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December 04, 1996 - Image 4

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The Michigan Daily, 1996-12-04

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4 - The Michigan Daily - Wednesday, December 4, 1996

Uhe £Idigrn Dalg

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

RONNIE GLASSBERG
Editor in Chief
ADRIENNE JANNEY
ZACHARY M. RAIMI
Editorial Page Editors

NOTABLE QUOTABLE
'We feel that it is inappropriate for any
University-sponsored publication to be printing
homicidal fantasies about graduate assistants.'
- GEO Organizer Tamara Joseph, responding to an anonymous article in Advice
magazine that tells stories about instructors
JIM LASSER SHARP AS TOAST

Unless otherwise nted unsigned editorials rfect the opinion of c thmajort of te Daiys editor ilbard. All
other articles, letters and cartoons do not necessarily reflect the opinion of The Michigan Daily
FROM THE DMLY
Four years and out
Curriculum change is graduation-friendly

Zt4AUUAT.ON DAY.

JAUA VI/%A ful & AAU"

T he Engineering class of 2001 could
have an easier time graduating from
the University in the standard four years.
Curriculum 2000, the brainchild of the
Undergraduate Curriculum Task Force, is a
set of structural changes to the College of
Engineering that would not only make it
easier for students to get out on time - it
also would enrich the education they get.
The task force has found an effective solu-
tion to a long-standing problem and
deserves commendation for this inventive
initiative.
At the heart of the new curriculum lies
the combination of several 100-level intro-
duction classes. Engineering 101 -
Introduction to Computing, a four 4-credit
course - will absorb Engineering 103,104,
106, 107 and EECS 100. Unlike the old
classes, 101 does not pair a specific pro-
gramming language with an introduction to
computer science, weeding out classes that
beat dead computer trends to death.
Moreover, the new curriculum design
aims to streamline coursework to make
graduation in four years a reachable goal.
'iition isn't getting any cheaper; getting
students out on time saves students money.
In addition to making four-year degrees
more attainable, the new curriculum
promises to increase their value by expand-
ing their breadth. Currently, some of the
engineering programs allow for as few as
two elective credit hours. As part of
Curriculum 2000, each undergraduate engi-
neering program must have at least 12 elec-
tive credit hours, enabling the student to
have a more diverse educational experience.
The task force is composed of four stu-
dents from different sections of the College
of Engineering. Student members represent
every class except the present group of
first-year students. The committee's cross-

section of the Engineering student body is
beneficial and promotes discussion of a
variety of concerns.
Students have been calling for a change
to allow them to graduate within a four-year
period. The College of Engineering has
answered those requests by establishing a
program to improve this possibility without
requiring students to overburden them-
selves with 17 or 18 credits per term.
Between students' influence on the task
force and the demand from the student body
to make four-year graduation feasible,
Curriculum 2000 is an excellent example of
the administration tapping the resource of
student input to help solve a difficult prob-
lem.
LSA could learn from Engineering's
example. LSA students also face the prob-
lem of involuntary graduation delays.
Upper-level concentration classes frequent-
ly require more work and a greater time
commitment but offer fewer credits. The
credit system forces students to take on
more than they can handle - or stick
around for an extra semester or two or three.
LSA administrators should try to solve the
credit problem in a similar manner to the
College of Engineering. The results might
not only alleviate the problem, but might
improve the education students receive.
Curriculum 2000 promises to help solve
some of the problems facing Engineering
students. Regrouping may save students an
extra year's tuition while enriching their edu-
cation. Michael Parsons, former associate
dean of Engineering and chair of the task
force, said: "We have accepted our students'
arguments.'
Indeed, the new programs should
increase both the quality and accessibility
of students' education. The University
should finalize the plan soon.

t/c
/v'.F

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

Blood donation a 'Riske' business

Letter was
a personal
attack
TO THE DAILY:
What purpose did Jim
Riske's letter ("LaLonde is
too risky to donate blood,"
12/2/96) serve? He offered
ill-informed comments on
what constitutes high risk for
HIV and a personal attack on
Ryan LaLonde. Without any
informative basis, the pur-
pose of this letter seems only
to allow Riske to publicly
express his homophobia to
the University community.
LaLonde has proved him-
self to be one of the
strongest leaders on campus.
His hard work in making this
campus more comfortable
for lesbian, gay and bisexual
students is admirable. In
fact, it was just such an
action in writing his letter
regarding the discrimination
in Red Cross practices that
inspired Riske's ridiculous
attack.
The letters to the editor
section of The Michigan
Daily should not be a forum
for expressing personal
attacks on other students on
campus. If Riske wants to
write a well supported dis-
cussion of his position on the
blood donation policy, this
would be far more appropri-
ate for publication.
STACEY BRONOEL
LSA SENIOR
Riske is just
as risky as
the rest
TO THE DAILY:
Oh, for crying out loud.
Today I open up the Daily
and find some moron wrote
this ("LaLonde too risky to
donate blood," 12/2/96) tes-
tament to idiocy, "When
Ryan stops engaging in an
activity that puts him at a

high risk for AIDS (and who
says he is) ... he will no
longer pose a risk of passing
those diseases into the
nation's blood supply."
Well "Riske'" why don't
you pick your ass up and
carry it back to Mars or
whatever hell planet you've
been living on. Do you hon-
estly not have a clue who
poses risks, and who is safe?
Everyone poses a risk! And
nobody is safe. If they've
ever had sex.
That's a risk most of us
seem to be willing to take,
but not with this asinine
pipe-dream of invulnerability
that you seem to have. What
the hell? Do you really
believe you "pose no risk" to
the nation's blood supply?
Do you really think you
"pose no risk" to your part-
ner? I swear, when God was
handing out retard sandwich-
es you must have had a sec-
ond helping.
ANDREW UN
LSA SENIOR
The middle
ground:
Dangerous
blood banks
TO THE DAILY:
If Jim Riske thinks that
barring homosexual men
from donating blood will
guarantee a clean blood sup-
ply, he is wrong. Apparently
he is unaware that AIDS is
spread through heterosexual
sex in the same way that it is
for homosexual sex. Ryan
LaLonde is not asking to be
treated as though he is better
than anyone else - the Red
Cross rule is not, as Riske
seems to think, "stop having
sex with all kinds of gay
men and we'll let you donate
blood.' Instead, it says that if
you are a man and have ever
had sex with another man,
you cannot donate. The rea-
son LaLonde finds this
unfair is that under this

guideline, a man who has
only had sex one time with
anyone, and even if that was
with a condom, is disquali-
fied. The problem with that
is that at the same time, a
man who has sex regularly
with many different women
(possibly unprotected) is
allowed to hop up on the
table and put his pint of
blood into the blood supply.
Obviously, there is a flaw in
the system when this can
happen.
What I believe LaLonde
was asking for was to have
the question in the pre-dona-
tion stage read more along
the lines of "do you now or
have you ever had unprotect-
ed sex with anyone.' That
allows completely safe gay
men to donate, as well as
keeping unsafe heterosexual
men and women from donat-
ing. No one wants our blood
supply to be compromised
just to allow everyone who
wants to donate to do so -
but why is it such a big deal
to change the rules so that
people who are really
involved in high-risk activi-
ties are not allowed to give
and those who are safe are
approved? No special inter-
ests, just fairness and com-
mon sense.
PETER WILHELM
LSA JUNIOR
Letter was
inappropriate
TO THE DAILY:
I am writing in response
to Jim Riske's letter
("LaLonde is too risky to
donate blood," 12/2/96).
Since when does the Daily
print the equivalent of graffi-
ti in the high school bath-
room? Instead of a forum
for insults and judgments of
others' lifestyles, perhaps the
letters page should concen-
trate on intelligent discourse.
ANTHONY ZARET
RC SOPHOMORE

MILLER oN TAP
The lady ain't
So polite
like the CRISP system. Not because
I enjoy being on hold, planning my
future or listening to the CRISP lady's
strangely erotic sermon every time I
call up (OK, that last one isn't that
bad). But the real reason I like
CRISPing is the reactions that can be
observed in your
fellow students.
College students
usually don't like
to talk about their
schedules, classes,
plans for the
future, career
aspirations and all
that other non-
sense. The desire
to do that is usual- AMES
ly driven out of usJAE
by a passel of MILLER
pushy, nosy rela-
tives at holiday dinners. ("What the
hell are you going to do with that when
you graduate? Huh? Mr. College
Student? What don't you just get a cas-
trating, lifeless job with Corporate
America, a drinking problem and start
beating your wife? Hell, worked fr4
me!") CRISPing forces us to make
decisions about life that require advice
which oftentimes comes from our
friends. Given the fact that concentra-
tions and classes have been discussed
ad nauseam this week, I believe I have
gained some special insight into these
things.
At the risk of perpetuating a few
stereotypes and incurring upon myself
a mountain of terrifying e-mail, I give
you: University concentrations. Due to
space constraints, I have left many
programs off this list, but I feel this
will give a general idea of the kind of
people who populate our campus.
Engineering
This is a major to make people who
are bright, smart, and people who are
smart, intolerable. Engineering stu-
dents are the most dangerous people
on campus because, since they are
already smart people, they don't need
to spend an awful lot of time on home-
work, leaving their massive intellects
free to other pursuits (i.e. forming
unnatural relationships with personal
computers). If you've ever wondered
how a human being can take classes
like "Theoretical Algebra"
"Elementary Particle Physics" and
"Fluid Dynamics," and not become
dreary, lifeless and celibate, watch a
few of these guys. (Hint: they can't.)4
Recommended courses: Math 281,
Can You Afford Another "Star Wars"
T-shirt?; Physics 363, Peeking
Through Blouse Sleeves To Keep
Yourself From Going Insane; and
Computer Science 226, Yahoo, Lycos
or Alta Vista: Who Has The Best
Nudie Pictures?
School of Natural Resources
Or, "You mean I can climb moun-
tains, look at rocks, weave hemp jew-
elry and smoke hash by the metric ton
for four years, and get a degree!? Hot
damn! What box do I circle?" If
you've ever wondered where the peo-
ple who run wilderness retreats, own.
camping gear stores, and generally are
smelly, hairy and tie-dyed for a living
come from, try the SNRE neck of the
woods.
Recommended courses: Right. Like
they'd show up.
The B-School
Do any of these news stories sound
familiar? A large corporation dumps

toxins into a river and gives an entire
town brain tumors, or sells dangerous,
carcinogenic products to the public.
Now, if it ever crossed your mind to
ask where a person would learn to do
something like that, walk out of East
Quad, and it's on your left. (Imagine
that, something being to the left o14
East Quad.)
Recommended courses: International
Business 423, Keeping a Thai Hooker
Girlfriend As A Business Expense;
Finance 111, Can You Think Of
Anything More Important Than Huge
Bonuses and Unearned Salaries?
Neither Can We!; and Management
232, Sweatshops, Sweatshops;
Sweatshops!
The Residential College
Being an RC student, I have a spe-
cial reverence for this part of the
University family RC students are
easy to spot. We rail against the
excesses of the capitalist system and
spend $70 on Bob Dylan tickets. We
think putting "Visualize World Peace"
bumper stickers on our cars might
actually save lives. We think the Bill of
Rights applies to flag-burners and per-
formance artists but not gun owner1
and KKK members. In short, we are
what the conservatives think of when
they think of liberals.
Recommended courses: Social
Science 225, Why The Rest Of The
World Isn't As Smart As You Are;
Pie 1 i1S Vir.,tim Ctn*,,o Ac

0

I"

1

I

Cuffing efficiency
Engler's plan would add chaos to state govt.

L ast week, Michigan Gov. John Engler.
announced a plan to drastically down-
size the government bureaucracy. The pro-
posal makes more than 7,000 state employ-
ees eligible for a lucrative early retirement
package. Engler intends to replace only one
in four departing workers. But Engler is not
thinking clearly. Simultaneously losing so
many senior officials and increasing the
workload of those remaining would severe-
ly reduce the quality of service the state can
offer its citizens.
Some of the hardest-hit departments
would be those Engler has already abused
during his time in office. The Department
of Natural Resources stands to lose up to 21
percent of its workers. James Carter, DNR
personnel chief, says the largest number of
retirements would come from parks and
recreation. Park managers and wildlife biol-
ogists preserve the livelihood of Michigan's
wildlife - the positions must remain
intact.
Also, the Department of Civil Rights
could lose 47 of its 166 employees - just
less than one-third. Michigan has moved to
the right since Engler's reign began, but the
state must uphold its commitment to civil
rights. And being committed means retain-
ing enough personnel to pursue and resolve
all civil rights complaints.
Engler hasn't left out his favorite depart-
ment to cut - education. Under his plan,
up to 20 percent of Department of
Education workers would be eligible to
retire. The department certifies teachers
and appropriates funds to local districts.

From a broader perspective, Engler's
plan puts the state government in danger.
The retirement offer would extend to a 50-
year-old with 25 years on the job, and a 60-
year-old with 10 years of service. Many
higher-ranking officials, including several
department heads, have expressed interest
in the plan - which, coupled with term
limits in the state legislature, would result
in a loss of state institutional memory.
In addition, an exodus of workers would
leave an inordinate number of responsibili-
ties to redistribute. Chaos would result.
Numerous and simultaneous promotions,
along with higher workloads, would
adversely affect all departments. Few offi-
cials could provide training and some per-
sons would inherit duties they are
unequipped to handle. Vital departmental
functions would fall through the woodwork.
Engler's proposal would also affect the
pension plans of new employees. The new
pension - "defined contribution plan" -
could result in lower benefits. Moreover,
union officials fear it would damage the fis-
cal solvency of the current retirement sys-
tem. The state must solicit union input and
explore long-term fiscal effects.
Michigan is not in dire financial straits.
Nevertheless, Engler wants to keep chop-
ping the budget - and eliminate jobs while
he's at it. His early retirement plan would
result in an overburdened, inexperienced
staff. After implementation, the state could
not maintain current levels of service.
Engler needs to refocus his energies on the
needs of his constituency - rather than

l

Jordan article headline was misleading

OI

To THE DAILY:
Get your facts straight!
The headline on the Dec. 2
front page read, "Israel eyes
permanent spots in Jordan."
This is blatantly misleading
and deceiving. The state of
Israel has no claim to any
land whatsoever in the coun-
try of Jordan, nor is it seek-
ing to build any such settle-
ments there.
(Israeli Prime Minister
Benjamin) Netanyahu is pur-
suing settlement expansion in
the Jordan Valley, a part of
the West Bank that Israel

assertion that Netanyahu
"rejects the premise of trad-
ing occupied land for
peace" is false. Regardless
of your feelings about the
peace process, most parties
will agree that the hard line
that Netanyahu is taking
does not reject the basic
premises of land-for-peace.
Netanyahu and Yasser
Arafat are working to
arrange a more secure with-
drawal from Hebron which
will insure greater security
for all parties involved,
Jews and Arabs. Please be

To THE DAILY:
I find the headline of the
article that you chose to print
from the Los Angeles Times
reading, "Israel eyes perma-
nent spots in Jordan,"
(12/2/96) to be particularly
offensive. Issues as to whom
the West Bank belongs aside,
it is completely out of line
and deceptive to refer to the
West Bank, or the Jordan
Valley as it was referred to in
the article, as "Jordan.'
Doing so blatantly expos-
es the author's anti-Israel sen-
timents and hate-colored per-

.

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