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October 13, 1994 - Image 4

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1994-10-13

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4 - The Michigan Daily - Thursday, October 13, 1994

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

Jessie Hallada
Editor in Chief
Samuel Goodstein
Flint Wainess

Editorial Page Editors
Unless otherwise noted, unsigned editorials reflect the opinion of a majority of the Daily's editorial board. All
other articles, letters, and cartoons do not necessarily reflect the opinion of The Michigan Daily.

'All pigs and goats were ordered off the streets
today by the Mayor of Port-au-Prince, Evans Paul,
in anticipation of Father Aristide's planned arrival
here [Haiti] on Sunday. '_as reported by The New York Times
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Give students a voice
A non-voting student regent is our only hope

* nfortunately, the Board of Regents is
composed of individuals elected, in large
part, because of their stature within either the
Republican or Democratic state party. As a
result, many regents had limited prior knowl-
edge of the issues surrounding higher educa-
tion before their election. Add this to the fact
that most party faithful don't have strong ties
in the student community, and once elected,
usually don't have the time or will to begin
fostering those relations. The structure that
emerges from this precarious mix is a govern-
ing body that is out of touch with student
Currently, the regents meet every month in
a session that is open to the public viewing, but
closed to student input. Observers of these
sessions notice that students have highly
limited means for contributing to the very
discussions that in large part determine their
living environments and their financial con-
ditions. Presently, it is not feasible for a
student to win a seat on the board because no
student is likely to win the Democratic or
Republican nomination. Theoretically, a stu-
dent could win election to the board through
an independent candidacy or by nomination
from a minor party, but given the abysmal
success rate of independent or minor party
candidates, that will not happen anytime
Even if a student were to, somehow, gain
major party nomination and win a statewide
election, they still might not be allowed to
-serve. The latest opinion from the state attor-
ney general considers a voting student regent
illegal, due to a perceived conflict of interest:
officially, it is the regents who bestow diplo-
mas upon graduation, and for a student to be

empowered to give themselves a diploma is,
according to present theory, illegal. Although
this position might be overturned by a court
challenge, the risk of losing a seat after an
expensive campaign would deter most stu-
dents from even throwing their hat in the ring.
However, a voice speaking for student
concerns before the board is clearly a neces-
sity, and the creation of a special seat for anon-
voting student regent is the best route. While
this would not give students power equal to the
elected regents, it would allow for a dialogue
between governing and governed which has,
for too long, been missing. The establishment
of a seat for a non-voting student regent re-
quires merely a majority vote of the Board of
Regents, and can be accomplished as early as
their next meeting, two weeks from now.
Should the position be created, the presi-
dent of the Michigan Student Assembly
(MSA) would be an obvious choice for stu-
dent representative. Because the voter turn-
out is so dismally low for MSA elections, it
is unlikely that a separate election for a
student regent seat would draw any more
students to the polls than MSA elections.
This should not be an appointed position,
because the representative needs to be cho-
sen by the student body, so he or she can
represent the most broad set of interests.
The Board of Regents makes countless
decisions that effect the everyday lives of
students. The fact that students are not repre-
sented on the board can only lead to misunder-
standing between students and administrators,
and detract from the mutual mission of
progress. Before dumping more tuition in-
creases and conduct codes on us, the regents
should at least hear what we have to say.

An accent


The Daily errs does not a
on health care poor teacher


he Sigma Phi Epsilon house recently
turned in its charter in response to strict
sanctions for a hazing incident that occurred
Sept. 4. Relatedly, after a trial ending last
Friday, Michigan State University (MSU) was
held accountable for hazing that took place in
the Michigan State Marching Band. Across
the state, hazing has constituted a strong and
ever-present undercurrent in university orga-
nizations. Fortunately, these two cases finally
bring to the forefront those issues that have
been laying dormant, lurking inconspicuously
under the thin veneers of loosely-enforced
policies against hazing. Hopefully, the Inter-
fraternity Council (IFC) and state universities
will continue to crack down on hazing inci-
dents. More likely, it will require the initiative
of students pushing through an anti-hazing
statue for the state of Michigan to eradicate
this ubiquitous self-debasement.
The hazing revealed by the Sig Ep case was
surprising only in that it was discovered and
acknowledged. The actual hazing itself was
not new information in and of itself, nor is it
probable that Sig Ep played a different or more
extreme role in hazing than many other frater-
nities. Sig Eps simply got caught. The optimist
hopes Sig Ep's example will encourage other
organizations to terminate their hazing prac-
tices. The realist notes that if not because it is
the right thing to do, maybe organizations will
stop these practices because they fear retalia-
Perhaps more unexpected was Jeffery
Greenfield's story which unveiled hazing as
an activity that extends beyond the practices
stereotypically assumed to be limited to the
Greek system. Jeffery Greenfield was a mem-
ber of the Michigan State Marching Band until
he was forced to quit the band in the face of

harassed under university supervision and the
presence of the band director. Seeking com-
pensation for his trauma, Jeffery sued MSU
for not taking reasonable actions to protect
him. The trial has just ended and he was
awarded $100,000 from the university. Al-
though Jeffery received his rightful compen-
sation, it frightens to think that the university
itself was responsible for the hazing that took
place. Ironically, the institution was held re-
sponsible for the very practices that are gener-
ally considered to be only a student problem.
Clearly, this example shows that hazing is
not just a student concern nor a small-scale
problem of the Greek system. Although both
of these cases were taken care of, many other
organizations will continue to abuse the sys-
tem and to abuse their members. Even though
the University's Office of Greek Life acted
responsively to the problem, the sanctions
were not strong enough to deter hazing that
continues to occur on campus. Anti-hazing
legislation, which is already a reality in at least
38 states, would act as a greater deterrent to
this practice.
The discrepancy between the sanctions lev-
eled by various institutions and organizations
shows an inconsistency that only causes con-
fusion and ineffectiveness. The lack of spe-
cific anti-hazing policies in the IFC constitu-
tion also contributes to this problem. The
consistency that is obviously needed can only
be provided by a state law.
LSAseniorDaveGarciahas already drafted
and submitted an anti-hazing statue to several
University officials in hopes of gaining their
support for a state-wide lobbying effort. The
effort is expected to begin shortly after the
Novemberelections. This page hopes Garcia's
efforts will be rewarded, and hazing will turn

To the Daily:
Once again the Michigan
Daily has provided us their in-
sight" in solving all the world's
problems. Though lacking in
any depth whatsoever, the Oc-
tober 1th, editorial, "Health
Care Abundance" covers the
issue of health care reform in
the United States.
In an "It's So E-Z" ap-
proach, the Daily manages to
take what has been a major
problem/conflict of the United
States governmentforyears and
turn it into a snap-solution via
their recommended two-step
1.) Don'tgetsick, and 2.) If
you do, don't spend much
money getting better. Sheer
brilliance. What exactly is the
point of printing an "editorial"
that is made up entirely of com-
mon knowledge? No one would
argue that not getting sick and
advocating low-cost medicine
will decrease our health care
Can you offer a more pro-
found commentary? Citing your
own critique that "Americans
ignore overuse" you've shown
you are not the exception.
By printing such simplistic
statements regarding the health
care system you appear to be
ignorant. By printing themover
and over again, you appear to
be ignorant and annoying.
Please! - save the space.
Jennifer Anne Zelenock,
Inteflex Medical Program
hooray for the
To the Daily:
With the editorial on the
Contract With America, the
Daily has once again misrepre-
sented and mischaracterized the
Republicans in Congress.
The Contract With America
is the culmination of the most
productive and constructive
opposition party in history. In
the two biggest issues the Con-
gress faced in the last two years,
the Clinton Tax Bill and the
Clinton Health Plan, the GOP
has produced several alterna-
tives. In 1993, Republicans in
the House rallied behind Con-
gressman John Kasich's Bud-
In 1994, the Dole-
Packwood proposal on Health
Care received more cosponsors
than any other plan. During the
Bush Administration, Demo-
crats did not offer alternative
budgets and obstructed his

To the Daily:
Though I am certain many
responses will materialize re-
garding Birk's letter of Oct. 6,
I feel strongly compelled to
voice my spontaneous reaction.
I have little faith in the opin-
ion of a student who openly
admits they read the newspa-
per during classroom sessions
of their high-priced elite edu-
cation. Can we really consider
your experience as typical or
significant ifthe Daily contains
more "understandable" infor-
mation than your teacher?
As an engineer, upon gradu-
ation you will probably work
with people from around the
world. You can be sure that
your colleagues are at least as
well-trained, if not better, than
you. A heavy accent does not
imply incompetence. As stu-
dents, we have a responsibility
to hear past the accent, to the
greater insights and wealth of
"Other" experiences beyond.
You can be sure, a highly es-
teemed institution such as the
University does not employ any
instructors who are not compe-
tent in their field. In addition,
most International TAs must
attend an intensive 3-week
workshow sponsored by a Uni-
versity affiliated institute, be-
fore they ever step into the class-
Foreign TAs struggle with
this kind of adversity on a daily
basis at this University. It is
very dismaying to read such
ignorant, racist and short-
sighted remarks from Univer-
sity undergrads. What you "de-
serve" is the most diverse and
challenging education avail-
able, and not an education
which excludes the world out-
side our borders.
Amy Clark Beal
School of Music TA
Ignorance is
bliss, so there
must be many
happy drivers
To the Daily:
In light of the recent inci-
dent between a pedestrian and a
bicyclist, I would like to illumi-
nate this dark void of bicycle
traffic behaviorwhich is promi-
nent on campus.
Myth: Bikers are a special
case when riding on the road.
Fact: Bicycles, when driven
on the road, are legally consid-
ered vehicles. Hence, bikers on
the road are drivers.

will survive,
and grow
To The Daily:
The outpouring of student
support for the Ann Arbor Ten-
ants Union has been very grati-
fying to all of us at the AATU.
We want to thank all of the
students who have taken the
time to attend MSA meetings,
write letters to MSA, circulate
petitions, or take other actions
to save the AATU. We are sorry
that some of your Representa-
tives on MSA have ignored your
input, but we want you to know
that we were listening.
We have no doubt that the
majority of the students on this
campus value the services of
the AATU, and we are dedi-
cated to finding a way to pro-
vide those services to any stu-
dent who needs them. To that
end, we will be sponsoring a
ballot question in the Novem-
ber MSA election. This con-
stituent initiative would raise
the student fee by a mere 25
cents in order to assure that
tenant counseling, advocacy,
education and other AATU ser-
vices will continue to be avail-
able free of charge to all stu-
We expect this initiative to
pass, but it will not take effect
until January. This leaves the
AATU without institutional
support for its services to stu-
dents during this term. Overthe
next few months, we will be
turning to students to help us
cover the costs of those ser-
vices. Here are some ways that
you can help:
*Pay your25 cents this term.
We will be holding a bucket
drive and will be regularly set-
ting up tables in the Fishbowl
and otherlocations. There's also
a donation jar at the AATU
office on the fourth floor of the
elf you can, contribute $5
and become a Special Student
Supporter of the AATU.
'If the AATUhas saved you
money in the past, consider
donating back a portion of what
we helped you to save.
*Volunteer to help the
AATU raise funds or to help
out in the office while our regu-
lar volunteers are out
For the past 25 years, the
AATU has been there for stu-
dents; now we are counting on
students to be there for the
AATU. While the past few
weeks have been frustrating for
all of us, we feel confident that
your tenants union will emerge
from this crisis stronger than
Carmen Crosby
AATU Board President
Pattrice Maurer

Postcard from
South U
Don't be upset, but being a rea-
sonably rational and fair-minded
LS&A concentrator, I feel it is my
duty to bring an unpopular piece of
information to your attention, a fact
that the University administration
has mischievously attempted to hide.
In U.S. News and World Report's
annual authoritative study of Ameri-
can universities, the U of M is ranked
#1 in only one category this year,
and it's not academic reputation -
we have the largest pseudo-hip con-
glomeration of Urban Outfitter-
poster children in the land. Hurray.
One does have to admire Ann
Arbor's impressive diversity. Our's
is the only city able to house a Cava
Java and a bowel-churning Taco Bell
on the same block. A casual walk
down South University is illustra-
tive: as the pumped-up frat boys and
platform-shoed sorority girls head
on to campus from the fringes of
Washtenaw, stowaways chow on
$.59 rainforest burgers in the
McDonalds villa, Deadheads sniff
incense and light candles in Middle
Earth, while that fur ball of a dog
scampers about, alchemists brood
and concoct in the apothecary drug
bin, professorial types lament in
coffeeshops and pro-Wolpe con-
struction workers feast on "kosher"
hotdogs (yea, right those dogs are
kosher beef). To be sure, South U is
a chronicle of daily student life. In
the mornings, the bagel subculture
awakes and the caffeine dependent
get their fix. Some peruse the Daily
and decry the art staff's blasphem-
ing of The Mongolian Barbecue,
and others finger paint along with
the staff of the USA Today.
During the day, we're all thrust
into adisturbing quandary: confront-
ing those all-too familiar faces from
the days in the dorm when I still
thought frat parties were cool. (A
fellow social commentarian named
Twenge - sounds like a country-
western tune-suggests that in such
situations blab on about majors,
lunch dates and how to pronounce
Biakabatuka).Thesolution: just stare
ahead, mouth a tune and avoid con-
tact, like the Spence Abraham cam-
paign. South U is the place where
countless faces pass on the street and
shifty eyes dart to and fro. I've al-
ways wanted to shout out (to no one
in particular): "Find another focal
point, cowboy! I don't look that
strange. So my hair style may not be
the type you encounter on a regular
basis atZBTdate parties ... I'm sorry
that I don't have that western Michi-
gan golden boy look..." I'll choose
the preppy, corduroy Ethan Hawke
look (in Dead Poets, not Reality
Bites) over the style of the slovenly
lead singer of Soul Asylum.
To paraphrase a recent letter
writer - Ann Arbor is the trendiest
town, per capita, in the industrial-
ized world. In middle school, the
problem was that on the first day of
school, one experienced great stress
that your best friend would wear the

same short-sleeved Polo shirt and
Bugle Boy jeans as you would,
thereby making a mockery out of
one's veiled attempt to look cool and
thus line up a movie date for Friday.
Now in college, the issue is more
boot related. It's as if Deiter and his
leather-encased Doc Marten bud-
dies succeeded in convincing mil-
lions of impressionable American
college youth to buy overpriced
German Army paraphernalia from
the Weimer era.
Speaking of South U's fashion-
ably challenged, in the evenings,
less sophisticated punks stake out
their territory on the corner of South
and East U. In punk-speak, dyed
green hair means capitalism is bad
and thatthe Third World isn't devel-
oping quick enough, purple means
one believes that the forces of Zion-
ism are poised to take over the world
financial systems and yellow means
you're protesting the loss to Colo-
rado. I myself have beaded hair -a


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