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February 18, 1998 - Image 4

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1998-02-18

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4 - The Michigan Daily - Wednesday, February 18, 1998

(be £girbiun &ifg

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 hoard.
All other articles, letters and cartoons do not necessarily reflect the opinion of The Michigan Daily.
Stadium Crunch

Students deserve 'M'
M ichigan Stadium is a well-loved fix-
ture at the University. The memories
that ensue season after season will never
leave the hearts and minds of University
students and alumni. But from the Athletic
Department's misguided decision to issue
split-season tickets to first-year students to
the recent proposal regarding new high-tech
scoreboards, the Michigan football stadium
has been the subject of many controversial
suggestions. The latest proposed change for
improving the Big House - presented by
the Task Force on Football Ticket Policies
- is to relocate the students' section from
the southeast side to the northeast corner of
the stadium, creating additional seating for
This proposal is practical and benefi-
cial to students. Many students enter the
stadium through gates 9 and 10 on the
northeastern side closest to Central
Campus. Relocating students to the north-
east corner of the stadium will shorten the
route students take to enter the stadium
and loosen the congestion outside the "Big
House." It will also displace the non-stu-
dent season ticket holders presently seated
in the northeast section, allowing those
who enter the stadium from the southeast
to access their seats without venturing out
and navigating through the human traffic
jam that inevitably forms in the stadium's
The most important aspect of this plan
is its intent to ensure that last year's issu-
ing of split-season tickets to first-year stu-
dents will not be repeated. According to
the task force, the relocation of the student
section will consolidate seating and aid in
the efficient allocation of the 5,200-seat
expansion planned for the 1998 season.
According to Athletic Director Tom Goss,

Stadium's new seating
the primary purpose of the expansion is to
mitigate the shortage of student seating
that was made painfully obvious last sea-
son. With a national championship under
its belt, the Michigan football team
promises to attract an even larger crowd
this fall - students deserve to be guaran-
teed a place to sit. The department should
allocate the seats as such, providing the
students with additional room rather than
allocating the expansion seats to non-stu-
dent ticket holders.
The University boasts a strong football
tradition. The "Big House" is a historic
site, full of nostalgic memories for thou-
sands of University alumni and students.
The stadium's rich heritage should be
respected and honored. The Big House
should be protected from unnecessary
changes that will detract from its historic
tradition. But some changes are necessary,
and the relocation of the student section is
one of them. Every Michigan fan who has
attended a football game can vouch for the
congested state of the stadium's perimeter.
Every first-year student issued a split-sea-
son ticket for the 1997 national champi-
onship season can attest to the need for
additional student seating.
Adjusting the seating arrangement to
encourage fans to enter the stadium at the
gate nearest their section is only logical.
And while the students will have to adjust
to a new perspective, the overall benefits
outweigh the break with tradition. The
congestion will be alleviated outside the
stadium, allowing students to thoroughly
enjoy their football experience rather than
fight with crowds outside. Students
should have access to the new seating
added for the 1998 season - and to full-
season tickets as well.

'Behavior like that is a violation of what we
consider to be our values at the University.'
- Ken Blochowski, interim director of the Office of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and
Transgender Affairs, commenting on the offensive vandalism found in Angell Hall

Veto violation
Line-item veto should remain stricken

0 n Feb. 12, U.S. District Judge
Thomas Hogan ruled that the line-
item veto violated the Constitution's
requirement that the president sign or
veto bills in their entirety. Stating that
"although the Line-Item Veto Act may
have presented an innovative and effec-
tive manner in which to control runaway
spending by Congress, the
(Constitution's) framers held loftier val-
The Line-Item Veto Act, passed in
1996, transferred too much of Congress'
legislative power to the president. By
allowing the president to delete certain
spending clauses within individual bills,
it was believed that wasteful spending
could be cut from the federal budget.
Since the bill was enacted, President
Clinton has cast 82 line-item vetoes.
Thirty-eight of those vetoes were for mil-
itary construction projects, which
angered many lawmakers.
This conflict caused the president to
.slow his pace, drawing further criticism
that he was leaving billions of dollars of
special interest projects untouched. The
bill also never defined what wasteful
spending is.
While many people view "hometown
pork" spending - money appropriated to
projects in legislators' home districts to
garner favor for him or her - problemat-
ic and wasteful, the line-item veto is not
an appropriate solution. Restraint on such
wasteful spending must come from the
lawmakers themselves, not from laws that
ignore the Constitution's intent.
If the electorate wishes to effect

the power of its vote to elect officials
whose spending ideas are more reason-
When the president vetoes a specific
appropriation, he is in essence negating
the input of one or several lawmakers.
The executive is negating the vote of
thousands of constituents who those leg-
islators represent. A line-item veto also
second-guesses the citizens' will -
something that goes well beyond the pres-
ident's pervue.
This is why the Constitution states that
laws must be passed in their entirety -
so that no one person can have complete
control over legislative outcomes. While
the president is elected by the people, so
too are U.S. senators and representatives.
When Congress passes laws, it does so on
behalf of the people. When the president
takes power into his own hands that was
not originally granted by the
Constitution, he is negating the will of
the people and the basic values held by
the United States.
Consequently, not only does the line-
item veto take away from the power of the
people, but it is unconstitutional and its
annulment by the federal district court
should be upheld. The line-item veto has
lofty ideals but its good intentions do not
make it acceptable. The means of this act
do not justify its ends.
It is now up to the Supreme Court to
decide the law's ultimate fate - they too
should see the unconstitutionality of this
act. No one but the citizens of the United
States and their elected legislators should
be allowed to decided where and how

Daily did not
cover sell-out
comedy show
The Daily needs to make
sure to throw Comedy
Company a plug for its next
show. The group consistently
sold out its previous perfor-
mances and it does a great
job, but the Daily failed to
mention us. Before its last
show "Boogie Laughs," a
reporter from the Daily came
during a practice to hold an
interview. Needless to say the
members of Comedy
Company were disappointed
that there wasn't a plug for us
before the show. Then the
group hoped for at least a
review but that didn't come
either. The Daily needs to
come to the group's next
show and see for itself why it
sells out time and again.
Comedy Company has an
improv show at the League
Underground on Feb. 20, and
its last and biggest show of
the year on March 20 and 21.
Keep an eye out for us, OK?
U.S. is
for suffering
This is in response to
Aaron Brooks' Feb. 6 letter,
"Letter Omitted Iraqi Faults."
Brooks said that only
Saddam Hussein is responsi-
ble for the suffering of his
people and not the United
States. He dhded his letter by
saying, "The United States
can't help it if Saddam does-
n't care." Well I beg to differ.
This is similar to a police
officer trying to get a fugitive
to surrender - so he puts a
gun to the head of a random-
ly chosen person and threat-
ens to blow his head off if the
fugitive won't surrender.
Then the officer explains that
it is the fault of the fugitive if
he eventually kills the inno-
cent bystander.
The embargo against Iraq
is immoral because the U.S.
leadership knows that
Saddam doesn't care about
his people. Saddam has, in
the past, gassed his own peo-
ple, imprisoned, tortured and
executed tens of thousands of
dissidents and has ruled Iraq
as a police state.
Saddam will never step
down from power even if mil-
lions of Iraqis starve to death.
Sure, the United States may
not have directly bombed
civilians during the war, as
Brooks claims, but enforcing
the embargo has indirectly led
to the deaths of more than a
million people.
UNICEF reports that

his stance.
Let's face it, the United
States is using the whole situa-
tion in the Persian Gulf as an
excuse to maintain its presence
there. It has several military
bases in the gulf and continues
to expand. The United States
has the weapons and sophisti-
cation to find and kill Saddam
but it doesn't plan on doing so.
Even President Clinton said
that removing Saddam is not in
the best interest of the United
States. Also, the United States
has the ability to find and
annihilate all of his weapons
by using its advanced satellites
and stealth aircraft, but this
would mean that there would
no longer be a "threat" to justi-
fy its military presence in the
I am no supporter of
Saddam, nor do I support his
manufacturing of weapons of
mass destruction. I am sim-
ply speaking on behalf of the
innocent Iraqi civilians.
Americans should start to
see this situation for what it
really is - an effort by the
United States to maintain
control over its oil fields.
The United States is not
the police officer of the
world but rather the bully.
What the United States is
doing is abusing its power,
and as it continues to do so,
the United States will
become increasingly unpopu-
lar with other nations.
It is time for ignorant
people such as Brooks to see
through the empty and mean-
ingless statements uttered by
U.N. and U.S. officials.
No matter how much it is
rationalized, the United
States is responsible for the
suffering of millions of inno-
cent people.
Daily reporter
Jewish faith
and traditions
The Feb. 11I article
"Orthodox community faces
challenges in remaining
kosher" reflected a common
and unfortunate misunder-
standing held both by people
in and out of the Jewish com-
munity. In fact, Conservative
Jews are bound by all laws of
Judaism, including the
dietary laws and the laws of
Sabbath, as opposed to the
indication in the article that
only Orthodox Jews are
obligated to these laws.
It was an irresponsible
omissioh on the reporter Susan
Port's part. She should have
done more research.
This poorly written arti-
cle was further hampered by
decontextualized informa-
tion. According to Jewish
dietary laws, milk products

ter about which she was
Errors by the media con-
tribute to the continued mis-
perceptions by fellow Jews
and non-Jews of what
Conservative Judaism stands
action places
'unfair stigma'
on students
Should the University
sacrifice self-esteem for cul-
tural diversity? I contend that
affirmative action policies do
much more harm than good.
Suppose that two minority
students, both from Detroit,
apply to the University. The
first student worked hard dur-
ing high school to achieve a
high GPA and good test scores.
The second student was aver-
age but not good enough to
gain admission to the
University without the benefits
of affirmative action.
Because of affirmative
action, both students obtain
admission to the University.
Although the first minority
student did not need affirma-
tive action policies to gain
admission, most students and
professors are likely to assume
that he or she is an affirmative
action student.
This is exactly why affir-
mative action policies are
harmful. It places an unfair
stigma on all minority stu-
dents whether or not they
worked hard to achieve their
goals. The students who do
work hard are not getting the
recognition they truly
deserve. Furthermore, I am
sure that there are more
minority students who earn
their right to be here than
those who gained access
through affirmative action.
This makes the issue an even
greater tragedy.
The University has a long
history of being one of the
most elite academic institu-
tions in the world. To tarnish
this history by allowing
admission to a few individu-
als who are not academically
qualified to attend the
University is an injustice.
The University is only
setting up failure for those
students who don't qualify on
their own merit. If these stu-
dents don't succeed and their
self-esteem is broken, then
the University should be held
accountable for the psycho-
logical and emotional dam-
age caused to them.
But instead of laying a
blanket stereotype on all
white male conservatives,
people should concentrate on

Winter Olympic
bring more th
just sports to
television vie
By now, it's common knowled
that the 1998 Winter Oym
Games are on their way to being t
most ignored event since the last Fa
For the longest
time I couldn't fig- ,
ure out why. After
all, athletes from
all over the world
competing for the
glory of their
fatherlands, one
man stands victori-
ous over a sea of
inferior warriors,
light glints off the
gold on his chest as
his national anthem j"
plays in the back- N
ground. What's not to like here?
It occurred to me this morning: T
Winter Olympics are just weird.
The summer games are much eas
to get into. There are lots of races, a
races are fun to watch. Seven hu
guys line up on a clay track on ab
tiful summer day. With their nt
inhuman physiques they fly. at t
sound of the pistol shot and the Winn
is declared in the matter of seve
dozen seconds. That's perfect forus.
Plus, the summer games have bi
ticket sports, some of which are ev
already popular. Basketball, baseb
track, soccer, tennis and pingpo
(whatever) are sports that most of
have engaged in or at least watched, i
non-Olympic context.
The winter games, by way of cntra
are totally alien. (With the exception
hockey, although presented in a sligh
castrated form.)
Budwieser doesn't sponsor the lu
too often, nor does ESPN carry offs
son bobsled training reports. Outside
this fake little CBS publicity wor
these sports just don't exist. With t
exception of a few events like sn
boarding and skiing, most of us
never evenattempted some of the
They require some explanation:
Curling: Combines the raw athle
cism of bowling, with the non-st
action of billiardswand the natu
charm and charisma of Scandinavia
A sport that, if someone told you
find the one event that was put in
the Olympics as a prank, you wou
pick it in a second.
Pudgy people, inertia and m*
zamboni technology at their fine
expression. Curling is a good one
tune into if you don't like lots of qui
movement and excitement or if y
like to take drugs in the middle of t
Two-man luge: For people w
don't get enough homoeroticism
men's figure skating. Two guys, ob
ously very close personal friendsa
covered in some kind of synt*
material tight enough to show of
good moyle's handiwork.
They stuff themselves, one on t
of the other, into a plastic tube a
slide insanely fast through an i
track, like a hamster trapped in a .
never mind. The two-man luge is n
closed-captioned for the metaphor
cally impaired.
Which brings us to.. s
Figure skating: The most unho&
sports. Women's (apparently define
anyone who can just spell "menstru

tion" or heard of it in Cosmo) skating
really, really creepy.
Aren't people who encoura
teenage girls to dress scantily a
jump around in front of a video ca
era arrested in any other context? N
during the Olympics (or the '70s f
that matter. I'm looking at yo
Polanski.) "Lolita" gets an NC-
this country, but network televisio
allowed to make us familiar with t
topography of Michelle Kwan
crotch. Ick.
Men's skating: The gay Nation
Hockey League. The funniest thin
about men's figure skating is that t
announcers and reporters have to t
so hard to make "it sound like oth
How else do you think that a wo
like "lutz" gets into our national v
ulary? They try and whip us into a fre
zy over someone doing a triple axle i
practice like it was Babe Ruth gesturin
to the stands with his bat. It's hard
respect an athlete who you know for
fact in two years will be wearing
Aladdin costume and ice dancing wit
Nancy Kerrigan.
Speed skating: A sport for midwes
erners to watch. Women with
behinds and thighs that could ci
bowling balls. We're used to it.
Spot the black athlete: With tI
exception of the year we had th
Jamaican bobsled team, this sport h
not had a medal winner since ... h



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