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November 08, 1996 - Image 4

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1996-11-08

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4- The.Michigan Daily - Friday, November 8, 1996

fwh Eidgiguu Eajg

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

Editor in Chief
Editorial Page Editors

'Regent Baker has served the University and
he has served it well. Perhaps after 24 years,
it's time to let someone else serve.'
- Former University President James Duderstadt, commenting
on Regent Deane Bakers (R-Ann Arbor) electoral defeat

Unless otherwise noted, unsigned editorials relect the opinion of the majority of the Dailys editorial board. All
other articles, letters and cartoons do not necessarily reflect the opinion of The Michigan Daily.
Tpping the scales
'U' evaluation stats should consider bias

1 / ^

0 ne of the most important opportunities
for University students to impact the
quality of their undergraduate education
comes in the form of tiny ovals and a No. 2
pencil. At the end of each term, students fill
out University-distributed evaluation forms
to solicit students' feedback on courses and
instructors. Although each University
department assesses the forms differently,
they carry significant weight in departe-
mental determinations as to who gets raises,
tenure and promotions. However, the
University does not weight gender differ-
ences enough when making these decisions
- departments also should review male
and female instructors' evaluations sepa-
rately to account for inherent gender biases
- not prejudices, but statistal bias.
Although students often display it in
subtle ways, gender bias does exist in class-
rooms across campus. Students often per-
ceive male and female instructors different-
ly - such perceptions can lead to drastical-
ly different concitisions on the evaluations,
and they can prevent women from receiving
raises. By evaluating genders separately,
.pay raises might reflect a more balanced
distribution for males and females. The
change would help enforce a unbiased eval-
uation of women faculty.
Michigan Physics Prof. Katherine Freese
told the Daily that statistical evidence sup-
ports the claim that gender bias exists with-
in the student evaluations - especially in
highly technical courses, such as physics
and math. Since many of these fields have

been male dominated, many women
instructors feel compelled to be tough, strict
and impersonal. As a result, students may
overlook the professors' actual teaching
ability and give poor evaluations because of
a less-than-motherly demeanor.
The University should increase its
efforts to study gender as a factor in raises
and promotions - if gender biases persist,
then the University could and fail to attract
- and retain - top-notch instructors.
Between the nasty competition and lower
pay, female professors may not want to
teach at the University because of apparent
biases. In the end, this adversely affects the
quality of education for students.
The Center for Research on Learning
and Teaching recently launched a project to
study the association between gender of the
instructor and the students' rating. Connie
Cook, CRLT's director, said the research
should last for about one year. CRLT's
study is an important; the University should
analyze its findings and take any appropri-
ate action to deflate gender biases.
Many members of the University com-
munity are concerned that gender is not
enough of a factor when the various schools
and colleges determine advancement.
Often, female instructors lose out because
of inherent gender biases in many of the
students' evaluations. The issue will not go
away - individual departments should take
steps to reintroduce fairness into the review
and use of student evaluations, to best capi-
talize on student input.

(~0 Q)


Po lutants endanger Lakes

Holiday would raise participation, morale

The future of the Great
Lakes could be drastically
affected by current regula-
tions proposed by the
Michigan Department of
Environmental Quality. Under
the federal Great Lakes Water
Quality Initiative, which was
signed into law in 1995,. each
state bordering the Great
Lakes must establish rules
and regulations that meet fed-
eral standards and set a proto-
col for specific environmental
and public health standards in
their respective states.
GLI requires Great Lake
states to create regulations to
prevent and control toxic pol-
lution within the Great Lakes.
Michigan's compliance is
tantamount to ensuring a
clean and safe environment
that meets acceptable public
health standards. GLI is nec-
essary to protect the Great
Lakes because they represent
the world's largest body of
surface fresh water and,
unlike most lakes, they do not
flush out frequently. This
makes the Gireat Lakes more
susceptible to persistent bio-
chemical accumulative, which
endanger the health of those
persons ving in the Great
Lakes Area.
Although we have made
progress in the remediation
efforts of U.S. water systems
since the passage of the feder-
al Clean Water Act in the
1970s, our lakes are still large
contaminated. The repercus-
sions of toxic pollutants in our
water are revealed in our own
communities. A recent study
from Wayne State University
shows that I1-year-old chil-
dren form western Michigan
whose mothers consumed
PCP-contaminated fish
before and during pregnancy
suffer as much as a six-point
deficit in their IQ. Other
effects of contaminated water
- 1arleig is an RE
senior and Miller is
an LSA junlior'

are showing up in the bald
eagle populations on the
shores of the Great Lakes. The
eagles reproductive patterns
have been altered, they cannot
reproduce as easily and their
offspring are born with defor-
mities, such as twisted beaks.
Michigan's draft of GLI
lacks environmental and pub-
lic health protection in many
areas. The National Wildlife
Federation recognizes several
flaws in the Michigan draft
that must be corrected before
it is submitted to the
Environmental Protection
Agency for final approval.
Some of the major issues are
listed below:
e Closing the loophole for
variances. The Department of
Great Lakes face
many dangers
Environmental Quality wants
to grant "multiple discharge
variances" that would allow
all discharges on a river to
apply for a "variance"
(exempting them from com-
pliance). This translates to
every polluter on the Huron
River is permitted to bypass
the new water quality stan-
N Preventing all sources
of toxic pollution. With limit-
ed exceptions, Michigan's
proposal fails to address the
issue of pollution entering our
water through sources such as
the air and land runoff. It is
crucial to focus on more than
just the direct discharges. In
Lake Michigan, over half of
the PCPs fall from the sky. In
Lake Superior, 90 percent of
the mercury contamination
found in the water is from the
Removing loopholes
that allow trading. Michigan
would allow increased pollu-
tion in some water streams in
exchange for vague promises
to reduce pollution elsewhere
in the watershed. The state
wants us to trust that this
scheme will protect our health

in an interim period, leaving
stricter rules to be developed
in the future. This proposal is
illegal under the federal GLI.
If Michigan wants to allow
such actions, rules that
assured the protection of our
health must precede this pro-
posal, as well as public input.
Designing Lake
Superior as an Outstanding
National Resource Water.
Michigan's proposal falls
short of providing any extra
protection for Lake Superior,
despite promises from Gov.
John Engler to the contrary.
ONRW designation would
freeze toxic pollution and pre-
vent new or increased releases
of the most harmful pollu-
tants. Lake Superior is the
largest and most pristine body
of water in the Great Lakes. It
is important to preserve Lake
Superior's unique status.
The Michigan proposal
includes some positive regula-
tions. It focuses on bioaccu-
mulatives and sets new stan-
dards above the federal rec-
ommendations. s owever,
these few progressive steps
fail to ensure the protection of
our Great Lakes and the
health of those living in the
Great Lakes region. GLI can
set a precedent for the future
management of the Great
Lakes. Michigan, once an
international leader in water
quality protection, must adopt
a GLI that eliminates loop-
holes and guarantees adequate
protection of the Great Lakes.
The DEQ will be accepting
written comments prior to
Nov. 29. Please write or call
to voice your support of GLI
and your concern with the
loopholes in Michigan's pro-
posal. The DEQ can be
reached at:
Michigan Department of
Environmental Quality,
Surface Water Division, P.O.
Box 30273/Lansing,
Michigan 48909. The phone
number is: (517)-335-4184.

.Katie's guide to
good and cheap
eating out
EĀ°ver have a fly in your veggie lo
If you live in a residence hall, thig
probably doesn't
happen. Do you
even get veggie lo
mein in those
places? All I
remember is gar-
banzo beans and 7
white rice and the
occasional pathet-
ic falafel, and get-
ting really excited .
when they had KATIE
potato pancakes. HUTCHINS
Anyway. I don't
get my food made for me anymore.
Not in a cafeteria. I assume most peo-
ple on campus eat at home most of the
time - even if it is only mac and
cheese or cereal.
But I eat out or order in for most of
my meals. I got tired of doing dishes.
And I think that's why I got a fly in m
veggie lo mein yesterday. Yu eat ou
often enough, you experience all the
bad-luck parts of eating out. This was-
n't just your average fly; it was big, fat,
and gooey - and unfortunately it
looked very much like the rest of the
unidentifiable junk in my to mein. And
it almost got into my mouth.
I won't identify the food establish-
ment responsible for this. I like to give
people a second chance before con-
demning them. But personally, I'm n
eating there again. Good luck finding
out which one it is.
This is about the worst food experi-
ence I've had since somebody put
meat on my meatless burger at
McDonald's. Other than that one
screw-up, McDonald's is one of the
best meal deals in town -just behind
'the Olive Garden, Oasis, and Amer's,
which all tie for first place.
I know what you're thinking
Amer's? Deal? That place has
Zingerman's prices and your-average-
Mediterranean-deli quality. Ah yes,
but don't forget the $2 soup and the
sample cheese trays. The soup is usu-
ally pretty good, and you get a big
hunk of bread with it. And lately,
they've been putting out cheese trays
with bread (and sometimes meat, for
you meat eaters).
So you can get your full meal for tw
dollars plus tax - all you have to do
walk casually by the sample tray a few
times and stuff some chunks of cheese
in your pocket. Down side? They got
rid of their smoking section.
Which leaves the Fleetwood Diner,
Oasis, and Burger King as the only
places where you can get good. cheap
eats and still have a cigarette after your
meal. Fleetwood has to be the best
because the whole place is a smokin
section, the ambiance is comfortably
dingy, and there are lots of interesting
people to look at - particularly at 2 in
the morning. But the best part has to
be the Hippie Hash. Imagine: hash
browns, veggies and feta cheese. The
stuff is heaven. And - if you play
your cards right -you can get six
refills on your cup of coffee.
But Subway is where playing your
cards right matters most. You gotta b
polite to these people, because th
can really skimp on the ingredients. It
all starts when you order your six-inch

sub. You have to say please, and thank
you, and smile a lot. Because they
always cut the bread in half very
unevenly, and whether you get the big
half or the small half depends largely
on whether your sub-maker likes the
looks of you.
Subway people have a lot of discr
tion. They can give you four pickles
ten, three black olives or a whole big
pile. And they have two styles of sub-
wrapping: Sometimes it's really tight
and tidy; other times it is specifically
designed to fall apart and spill vinegar
and oil everywhere the second you
walk away from the counter.
Mongolian Barbecue is where they
have the least discretion. You basically
pay a lot of money and then you're on
your own. You have to pick your ovO
ingredients, spices and sauces - and
then choose how you're going to eat it
(with rice or in a tortilla).
Now, I go to restaurants because I
can't cook. If I could cook, I'd be at
home doing it. When I pay more than
$10 for my meal, I want it served to
me with all the perfectly balanced sea-
sonings. I want a savory dining experi-
ence, with free bread (as you get L
Cottage Inn), attentive wait-peop
and a pretty plate.
Mongolian Barbecue has the great-
est possible restaurant scam. Everyone
loves it because they cook your meal
with big long sticks. However, if I
knew what cumin would do for my

p eople once fought and died for
Americans to have the right to vote and
choose their representatives. But many
Americans find that their busy lives prevent
them from excercising that right. Voting is
more than a right - it is a responsibility.
However, with work, classes, families
responsibilities and other significant time
commitments, Americans are forced to
choose between obligations. To combat low
national voter turnout - to make it possible
for Americans to meet all their obligations
- the federal government should make
election day a national holiday. With an
entire day free, most Americans will have
time to vote - and the holiday would give
symbolic emphasis to the voting ritual.
On Tuesday, only 48.8 percent of eligible
voters went to the polls. This rate was lower
than 1992, which was 55 percent of eligible
voters. The drop is disconcerting. Civic
organizations across the country have
worked to increase voter registration - and
turnout - recently. For example, at the
University, students worked in Voice Your
Vote to increase registration rates. But even
with MTV, the registration efforts did not
bring citizens all the way to the polls.
Turnout across the country declined.
While candidates strive to please voters,
the actual voting process deters participa-
tion. People are increasingly busy with their
jobs; lines at the voting sites can be usually
slow moving. The country is hardly provid-
ing voters the best chance to exercise their
right. A national holiday would help elimi-
nate this sentiment, sending a message to

the people that voting is so important that
the government and businesses are willing
to shut down for a day to gather Americans'
The concept is not unique. Many other
countries, such as Italy, have made their
election days national holidays. As a result,
the voter turnout reaches approximately 80
or 90 percent in these countries - in com-
parison, American voter turnout is just
plain sorry. In these countries, the holiday
gives citizens the opportunity to celebrate
this right.
The government can do even more to
make the polls accessible to busy
Americans: The federal government should
adopt mail-in voting. In a special U.S.
Senate election in Oregon last winter, citi-
zens had the chance to vote by mail. In that
race, about 66 percent of eligible voters cast
ballots - much higher than Oregon's usual
turnout rate and significantly above the
national average. The candidates and many
voters thought the mail-in system was ben-
Opponents of a national holiday may
argue that everyone can and those who do
not take advantage should suffer the conse-
quences. What a negative attitude to harbor
- instead, lawmakers should be looking
for ways to expand access to democracy.
The holiday and mail-in voting would
dramatically change American politics -
in a way that Thomas Jefferson would
approve. Tuesday's election is compelling
evidence for the need to make voting more
accessible to all Americans.


Fee increase
will augment
Being active in commu-
nity service is as vital to our
education as lectures, labs
and exams.
The lessons we learn
while volunteering help us
become more compassionate
members of society. Here at
the University, we demand
top quality in the classroom,
and we spend thousands of
dollars a semester for it.
Why should we expect
any less when it comes to
our education through com-

available a year for the
strengthening of community
service at the University.
In addition to funding
Project Serve and the Black
Volunteer Network, the fee
increase would make funds
available to any student
organization that wants to
benefit from community ser-
vice. A mutlicultural group
could request money for an
educational program. The
Greek system could obtain
money for work with their
philanthropies. A service
group could get funds for a
particular program or for
campus awareness. A portion
of the money also will be
allocated for a scholarship.
William Jewett Tucker
said, "Do not expect that you

I am a former Ohio State
University football player in
the 1963-65.years. In 1965,I
co-captained our football
team against the Tom Mack-
led Wolverines to a Buckeye
victory. I even married a
great woman who was born
and raised in Michigan. I
have respect for Ann Arbor
and Michigan.
Currently, I am mayor of
Columbus. I must admit that
Ann Arbor is fortunate to
have Ingrid Sheldon as your
I have worked with and
know Sheldon to be knowl-
edge, likeable and enthusias-

ANN ARBOR, MI 48109-1340

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