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October 12, 1998 - Image 4

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1998-10-12

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4A - The Michigan Daily - Monday, October 12, 1998

be S~id{igan &gi g

ASB teaches us
the truth about


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

Editor in Chief
Editorial Page Editor

I though it was kind of funny so
I sent (the application form) in.'
-LSA senior Eric McCutcheon, commenting on his upcoming
visit to Los Angeles as a contestant on the Wheel of Fortune

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
State suggestions
Admissions quotas should not begin at the 'U'


i. $ ....

E very year, students, admissions coun-
selors, state legislators and Michigan
residents debate whether state high school
graduates should gain admissions prefer-
ences over out-of-state applicants to state-
funded universities and colleges. This
issue emerges annually during the
Legislature's debate - which often focus-
es on the University - on state funding for
Michigan's 15 public colleges and univer-
Historically, the University is comprised
of about one third out-of-state and two
thirds in-state students. This is based on an
unofficial guideline that dates back to the
tenure of former University president
Robben Fleming in the late 1960s, who sug-
gested these breakdowns.
Currently, there are no quotas limiting
the number of admissions of in-state or out-
of-state students to the University. But since
the University receives state funding, the
Legislature has given the University a list of
suggestions and requirements along with its
budget appropriation. This addditional
paperwork. suggests that the University
should work hard to recruit and admit qual-
ified Michigan students. But the Legislature
has stopped short of setting a quota; some-
thing that should never be an issue.
The University takes pride in its diverse
student body. One of the main reasons for
such diversity on campus is that admissions
are based upon individual merit rather than
on a basis of a quota system. This puts out-
of-state students on level terms with their
in-state counterparts. Setting up a quota for
out-of-state admissions would deter the
number of out-of-state applicants, and more
important, could seriously affect the
strength and diversity of the student body.

This could harm the reputation of the
University as many would-be applicants
turn their focus to other universities, where
they know they would be considered on
their individual merits rather than on
uneven grounds brought about by a state-
imposed quota system.
In addition to the damage done to repu-
tation, the University's academic competi-
tiveness could also be affected. One of the
reasons the University is competitive with
many leading colleges and universities is
because of its strong student body that rais-
es the standards within the University. With
less academic diversity, the student body
could be weakened and campus's high stan-
dards might be significantly reduced, result-
ing in a less competitive academic environ-
While the state-imposed quota system
could assist in-state students in admissions,
these students could later be affected finan-
cially. Out-of-state students pay higher
tuition, and if a quota is established that
reduces the size of this group, it could
threaten the University's finances. This
could then increase the financial burden of
in-state students.
The most important reason that there
should not be a quota, however, is that the
University's autonomy would be under-
mined. If admission quotas were set for the
University by the state Legislature, ques-
tions could be raised over who really runs
the University - the Legislature or the
University Board of Regents. A university
so rich in tradition needs to be autonomous.
A quota system aimed solely at the
University would hinder, rather than
enhance the academic community of the


A united effort
Giving to the United Way is important

Non-profit organizations are bound to
struggle. While most people support
the concept of an establishment that aids the
community, not everyone supports the cause
financially or through volunteer work. Thus,
the process of raising money toward a goal
is slow and arduous. So when one of these
agencies faces a situation in which aid
becomes even more scarce than usual, an
extraordinary amount of work is necessary
to make a worthwhile impact.
Since 1996, the Washtenaw United Way
has been battling vigorously to rebound
from problems involving a former presi-
dent's corruption. The most recent cam-
paign began almost five weeks ago, with
both a new president and a new board. The
1998 campaign represents a changed image
for the United Way - one with a reassuring
degree of integrity and an impressive drive
for success. Laminated cards given to all
volunteers and donors list the positive
changes that have been made and those that
are in the near future, including significant
cuts in overhead, an increase in funding and
a concept of community participation in
decision-making. The cards also reminds
those involved of a shift back to the
agency's original focus - raising money
for a number of local non-profit organiza-
tions. As far as the moral integrity of the
management and the drive to succeed
among those involved with the campaign
are concerned, the United Way appears to
be back on track.
The process, however, is still experienc-
ing repercussions from 1996. Although
reports from individual campaigns are
showing significant improvements from
last year, there still appears to be some mis-
trust from potential donors. Notably, the

the College of Literature, Science and the
Arts - is showing only limited success.
Although a certain degree of apprehen-
sion from community members would be
understandable and even expected after
what happened two years ago, it by no
means should be used as an excuse not to
donate to or volunteer for a worthy cause.
Those who were responsible for the finan-
cial mismanagement are no longer
involved; those who have recently become
involved are struggling to right the
wrongs. But their efforts are being under-
mined by the shadow of their predeces-
sors' actions. Now should be the time to
increase donations to encourage the
rebuilding process, not to hesitate as a
result of misgivings caused by past inci-
dents. Those who have convinced them-
selves that the United Way is no longer a
worthy cause should re-evaluate the situa-
tion looking at the current campaign, not
the dishonesty they remember.
To donate is to willingly give one's
money to extraordinary cuses without
directly receiving anything in return.
Therefore, to discover one's hard-earned
dollars are being subject to extortion causes
a person to feel upset and violated. But the
fact is that the United Way is once again an
honest, worthwhile cause - one that is
deserving of this community's support. The
limited success of some individual cam-
paigns, especially that of the University,
suggests that a number of people are more
focused on the past than on the current real-
ity. A good cause aimed at the betterment of
its surrounding community should be
embraced by those who live and work in
and also rely on that community. This year's
United Way campaign is one that should be

Congress is a
group of
petty' voters
When I picked up my
copy of the Daily on Oct. 9,
I saw the front page article
on the House of
Representatives vote to
begin formal impeachment
proceedings ("House
approves inquiry"). When I
read the statistic on the vote
(258-176 for impeachment)
I was interested to see how
it broke down according to
party lines. According to
the article, all Republican
members voted for the pro-
ceedings, as well as 3 1
Democrats. This was very
There were two possibil-
ities facing our legislators
going into this vote. It was
either blatantly obvious and
clear that President
Clinton's actions deemed
necessary full impeachment
proceedings or it was not so
clear cut.
Let's look at the first
case, where it is obvious he
should be impeached. If that
were the case, we should
have seen a vote similar to
the one 25 years ago when
President Nixon was about
to be impeached. That vote,
according to the Daily arti-
cle, was 4 10-4 in favor of
proceedings. If it were bla-
tantly obvious that Clinton
should be impeached, and
we had a Congress made up
of men and woman who
were compelled to do the
right thing for the country,
we would expect to see a
landslide of just that sort.
But we see that the over-
whelming majority of
Democrats voted not to hold
total impeachment proceed-
ings. This means that the
majority of Democrats are
complete fools or they voted
only to back their party. If
indeed this is the case, we
should all be very disap-
Looking at the other
case, where it is not so cut
and dry, we would expect a
different outcome. We would
expect to see some indeci-
sion in Congress. We would
not expect a vote of 410-4
but one more like 258-176.
But that said, we would
again expect a Congress
made up of men and woman
of conscience to vote for
what they believed to be the
correct action. We would
expect the parties to be a
microcosm of the whole. We
would expect both the
Republican and Democratic
parties to have statistics sim-
ilar to the 60-40 split in
votes of the Congress as a
whole. But we don't see that
either, we see that not one
Republican voted against
impeachment proceedings.
This would seem to indicate
that, as oposed to voting

very petty career politi-
Article about
Delta Zeta
was wrong
I was very upset after
reading the Oct. 9 article
about the closing of my
sorority ("'U' Delta Zeta
chapter to close"). Despite
the efforts of our members,
the Daily just couldn't get the
facts straight. It's painful
enough that ournchapter
closed. Unfortunately, it
seems that the Daily basically
made up the facts of the story
to fit into its mold of what it
thought it should be. It seems
that the Daily was trying to
take yet another blow at the
Greek system.
Delta Zeta did not close
because we could not attract
new members. In fact, we did
not even try to attract new
members. Our special recruit-
ment week that, according to
the article, was part of the
"reorganization effort" was to
take place this week. The real
reason we closed can be
found later in the article. Last
year, we experienced a severe
decrease in membership due
to a series of deactivations.
Rush on a campus this size
cannot be conducted by the
small number of women that
stayed to help reorganize.
Basically, the article was
an insult to me and my soror-
ity sisters. In the past, the
Daily has gone out of its way
to make the Greek system or
any individual sorority or fra-
ternity look bad inany way
possible. The Daily should
get the facts straight next
Daily should
fill space with
better stories
This letter is concerning
the Sept. 29 article "Grocery
stores differ in price, conve-
nience." I realize that the edi-
tors of the Daily have a certain
amount of space they need to
fill for each issue, but this par-
ticular article was both a waste
of space and a waste of the
reader's time.
My initial response to the
headline proclaiming that
grocery stores vary in both
service and price was "No
kidding." Isn't that one of the
perks of a free market? The
article was filled with com-
mon knowledge and trivial
information. Meiier has an

words' are a
part of every
In the spirit of the "fair
and honest dialogue" that
Micah Peltz is seeking in
his Oct. 7 letter ("Viewpoint
was damaging to efforts for
peace"), I would like to
make a few points clear.
First, Peltz's conception of
an editorial page as a place
where one should not use
"provocative language" is at
odds with the history of
American journalism, The
editorial pages of America's
newspapers have historical-
ly been the home of some of
the most provocative lan-
guage in the business. And
in a more general sense,
"fighting words" themselves
have been intrinsic to every
struggle for freedom: Where
would the American
Revolution have gone with-
out the fiery pamphlets of
Thomas Paine? Would slav-
ery have ever been abol-
ished without the speeches
(deemed "violent" and
"inflammatory" at the time)
of a Sojourner Truth? While
Gandhi was a pacifist, his
words against British colo-
nialism were not nice and
friendly but fierce and out-
What would "a woman's
place" be today if people like
Gloria Steinem had never
been brave enough to use
"fighting words?"
As to the specific objec-
tions raised in Petz's letter:
Israeli soldiers do tote machine
guns. And it is my opinion that
any state that has different offi-
cial policies for one
ethnic/racial group than anoth-
er is racist. Are the Palestinians
suffering under a "holocaust?"
Well, six million of them
haven't been murdered - yet.
The question is, do we wait
until this happens or do we
head off another tragedy like
what happened to the Jewish
people while we still have the
chance? A Jewish friend of
mine.has said that Israel sup-
porters who object to Nazi
comparisons should be told,
"OK, then the Israeli govern-
ment aren't Nazis, they're
Klansmen" (i.e., the difference
is one of scale, not principle).
The truth is, supporters of
Israel have never been will-
ing to "sit down and examine
the facts" in the manner Peltz
suggests unless it is assured
that they control the terms of
discourse. This is because the
facts are against them: We
are not talking about an equal
conflict where "everybody
has their opinion and that's
that" but a fundamentally
unbalanced power relation-
ship where Palestinians have
been routinelydenied an
open forum for their con-
cerns. Is it any wonder, then,
tihai a nennI n cocntanty

A college students, our Spring Break
experences are rather predictable.
The one-week respite the University so
generously allots us each February is typ-
ically squandered on some of the most
bland activities imaginable.
Despite our truly heterogeneous aspira-
tions for adven-
ture, it is
inevitable that
our vacations
will be spent in
one of two ways.
Option A:We
wedge our butts
between our
sofa cushions
and imbibe"
seven days' SCOTT
worth of "My- HUNTER
14-Year-Old I< \1
episodes of Jerry Springer, Ricki Lake
and/or Rolanda, all the while intending
to do something intellectual tomorrow.
Option B: We take off with our cliques
to frolic for a week in the vomit-stained
streets of some warm, tropical tourist
town. Each day is spent sifting through the
miles of bare flesh for a hookup who is
actually over the age of 18.
Well, I'm here to tell you that there's
no reason to throw away your precious
Spring Break on Jerry Springer or 16-
year-old "women," no reason to expend
your few days of freedom and unfet-
tered glee trying to re-enact "Baywatch"
(because, frankly, you're no David
Hasselhoff nor Pamela Lee). You don't
have to embrace the airbrushed images*
of trivial diversions that Campus Travel
throws at you.
The University has something better
in store for you: Alternative Spring
Break, a week of service that some stu-
dents undertake in lieu of watching
"Rolanda" re-runs.
Each year, about 400 college students
take the week of Spring Break to travel to
40 sites across the nation and volunteer@
under different issues like rural poverty or
health and aging. This Project SERVE-
sponsored activity gives students a chance
to get help out communities and take a
dirt-cheap trip somewhere in the country.
And don't think this is just some
shady little thing that some scrub over at
Project SERVE thought up. Cool col-
leges like Columbia University do it,
too ... So, don't worry, it's OK.
Now, I know what you're thinking to
yourself right now: "I'm notchanging
no bedpans or diapering no old people
on my Spring Break."
But people have actually been known
enjoy ASB. Yeah, you might get your
hands dirty or mess up your natty little
Patagonia, but it could wind up being a
cool way to use up seven days.
Now, before you sit back and believe
everything I say, I should let you know
that I am no objective observer; I'm prob
ably just a little biased. I'm with a service
organization and last year, I went on ASB.
I'll tell you the truth: When I first
signed up, I had visions of going to
somewhere cool like New York or
Arizona to work. And even though I
faithfully filled out the form requesting
to go somewhere cool, things went
awry, really awry, and I was banished to
the butt-crack of Kentucky, imprisoned
in the mountains for seven days in the
actual birthplace of the Beverl
Hillbillies. (Moral: Don't get lured in b6
dreams of going to New York or
Chicago ... it's all a big trap, I tell you!)
Kentucky, dammit!
Now as a Northerner, I've got to admit
that I have been told most of my life to
make fun of people from the South (I
know what you're thinking, and yes, we
do consider Kentucky the South ... hell,
we consider lower Indiana the South.).
I'm sure all my fellow Yankees knov
exactly what I'm talking about; it's kind of

an old tradition that has developed here in
the North. For some reason or another,
we've developed a superiority complex
about our sector of the country.
Consequently, many of us have a few too
many prejudices about people
For instance: When a Northerner
hears a drawl, he immediately thinks
"Oh yeah, that's a Grand Wizard if I
ever saw one." Or he thinks, "Nope, thi
guy's definitely not too bright ... I'l
have to speak really slow."
The Southerners have always been that
branch of the family that we have tried to
keep under wraps so that they don't
embarrass us in front of all our stuck-up
Yankee friends. They have always been
that set of people that we have looked
down upon and laughed at because we
they remind us so much of Jed Clampett
But the good part about doing ASB is
that you get a chance to actually interact
with all the people for whom you work
and learn what they're really like. Just
look what a sensitive, open-minded per-
son the week turned me into. Even though
the area I stayed certainly had its fair share
of Jed Clampetts. I learned Southerners

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