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November 12, 1998 - Image 4

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1998-11-12

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4A - The Michigan Daily - Thursday, November 12, 1998

c1ie £Qihil1 &ffg

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

Editor in Chief
Editorial Page Editor

'We will not grant them bargaining outside of state law.
If the state law changes then we'll recognize them.'
- Joe Duggan, associate dean of the University of California-
Berkeley s Graduate Division, on the university's refusal
to acknowledge Graduate School Instructors'union

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.
AAPD jumps on under-age drinking bandwagon

Under-age drinking has become the
.a issue du1jour among authority figures
at the University. The death of LSA first-
year student Courtney Cantor, along with
the recent alcohol-related death at Michigan
State University, has resulted in various
committees and other highly publicized
efforts intended to raise an uproar over this
perceived scourge on the community. Now
the Ann Arbor Police Department has
joined the campaign, bringing with it what
the University and its task forces could not:
the law. Over the weekend, the AAPD tick-
eted 75 minors and cited four parties for
violating laws against under-age drinking.
The police sent under-age volunteers into
three fraternities and one campus party
where they successfully obtained alcohol.
b^ As a result, three fraternities are under
investigation and risk a number of possible
penalties, including having their charters
This zealotry to crack down on under-age
drinkers and their supposed corrupters has
gotten out of hand, and the consequences are
beginning to outweigh whatever benefits, if
any, exist. The integrity of the methods
employed by the AAPD are highly question-
able. Enlisting people who are under 21 to try
to get unsuspecting fraternities to serve them
alcohol does not help anybody, it simply pro-
vides an opportunity for the police (and the
University, if it chooses) to take punitive mea-
sures against the houses. Furthermore, it cre-
ates an atmosphere of mistrust and antago-
nism among students in otherwise social and
w largely controlled environments. What it does
not do is help prevent tragedies associated
with drinking. The AAPD is trying to demon-
strate that it will not tolerate under-age drink-
ing nor the possible catastrophes that it can
cause. These recent sting operations amount
- -

to little more than a publicity stunt. It makes
the police department appear to be on top of
a problem perceived as pervasive and insidi-
ous, and it sends a message to the parents of
students that Ann Arbor is not a place where
under-age drinking is allowed.
For better or for worse, under-age drink-
ing is as common in Ann Arbor and among
students at the University as it is anywhere
else in the country - the latest efforts of
Ann Arbor's Finest will do nothing to
change that. Although there is no direct
connection between the police actions and
efforts to curb under age drinking on the
part of the University, the timing of the cita-
tions coincides with recent pressure put on
fraternities to go alcohol-free.
Further, under the recently amended
Family Education Rights Privacy Act, the
University has the authority to notify the par-
ents of under-age students who are caught
drinking. Vice President for Student Affairs
Maureen Hartford stated that the administra-
tion has not yet decided whether or not it will
inform the students' parents. The University
should not change its policies simply because
it now has the legal power to do so; instead, it
should respect students' privacy.
The belief seems to be that there are
major problems on this campus with under-
age drinking and that tough action is need-
ed to deal with them. Making examples out
of fraternities and others who serve alcohol
at parties (as well as the people who con-
sume the alcohol) is counter-productive.
The Ann Arbor Police Department has
jumped on the bandwagon of harassment
and punishment that has characterized
efforts to "help" students deal with under-
age drinking. University students need to be
given more respect by those who are sup-
posedly there to protect them.

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o en letter to President Bollinger
BY THE LSA STUDENT GOVERNMENT converse and ask questions of other advisors. It is
It has recently come to our attention that this open and friendly space that would be lost if
you plan to move some of your central admin- Advising was moved to temporary classrooms.
istration offices to Angell Hall. While our gov- Academic Advising is crucial to the success
ernment underst ands the reasoning behind this of LSA students. Each student must meet an aca-
move, we feel that it is our duty to inform you demic adviser during his or her first-year orienta-
of some of the problems that would result from tion to set up an academic plan for their years at
this change. Numerous resources, including the University. This initial contact is one of their
LSA Academic Advising and the Honors first and most important impressions of the
Office, would be displaced by the move. It is in University, and the move has the potential to
the interest of our government to assure that affect an entire generation of LSA students. But
these two institutions, which are so crucial to their interactions with Advising do not end there.
LSA students. are settled into new homes Academic Advising facilitates 36,000 in-person
before the adminstrative shift takes place. appointments, 46,000 phone calls and 23,000
Our concern stems from putting these student academic advisor e-mail messages per year.
services in temnorary housing, perhaps with These numbers are just one indication of the
classrooms trnsiormed to makeshift cubicle importance of Academic Advising to students.
units. Some of Ihe most important benefits of LSA Student Government is willing to
Academic Addxing are linked to its spatial endorse your move to Angell Hall, but only if
design, includiiw the privacy of individual offices Academic Advising and the Honors Office have
that the Cen'tr provides. Without permanent been settled into their permanent homes first. We
offices, not only will the quality of advising fear that any other decision would set a precedent
diminish, but the inconvenience and unsettling of compromising students' interests, thus priori-
atmosphere of the temporary space would tizing administrative objectives over students'
decrease the ef1iectiveness of advising in general. needs. Before the administrative relocation takes
Also, each adviser currently has the ability to use place, we are asking you to support the students'
the Internet to ensure accurate advising, which need for sufficient advising facilities by provid-
temporary cubicles in a classroom would not ing a permanent setting where adequate space
allow. Finally, perhaps what makes the Advising and computer facilities are available. Thank you.

Bollinger's test
will come when
he takes a stand
on the Code
Sf Lee Bollinger wants to reach out to
Istudents and change the way ihe
president relates to campus. he Won't
just move from the Fleming Buildin t
Angell Hall.
He will take a
stand against the
Code of Student
The Code is a bill
of non-rights. It is
inhumane, authori-
tarian and directly
contradicts the
longstanding prin-
ciples of the
University. If, for J
any reason large or ELDRIDGE
small, you are pur- STI' Ks
sued under the lrsls
Code, may God
help your soul.
In the Code, we can see how this
University views its students. And the
picture we discover is ugly.
"This Code is one of the University's
administrative procedures and sh
not be equated with procedures use
civil or criminal court," the document's
text states.
Among other things, these proce-
dures include piddling, silly little tra-
ditions like reasonable doubt, the
importance of precedence, public
hearings and the right to an attorney.
Under the Code, witnesses may not be
called unless both parties agree to
allow it.
Some standard for an institution d
icated to openness, education and in
vidual rights.
The text of the Code uses comforting
terms such as "values" and "essential
mission" to soften the otherwise overt
route it takes in trampling the rights of
students. (Read the full document at
http://www.umich.edu/~-osr.) When
the Code was approved in the fall of
my freshman year, few people were
"This isn't even a literate document.
... These are not values in any sense of
the word," said a member of the facul.
ty's governing body, shortly before th
Senate Advisory Committee or
University Affairs unanimously recon-
mended that the regents not approve tfr
Early in 1999, the Code will sr
face before the Board of RegeVt
once again. Internal and exter
review processes are looking into
success of the Code's implementatyr
- an intriguing prospect, considering
Code hearings take place in ats
pheres of total secrecy. Results will
be presented to the Board of Regets
in January.
If Bollinger were to come out in f of
of revamping -or ideally, comple ly
scratching the Code, the imp"et
would be forceful.
Throughout his preside y,
Bollinger has talked about the im r-
tance of a humane education.
Education is a civilizing force.T e
University has a great role to plaPin
shaping a better society. It is ann -
tution that shaped thervisions of peo-
ple like Robert Frost, Clareee
Darrow and President Ford. a,,}v
Bollinger is spearheading plan-to
build a theater dedicated to Univety
alumnus Arthur Miller. Approprnet1
one of Miller's most famous pay ,
"The Crucible," comments on a soety
spun out of control by the distortioj, of

The University president is a' First
Amendment scholar and a brilfiant
legal mind, someone widely regarded
to possess the elusive quality of being
a humane lawyer. In two years in
office, he has fostered an enormous
reservoir of good will among studen*
the object of far more affection than I
believed possible for a.. University
Now it's time for some hard deci-
sions. The approach Bollinger takes to
the Code's future will reveal the depth
of his remarks about institutional values
and building a tolerant society.
I don't judge anyone in leadership
positions on the basis of one decision. I
have great admiration for the vision and
integrity of Bollinger's predecess*
James Duderstadt, even though
Duderstadt's administration oversaw the
Code's implementation. One decision
does not make a president.
And the Code is an ugly topic.
Changing it will not bring the
University national glory, boost its spot
in U.S. News rankings or increase state
It will tug this administration in
controversy. The last 'time the Co'
was a major topic on this campus, stu-
dents stormed the Fleming Building.
But this controversy can be weath-
ered. Dismantling the Code is a cause
worth fighting for. Bollinger has articu-
lated a moving, inspiring vision of this
I Inive'it's, aidentity andnlae in th

Office work so well is the open space in the mid-
dle of thedoffice where students can consider their
questions and schedules and where advisors can

A copy of this letter was
sent to President Bollinger

m - -

Passing the buck
Court should make a ruling on voucher system

Money for public schools can continue to
be diverted towards private schools.
That is what the Supreme Court decided on
Monday when it resolved, eight to one, not to
hear a challenge to Wisconsin's school vouch-
er program that provides low-income families
with credit of up to $5,000 per child toward
tuition for private schools.
While the decision does not set any
national precedent, it still gives credence to
a disturbing national trend. On their face,
voucher programs sound like an excellent
opportunity for families whose public
schools have failed them. But the reality is
that vouchers have yet to produce any ben-
efit that outweighs the harms of taking
money away from public schools whose
resources are already meager enough.
Independent annual evaluations of the
voucher program in Milwaukee have shown
that there is no significant increase in learn-
ing for students who received vouchers
compared to their counterparts in public
schools. Private schools are not inherently
better than public ones - last year, two pri-
vate schools in Milwaukee that had students
who utilized vouchers shut down in the
middle of the school year.
Private schools can often be elitist and
have the ability to accept or deny students as
they please. Statistics have shown that on
average, private schools with religious affilia-
tions typically accept only one out of every
three applicants. Students who lack ,the
grades, test scores or intellectual ability to-
perform well at a private school - those who
need special resources the most - will
remain essentially abandoned in a financially
crippled school district. The purpose of public
education is to give every American child an
adequate scholastic background, not only the

smartest or most well-behaved students.
Vouchers can never cover all of the
expenses of sending a child to a private
school either. Total tuition costs often
exceed the value of the voucher.
Additionally, when poor families choose
out-of-the-way private schools (as necessity
often dictates), transportation costs can be
The number of families who use their
vouchers to send their children to parochial
schools is significant. So much money is
going to nonsectarian institutions that the
Wisconsin branch of the American Civil
Liberties Union opposes the decision of the
Wisconsin Supreme Court to uphold the
state's voucher policy on grounds that it vio-
lates the separation of church and state. When
the court ruled in early June of this year, it
said that school vouchers did not contradict
the First Amendment because the purpose of
the program is to advance secular interests
and that any benefit to religious institutions
would be purely incidental. But when public
money is being diverted away from public
schools and redirected toward religious
schools, it is easy to see why the Supreme
Court should have taken the opportunity to
set a national legal precedent on this issue.
Presumably, the Supreme Court's deci-
sion Monday was in accordance with the
tradition of waiting for several lower courts
to make rulings on constitutional questions
before it steps in to clarify legal disputes.
But such a process could take years.
Meanwhile, proponents of voucher pro-
grams in several states, including Michigan,
have been emboldened. The practical and
constitutional consequences of voucher
programs are far too dire for the Court to

U' treats
After reading Friday's arti-
cle about Steve Nadel ("Nadel
suspended after Code hear-
ing"), I feel it necessary to
point out a double standard in
the policy regairdi!:a academic
punishments fr sex offenders.
Steve Nadel was convicted
of fourth-degree criminal sexu-
al conduct for a crime commit-
ted in February. As you may
recall, this is much like the
case of one Jason Brooks, also
convicted of fourth-degree
criminal sexual conduct for a
crime committed February of
the same year. Nadel was sus-
pended indefinitely; Brooks
was not suspended from the
University at all.
The difference? Brooks is a
member of the U of M football
team - Nadel is not. Nadel
faced an academic punishment
that could easily lead to his not
receiving a degree - Brooks
was not allowed to play foot-
ball for four games.
A double standard surfaces.
It becomes clear where the
University's interest lies:
Punishing sex offenders is all
well and good so long as it
does not interfere with our pre-
cious football. I d say we must
ask ourselves what is more
important to us as human
beings, a fundamental respect
for all people or sports? Is it
more important to us to have
people who can walky the
streets of Ann Arbor without
fear or to have students who
can throw a ball really well?
I'd say that the University
has shown us a gross miscar-
riage of common judgement,
one that is certainly not in the

Princess Rachael Farber's
backside, I fail to understand
how doing so will mend rela-
tions at this wonderful univer-
sity. The harsh words Farber
had for my previous letter only
serve to make my feelings
stronger. Since when is criti-
cism a capital offense outside
of Staten Island? I had merely
wanted to express my opinions
of the fragmentation of the stu-
dent body. I foolishly believed
that some students from New
York would appreciate it. I was
wrong. Farber, if you still wish
for me to kiss your ass, I'm
having my teeth cleaned on
Lockyer was
'right on'
Sarah Lockyer is right on
about the zealots and converts
who control this campus "The
fervor of the new convert,"
11/ 10/98). These zealots con-
vince people that U of M truly
has a political atmosphere. I
beg to differ. Most of the pro-
paganda and rallies involve
protesting minuscule issues,
like freeing a cop killer. Others
believe that sleeping on the
diag in 20-degree weather will
curb the homeless problem.
Unfortunately, there is no
political balance at U of M.
Nearly every political organi-
zation is shifted to the left.
This results in Communist
groups whining about tyranny
in the United States. Sadly, the
professors fuel these
leftist/zealot groups. Most of
these groups base their argu-
ments on subjective emotion.

Societies are
First, I want to thank the
Daily for even acknowledging
that the Tower Societies even
exist, as many people at this
University would like to pre-
vent the majority of the student
body from knowing what goes
on in their own Union at all
("Secret societies pressed to go
coed," 10/28/98). Second, how-
ever, is a complaint on the
breadth of the article. While
the fact the both Michiguama
and Adara are in violation of
Title IX is important, what is
even more upsetting is their
co-opting of Native American
culture. Anyone who has
walked by the Union on
Monday nights has heard the
drumming and chanting com-
ing from the Tower, which is
some misguided and disre-
spectful attempt on
Michiguama's part to create a
sense of brotherhood and com-
munity by desecrating two
parts of many Native
American religions. Most stu-
dents do not know about the
totem pole that was supposedly
removed from an area near the
University ropes course, the
tree by the Grad Library that
they used to paint red late at
night or the silly names mem-
bers used to give each other
mocking Native names. If the
culture and religion of any
other minority group on this
campus was so blatantly trivi-
alized and misrepresented, this
University would be in an
uproar. So I ask you to consid-
er this as not only an issue of
sexism, but as an issue of bla-
tant and University-sponsored
racism. Removing the Tower
Societies from University
property because they violate

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