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January 10, 1995 - Image 4

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Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1995-01-10

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4 - The Michigan Daily - Tuesday, January 10, 1995

(7io 4t Citi tt t Butl

'Hours after we took our oath under the
Constitution of the United States, we trampled it.'
- U.S. Rep. Bart Stupak (D-Menominee), on proposed cuts in the tax rate many
Democrats consider unconstitutional

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

Jessie Halladay
Editor in Chief
Samuel Goodstein
Flint Wainess

WHY T'oN'T7

C-\iRL§ SEEM -ro

Editorial Page Editors
0ness 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.

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nority faculty
U' must strive to hire, retain minority faculty

recently released report concluded that
the number of Black faculty at the Uni-
versity has fallen 1.2 percent over the past
year. While this decline is relatively small,
considering the fact that a decline of a few
percent could mean a loss in the single digits,
it does reflect a failure on the part of the
University to retain the Black faculty members
who are currently employed here, and a failure
to attract new Black faculty. President James J.
Duderstadt has taken a commendable stance
by recognizing these failures and vowing to
reverse them. But words, however well-
intentioned, are cheap. The report should spur
the University into action.
The presence of minority faculty mem-
bers is vital to the University. Minority faculty
inembers bring diverse viewpoints to the stu-
dent body, broadening undergraduate educa-
tion.
Students who have had less contact with
minorities can come to appreciate the perspec-
tives that people from diverse backgrounds
can bring to the University. Furthermore, mi-
nority faculty members can help increase the
graduation rates of minority students. Minor-
ity faculty can serve as a model of academic
success to those who might become discour-
aged with the educational process, and thus the
faculty can inspire these students to continue
with their education.
The question persists, then, as to why the
University has allowed the number of minority
faculty at the University to decline. As Provost
and Executive Vice President for Academic
Affairs Gilbert R. Whitaker Jr. noted, the hir-
ing of qualified minorities for teaching posts is
very competitive, and it is often difficult to lure

minority academicians to Michiganwhen com-
peting with Ivy League schools. However, if
the University can claim to be one of the
leading educational institutions in the coun-
try, it must attract minority faculty with the
same effort as peer schools.
The University has made much headway
in hiring minority academicians. During the
past five years, the number of minority faculty
members has increased by 37.2 percent. Mi-
norities now comprise 14 percent of the total
faculty, compared with 10.7 percent in 1989.
Even during the past year, while there was a
drop in the number of Black faculty, there
were increases in the hiring of Hispanic and
Asian American faculty. Duderstadt has re-
peatedly emphasized his commitment to hir-
ing minorities and has expressed concern at
the decrease in the number of Black faculty.
Provost Whitaker's establishment of a task
force to study minority hiring - in hopes of
fostering diversity - is a definite step in the
right direction.
However, much work remains to be done
in this area. Duderstadt noted that new faculty
are hired by search committees chaired by the
faculty members themselves. The University
administration should direct the search pro-
cess to ensure that minorities are considered
for faculty positions,
Once minority faculty members are hired,
the University should work to keep them.
Over the past year, Black faculty members left
the University for other positions. University
administrators should focus their efforts on
retaining faculty, and on creating an environ-
ment that is attractive to minority academi-
cians.

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Fun minus the
lampshade:
End the binge
My friend Jack hasn't had a
trash can in his dorm room since
September. Some guy he didn't
know threw up in it after getting
sloshed at a cocktail party. Jack
headed to the bathroom to wash it
out, but after tripping over another
guy who'dpassedout in the middle
of the hallway, he gave up.
According to a national survey
released last month, problems re-
lated to drinking on college cam-
puses go far beyond such minor
frustrations. The survey,published
in the Journal of the American
Medical Association, found that
nearly half of all U.S. college stu-
dents are binge drinkers (defined
as having four or more drinks on at
least one occasion in the past two
weeks).
Binge drinkers, the study found,
cause a number of serious prob-
lems for both themselves and oth-
ers. Sixty-one percent of binge
drinkers have missed a class be-
cause of drinking, 41 percent have
engaged in unplanned sex, 23 per-
cent have gotten physically hurt,
22 percent have had unprotected
sex. These binge drinkers also
managed to make life miserable
for those around them: Of students
on campuses where more than 50
percent of the students are binge
drinkers, 68 percent had their study
or sleep interrupted, 54percent had
to care for a drunken student, 34
percent were insulted or humili-
ated, 26 percent experienced un-
wanted sexual advances.

6 0

.- - 1% 0 -1-AWk, r% I

Indignation over Proposition 187 is unjustified

To the Daily:
Iam a resident of the state of
California -and I am against
Proposition 187 after an edu-
cated decision about it. How-
ever, my decision is based on
an understanding of the prob-
lems that gave rise to Proposi-
tion 187, and I urge the people
of other states to take an in-
formed look at this controver-
sial issue in order to make an
educated decision.
California is struggling eco-
nomically, strained by the rapid
influx of people searching for
the golden dream in the golden
West. Mexican citizens also
were part of this quest, often
entering illegally in an effort to
obtain this "American Dream."
However, the population ex-
plosion of the '80s was quickly
followed by the recent reces-
sion, driving many of the same
dream-seekers to better pas-
tures. Now there are fewer tax-
payers to support the large group
of illegal aliens (hundreds of
thousands) already in Califor-
nia and constantly pouring in
due to lack of funds needed for
better border enforcement.
Proposition 187 denies non-

emergency and educational
benefits to illegal aliens within
the state of California. It was
passed by the 67 percent ma-
jority needed to enact a law in
California primarily because
there seems to be no other way
for California to feasibly solve
the negative cash flow prob-
lemofillegal aliens. Loopholes
in the system allow aliens to
avoid paying taxes and yet ob-
tain free or low-cost medical
care and education of all kinds.
An illegal alien was recently
quoted back home as being
against Proposition 187 be-
cause she would no longer be
able to attend medical school
for $25 a year.
Misinformation and lack of
knowledge inflate the misun-
derstandings that people have
concerning Proposition 187.
Fliers that were handed out at
the rally interchangeably used
the words immigrants and ille-
gal aliens as if they meant the
same thing, along with several
statistical strategies designed
to make the problem look in-
significant. Illegal aliens were
quoted as less than 1.5 percent
of the population of the United

What good for MSU ...

Writer's barb ignores reality

Michigan State's pledge
t first glance the pledge by Michigan
State University President M. Peter
McPherson to keep tuition raises to the rate of
inflation seems admirable. However, the plan
is based on an overly rosy picture of higher-
education funding, and is more appealing as a
public-relations device than as a fiscal for-
,mula. This promise would only be a dream
here. While tuition increases are a hardship on
the student body, this University's economic
goals must remain realistic.
MSU is able to make this pledge only
because it has raised its tuition at exorbitant
rates in recent years. The promise also hinges
on state participation - tuition will not in-
crease more than the rate of inflation as long as
state appropriations also increase at the rate of
inflation. One must question how long MSU
will be able to keep this promise up.
As University President James J.Duderstadt
pointed out, the University "play(s) in a much
different league and it's amuchmore competi-
tive league. (MSU is) under different con-
straints, different pressures than we are." He is
correct. The University provides a type of
education distinct from MSU's program, one
with different funding needs. Very few would
be willing to sacrifice academic quality for
lower tuition - a possible side effect of a
McPherson's pledge.
The fact is that higher-education costs are
excessive across the country. Those who can
afford to pay go to school. In some cases those
who cannot pay are completely unable to
pursue a quality education. Many American

unrealistic for 'U'
thereby prolonging their stays - and the cost
to both students and government- in the halls
of knowledge.
In light of this situation, the new Republi-
can Congress is threatening to put an end to
subsidized loans, removing the option of hav-
ing the government pay interest on loans until
a student finishes school. This is far from what
students need. Apparently our new leaders
believe college students to be a mangy bunch
of freeloaders, living off government hand-
outs. On the contrary, many students are work-
ing diligently to stay in school.
It must be noted that subsidized loans go to
students who qualify for financial aid accord-
ing to the federal formula. They are not handed
out to rich kids who want joy money.
Also remember: These are loans, not grants.
They will be paid back, with interest. The
government does not lose out on this deal.
Students pay for their educations a few times
over by the end. As the price of education
increases, the cost grows higher for students.
Without student loans, many students would
not be able to attend the University or any
other institution.
It would be ideal to rein in tuition by
limiting increases in the rate of inflation. And
MSU is correct to encourage the state to com-
pensate for inflation. This is one step toward
making highereducation affordable forevery-
one; student loans are another.
Legislators and university officials should
recognize the financial hardships many stu-
dents endure - maintaining subsidized loans

To the Daily:
It is clear from Eric Berg's
letter published Dec. 4 that his
four or five years here failed to
expand his view of society be-
yond that of a high school level.
Had Mr. Berg learned some-
thing here, he would have dis-
covered that each discipline is
valuable.
Mr. Berg, your statement
that LSA courses require no
work and have a difficulty rat-
ing of zero, make it clear that
you do not grasp what LSA is.
Instead, you reveal the degree
to which your education is lack-
ing, as it is oblivious you have
not acquired the skill of articu-
late discourse, nor the ability to
research that with which you
claim familiarity. Instead, you
opt for the grunt-like reasoning
of "Engineering Rules!"

When slamming disciplines
that are not engineering, it
would be advisable to consider
the following: who are the writ-
ers, journalists, scientists, film
makers and politicians?
The majority of these
people have LSA backgrounds,
because such backgrounds arm
LSA grads with the ability to
evaluate mass information,
identify and predict trends, and
problem solve. Such things are
not the stuff of sine curves and
thermodynamics.
I'm not discrediting the
value of engineering. What I
am attacking is your provin-
cialism, and the unfortunate
fact that you leave Ann Arbor
as narrow-minded as you came.
Deborah Weinstein
LSA senior

States; what's 1.5 million out
of 280 million people? And my
own law school class, in sup-
posedly one of this country's
top law schools, voted "as a
group" to take a stance against
Proposition 187 after no dis-
cussion of the subject. From
remarks made by my class-
mates, they were not even sure
what they were voting on, other
than the face values issue, de-
scribed in 30 seconds.
California can no longer
afford to pay for the illegal free
ride. People far removed from
this situation are too quick to
condemn what they do not un-
derstand, have not lived
through, and are themselves
unwilling to pay for. Until the
citizens of this nation are will-
ing to put their tax dollars where
their mouths are to aid the en-
tire Southeast and West with
this problem, there is little that
the agitation of non-Califor-
nians can do to keep California
from taking measures to solve a
problemthat the rest of the coun-
try ignored until now.
Tanya Sizemore
First-year Law student
Cartoon is a
witless sham
To the Daily:
In the four years I have gone
to this university, I have read
countless letters calling for the
head of Greg Stump, then Jim
Lasser, for what people felt was
a total lack of intelligence and
humor in their work. Person-
ally, I didn't care. But the car-
toon on Jan. 9 went a little too
far.
A political cartoon is sup-
posed to present current events
in a witty, sometimes humor-
ous way, that presents us with
the political view of the car-
toonist and maybe shows us a
different way of looking at
things. The cartoon that Jim
Lasser tried to push off as witty
and/or humorous on Jan. 9 fell
far short in both respects. Ifyou
want to knock the social pro-
grams of the Republican Party,
go ahead. That is the purpose of
a political cartoon. If you want
to write off all priests as child
molesters and throw stones at
an establishment that has done
a world of good in the commu-
nity, all without any basis in
fact or logic, push that garbage
off elsewhere.
At the top left hand corner
of every Daily editorial page, it
says "Edited and managed by
students at the University of
Michigan."Iam a student at the
University of Michigan and I
am ashamed of the fact that I
am included in the same group
as someone who would do
something as tasteless as this. I

These numbers add up to a lot
of problems caused by drinking to
excess. Everybody has a great
funny story about the time he or a
friend got drunk-there's the ones
who get silly, the ones who embar-
rass themselves and the ones who
ride around on their bikes indoors
(and usually fall off). College cam-
puses are one of the last places
where it is acceptable to drink to
get drunk, and it's seen as just
anotherpartof life. But mostpeople
also have a story about the bad
things that happened to them or a
friend because of drinking - an
acquaintance rape, a car wreck or
simply the old classic Technicolor
yawn.
These consequences of binge
drinking are fueling a growing
movement of students on campus
who are fed up with drunkenness
and its problems. Substance-free
dorms have appeared, and non-
drinking students are learning to
stand up for their rights. Students
should "be encouraged to speak up
and not to tolerate the impairment
to the quality of their colleges,"
said Henry Wechsler, the Harvard
researcher who authored the binge-
drinking study.
Wechsler doesn't call for an
end to drinking -just to drunken-
ness. It's tempting to see adrunk as
funny, but the myriad problems
they experience are serious. Stu-
dents who binge drink are seven
times more likely to have unpro-
tected sex, 11 times more likely to
fall behind in school and 10 times
more likely to drive after drinking.
So why is getting schlacked
associated with having agood time?
One binge drinker interviewed on
CBS News claimed that the stu-
dents in the substance-free dorm
on his campus were "doing a whole
lot of nothing." "There's more to
college life than studying,"he said.
There's also a lot more to college
life than getting wasted, and there
are plenty of fun social events that
do not involve wearing alampshade
on your head. The University and
other colleges should also institute
more substance-free dorms-most
students who live in them say they

*I

W

i

'U' unfairly denies benefits

To the Daily:
It was recently reported in
the Daily (12/9/94) that health-
care benefits would be made
available to same-sex couples
by the University. Apparently,
this enactment was intended to
prevent discrimination based
on sexual orientation. Person-
ally, I find this ludicrous and a
bit disturbing.
According to your article,
homosexual couples who are
living togethercan now receive
benefits if they fulfill certain
requirements put forth by the
University and the city of Ann
Arbor However heterosexual

cause of our sexual orienta-
tion. In your article, University
spokeswoman Lisa Baker is
quoted as saying that thew
University encourages "no dis-
crimination based on sexual
orientation." If this is true, then
why has the University passed
a bylaw that blatantly extends
benefits to one group and not
another?
This bylaw, like so many
others, has gone above and be-
yond equal rights. I thought we
were trying to balance the scale,
not tip it in the other direction.
I understand the need for some
tvne of benefits program for

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