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September 19, 1997 - Image 4

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1997-09-19

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4 - The Michigan Daily - Friday, September 19, 1997

le £iduiagrn &ugit

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

Editor in Chief
Editorial Page Editor

'Well, I threw up. Then I cried.'
- Baylor football coach Dave Roberts, after watching a tape
of last Saturday's Michigan-Colorado football game

Unless otherwise noted, unsigned editorials reflect the opinion of the majority of the Daily : editorial board. All
other articles, letters and cartoons do not necessarily reflect the opinion of The Michigan Daily.
Asphyxiation 101
'U' should remedy course shortage


- -'~~ ~

T he University welcomed a consider-
* ably larger class this year than in pre-
%aus years. Instead of warm greetings,
nome freshmen received a converted lounge
for a dorm room and the frustration of try-
ig to schedule classes that were filled long
before they arrived. Due to the onslaught of
first-year students, many core LSA courses
such as Introductory Composition, foreign
languages and Calculus were met with
unmanageable demand. The University
should use the increased tuition coming
from the large first-year student population
to accommodate the increased demand for
required courses.
In addition to the great numbers of first-
year students registering for classes, many
Graduate Student Instructors resigned late in
the term, creating a teacher shortage in sev-
eral departments. Despite scheduling cre-
ativity as classes began to fill during the
summer, 176 first-year students were with-
out classes. Those students unable to enroll
in core classes for Fall semester will simply
create more backup further down the line in
their academic careers.. The departments
offering core classes should take measures to
ensure that there will not be a repeat of this
year's scheduling crisis. In the future, better
admissions predictions and refined class
selection should help alleviate the problem.
The University should work to create a
better working situation for GSIs and thus, a
better overall educational environment.
During contract negotiations last winter,
GSIs cited the amount of work they were
forced to handle and the low compensation
they received in return -- problems adminis-
trators must work to resolve. With the over-

crowded sections of core classes, GSIs are
ending up with a lot more work than they can
handle; it wouldn't be a surprise if, with an
eye to the overcrowding and memories of
poor treatment in the past, GSIs pulled out of
their teaching commitments.
First-year students were not alone in their
scheduling surprise. Many lecture courses
are packed, leaving students without seats.
Large courses make it difficult to maintain
teacher-student interaction. With lecture
seating limited to standing-room only, stu-
dents receive even less attention.
Students should consider other options
to the standard core recitation courses such
as seminars. Seminars are an opportunity
for first- and second-year students to be
introduced to the University without filter-
ing information through an overwhelming
lecture. Students have access to several
seminars, most of which are taught by pro-
fessors and can be more accessible than
large courses of greater popularity. Students
should also keep in mind that they can ful-
fill requirements such as introductory com-
position in first-year seminars.
Overcrowded lectures and recitations
create a poor impression on new students.
Students interested in concentrating in one
of the overcrowded departments may not be
able to witness the finer points as a result of
the sheer number of people surrounding
them - and it's worse, of course, if they
cannot get in at all. Students may also feel
lost in the crowd and turn away from the
entire University. Administrators and
departments that experienced problems this
term should take steps to avoid repeated
scheduling problems in the future.

LOOK~ 3'5
ovER5 EA

,- Ho-



Keg tags will not stop under age drinking

F or many students, beer drinking is as
much of the college experience as
Michigan football or long nights studying.
On any given weekend night, many
Udiversity students attend parties where it's
not too hard to find kegs and alcohol. But
legally, the University's under-21 popula-
tion is not allowed to consume alcohol. In
an effort to prevent underage drinking,
State Sen. Dianne Byrum (D-Onodaga) has
proposed an initiative to attach tags to kegs
and hold buyers liable for minors caught
drinking from them. But the proposal will
not likely meet its goal because it is imprac-
tical. A voluntary experiment of the pro-
gram in East Lansing, home of Michigan
State University, lasted only a few weeks
after keg sales dropped by 50 percent.
Because of lost business, vendors quickly
gave up - and students had already begun
to buy their beer in other containers.
If kegs became more difficult to buy, then
inventive college students would find other
ways of getting alcohol. As in East Lansing
and Boulder, Colo. - home of the
University of Colorado, where a similar
experiment also failed - students would
find other ways to procure their drinks. The
proposed ban would be effective statewide,
preventing University students from simply
running to Ypsilanti to buy beer. However,
beer is sold in many different containers -
from six packs to cases of 12 and 24 -
offering students more than one option. In
addition, wine and other liquor products
would remain untraceable. The ban's effect

would be negligible - there are numerous
other options and ways for students to get
The plan's implementation is impractical
and unenforceable. It calls for a plastic
numbered tag to accompany each keg,
which would be associated with buyers' dri-
ver's licenses at the time of purchase. The
buyer would also have to sign an affidavit
swearing not to serve the contents of the
keg to any minors. However, the tags could
easily be removed - preventing the sys-
tem's desired ends from being reached.
Adding the tags would also compound
the duties of alcohol sellers. Already, many
Ann Arbor retailers record driver's license
information, but mandating the program
could prove excessive and may not be fol-
lowed. Enforcement also proves problemat-
ic as it does not improve upon current polic-
ing of parties by authorities.
As this experiment has already failed in
other towns, it must be questioned whether
it is worth the trouble of enforcing this pol-
icy in college towns. It will not improve on
the methods of sale and enforcement of the
policy will only drive student business away
or change it. If the plan is to stop minors
from drinking, a plan would be needed to
monitor all sales of alcohol. This would be
nearly impossible, as the state can only do
so much without reaching oppressive pro-
portions. Byrum should go back to the
drawing board and come up with a plan that
can be executed reasonably and have an
effective result.

Birth control
insert was
I would like to express my
dismay on seeing the insert
advertising birth control pills
in the Daily (9/15/97). I am a
practicing Catholic and as
such, I believe that marriage
is a sacred covenant and that
sex is a reflection of that
marriage covenant.
In other words, sex is for
married couples only and
should be open to the trans-
mission of human life (no
artificial forms of birth con-
trol). Advertising birth con-
trol pills in a newspaper
whose readership is largely
made up of unmarried stu-
dents is offensive to me.
I realize that my opinions
put me in the minority, but I
would like to make two com-
ments about birth control
pills that should appeal to a
larger portion of your read-
First, I urge women who
are taking the pill to read the
accompanying pages of med-
ical warnings and precau-
tions. The page of microscop-
ic print on the back of the
insert run in Monday's paper
claims to be only a brief
summary of potential health
Second, the pill is consid-
ered an abortifacient by the
Catholic church and by any-
one who believes that life
begins at conception. The
main function of the pill is to
prevent ovulation, but it is
not totally effective. A
woman taking the pill can
ovulate and the ovum can be
fertilized by her partner's
As a second line of
defense, the pill prevents the
fertilized egg from implanting
in the woman's uterus. The
fertilized egg is then flushed
from the woman during men-
struation. If you believe that
life begins at conception, then
this must be considered an
abortion, whether it was inten-
tional or not.
If you are Christian, Pro-
Life or simply believe that
life begins at conception and
you use chemical forms of
birth control such as the pill,
I urge you to reconsider.
Keep the
CRISP lady!
We are shocked and
offended by the recent peti-
tion to oust the CRISP Lady
from her tenure. Lee Palmer's
article ("Students petition to
hire James Earl Jones for
CRISP," 9/16/97) reported on

siasm in her voice, she has
been far more consistent than
most of the Michigan athletic
teams - but no one's trying
to replace them with James
Earl Jones. Think about it -
she's never complained about
how late you call her. The
CRISP Lady always answers
your phone calls, no matter
how many times you've hung
up on her. She's always will-
ing to accommodate your
needs, whether it be by e-
mail or fax. I even heard
once she delivered someone's
schedule personally!
The truth is, if any of the
Michigan "ladies" should be
forced to retire, it should be
the Grade Lady. You talk to
her maybe once a semester?
And half the time you talk to
her, she's so cold it's almost
as if you're talking to some
kind of machine. Plus, she's
so snotty about your grades:
"Stats 100 ... D+." How
about a little compassion?
Would it kill her to say,
"Don't worry, lots of people
didn't do well," or "Look, it
happens. I'll buy you one at
the bar." At least when you're
in trouble with scheduling
problems, the CRISP lady
listens, and presents you with
options: Add a class, drop a
class, modify, full-body mas-
sage (That's little-known
option No. 10.)
should not
fund arts
I wish to address several
important issues regarding
the Daily's editorial about the
National Endowment for the
Arts ("Cultural bridges"
9/17/97). While retaining
funding for the NEA may
very well be a cultural tri-
umph, it is also a constitu-
tional and financial tragedy
for the United States.
The Daily seemed to con-
veniently leave out the fact
that no where in the U.S.
Constitution is there a provi-
sion for the public funding of
the arts. In fact, during the
Constitutional Convention of
1787, delegate Charles
Pinckney introduced a
motion calling for the federal
government to subsidize the
arts in the United States, but
the other founders over-
whelmingly and wisely
rejected it because it clearly
violates the principle of lim-
ited government.
Our elected officials in
Washington should not be in
the business of financing pri-
vate expression. The Daily
would most certainly object to
government financing of the
chunrh hyhu ~ld th art be

feel about "obscene" art,
defenders of the NEA fail to
show the public how well the
arts flourish without govern-
ment subsidies. Testimony
before the House Interior
Subcommittee last March
shows that overall giving to
the arts last year totaled
almost $10 billion - up
from $6.5 billion in 1991.
This 40-percent increase in
private giving occurred dur-
ing a period that the NEA
budget was reduced by 40
percent. Clearly, cutting NEA
subsidies to art can easily be
compensated with private
support for the arts.
Lastly, the Daily argued
that the tax dollars appropri-
ated to the NEA is a drop in
the bucket compared to the
aggregate federal budget.
They are absolutely right -
eliminating the NEA would
be the equivalent of a govern-
ment accounting error.
However, the fact remains
that serious entitlements such
as Medicare, Social Security,
and other programs that
receive federal money are
relied upon by thousands and
are on the brink of bankrupt-
Assurance of arts funding
by the government is not a
priority. Unless, of course,
you happen to be a very
unpopular senator from New
York who is up for re-elec-
tion in 1998 and needs an
issue to boost his dismal 33-
percent approval ratings. In
closing, as nice as it is to
have secured funding for the
arts, the private sector should,
and does, assume this role
As a Nectarine employee
of 13 years, it has been my
pleasure to work with cus-
tomers of every ethnic origin.
My coworkers at present
include two Asians, a Native
American, a Mexican
American, an Indian and an
African American. The owner
is Jewish and I am gay. I have
always been proud to work at
a nightclub that celebrates
diversity the way the
Nectarine does.
It has been my observa-
tion the only "color" we care
much about is green - the
owner likes it when people
have money to spend.
Otherwise anyone who has
ID and is willing to behave
like a reasonable human
being is welcome to come in.
I trust that anyone who has
had any dealings with us over
the years knows where we
stand and will make up his or
her oninminds asfto whether

'Jones for
CRISPis only
the beginning
If a certain contingent of students
gets its way, your next CRISP
appointment could be a lot like this:
Student: Alrighty 1 got my classes
all picked out, here we go, just have to
dial old 9-9-8-1-8-8-1.
James Earl Jones (Darth Vader
M, press I
Student: "Hey,
cool, I guess that
whole James Earl
Jones for CRISP "
Lady Task Force'
pulled it off-"I'll
just put in my
class now ... Poli.
Sci. 3-0-5:"
James Earl PA
Jones (voice of SERILLA
"This is CNN"): WERIALA
"You have select-_WARFARE
ed Particle Physics course 7-8-9 -- if
this is not correct, press t now.
Student: "I must have typed it in
wrong, I'll just press 1."
James Earl (That's right; I was in
"Patriot Games" too): "I am alteri
the schedule, you must take Partic
Physics 789 -- pray I don't alter it any
Student: "What? No way. I'll just
press 3 to swap classes; that'll show od
James Earl whose schedule this is"
MIr Jones ("Huntfor Red October':
"Three is now inactive, your ability to
change your schedule is insignificant
next to the power of the force."
Student: "Dammit James Earl, you're
screwing up my schedule more th
that stupid computer woman and
separate LSA advisors did. I hate you.1
hate everything, forget all of you, that's
right, I'm pressing 7 ... 7 to disenroll!"
His friends call him Jimbo (not to
mention I won two Tonys and two
Emmys): "You pressed 7 ... I find your
lack of faith disturbing, good bye."
Well, maybe it would all work out
fine if the University's most famous
alumnus (President Gerry who?) to
the reigns as the students' telephone
registration emissary (CRISP Dude
sounds like a cereal, not a real job),
but I think we should all be cautious in
supporting the introduction of the
leading practitioner of the "dark side'
into our registration system.
Seriously, this CRISP reform idea is
very original and it has some promise,
but let's make sure we aren't backing
James Earl for the wrong reaso
Michigan Student Assembly ViW
President Olga Savic was recently
quoted on this topic. She told the Daily,
"I think it would be a great service to
students because it would reduce stu-
dent stress while registering."
Reducing stress? Yeah, right. If we
had given her any more space to com-
ment, she probably would have
endorsed the plan as the only hope to
end world hunger. Please folks, let's
blow this thing out of proportion. There
is only one reason to bring in Big Jim.
And that is because everyone who does-
n't attend this University will think our
registration system is really boss ad
everyone who goes here will know it is.
This CRISP plan is about one cat-
pus rising up and saying to everyone
else, "Hey, we got James Earl Jones,
whatta you got?" This is college, the
beginning pf adulthood and the last
real chance to be immature and b*
about something that shouldn't matter
but for some reason seems really cool

(tomorrow maybe it won't be so cool,
but who cares about tomorrow).
For example, I just found out that the
president of the student government at
Berkeley is none other than the lovable
scamp who played Chunk in "Goonies"
and Cornell has the actor who played
Data (also played Short Round
"Indian Jones and the Temple,
Doom"). I mean, I like Mike Nagrant
and all, but really, people -we are talk-
ing "Goonies' probably the best Corey
Feldman movie of all time. To my
knowledge, we have no minor celebri-
ties currently on campus and frankly; I
am little jealous of schools that do.
Hiring James.Earl could be the first
step in a new phase of higher educa-
tion, the celebrity endorsement phase.
I think the idea is great, instead
labeling everything on campus wi
the name of big, contributors, every
class, University building, program
and college gets endorsed by a celebr-
ty. You eat lunch in the Julia Child
Cafeteria, study in the Richard
Simmons Graduate Library or take
Philosophy 101 endorsed by hall-of-
famer Yogi Berra. It would also clear
up the inconsistencies in college ran -
ing systems. Let's face it folks, if y
got accepted to both the Itzak Perlman
and David Lee Roth schools of music,
which would you attend?
The "James Earl for CRISP Lady"
plan is just the beginning. First, we
could hire James Earl on a full-tinie
basis and give him Bollinger's office,

PO Box 30036
LANSING, MI 48909-7536
(517) 373-1734
.............-. ,iCA...... ..A~t E!Araa.r nrA .r A£,lJL-


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