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February 10, 1998 - Image 4

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The Michigan Daily, 1998-02-10

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4 - The Michigan Daily - Tuesday, February 10, 1998

G be Ā£irbitgun DutiIg

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

Editor in Chief
Editorial Page Editor

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
Share alkes
'U' should offer medical resources to coalition

'To bring together athletes, engineers and literature
students to something like this, for such a worthy
cause - for kids. This Is just awesome.'
- LSA senior Mike Ingber; on the University of Michigan
Dance Marathon that was held this past weekend
WA~AJI&)y FL44s
S Nouta NAVE
GONE up HE' BE'S BalRAy4
ON GE ThE A Lor oF & iES
PRE-L~c FOUOD "EI-Y, N.460A Jtitf?
Ou THy&T Hr?
1 H ff
1 s

T his year marks the beginning of a new
effort by 12 of the state's public univer-
sities to collectively combat the increasing
cost of health care. The project will create a
dialogue among the state's institutions of
higher learning, promote cooperation and
fulfill its goal of providing health-care cov-
erage for members of the universities' com-
munities. The 12 universities - collectively
known as the Michigan Universities
Coalition on Health - will hold meetings
every other month. Of central concern at
these meetings will be a discussion of the
various ways to reduce the costs of health
care services at the universities. The
University of Michigan, with its sprawling
medical resources, is in a unique position to
offer a great deal of aid to the other schools.
One of the major advantages of the
cooperation between schools is the sharing
of information that will occur. Each school
provides health care coverage and other
medical services to its students, faculty and
staff differently. The dialogue at these meet-
ings will allow the University and other
coalition members to see what other institu-
tions have tried and what worked best to
minimize health costs without reducing
quality of services. The other major benefit
of the coalition could be the purchasing
power of such a large group of consumers.
If the universities choose to purchase cover-
age from an insurance company as a group,
it would provide the schools with health
care at lower prices than if they did it indi-
A driving factor behind this coalition is
the increasing cost of tuition across the
state. Wanting to maintain the same level of

health services and programs but faced with
increasing costs, many universities have
had to increase health fees that students and
staff pay. In order to keep tuition - which
is already prohibitively expensive - in line
with inflation, health care costs at the
schools needs to be curtailed. The new
effort by the University and other public
institutions is vital to keeping higher educa-
tion within the average state residents'
reach - universities should not continue to
pass the cost of health care onto students
because students will no longer be able to
afford a higher education.
The increased costs of health care bene-
fits and services should immediately bring
attention to the University's state-of-the-art
medical facilities. The University spends a
large portion of its budget on its top-ranked
Medical Center, which is comprised of the
Medical School, six hospitals and more than
150 health centers and outpatient clinics.
With all of these resources, the University
has the ability to contribute a great deal to
the coalition members' health care situation.
With its vast health resources, the Medical
Center could provide care for numerous stu-
dents and faculty in the Metro Detroit area.
The University must commit itself to provid-
ing access to its facilities to all. If the
University can cooperate with other colleges
to reduce health care costs, then the
University can certainly facilitate a better
relationship between the its medical commu-
nity and other academic communities. High
health care costs are a problem for the entire
state - the University is in a good position
to help a significant number of the state's
schools combat prohibitive expenses.

l ! il


Schoolyard bully
Schools should not overstep their jurisdiction

E very parent sends his or her child off to
school in the morning, trusting that at
the end of the day, he or she will return
home safely. But in recent years, young stu-
dents have been testing the waters more and
more as drug dealing, harassment and phys-
ical violence are more and more common-
place in and around some schools. New leg-
islation in many school districts nationwide
gives schools the right to suspend or expel
students who partake in illegal activities,
regardless of how the legal system disci-
plines these minors.
Many school officials defend their
actions by quoting new federal laws man-
dating "zero tolerance" for guns and nar-
cotics in public school yards. They claim
that in order to foster a healthy and positive
classroom environment, strict measures
must be employed in dealing with young
people who break the law.
But many schools are going further to
ensure safe classrooms. In some parts of
the country, children who are involved in
illegal activities far away from the school's
campus can be punished when they arrive
in class the next morning. Some parents
and guardians are speaking out against
these new tactics, saying that the school-
imposed punishments undermine their
As the law stands now in many districts,
a young boy, for example, who harasses a
female classmate over the telephone can be
suspended for disrupting the sanctity of the
ideal classroom. A matter that otherwise
falls within the range of parental discipline
and legal intervention is now being decided
upon by people who have little or no rela-
tion to the children.
The new rules are turning public edu-
cation into a frightening environment in

that makes it difficult for students to
learn. Schools are places of learning, not,
prisons. In their attempt to make class-
rooms safe for students, these schools
have overlooked the fact that their prima-
ry job is to educate - the "good apples"
as well as the rotten.
It makes sense that no student should
fear for his or her safety when she arrives in
the morning. But schools should not be pro-
moted to judge and jury. In times when
children are not on school property, they are
under the auspices of their parents.
Similarly, between the hours of 9 a.m. and 3
p.m., it is the job of the school and teachers
to mind the children. Assuming a student is
dealing drugs on the playground or verbal-
ly abusing a comrade in the boy's room, a
school should most definitely take punitive
action. But when the actions moves away
from the school premises, it is between the
the child's guardians and the legal system to
take action.
If a particular problem were to get out
of hand, the police would likely find out
and the child would be subject to the juve-
nile corrections system. The schools'
actions could constitute a form of double
jeopardy. First, the school punishes the
child and after that, he or she could face
legal retribution. After being punished so
much for one - or even several - wrong-
doings, other things can suffer: the stu-
dent's morale and in turn, his or her stud-
ies. While protecting the rights and inter-
ests of certain students, these schools are
overstepping their role as educator and in
the process, abusing the rights of the par-
ents and students. Schools should do
something about the rise in childhood mis-
conduct - they should educate students
on the repercussions of bad behavior, not

U could help
improve public
high schools.
While I believe that it is
important that U of M and
other universities and col-
leges build campuses with a
diverse student body, I
believe that the idea of lower-
ing standards for minorities
cannot be relied on forever
and that it will not solve
problems that face minorities
and this country in the long
When standards are low-
ered for minorities, there is a
direct message being sent to
school districts thatahave
these minorities as a majority
of their student population.
The message is that their
standards for education and
graduating seniors are suffi-
cient and competitive.
Obviously, their standards are
neither sufficient nor compet-
itive, otherwise their students
would not be given lower
standards for entering univer-
sities in the United States.
The real crime here is not
the University's policy of
lowering its standards to
increase minority enrollment.
The real crime is that minori-
ty K-12 students are receiv-
ing subpar education and that
trail-blazing institutions like
the University are doing
nothing about it.
My point is that universi-
ties that have relaxed minori-
ty enrollment standards in the
name of diversity are not
doing anything revolutionary
or doing a favor for society
or minorities. In fact, a domi-
no effect is occurring that
could make minorities worse
off. The universities are
rewarding the students who
go to college, and the stu-
dents who don't go are on
their own with a poor educa-
I propose that a gradual
change be made to the way
minorities are aided when it
comes to education.
Universities can take the lead
by analyzing all immediate
and underlying problems of
inner-city schools. Once the
data is published, advocates
must go to the funding
source of those school dis-
tricts and demand change in
the quality of education and
the educational standards.
As disadvantaged school
districts improve the way
they educate their students,
standards for minority stu-
dents could be gradually
raised to the standards of
non-minority students
because they would be more
competitive. Eventually, the
differences between an inner-
city school and a suburban
school would be the same as
the differences between two
suburban schools under the
current system.

come from disadvantaged
school districts is only a tem-
porary solution. A creative
and well thought out plan
from our universities will
provide a permanent solution.
Bucket drives
are a bad
As one of approximately
30,000 students who cross
the Diag each day. I would
like to offer my opinion on
the activist phenomenon that
visits the big brass 'M'
almost as often as I do: buck-
et drives. Many students
would agreeathat bucket dri-
ves represent an unwanted
annoyance, but my gripe
comes from a different angle.
Like many students on
campus, I have done my
share of fund raising for vari-
ous activities and groups and
seen many strategies and pro-
grams for this purpose.
Bucket drives are, by far, the
least creative, least inspired
and lowest effort fund-raising
scheme I have seen. All I
have to do is take two steps
into Angell Hall to see other
groups rake in funds by sell-
ing donuts and coffee -
offering a service much
appreciated by passersby.
This is not a criticism of
the students who volunteer
their time to swing those
buckets in the cold Ann
Arbor winds - but instead, it
is a complaint to the leaders
of student groups who really
do their causes an injustice
by associating their names
with what has become the
Diag's greatest annoyance
(and that's no small feat). To
these leaders I would ask: If
you cannot come up with
something more creative and
effective than bucket drives,
you should check your moti-
vation for supporting these
causes. Are you a leader
because you really care and
are willing to put some brain
power into your cause? This
university is blessed with
resources; with a little effort,
you can make them yours.
review was
Upon joining my high
school newspaper, one of the
first things I was taught was
that if taken out of context,

would say that there are I I
songs on the album - so to
label the band religious based
on three titles is misleading.
What is more surprising is
her religious interpretation of
the song "Roadtrip." Those
who bother to read the full
set of lyrics will learn that
the song is about a dead
loved one and is not particu-
larly religious.
The only quote lliev gives
us are the sole references to
Heaven and angels found in
the song. Furthermore, it
becomes increasingly obvi-
ous to those who read the
review that Iliev probably
didn't bother to listen to the
album but rather came up
with a sweeping generaliza-
tion and simply read enough
of the lyrics to support it.
Lyrics are only part of pop
music today, but they are the
only topic of Iliev's article.
She never mentions the
superb playing to e found
on the disc - implying she
never bothered to listen to it.
Finally, she closes the
article with one glaring con-
tradiction. She declares that
SafeHaven will be successful
in the Christian Rock scene
because "more emphasis is
placed on specific lyrical
messages." But the lyrics
have been her sole complaint
throughout the entire article.
These poor lyrics are their
strength? It seems as if she
should have listened to the
album and maybe her article
would have made sense.
Proposal will
not solve
In the State of the Union
address, President Bill
Clinton spoke about the
threat that greenhouse gases
pose to the environment and
the need to implement pro-
grams to combat this grow-
ing problem. The tax incen-
tives and research program,
while a laudable effort, do
not go nearly far enough to
significantly reduce fossil
energy pollution and curb
global climate change.
Efficiency standards for cars,
light trucks and appliances
must be set and the carbon
dioxide emissions from
power plants must be
reduced. More programs to
increase the use of clean,
renewable energy sources
must also be set in motion.
Along these lines, the tax
breaks and subsidies that the
president has granted to the
oil and coal industry - the
chief greenhouse gas emitters
- can only serve to encour-
age more coal and oil burn-

The joys ofa free
man: Sunday TV
t is impossible to miss what you have
I never had, and for the past three years I
have only dreamed of free time and
Sundays. For those of us who have worked
every Sunday of our collegiate careers, a
full weekend seemed like a mysterious
and wonderful gift that only the virtuous
could enjoy. But I never could have"imag-
ined the fruits a Sunday could bring.
Besides ruining
any excuse I could
possibly have with
any of my profes-
sors, here I outline
the recipe for a per-
fect day of laziness
(only those who have
nary a care in the
world need apply):
First, wake up
sometime in the OSH
afternoon. Like WTHITE
1:30 or 2 p.m. or , UMING
anytime that you TN (U.
estimate is later
than everyone else in the same time zone
woke up, including your roommate. The
sun has to be up, it must be the perfect
day outside, and you have to have
absolutely no desire to leave your bed.
After a subsequent 30-minute nap and a*
least three personal debates about why it
would be best to return to sleep indefi-
nitely, the taste of the bar or last night's
other escapades will inevitably drag you
to a glass of water and the bathroom -
but don't worry, that is about all the
effort you'll make for the rest of the day.
Second, walk out of the bathroom and
land in that great easy chair that sits just
feet from God's gift to the world: the tele-
vision. If you are lucky like me, that
chair will be in the realm of seven tow
eight steps from the bathroom and will
rock back, way back, to simulate still
being in bed. If you are barefoot and in
sweats or your underwear, add a few
bonus points, it doesn't get much better
than this. A little preparatory planning
will land you the remote (still in between
the seat cushion and the arm of the chair)
and a bag of Ruffles, your two necessary
elements. Since it is too late for breakfast
or lunch, and way too early for dinner,
chips are the perfect remedy. Trust me.
Next, prepare for a workout. As my
roommate has so diligently taught me, the
most important aerobic activity you will
experience this day is something that
takes hand-eye coordination and complete
and utter attention: changing the channels.
Modeling yourself after masters like Butt-
head and Al Bundy, stretch out the fingers
by turning on the set and flipping throug
the low numbers (local networks an
community access) and then pause for a
moment on the preview channel ... it's
your menu, of sorts. And what an entree.
It was absolutely astounding to see
what America watches on a Sunday, and
I am certainly glad that I didn't wake up
any sooner because I have no need for
home repentance or a televangelist sav-
ior. These crazies who are too lazy to
achievessalvation by walking to thei
nearest place of worship are clearly o
my own heart, but how is watching
other people save themselves reward-
ing? I mean, that sounds like those peo-
ple who order a double cheeseburger,
large fries and then a Diet Coke - you
just can't save yourself from arterial cat-
astrophe with a concession such as a
diet soft drink, and you can't save your-
self from eternal damnation from the
venue of your La-Z-Boy. So enjoy your
sloth and pick a good show.
A movie with guns, bombs or really
cool stuff will do. I think I watched
"Roxanne" (cool nose and cool jokes),

"Real Genius" (cool science stuff), "The
Professional" (cool hit man) and
"Terminator 2" (just cool in general). Had
"Ferris Bueller" or "The Blues Brothers"
been on, it would have been bliss, but
these were just fine. Then came Olympics
There is nothing better on television
than the Olympics, and I am glad that my
jaunt into nonproductiveness occurred as
this historic events began in Nagano. You
can learn really cool stuff about a place
you will never go, hear constant updates
on that location's weather and get expo-
sure to lots of sports you never imagined
had a place on the worldwide athletic cir-
cuit. And thank God for CBS: I got to
watch two hours of curling competition,
Canada vs. the United States, and now f
know why they call it curling, what hitting
a stone on the nose is, and exactly why I
had never seen it televised before (no
sweet wipeouts, no exhilarating speed, no
heated interchange and no attacks with
iron bars by temperamental athletes).
I also got to learn, from an infomercial
of course, how to make a billion dollars
by sitting in my own home. At first, I
thought, what a great job for me and my
roommate. We could make two billion
dollars, all while eating nachos and
watching Beavis. Then I learned that the
true secret to financial success was rop-
ing idiotic mid-America into buying
your book, "How to make a million dol-
lars like I did, you idiot," and writing a

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