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April 04, 1996 - Image 4

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1996-04-04

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4A - The Michigan Daily -Thursday April 4, 1996

cat l E grtjcbt- an tia

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

Editor in Chief
Editorial Page Editors

Unless otherwise noted, unsigned editorials reflect the opinion of the majority of the Daily's editorial board. All
other articles, letters and cartoons do not necessarily reflect the opinion of The Michigan Daily.
reedom of information
'U' should release athletes' vehicle records

'The Daily is elitist trash. My grandmother
and my mother burn trash.'
- LSA senior Alisha Jefferson, burning a copy of The
Michigan Daily on Tuesday, during a protest of the paper
- - -1+« u
M _


Although Jerry

The University is once again colliding
head-on with a lawsuit as a result of
the Freedom of Information Act - this
time concerning ownership information for
student athletes' vehicles. Earlier this week,
Flint disc jockey Dave Barber filed a law-
suit against the University because adminis-
trators refused to disclose records naming
the owners of student athletes' vehicles.
Specifically, Barber wanted records for
vehicles that basketball and football schol-
arship athletes drive. The University denied
his request, citing the Family Educational
Rights and Privacy Act. Barber maintains
that the records should be available to the
public under FOIA. He is correct: The
University may not legally conceal the
records under FOIA. They must turn over
tle documents.
Barber said his interest in athletes' own-
ership status was sparked by Michigan bas-
kIetball player Maurice Taylor's car accident
hi February. Barber contacted Taylor's
grandmother - who supposedly leased the
1996 Ford Explorer - demanding specific
lease details. When she could not provide
him with satisfactory answers, Barber asked
the University for records of every vehicle
"owned, leased, rented or in any way pos-
sessed" by athletes; his obvious implication
i. that the University Athletic Department
may be violating NCAA rules, which forbid
student athletes from driving University-
owned or-obtained vehicles.
While lack of evidence prevents specula-
tion on Barber's implications of University
Athletic Department wrongdoing, the
university only seems to have fed his fire
with its denial. If the University has nothing
to hide, administrators should not hesitate
in making the automobile records public.
Barber's request does not violate rights to
privacy under FOIA - hiding behind
FERPA accomplishes little. FOIA may only


be bypassed in cases that involve students'
academic records. Vehicle registration
papers clearly do not reveal anything of aca-
demic nature, and the University's citing of
FERPA is a fallacy.
Moreover, the University has a long his-
tory of concealing information from the
public - including the University commu-
nity. For example, one of the most severe
problems with the recently adopted Code of
Student Conduct is that no student may
establish case precedent because all trial
information is "protected." University
administrators are often reluctant to comply
with FOIA, and, in this most recent case,
have demonstrated again their unwilling-
ness to honor requests for public informa-
tion. Furthermore, the University's
hypocrisy in zealously citing FERPA, while
simultaneously trying to skirt the Open
Meetings Act, is reprehensible. All cases
paint the University as more concerned
about self-incrimination than violation of
the law.
The University may be concerned about
what types of Athletic Department practices
are revealed if the records are released.
However, evidence of NCAA violations
may not exist among the documents. In any
case, the University is illegally concealing
documents that should be public informa-
tion. Automobile registration contains little
that could be considered private - and it
contains absolutely no academic informa-
tion. The University cannot hide behind
FERPA in this case.
Barber may be targeting student athletes
by calling their grandmothers and request-
ing information. Barber's or the University's
motivation is irrelevant - because both
must comply with the law. No matter how
trivial the information may seem, the
requested vehicle records must be released
- whether the University likes it or not.

Garcia is gone,
keep partying
At the last Grateful Dead show I
0went to I finally felt like a
Deadhead. I sold beer and T-shirts and
used the cash to buy my tickets. I set
up shop next to a dumpster, made
friends (and
trades) with the
neighbors and
ordered grilled
cheese -- hand-
delivered for a dol- ,
lar to our designat-
ed lot spot.
But that wasn't
what made the
show special.
What made that. --
show extraordi- KATIE
nary was Jerry HUTCHINS
Garcia. He was on
fire that night, hitting each tune with a
passionate and bluesy' vengeance.
Dancing barefoot in the mud with my
long skirt rolled up, I felt like I was in
heaven, and I looked forward to the4
many shows to come.
But they never came - and they
never will. Jerry Garcia died last
August. That day will never be forgot-
ten by Jerry fans around the world who
admired his beauty, his comfortable-
ness in front of a crowd, his soulful
voice and his intricate guitar solos. It
will be remembered by those who
gathered, shattered in vigils across the
country that night.4
Since then, mixed reactions to
Jerry's life and death have surfaced.
He was praised in many national pub-
lications. But some misinformed souls
chose to focus on Jerry's unfortunate
addiction and not his talent. His fans
flooded the Internet with their tears
and mournful poetry. Avid admirers
like Bob Dylan told us what Jerry and
the Dead had meant to them. Bob said,
"There's no way to measure his great4
ness or magnitude as a person or as a
player. His playing was moody, awe-
some, sophisticated, hypnotic and sub-
tle. There's no way to convey the loss.
It just digs down really deep."'
It's hard for some to face that we'll
never hear another Jerry tune. It's
upsetting that we'll never feel that joy
as Jerry guides our moods with his
slow, gentle voice.
What's even harder to deal with is
the immense flood of new fans - the
neo-hippies - tarnishing Jerry's
memory as they buy cheap memora-
bilia in Dead aisles at Best Buy stores.
Or maybe they're buying any CD they
I looked forward to
shows to come. But

Veto power
Clinton must refuse line-item bill

lives are their
own business
In a time of increasing
technology and innovation,
there is one thing that is
being greatly overempha-
sized. Drug tests. First, let
me say that I am not writing
this as a support for the use
of drugs, but rather for the
overemphasis that is being
put into drug tests.
My question is, if a stu-
dent is making theagrade and
is a prime candidate for a job
opening, why should what
the student does in his or her
spare time have any relevance
whatsoever as to whether or
not he or she gets the job?
The student is being hired
strictly for a job; that's it. If a
student managed to graduate
while also using drugs, more
power to him or her.
Why aren't any inquiries
made into a student's drink-
ing habits?
I understand the excessive
use of some drugs (cocaine,
heroin, etc.) can be detrimen-
tal to one's health, but at the
same time, some other drugs
(marijuana, for example)
have never been shown to
have long-term side effects.
A new form of drug testing
should be administered in
which only drugs that have
been known to be harmful in
the long run are tested for.
Excessive and frequent
consumption of alcohol can
havetmuch harsher long-term
effects, such as alcoholism,
than the constant use of a
drug like marijuana.
Corporations today have
become obsessed with
administering drug tests,
which in a sense could hurt
them since they would be
losing a potentially valuable
employee just because they
used drugs while attending
school. Are we expected to
be bookworms, to never go
out or do some crazy things
while in school? College is a
place to learn, but at the
same time, it is also the last
step between young adult-
hood and the real world.
We are given four years to
live the life, to get a quality
education while living away
from our parents and some
students choose to exploit
this newfound freedom.
It's their choice. And
employers should recognize
this and realize that the use
of some drugs does not nec-
essarily prohibit someone
from being a successful
employee. So, to you employ-
ers out there, take a second to
look at your hiring practices
and requirements. And I will
see you at Hash Bash.

this quote in the article
("Dailys stolen from campus
drop sites" 3/28/96). For one
thing, nothing at all in the
article substantiated this
Why Alianza? Because a
red car was claimed to have
been seen? Does Alianza
have a monopoly on red cars?
How did a connection get
made to Alianza? Why not a
Greek organization, a house
councilor just about anyone
else? I have no idea of what
really happened. I am merely
basing my questions upon
what I read in the article.
None of these questions are
close to being answered. As
far as I'm concerned it was
merely speculation.
However, the repercus-
sions are much more severe.
From here on out Alianza
will be associated with the
thefts, based upon this quote.
Even when they're found to
have no involvement, the
association will remain.
Furthermore, few people in
the mainstream know any-
thing about Alianza, nor its
Thus, they probably
assume every Latino/a is in
Alianza, and since Alianza is
"made up of thieves," what
does that make us as individ-
uals? Do you see where I'm
getting at? The continued
demonization of people of
color on this campus! Racial
prejudice may not be as bla-
tant as it once was, but
repeated occurrences such as
these continue to perpetuate
the hostile climate on campus
for "minorities" and increase
ethnic and racial divisions.
While fingers are pointed
at events such as MLK Day
celebrations and Chicano
History Week as being divi-
sive, it's the subtle actions,
such as the comment regard-
ing Alianza, that are more
dangerous. When it is shared
with thousands and thou-
sands of people through the
media, in conjunction with
continual other misrepresen-
tations, it consciously or
unconsciously ingrains an
image of an entire group of
people in the minds of others.
People need to realize that
they must take responsibility
for what they say or report.
Many innocent people were
affected by this article. I am
not calling for censorship,
just more thoughtfulness in
the future. As journalists, you
all should very well know the
power of words and the
media. Then again, maybe
that's why the quote was
Write a letter
instead of
stealing the

of racism against him and the
I'd like to remind people
that Lasser is a satirist - he
pokes fun at everything and
everybody without exception.
That is a satirist's job. If you
read the Daily every day, as I
do, then you would know that
Lasser makes fun of anything
that's recently been deemed
newsworthy: women, men,
minorities, majorities, gov-
ernment, politicians, the
University and, occasionally,
himself. He portrays one
point of view one day, and
another point of view another
day. People need to stop
being so sensitive.
Instead of taking offense
if a group you are associated
with happens to be the target
of his witty pen one day,
maybe you should take notice
that the cartoon is saying,
"Hey, there are people who
feel this way about you.
Maybe you should do some-
thing and try to change their
opinions." Writing a letter to
the paper, as many did in
their displeasure with
Lasser's caricatures, is one
way of doing this. Stealing
half of the papers in circula-
tion is not.
Yesterday, I picked up the
Daily to again see charges of
racism against the Daily
splashed across the front
page. I would like to ask the
people charging the paper
with racism why they think
that the press has only the
right to print favorable arti-
cles when the subject is a
minority, because that is what
their actions are saying to
me. Please try and change
my opinion. Thanks.
Greek Week
We are writing in regard
to The Michigan Daily's cov-
erage of Greek Week 1996,
or the lack thereof. At best, a
reader of your newspaper
could find an occasional
mention of the events sur-
rounding one of the largest
philanthropic endeavors that
occurs each year on campus.
At worst, no mention was
made of many of the events
surrounding Greek Week.
Greek Week is our chance
to show to the rest of the
University community that
the Greek system has many
merits, and is capable of
doing a great deal of good.
Thousands of dollars were
raised this year for a number
of charities, raised by the
hard work of the Greek Week
steering committee and by
the hard work of the mem-

they never came -
and they never will.


or years, American presidents have
been using the concept of a line-item
veto as justification for their respective
inaction on issues, crying, "If only I had a
line-item veto, none of this would have got-
ten through." Americans should be careful
what they wish for.
Last Friday, Congress sent President
Clinton a bill to create a line-item veto for
the president. Support for the measure was
substantial in both houses, passing 232-177
in the House and 69-31 in the Senate. The
proposed bill would allow Clinton to veto
any item in any spending bill that affects
less than 100 taxpayers. Such a veto could
then be overturned only by a two-thirds vote
of both houses. If signed into law, the bill
would exist for a period of eight years, at
which time Congress would review the leg-
America's power balance is in danger.
The line-item veto presents a serious shift
in legislative power and poses several major
First, while the bill is a commendable
gesture toward cutting pork spending in
congressional legislation, it shifts the power
to conduct such trimming entirely too far
into the hands of the president. Due to the
very nature of a line-item veto - especial-
ly in light of a two-thirds majority vote to
overturn it - the president would become
the spending-bill editor. It would empower
the president to alter legislation, virtually
unopposed. Unfavorable bills would be

Congress would be stripped of its power
to counteract the president's agendas.
Piecemeal cuts would render Congress a
fractured entity, incapable of rallying to
overturn legislation by majority vote.
Legislation then will have to be written
with the president's special interests in
mind - not America's interests.
Moreover, the bill would present the
future dilemma of having a president armed
with extra veto power and allied to
Congress controlled by his party. Without
traditional checks and balances, corruption
would overtake the government.
Furthermore, a line-item veto in the
hands of a president opposed by Congress
would create tremendous tension in the U.S.
government. The legislative process itself
might collapse under the strain of politick-
ing, special interests and political agendas.
Long-standing programs, such as federal
student aid and the National Endowment
for the Arts, might easily be cut with one
swipe of a president's veto pen, as will valu-
able federal defense contracts. The party
occupying the Oval Office would have con-
trol over who suffers. Clearly, this would
give the president too much power.
The proposed bill would deal a devastat-
ing blow to the traditional American
checks-and-balances system. Legislative
spending reform is necessary, but not at the
cost of the delicate 219-year-old power
infrastructure. The line-item veto shifts
tremendous power to the president -

can find that has "Touch of Grey" or
"Uncle John's Band" on it, never real-
ly getting the true picture of what the
Dead meant.
But some continue to trade tapes and
mourn about what might have been.
And some live in the hopeless hope
that the Dead will play together and
make that magic again - wishing
Jerry would somehow be resurrected. 4
But the word's been out for a while:
the Dead as we know them are dead.
They won't be playing together in a
band - at least not this year. But
they'll be making some music, and I
have high hopes for the summer -
particularly around July, when they are
rumored to be hitting the Midwest.
The rumor going around is that a
group of bands, including Bob Weir's
RatDog and Mickey Hart's new ban
Mystery Box, will be traveling across
the country this summer pulling
seven-hour shows in a full-fledged
bash tentatively called "Ship of Fools"'
Hot Tuna and Los Lobos might also be
participating in the festival tour.
Bruce Hornsby also will make an
appearance. Not only is this guy amaz-
ing, but he also satisfies the Dead
lover in many of us, fulfilling the Jerry
need with songs like "Brokedowr
Palace" and "Wharf Rat."
Don't expect much excitement from
RatDog. They play a lot of cheesy
Bobby songs, but it's always nice to
see Bob on the stage, because, well,
it's Bob.
Nobody knows who the other bands
will be, but speculation is that David
Grisman, Merle Saunders and the
Neville Brothers might appear.
Will this be a pathetic nostalgia trid
for those of us who have nothing bet-
ter to do with our lives now that Jerry's
dead? Will this be merely a forum for
rampant drug use, like the chaotic
Rainbow Gathering in Florida? I have
faith that it won't. Of course we'll have

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