voice in writing the law that made
serves on this - or any - city commission. that party illegal. When you park at an over-
This was not always the case. In 1972, after priced meter, or trip over a giant gap in a crum-
the voting age was lowered to 18 and after bling sidewalk, or pay higher rent because prop-
federal law changed to allow students to register erty taxes just soared, or watch Gelman Sciences
to vote in a city where they lived only to attend dump chemical waste into the Huron River, or
a university, recently enfranchised students ral- step over a homeless mother with her children on
lied together, voting in record numbers in the State Street, remember that you allowed that to
City Council elections. For several years during happen by refusing to care enough to pay atten-
the seventies, there were even students elected tion to city politics. The next time you are given
to council in a student ward as part of a student- the short end of the stick because you are "just a
dominated party - the Human Rights Party. student," remember that you willingly allowed
These students represented the needs of this this to happen by not voting.
large segment of Ann Arbor life. Since then, City Council elections are April 5.
'U' should give gay students housing option

t4H..ta ~E..( E.

0f N

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/y r Cl-I rA P4


Remember heritage 'and run with it'

Understand this.
A change.
new order.
way of being; of seein
...this African-"Ame
medallions, shouts of
and the like.
you have pride, in yo

with nothing to hold onto, torn asunder
and reshaped
Understand thatyou are cut off fromher,
ig things; of being no longer born of her
Just a nigger, a junkie, a degenerate, a
ericana", murderer, an american Negro!
f "back to africa" [Labels]
and you wear them because they fit
ur consciousness, and they fit because you do not.
trying to look at yourself through the
eyes of others
trying to hold on to something that is not
nor can ever truly be yours.
And as you look out you forsake what is
Bdan Meeks within,
completely missing the wicked, vibrant,
troubled, beautiful culture that thrives un-
usings der your very nose.
'ou, confounding, or have you forgotten?
forgotten that watts burned
ions of you, like that miles made sweet love to a horn
ite stay inside the nikki turned simple ink into a testa-
ok, ments to the living soul?
at you don'tknow didn't kids on your block run through
sprinklers on hot summer days?

drug dealers, an angry man-child lashing
out at someone, anyone
to mr. johnson down at the barber shop
on 23rd and 5th
[we cut head]
some proud black mother who worked
in some white woman's' kitchen, taking
care of her own family as well,
the harlem renaissance, new black
writers and artists speaking to the soul of a
new generation, as the activists make seri-
ous moves
all of this is your culture yet still you
look at yourself through others' eyes?
through white eyes, eyes that do not have
the power to determine your self-worth, but
that power is given
those same eyes that take facets of your
culture for profit, especially when pieces of
our culture work their way out to suburbia
[see rebellious white teenagers]
then discards them when they outlive
their usefulness
how can you ignore a heritage as rich as
this; how can you ignore all that wentbefore
you, all that happens now,


in your pan-africanist mu
that change before y
blurring your definit
some child who can't qu
lines of their coloring bo
underlining the factth
who the hell you are

now on the glaring, the hazy and defiant
you can hear them calling you, back,
black, beautiful, alien
has life, you want to know it. In it you
think you can find you; looking away ... to
find what?
She has a life, peoples all her own
Yes, yes I know she calls to you but
she is also ashamed,
abandoning you like the little bastard-
child that you are;

'All of this is your culture yet still you look at yourself
through others' eyes?'

grandmothers telling you stories about
lynchings in the south,
where they let you swing until your
tongue turned black,
from hands that pounded the ground
on which you walkf
malcolm, martin, an angela davis fist
thrust through your minds eye, burning
there forever, drive-by shootings, stupid ass

four hundred years on this soil have
amounted to something
good or bad
it is yours, unique to you
take it for what it is worth
and run with it.
Meeks' column appears on the Opinion
page every other Tuesday

Brady Bill only hurts law-abiding

RECENT PROPSAL at Cornell University
that would designate part of a residence
hall forlesbians, gays, and bisexuals, has
brought attention to the issue here in Ann Arbor.
IfCornell's president approves the plan, Cornell
will become the first of the Ivy League institu-
tions to recognize the special needs and consid-
erations homosexuals and bisexuals have re-
garding housing.
Following its pledge to try to create an open
and accomadating enviroment for all different
types of people here at the University, the ad-
ministration should strongly consider imple-
menting this option as well.
A homophobic roommate or an atmosphere
filled with anti-gay jokes and inferences can
createamiserablelivingenviroment. Halls where
gay-bashing is considered acceptable behavior
'is undoubtedly not a supportive place for re-
cently"uncloseted" studentstolive,particularily
when already forced to deal with institutional-
ized hetero-sexism.
Therefore, a hall or wing specifically desig-
nated for gays, lesbians, and bisexuals is a
necessary option. Filled with students experi-
encing the same thing and therefore more sensi-
tive to each other, this living area would be a

perfect world, where all people are tolerant and
understanding of each other, in this day and age
that position ignores reality. Homosexuals and
bisexuals should not be forced into a hostile
enviroment purely to satisfy the principles of
administrators who don't have to deal with the
trials and tribulations of dorm living.
Twenty years ago, the Intercooperative Coun-
cil offered the Lesbian Gay Male Programs Of-
fice (LGMPO) its own house. But, in fear of
becoming a segregated and "ghetto-ized" group,
LGMPO kindly turned them down. Some have
expressed this same fear today, that vandalism
and harassment would increase. However, a hall
or wing within a residence hall would not have
the same isolating quality as a separate house.
And while attacks on gays, lesbians, and bisexu-
als is a very sad reality, the students involved
would most likely be officially "out," and there-
fore already susceptible to gay-bashing. More-
over, the positives of this option-that it would
help create asenseofcommunity andindicatethe
University's support for its members - out-
weigh the potential negatives for many members
Clearly not everyone in the gay, lesbian, and
bisexual community would choose to participate

To the Daily:
Once again you've
decided to attack the Bill of
Rights. I fully expected your
editorial "Deadly Weapons:
Waco incident shows need
for Brady Bill" (3/17/93).
You claim the United States
needs the Brady Bill and that
the Second Amendment does
not guarantee the individual
right to bear arms. Your
naivete and political agenda
are fully exposed by these
I'm sure that you, like
other anti-gunners, fully
believe that the Brady Bill
will reduce the number of
handguns in this country and
drastically reduce the number
of firearm-related homicides.
In reality, its seven day
waiting period and added
governmental red-tape will
have little or no effect on
either the number of hand-
guns or the homicide rate. It
will only make it more
difficult for the law-abiding

citizens of this country to
purchase a handgun.
Ask yourself if you really
believe one more law will
dissuade some predatory
street-thug from obtaining a
handgun illegally. Only the
foolish would believe so.
You claim the Second
Amendment only guarantees
the right of the states to raise
and arm militias. I find this
twisted interpretation aston-
The amendment in its
entirety states, "A well-
regulated militia being
necessary to the security of a
free state, the right of the
people to bear arms will not
be infringed." As pointed out
by George Horn of the
University of Newcastle, the
first part of the amendment is
merely a subordinate clause
giving some support to the
second part. The second part,
"... is the right of the people
to bear arms shall not be
infringed," is the independent

clause of the statement and is,
in Horn's words, "absolute."
If anti-gunners choose to
ignore this fact they must
then explain who the
amendment refers to as "the
people." The term "the
people" is also used in the
first, fourth and tenth
amendments in regard to
individuals. There is no
mention in the Bill of Rights
of "the people" being only
state governments. Rather,
"the people" refers to each
citizen within our republic.
For anti-gunners to
demand that only states have
the right to arm themselves,
they must also demand that
only states have the right to
freedom of speech and
assembly and freedom from
unreasonable search and
seizure. I hope the folly of
such demands is as apparent
to you as it is to me.
Ron Tykoski
LSA junior

To the Daily:
My girlfriend and I rent a
one-bedroom apartment m
University Towers (536 South
Forest), and the building has
recently had a lot of trouble
with the water pipes. The
water had been turned off on
March 9 for repairs. That
night, after the water had been
turned on, we discovered
flaky, metallic sediment in the
water that had settled out in
the bottom of a cup.
My girlfriend went to the
front desk and informed the
late-night attendant, showing
him the water. The attendant
refused to take any action to
alert the tenants, simply telling
her to run the water a while.
Today, March 10, when she
spoke to Joyce the building
manager, Joyce reacted the
same way.
This is a very significant
negligence. It seems the staff
of University Towers doesn't
care about tenants' health
enough to even post a notice
in the lobby or distribute
letters to the apartments
warning not to drink the water
without running it for a
considerable time. Consider-
ing that the rents have been
exorbitantly raised for new

'U' Towers
tenant safety



Christian scripture irrational, homophobic

To the Daily:
I find it interesting that
there is always someone who
can be found enforcing their
personal life-style choices on
other people. One particular
instance I would like to cite is
a letter that Kevin Berger
wrote to the Daily, "Homo-
sexuality article misportrays
Christianity..." (3/18/93). In

Unfortunately, that
homophobic stand of Kevin's
is no small blemish, for it
stems from his belief in
Christian mythology. He thus
supports his argument by
declaring that scripture reveals
the "divine"rejection of
homosexuality. Now, how
does he validate Christian

requiring irrational accep-
tance. Kevin evidences this in
his statement, "I believe in the
errancy and entire trustworthi-
ness of the Bible."
I agree with Kevin that
homosexuals cannot be
practicing Christians. In fact,
it would be quite ironic for
them to hold such religious
beliefs. The Christian Rod


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