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April 12, 1995 - Image 4

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The Michigan Daily, 1995-04-12

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4 - The Michigan Daily - Wednesday, April 12, 1995

57 E atich4hrIII ttt a7t1g

DAVD WARTowsKI

STANDING ON THE

420 Maynard MICHAEL ROSENBERG
Ann Arbor, MI 48109 Editor in Chief
Edited and managed by JuIE BECKER
students at the J AMEs NASH
University of Michigan 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.
Grievance repair
New 'U' process should benefit faculty, staff

Ta king pride in your alma
mater - and paying for it

in response to complaints that its current not committed itself to maintaining this pro
system is unworkable, the University is gram beyond its nascent stage. While change
changing its faculty grievance procedure. Now, in the new plan may be appropriate eventuall
in addition to the traditional confrontational the University should at least guarantee it
grievance system, faculty have the option of employees that it will not return to the ol
pursuing what administrators call a "non-con- bureaucratic system. Knowledge that the ne
*frontational, win-win process based on con- plan will be maintained will make employee
ciliation and consultation." This is a welcome more secure and forestall new breakdowns i
change to a presently ineffective system. the system - hopefully preventing future e
Many see the current situation as cumber- mity between the University and its employ
some, unfriendly and bureaucratic - conse- ees and discouraging frivolous lawsuits.
quently, it fails to serve the faculty and staff As the new system develops, the Univei
well. Also, employees do not respect the pro- sity must be careful to execute the process i
cess, and few are familiar with its stipulations. good faith. In the past, there have been charge
The grievance process is underused - in its of arrogance and insensitivity levelled again
place, employees often try to settle their prob- the University because of its handling of griev
lems with the University in court. This has ances. The new system will help to foresta
.clearly been destructive, as the University has such problems. But the University must kee
become embroiled in several ugly and expen- to the new grievance process in spirit as well a
sive legal battles with its former employees. in letter -otherwise, the same problems wi
The new program puts constructive prob- arise again and again.
fem-solving ahead of hostility in handling dis- The faculty and staff must also cooperate i
putes. Also, it is more personal in nature - making the new system work. In the pas
instead of relying on paperwork, it is based on employees have not learned about grievanc
personal interaction for settling differences. procedures. They must make an effort to ft
Pverall, thenew process is amore user-friendly miliarize themselves with the new system. I
system for resolving disputes. the past, employees have often been too quic
In addition, as part of the "conciliation and take their complaints to the courts, regardles
consultation" plan, the University is training of the options available at the Universit
50 employees to work as conciliators in solv- Employees must work with their employer i
ing disputes. This is particularly encouraging. the new system is to be a success.
The new alternative is not administered by the The new, non-confrontational plan must b
University against employees, but rather is allowed to continue and grow, and all person
based on employee input and participation. involved must strive to make it effective. Th
However, the University unfortunately has way, everyone will win.
Unfriendly environment
House sets out to roll back protection
A s the Republicans finish their first 100 clear that the private property bill is an indire
days at the helm of the U.S. Congress, means of crippling the Endangered Specie
they can congratulate themselves on having Act. Forcing the government to compensat
passed several measures that would change the private property owners for the lost value o
face of regulatory legislation and the protec- their land would create an unbearable financi
tion of the environment for years to come. Just burden for the government. Fish and wildlif
last week, the House Committee on Transpor- agencies would have no other choice than t
tation and Infrastructure approved a proposal relax their enforcement of the Endangere
that would "overhaul the 1972 Clean Water Species Act. However, this is not the fu
Act by easing water-pollution controls on in- extent of the attack on endangered species. I
dustry and local sewer agencies, while sharply a more direct challenge, many members o
reducing the protection of wetlands." As the Congress have discussed using their "purs
Senate considers this and other regulatory leg- powers" to completely eliminate funding fo
islation, the fate of the environment hangs in enforcement of the Endangered Species Ac
the balance. Furthermore, Congress is discussing a six
The attack on the environment began in month moratorium on the listing of new sp
early March with the House's passage of the cies to the endangered species list. These a
risk assessment bill and the private property tions demonstrate a dangerous disregard fo
bill. These two measures - in an attempt to the principle of protecting endangered specie
relieve executives and private property own- in the United States.
ers of the onus of regulation - would change The most recent proposal to reform env
the nature of all Congressional regulatory leg- ronmental regulation would narrow the prese
islation. The risk assessment bill would hold definition of wetlands by 60-80 percent. Inte
laws to newly restrictive standards by at- estingly, this new legislation emerges ju
tempting to determine the costs and benefits of weeks prior to the date a scientific panel pla
allsuchmeasures.Although cost-benefit analy- to release its findings in a two-year wetland
sis is clearly a reasonable concept, its applica- review. Many of the scientists involved hav
tion to environmental regulations - at least in denounced this new legislation as arbitrar
its present form-is both difficult and unwise. unscientific and dangerous. Like other Hous
Although the cost of certain regulations can be legislation in recent weeks, the bill greatl
measured, assessing benefits is more difficult. diminishes the government's ability to prote
Can a dollar value be placed on clean air and disappearing natural resources.
water? - As the dangers of pollution and dwindlin
The House has also passed the private natural resources became well-known in t

property bill, which would force the govern- early 1970s, the U.S. government passed,
ment to compensate owners for any regulation wide array of legislation designed to prote
which would decrease the value of any portion citizens from impending doom. Now, 25 year
of an individual's property a minimum of 10 later, the government is reversing its course i
percent. In addition, if the decrease in value the fight to preserve the environment. Iron
were determined to be higher than 50 percent, cally, the same members of Congress wh
the government might be forced to purchase speak sentimentally about the ills of leaving a
the entire property for its original value. While indebted government to our children do n
property-rights advocates cite the Fifth Amend- hesitate to leave our children with dirty wate
ment to buttress their cause, legal issues re- smog-filled air and dilapidated ecosystem
main ambiguous; clearly the framers did not Wealthy executives andpropertyowners greas
foresee the problem of acid rain or disappear- politicians' back pockets, protecting them

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B eing an alum means many things. It
means coming back forfootball games,
wearing obnoxious blends of maize and
blue, and getting constantly hitup formoney.
It seems the University is anxious to make
seniors feel like alumni.
The Michigan Telefund finished its Se-
niorPledge Program on Sunday. They called
over a thousand seniors, asking them for
money. The program collected about
$35,000, a third of which will actually go to
programs. The rest covers the program's
overhead.
Seems pretty inefficient to me.
"But we think of it as an investment,"
said JaNele Jordan, program manager of the
Michigan Telefund.
The investment is that if you gave, they
figure you'll give again. They'll keep call-
ing you. As you get rich, you'll give more.
The costs they incur now mean big dona-
tions in future years. It's an investment.
I know private donations are a large part
of the University's budget. Without them,
the University couldn't survive. That I've
heard over and over. You know this Univer-
sity needs money when a major duty of the
president is to be friendly with rich alumni.
But donations are still a tough pill to
swallow.
Really rich alumni may give fairly eas-
ily, but the reality is most alumni are heavily
in debt for years. Giving away money is
currently the last thing on my list of things
to do.
"But we have people think of it as an
investment," said Jordan. "And it's true."
She explained that in the job world,

alumni are able to fall back on the reputation
of the school. They often get jobs because of
Michigan's high ranking and Michigan of-
ten gets a high ranking because it has a lot of
money and Michigan has a lot of money
because of alumni donations.
So if you want to keep your job, then you
have to give money to the University. It's an
investment.
The reality is that my donation to Michi-
gan will mean jack squat. The reality is that
Michigan is still trying to hit me up for
money and that leaves a sour taste in my
mouth any way you cut it. It kind of takes the
school pride away when you get calls for
donations during dinner. It's put the Univer-
sity at about the same level as ambulance
chasers and door-to-door air conditioning
salesmen.
It's still telemarketing. These guys still
call during dinner, intentionally. They have
to get you when they are home. They need
your money.
Jordan said they like to think of what
they do as "friendraising" rather than
"fundraising" because of the ties they keep
with the University. When the Telefund
calls alumni, the workers tell them what's
going on in their old college - new build-
ings and stuff like that - to make them feel
as though they are still a part of the Univer-
sity.
Yeah, great. Get the conversation over
and take my money. If I want to know
what's going on, I'll read my alumni maga-
zine. These guys are still telemarketers. The
bottom line is still the almighty dollar.
I know that donations are necessary. But

it's tough giving to an institution this large,
an institution where you know a lot of
money is poorly allocated. It's tough giving
when the University has already taken so
much.
Returning for football games and wear-
ing maize and blue with pride sounds nice.
But who wants to get hit up for money? If
you give as a senior, be prepared to keep
giving. You're on their list.
When the phone rings at dinner, be happy
because it's a friendly student from your
alma mater calling to tell you what's new at
your old college. And the friendly student
will ask you for a donation (a token $1,995
to represent your graduating year?). If want
to keep your job - or your conscious -
you better give.
Why am I not excited?
Donating would feel a lot more altruistic
if you weren't constantly hounded for the
money.
Alumni can donate with time, like James
Earl Jones. They can donate to the
University's ranking by speaking kind words
that build the school's reputation more than
any magazine rating. And alumni can en-
courage others to come here if they think it's
a good school. They donate when they send
their kids here.
One day I may donate money to this
school. If the Michigan Telefund never calls
me. If I make it past the indebted years
without a plea for cash, then I think I will
write the University one fat check. To them
the check will be a drop in the bucket. A
necessary drop in the bucket.
I just want to give it on my own.

01

JIM LASSER
,w LAcA s 9
Z~4ILr
/1

SHARP AS TOAST

HEY tDUDE, NICE
SPEECH1. Bur
17 S-fILL 'DON'T
KcNOW WHftO YOU
to '1T WORRY,
J-UST REMEtAER
To VOTE FRR
13i LL OLIN VON I
1996 o

0

3

0

NOTABLE QUOTABLE
"The world has
passed through
the nuclear age
and found it
wanting."
- Jesse Deerinwater,
a member of
Citizens Resistance
Against Fermi II (an area
nuclear power plant)

0

C1

Why Clinton chose to speak at Michigan State's Graduation @
LErTERs
Music reviewer slights African American music

To the Daily:
This letter is a response to
the Daily's recent review of
Adina Howard's CD "Do You
Want A Ride?" (4/5/95) The
Daily's staff writer, Eugene
Bowen, has opened his mouth
too many times about the ways
in which Black people eat, dress,
sleep, and think. And all too
often the only thing that comes
out is a lot of hot air. In almost (if
not) every article, Bowen bla-
tantly criticizes and "talks down"
to Black people and at the same
time he tries to encourage us by
saying, "But I know we can do
better ... my brothers and sis-
ters."
The Daily needs an African
American writer who will pro-
vide the balance for Eugene's
flagrantly conservative views. I
am sure the Daily's editors real-
ize they can not feature Bowen
as the "sole voice of Black folk,"
as he most assuredly blunders in
using his blazing pistol (the pen)
to shoot down every Black per-
son in sight. What ever hap.
pened to the pleasant, colorful
and funny side of Black people's
lives? To Bowen, it would ap-
pear as if those essential quali-
ties do not exist.
How could you call her vo-
cal skills "piss-po"'? The truth

is, the only things that are piss-
po' are Bowen' sreviews and lack
of knowledge regarding excel-
lent music. If Ms. Howard's
music is as popular as you con-
tend it is, I guarantee that it is not
because of her sexiness.
Howard's song was popular well
before she released the video for
"Freak Like Me". The fact that
she is not only sexy, but beauti-
ful, is irrelevant. Her image only
adds to her talent. Rather than
present your tidy, yet sexist im-
age of how a Black woman should
dress, maybe you should con-
sider Ms. Howard's image as a
compliment and benefit to her
marketable and pleasant voice.
Yes, I said it; her voice is nice.
After purchasing Ms.
Howard's album, I listened at-
tentively to her vocals, the
samples used from other songs,
bass and keyboard programming
and the timing of abstract instru-
ments. I concluded that her vo-
cals sound very much like the
Hip-Hop Queen Mary J. Blige,
and her musical selections near
R. Kelly's in production. The
reputations of the artists and pro-
ducers that are on her album -
namely William 'Bootsy'
Collins, the respectable gangsta
lady Yo-Yo, George Cooper and
infamous George 'Atomic Dog'

Clinton -all attest to the excel-
lence in musical talent that is
displayed on the album.
To call Ms. Howard's voice
'heinously wack', says nothing
except that your evaluation of
Black music is in fact 'wack'
and weak. In a slightly modified
African-American tone that can
be printed in the Daily: "Forget
what you're talking about, this
girl is dope, or in your overused,
played phrase 'da-bomb'."
Before you "dropyourpants"
(or color) for the hierarchies of
the editorial business, please,
consider what you are going to
say--especially if it pertains to
an area of interest about which
you know nothing.
Adina Howard has every-
thing a 90s woman would want:
beauty to behold, courage to do
what she wants, and a vocal gift
that makes her musically in-
clined. And you are not the
"ruffneck" that Ms. Howard
speaks about in her album. It
was clear when I read your re-
view that you were trying to
appease only those few Black
grandmothers who don't listen
to "sinful" contemporary mu-
sic.
Joao Ian Berry
LSA junior

Affirmative
action harms
quest for

gender equity 0
To the Daily:
In response to Ms. Trudeau's
letter regarding the "oppression"
of women, ("Gender-based dis-
crimination still exists in U.S.,"
4/6/95) we have one thing to say:
get over it, and quit whining.
It seems to us that it is exactly
your sort of attitude that contrib-
utes to this so-called "oppres-
sion." Constant whining and
complaining about the plight of
women in society simply per-
petuates and augments the image
of women as the weaker sex.
This victim motif, and plea for
affirmative action, is exactly what
has estranged the average woman*
from the 'feminist' movement.
Affirmative action is detri-
mental to our position. Qualifi-
cations and ability should be the
sole means of determining the
suitable person for the job. Hir-
ing any individual simply to meet
a quota is not and never will be
beneficial for anyone involved.
Unqualified women hired in this0
type of situation further expand
the notion that women are unable
to do "men's" work.
Affirmative action is a return
to eye-for-an-eye. A history of

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