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September 30, 1998 - Image 4

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The Michigan Daily, 1998-09-30

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4 - The Michigan Daily - Wednesday, September 30, 1998

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- - -_. _

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.
Gendered education
U' should be aware of possible sex biases

The University prides itself on teaching
subjects from a broad variety of per-
spectives. Be it in the humanities, social or
hard sciences, the administration has held
that the material presented should not be
one-sided, nor male-dominated.
In response to her observation that such
things were occurring at the University's
political science department, former assis-
tant Prof. Jacqueline Stevens sued the
University for sexual discrimination and
defamation earlier this month after she was
denied tenure in November 1997. That
month, according to the Office of Budget
and Planning's most recent tenure informa-
tion, the political science department was
composed of 22 tenured men and only six
tenured women. In addition, nine men were
in tenure-track professorships while only
four women held the same status. Between
1991 and 1998, the political science depart-
ment has recommended six out of eight
male candidates as opposed to only one out
of four women for tenure.
These shocking statistics give ample
reason for Stevens to suggest discrimina-
tory practices, which are not only unfair to
female professors in the department, but
conflict with two values the University
claims to stand for - equality and diver-
The suspicion of discrimination also
casts a poor image on the University. But
worse are the adverse effects the alleged
faculty irregularity has on students. With
such a preponderance of male perspectives,
political science students may receive a
slanted perspective in their curriculum and

course options.
American society has been deemed, in
many ways, male-dominated. History
clearly illustrates that men have had an
advantage not only in the field of political
science but also in the job market in gen-
eral. By appointing 16 men and one
woman to the LSA employment commit-
tees and subsequently promoting an
uneven ratio of men to women, University
administrators are perpetuating a cycle of
gender discrimination.
Political science is itself a male-domi-
nated field. By employing more female pro-
fessors, the University could help break the
typical male-dominated political science
trend, and give students an advantage by
offering a more holistic education. Female
students would especially benefit from
more equally staffed departments, as female
professors would serve as successful exam-
ples in the world of politics. Prestigious
professors, both men and women, can bring
notoriety to the University's already well-
known department. But such an imbalance
as Stevens claims poses a threat to the
breadth of the curriculum and the depart-
ment's reputation.
In the spirit of diversity, the University
should ensure that all departments
employ equitable tenure standards and are
composed of a cross-section of research-
ing academics. Only then will students
reap the benefits of a well-rounded edu-
cation. With a broad range of outlooks
and experiences to be shared, students
should be exposed to all possible view-

'I can't think of a topic more Important for
this University and all major research universities
than to think about American values.'
--- University Provost Nancy Cantor;
discussing issues that face modern society
GOALS ... A. QW! ,,.
ASS a. A AT Q00 s UTII
Ma MSA. #4(@!
Q. V*AT Do You TowI OF
A A I!# !*?8 *4&!
Beikey 11 Waissbaden togetoutof town

Poverty Pat, a
modest proposal
S everal New York City public ele-
mentary schools are trying to have
peanuts and all peanut products either
banned from their premises or moni-
tored as closely as a black teenager in
Macy's. Several other suburban school
districts have already succeeded in
this to varying degrees. Some just
have it in separate
parts of the cafete-
ria, while others go
so far as to ban
M&Ms because
the plain ones are
made in the same
vats as the ones
with the offensive
The reasoning is
cogent enough. 1M
Some kids have an ARE
allergy to the oil in
peanuts. A few of TAl
them are so sensi-
tive to it that just getting the oil on their
hands, inhaling particles crushed nuts or
even eating plain M&Ms made in the
same vats as their peanut brothers can
cause rashes, dizziness, difficulty
breathing and even death if the child
goes into anaphylactic shock.
Some parents have, predictably,
complained. Peanut butter and jelly
sandwiches have raised millions of
pink-cheeked tract-home progeny into
strong and healthy adults. To remove
the food entirely, to see it as "bad," is
a kind of blow to childhood itself.
Imagine the FDA finding out that car-
rot sticks and hot dogs cause diphthe-


On May 25, 1997, according to The Los
Angeles Times, David Cash peered into a stall
in a Nevada casino restroom and saw his best
friend muffle the screams of a 7-year-old girl
with his left hand and fondle her with his right.
Cash was in the restroom for two minutes. He
did not assist his friend, nor did he hinder him.
Cash did not call for help; he just left as his
friend shouted at the girl. When Cash and
friend Jeremy Strohmeyer reunited minutes
later, Sherrice Iverson was dead in the
restroom. '
To avoid the death penalty, Strohmeyer
pleaded guilty to the murder earlier this month.
As his best friend went to jail to await sentenc-
ing, Cash spent the day in class at the
University of California at Berkeley.
Regardless of his responsibility under the
criminal law, many in the university communi-
ty at Berkeley want to see Cash leave. The stu-
dent government passed a resolution calling
for Cash to voluntarily withdraw from the uni-
versity after protesters gathered at Berkeley's
Sproul Plaza to demand his expulsion. On the
day of the rally, Chancellor Robert Berdahl the
former president of University of Texas, was
asked if he would feel comfortable with his
daughter living in the coed dormitory where
Cash resides. Berdahl declined to answer. At
least Berdahl doesn't have to live and study
with Cash, who is currently protected by
Berkeley police.
Cash's major is probably not public rela-
tions. Not one to be mired in the past, Cash
blithely told the L.A. Times that he does not
think about the murder. "I'm not going to get
upset over somebody else's life. I just worry
about myself first. I'm not going to lose
sleep over somebody else's problems."
Instead, he is enjoying his notoriety. He told
the Times that the publicity surrounding the
case has made it easier for him to "score
with women." Anyone concerned about
Cash's future will find reassurance in his
plans, which he revealed to the Long Beach
Press-Telegram: "I'm no idiot ... I'll get my
money out of this."

A more timid personality might shy away
from publicity, but Cash seems eager to bask in
the glare. A hot topic on radio talk shows in
Los Angeles, Cash called KLSX-FM to partic-
ipate. "The simple fact remains that I do not
know this little girl. I do not know starving
children in Panama. I do not know people that
die of disease in Egypt."
Even though he says that he doesn't think
about it, one wonders how often David Cash
recalls the Memorial Day weekend 1997, when
he and Jeremy Strohmeyer, two weeks shy of
graduating from high school, went to Nevada.
As the Times describes, the slot machines
had lost their charm by early Sunday morning.
Cash and Strohmeyer were ready to leave the
Primadonna Resort and Casino when a rolled
up wet paper towel hit Strohmeyer's arm. He
picked it up and threw it back at the little girl
in black boots and sailor outfit who accidental-
ly threw it his way. Sherrice Iverson darted out
of the video arcade. Jeremy Strohmeyer fol-
They played hide and go seek for a few
minutes until Sherrice ran into the women's
restroom. When Strohmeyer caught up to her,
Sherrice stood in one corner clutching a yellow
"Caution: Wet Floor" sign. As Strohmeyer
approached Sherrice, she swung the sign at
him. After being hit by the 46-pound girl,
according to Jeremy's report to Las Vegas
police, he "went haywire." Cash watched as
Strohmeyer forced Sherrice into the handicap
stall and locked the door.
Cash jumped on a toilet to peer into the adja-
cent stall, where a young girl struggled to escape
the grip of a man more than twice her size.
David Cash was Sherrice Iverson's last chance.
David Cash is not his brother's keeper; he is
not in the business of looking out for others.
And legally, he doesn't have to be.
Sadly, Jeremy Strohmeyer's crime was not a
unique event. What is unique is Cash's lack of
This column ran in Monday's edition of
The Daily Texan, the University of Texas-
Austin's student-run newspaper.

The scarlet plate
New bill demands humiliation over punishment

E nacting stricter laws against drunk dri-
ving would appear to be a foolproof
move for Gov. John Engler as election day
draws closer. Last year, 544 people were
killed in Michigan because of drunk driving
accidents. Fighting this problem is a cause
nearly everyone can support. It is an issue
that should not divide Republicans and
Democrats nor should it create controversy
among voters or lawmakers. And yet last
week, after the State Legislature approved a
bill-package to reform current drunk dri-
ving laws, certain proposals remained sus-
pect at best.
Engler has expressed his unconditional
support for the entire 20-bill package. This
doesn't sit well with some Democrats in the
state House who feel the bills contain many
specifics that are simply counter-productive.
Among the most startling of these was a pro-
posed drunk driving penalty so infused with
grim symbolism as to border on the absurd.
The original legislative package included a
ghastly law - proposed by Engler himself
- that would make Nathaniel Hawthorne
turn over in his grave: the issuing of scarlet-
colored license plates to convicted drunk dri-
vers. This bizarre proposal was quickly
dropped from the final package, but its spirit
lives on in other parts of the bills.
Under the new laws, which would take
effect on Oct. 1, 1999, repeat offenders -
those convicted of drunken driving a second
or third time - would have their cars booted
outside of their homes for 24 days and 6
months, respectively. Measures such as these
seem to be aimed more at social stigmatiza-
tion than at saving lives. The goal, of these
laws should be to keep dangerous drivers off
the roads, not to humiliate them into compli-
ance. For one thing, it may not work. There is
no guarantee that someone whose car is boot-
ed outside of their home will be shamed into
never drinking and driving again. It does not

even guarantee that the person will not sun-
ply drive another vehicle within that time
period. Instead of giving a person the option
to be embarrassed or not, it should be the job
of lawmakers to simply get that person off the
This confusion of purpose is further
emphasized by the bills' comparative
leniency on first-time offenders. Those con-
victed for the first time will not be subject
to suspension of driving privileges nor to
the temporary loss of their vehicles. It
seems that the state is more interested in ril-
ing up neighborhoods against drunk drivers
by publically displaying their immobility
than they are in creating serious legislation
that would keep drunk drivers off the road
Engler and the state Legislature are treating
drunk driving more as a social disease than
as a physical threat to many innocent peo-
ple. Such measures, as have been outlined
in the new bills, are more punitive than pre-
ventative. While it is essential to punish
people who drive while intoxicated, it is
more important to make sure that there are
fewer drunk drivers on the roads.
But there are proposals in the bill pack-
age that indicate drunk driving laws are
moving, albeit slowly, in the right direction.
One provision requires that those convicted
a second time submit to drug and alcohol
treatment. While a few Alcoholics
Anonymous meetings will not solve the
problem of drunk driving, at least laws such
as these focus on preventing destructive
behavior before it results in catastrophe.
The Legislature's package also allows for
the suspension of driver's licenses without
court orders. These latter proposals attempt
to minimize the number of people who are
driving under the influence at any given
time. It is this kind of legislation that will
save lives; embarrassing lawn ornaments,
scarlet letters or public stonings will not.

Anyway, these selfish parents say
they don't see why they should have to
alter their child's diet, for the worse,
and inconvenience themselves just to
accommodate a segment of the stu-
dent body that is small by their own
admission. Further, they argue that
children are hard to supervise in an
elementary school situation, and the
rules would be useless because the lit-
tle rug rats would do whatever they
like anyway.
The parents of the at-risk children
counter that whatever inconvenience
their kids' allergies cause other par-
ents, it can't be any worse than putting
them in the way of such serious harm.
More to the point, they argue that
being white, uptight, semi-affluent
and constipated means that the world
their children inhabit should be totally
free from risk, unpleasantness and
pain. They shouldn't even have to look
at the homeless on the street if it ruins
their ballet lessons.
I, myself, could not agree more.
Something must be done about the
scourge of peanuts immediately. Our
preppie children are getting sick.
Dozens of them, I'm sure, have gone
home sick from school this year alone
- their little sick faces framed in the
back windows of Eddie Bauer detailed
Ford Explorers, vomit stains festoon the
front of their carefully purchased Polo
for Kids ensemble.
This must stop. I want to see puke-
colored ribbons on the DKNY outfits of
Oscar nominated titty-monsters. I want
Jimmy Carter crying in contrition on
national television. I want to see Mr.~
Peanut beaten and castrated at a Yankee
playoff game.
Think of the horror that has already
visited the WASP community (and
haven't our people suffered enough?)
Mothers racing home from work at the
software company warehouse space.
raffish blazer and National Public
Radio T-shirt rumpled from worry to
comfort children, some sick for hours;
Dads in Saabs with mustaches and.'
marketing degrees, wearing out the
crepe rubber on their Bass Weejuns to
be with their eugenically produced
soccer rats.:w
I, therefore, respectfully submit the
following modest proposal: Create a
100-percent safe school lunch food sub-
stitute so the precious peanut allergi;
can continue to eat with impunity. -
Begin by grinding up the poorest 20#
percent of the student body and makin
them into a delicious, safe pat. This
should be easy enough. Their parents
are probably some kind of labor union,
ethnic types. Offer them, say, $7 a
pound and the parents of the fatter chil-
dren will probably win over whatever
stragglers there may be. Perhaps a
slightly higher price for the more well.
marbled children.r e
Think of the savings alone in busing
that would result by eating the poor. It
would also eliminate the guilt and dis.-
comfort of having to interact with peo-
ple outside of your socioeconomic
With Poverty Pate, there is no risk
of peanut contamination, and no more
sick little Joshuas, Kristens and
Ashleys. Some of the children may be
a little leery at the prospect of canni-
To ameliorate this anxiety, explainto
them how slaughtering and eating the
poor will prepare them for jobs in the


Sports teams
bonding is all
in good fun
I am saddened to hear that
instances still occur in the
year 1998 as those stated in
the Sept. 23 article "Western
suspends hockey players,
While we hear stories of
"hazings" and "initiations"
happening all the time at
other universities, I am hard
pressed to believe that it
happens here. We all know
that at the University, we
don't have any underage
drinking, no promiscuous
sex, no drug use and no
hazings or initiations of any
I'm sure these standards
range all the way from
SAPAC to the men's hockey
squad. I'm sure this incredi-
bly close-knit group that
brought the national cham-
pionship back to Yost
Arena spends Saturday
nights watching movies and
eating popcorn.
While that may not be a
very realistic picture of
things, I'm sure that what
the sports teams do behind

Wolverines, then so be it.
'M' fans
should shout
'Hail!' at
As the baseball playoffs
begin, we're going to hear
Atlanta fans shout only one
word when the National
Anthem is played. In Fulton
Country Stadium, you'll hear
" ... o'er the land of the free,
and the home of the
In Baltimore's Camden
Yards, fans shout "0" (for
the hometown Orioles) when
the National Anthem gets to
"0, say does that star-span-
gled banner yet wave ..."
In Michigan Stadium,
where fans know only one
word of the Maize and Blue
("Hail!"), it's always sur-
prised me that we don't shout
"Hail" when the National
Anthem gets to" ... what so
proudly we hailed!"

Daily sports
needs to do
more team
Do the Daily sports writ-
ers do any research? Do they
think it is alright to write and
print an article about an ath-
letic team without even
knowing who is actually on
the team?
For the past two articles
about the golf team,
("Linksters prep for
Hawkeye," 9/25/98 and "Golf
searches for consistency in
Iowa," 9/28/98) you have
included the same picture of
former golfer Kyle Dobbs.
Dobbs's last year on the team
was 1996-97 (two years ago).
I cannot pinpoint exactly
when, but I do remember
reading a couple of articles
about the golf team last year,
also, that had Dobbs's picture
attached. I hope the Daily real-
izes that it is not only embar-
rassing itself but it is embar-
rassing me and the rest of the
golf team. If we are not impor-
tant enough to have current
pictures and information pub-
lished about our program, then

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