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February 12, 1996 - Image 4

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1996-02-12

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4A - The Michigan Daily -- Monday, February 12, 1996

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

Editor in Chief
Editorial Page Editors

I'm not trying to separate myself. I'm trying to help my
people. If I don't take care of mine, no one will.'
- Darilis Garcia, president and co-founder of
the Latina sorority, Delta Tau Lambda, explaining
why she belongs to an ethnic-specific organization.

Unless othlirwise noted, unsigned editorials reflect the opinion ofja majority of the Daily's editorial board. All
other articles, letters and cartoons do not necessarily reflect the opinion of The Michigan Daily.
Moving violations
'U' vendor restrictions would spoil spirit

Several of Ann Arbor's most interesting
merchants may be forced to close up
shop - or move it every five minutes. Last
Monday, the Ann Arbor City Council passed
an ordinance imposing additional fees and
restrictions on street vendors. These include
licensing fee hikes, mandatory liability in-
surance and a five-minute limit for solicita-
tion at any address. The University also plans
to update its policy on street vendor activity
on University property. It will focus on the
grounds surrounding Michigan Stadium,
Crisler and Yost arenas and the entire sports
complex. If the policy
changes pass, football Sat-
urdays will never be the
The city's new ordi-
nance requires street solici-
tors to pay a licensing fee
more than double the cur-
rent $35 annually. Manda-
tory basic liability insur- _
ance will cost approxi-
mately $500 peryear. While
the fee increase may be justified and the
liability insurance might be in the best inter-
ests of the vendors and the city, the five-
minute limit is beyond questionable. Ven-
dors may stay at any street address for only
five minutes before they must move to a
different address - and they will not be
allowed to return to any address for two
hours after leaving.
City Council approved assignment of a
part-time enforcement officer to ensure com-
pliance with the regulations. The idea of one
part-time officer - however diligent his or
her efforts are - is laughable. The plan
promises inadequate enforcement - espe-
cially for the ludicrous time limit at each
address and the vague definition of "moving
locations." What will constitute a "change
of address?" City officials have not offered
a clear definition. Depending on the degree
of vendors' mobility, the special enforce-


ment officer could face quibbles over inches
as a direct result of the city's vagueness -
reducing a city ordinance to a childish
The University is less concerned with the
time period in which vendors conduct busi-
ness on its athletic campus - but whether
they sell at all. A 1980 University resolution
restricted vendors' hours from 10:30 a.m. to
1:30 p.m. and from 4:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. on
football Saturdays. Currently, the vending is
restricted from near State Street to Main
Street and Stadium to Hoover. The updated
resolution would alter the
time restrictions to three
hours before and after foot-
ball games, and also would
include provisions for bas-
ketball games and other
sporting events.
James Kosteva, Univer-
sity director of community
relations and a proponent
of the resolution, cited
safety and efficiency as the
primary motivation for the change. He sug-
gested that the Department of Public Safety
and the Ann Arbor Police Department are
unduly burdened with vendor issues on foot-
ball Saturdays and cannot perform efficiently
in more important areas. He also claimed
vendors hindered movement of crowds to
and from the stadium.
Few would contest the fact that forging a
path to Michigan Stadium on football Satur-
days can be a trying task. However, most
would agree the difficulty is largely due to
the sheer number of fans - not the compara-
tively few vendors selling hot dogs or shirts.
The small space they take away cannot com-
pare to the spirit and atmosphere they con-
tribute to game days. Further restrictions on
these vendors would be not only useless but
detrimental. The University should weigh
this before leaping to follow the city's poor

/ r



MA\. P 4"A °



No racism
We are two volunteers at
the Sexual Assault Preven-
tion and Awareness Center.
We have been aware of the
controversy centered around
SAPAC's Peer Education
program since the firing of
Janelle White. We have had
very little contact with
Janelle, Debi (Cain. director
of SAPAC) or anyone else
involved in this situation.
Therefore, we refused from
the beginning to take sides
on this issue. However, there
is one thing that we both feel

very strongly about -
SAPAC provides services to
sexual assault survivors,
regardless of their race,
class, gender, sexual
orientation or age, not
available through any other
organization on campus -
services that we feelare
necessary. We are scared
that students will not feel
comfortable coming to
SAPAC for counseling
services as a result of this
controversy, we resent the
fact that it has been made to
be such a public and
political issue. The allega-
tions made toward persons
on both sides of this issue
are, if true, certainly cause

to be concerned, but we do
not believe publishing an
explosive article in the Daily
("Accusations slam
SAPAC," 2/8/96) is the way
to solve the problem. We ask
everyone to remember the
following when attempting
to decide how to discuss
their side of the issue. You
are only hearing one side. To
us, that does not seem like
enough information to
discontinue work with
SAPAC or use of its

Gender roles
grow as we do
itle IX is like a bandage on a
J.problem far too big for it to
In mandating gender equity in the
University's Athletic Department,
Title IX is meant to remedy a situa-
tion in which women's sports and
men's sports are unequal. But men
and women's sports are unequal
because men and women are un-
equal, not because
their monetary re-
sources are un-
equal.The roots of
the problem go a
lot deeper, and to
girls and boys ofa
much youngerage
than Title IX can
It starts in pre-
school times, KATE
when we walk EPSTEIN
around our houses
in our mothers'
high heels. Wearing these shoes -
or pretty dresses or long flowing
skirts - represents the height of,,
feminine glory for little girls. And
these clothes teach us what is prized
in the female of the species. Men
and boys wear clothes designed for
comfort and convenience. Women's
and girls' are generally designed for
looks. Even if we are encouraged to
run around sometimes, as little girls
we learn that the best thing we can
do is look good. And if that means
that we can't run around and get
sweaty and mess up our hair any
time we feel like it, so be it.
Looking good took up time that
could have been devoted to playing
catch. As little girls, we spent a lot
less time learning the basic skills of
many sports than our brothers. Then
we were a step behind the boys at
our first gym classes in elementary
school because the hand-eye coor-
dination needed to catch and throw
is tearned, not innate. Gym class,
with its competitive atmosphere,
became a site for humiliation.rather
than learning.

Inaccuracies promote discrimination

Bad reputation
U.N. deficits could hurt humanitarian efforts

The United Nations is a dirty name in
Congress these days. When mentioned,
Newt Gingrich sees red, Jesse Helms bel-
lows four-letter words and Bob Dole derides
it as an "out-of-control pursuit of power."
And because of the United Nations' poor
image, the international agency is now in
financial trouble.
Last week, the U.N.'s Secretariat an-
nounced that the worldwide organization is
planning to layoff approximately 10,000 -
one-fifth of its employees - due to persis-
tent budget deficits. Currently, the United
Nations faces a daunting $500 million deficit
in its operational budget. Many member coun-
tries have not paid annual dues, causing this
deficit. The United States, for example, has
not paid dues for the last two or three years,
amassing a $1.3 billion bill. The United Na-
tions has no other method of income, so it
depends upon these countries' contributions
to remain afloat.
Each member country must contribute to
the United Nations' operating budget that
pays for facilities, maintenance, personnel
and communications. The amount of each
country's share is tabulated by its national
wealth. The United States - one of the
world's richest countries - pays 25 percent
of the budget. When member countries as
important as the United States withhold dues,
it creates serious financial problems.
Many politicians argue that withholding
funds will force the United Nations to reor-

the United Nations suffers from the ineffi-
ciency that most large governmental organi-
zations do. Also, many member of Congress,
including Senate Foreign Relations Chair-
man Helms (R-N.C.), hold a deep mistrust of
all intergovernmental organizations. He and
his supporters fear that the United Nations is
scheming to create a powerful world govern-
ment. In addition, members of Congress tend
to spread their paranoia because it resonates
with Republican voters during election years.
Whatever their motivations, their suspicions
are misguided.
Since the end of World War II, the United
Nations has done a great deal of humanitar-
ian work around the world. Through UNICEF,
the Office of the High Commissioner for
Refugees, the World Food Program, the U.N.
Development Program and several other or-
ganizations, the United Nations has saved
millions of lives and improved the lives of
many others. The bureaucracy will bear the
brunt of the budget cuts, but humanitarian
programs will suffer. Proper delivery of aid
depends upon an effective delivery appara-
tus. The United Nations' bureaucracy is ex-
tensive, but some of it is necessary to make
sure that donor items reach needy recipients.
The United Nations should streamline its
operations; the organization itself admits the
problem. However, Congress' approach -
forcing results by bankrupting the
organization's budget - is counterproduc-
tive. It only hurts the humanitarian efforts the

As any immigrant group
in America, Arab Americans
have had to face many chal-
lenges: a new language, cul-
ture and economic instability,
just to name a few. Arabs have
accepted these challenges, like
past immigrant groups, adjust-
ing to this new nation while
retaining much of their heri-
tage. Arab Americans have
also faced a more sinister ad-
versary in America: racism.
While it is no longer accepted
to stereotype and discriminate
against most minority groups
in this nation, and rightly so,
discrimination toward Arabs
is actively practiced and ac-
cepted by much of the Ameri-
can media, government and
From Washington, D.C.,
to Hollywood, the Arab has
been portrayed as violent, bar-
baric and uncivilized. This is
why an unfair, inaccurate and
biased piece, like the one
printed in the Daily on Janu-
ary 24, offends, angers and
saddens the Arab American
The article, titled "Israel a
lonely champion of democ-
racy," made many inaccurate
statements about Arabs, and
left out important information
crucial to the understanding
of events in the region. Glar-
ing errors in the article in-
clude referring to Iran and
Mauritania as Arab nations
and describing the "many
theocratic dictatorships sur-
rounding Israel," when in fact
only Saudi Arabia is a theo-
cratic government surround-
ing Israel. The article collec-
tively labeled all Arab nations
in the region "brutal, back-
ward dictatorships." This
statement is insulting and
false. The Arab world, com-
posed of 22 nations, consists
ofa wide array of diverse types
of governments. From theoc-
racies, to democracies, to dic-
tatorships, the Middle East is
a diverse political arena.
Therefore, the article's attempt
to lump every Arab nation into
a homogeneous category of
backward dictatorships is sim-

restrictions on women's
rights, women in other Arab
countries have opportunities
to excel in education, work
and many other aspects of life.
Women in Iraq, Lebanon, Pal-
estine, Jordan, Algeria, Tuni-
sia, Morocco and Egypt hold
important positions in the
medical field, law and educa-
tion, and their roles are cher-
ished and valued by their so-
cieties. Obviously, the author
has never been to an Arab
nation. The author also wrote
that only 3 percent of Yemeni
women are literate. In fact,
more than eight times the
stated figure are literate.
One area that the article
did a great disservice to the
community is its description
of Palestinian-Israeli rela-
Arab countries are
examples of de-
mocracy, fairness
and equality.
tions. The writer claimed that
Arabs living within Israel en-
joyed the exact same rights
and privileges as Jews. This
argument is not true. Israel's
Law of Return allows any Jew
from any part of the world to
become a citizen of the State
of Israel. Another, the Absen-
tee Law, denies any Arab who
has left his or her home in
Israel from returning simply
because he or she is a non-
Jew. These are examples of
the treatment of Arabs that is
unequal and discriminatory
and invalidates the claim that
Arabs in Israel receive equal
The article also neglected
to mention the over 1.5 mil-
lion Arab residents of the West
Bank and Gaza Strip. While
many facts are disputed be-
tween Israelis and Arabs,
some simply cannot be de-

nied: Palestinians have been
under an Israeli military occu-
pation since 1967 and under
this occupation, Arabs were
denied the right to vote; hun-
dreds of Palestinian men,
women and children were
massacred by Israelis in the
village of DeirYassin in 1948;
Israel appropriated land for
settlers from Palestinians un-
lawfully; these settlers are per-
mitted to carry weapons wher-
ever they walk, but Palestin-
ians cannot; and Palestinian
Universities, such as Bir Zeit
University, were closed by the
Israeli government for years,
preventing an entire genera-
tion of Arabs from receiving
an education they deserved. It
is clear, therefore, that Pales-
tinians are subject to state sanc-
tioned discrimination.
The article only served to
perpetuate stereotypes and
misinformation about Arabs
- part of an ongoing battle
with discrimination we face in
America. It is unknown to
many Americans that Arab
Americans play an active role
in this nation's government.
Notable Arab Americans in-
clude Secretary of Health and
* Human Services Donna
Shalala and Sen. Spencer
Abraham (R-Michigan). The
author of the original article
was obviously not well in-
formed, as has been proven
here. We hope that the readers
of the Daily always question
the legitimacy and accuracy
of the articles they read and
take the initiative to inquire
and educate themselves about
all issues they encounter. We
encourage the readers to ex-
plore this issue' and form a
valid opinion based on fact
and truth. A critical reader
must always question the mo-
tives and purpose behind each
piece of writing. We urge this
community to be active seek-
ers of knowledge and justice.

Learning to catch in time to save
us from the ridicule of our class-
mates, which some of us did, can
still provide negative lessons about
women and sports. Most of the
people teaching little girls and little
boys to catch-and-throw are men.
We may learn to catch a ball, but at
the same time we learn the skill will
be useless when we are adults. The
damage done by our mothers stay-
ing inside while we play outside
with our fathers varies from one girl
to another, but the overall effect is
that boys devote more time and en-
ergy to playing sports than girls do.
Even if our mothers came out to
play catch with us, even if our par-
ents actively fought gender roles in
terms of sports, the schools insti-
tuted girls' athletic inferiority. Fed-
erally mandated tests expected less
of girls than of boys, even when
they were testing pre-pubescent chil-
dren, whose biological sex has no
effect on their athletic ability. The
idea that girls will always be physi-
cally inferior to boys has so much
power that in my high school, girls
were expected to do fewer sit-ups
than boys. Biologically, girls' lower
center of gravity once they start to
develop actually makes sit-ups easier
for us than for boys. The lesson is
"you can't win, so don't try." And
sports and testing always empha-
size winning.
Even ifour homes and our schools
didn't teach us that sports might not
be worth the trouble, the media
makes gender roles around sports
hard to miss. Televised sports events
almost always depict men's sports.
The imbalance is overwhelming, and
as little girls, we noticed. Our broth-
ers could dream about becoming
professionals, and no matter how
far fetched those dreams were, they
weren't made impossible by their
sex. Sports would never get us very
Worse, the sports on television
that involved women reinforced the
major point that appearance is a
woman's most vital duty. Whether
it be beach volleyball or figure skat-
ing, women's looks get at least as
much play as their athletic prowess.
TV nearly never shows a woman
whose body has been as compro-
mised by padding as a football play-
ers'. For glory and money, model-
ling is a much better bet for girls
than sports. Appearing, not doing,
is a woman's job.
The lessons learned on television
and in the media illustrate that the
problem of gender imbalance in
sports feeds upon itself. Gender in-
equality in sports in pre-pubescent
children leads to gender inequality



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