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February 25, 2000 - Image 2

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The Michigan Daily, 2000-02-25

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2 - The Michigan Daily - Friday, February 25, 2000


Bush allows execution of woman
Texas governor rejects claim of self-defense


- Y) I

62-year-old woman was executed by
injection yesterday after Gov. George
W. Bush rejected her claim that she
killed her fifth husband in self-defense
and deserved a reprieve.
Betty Lou Beets became the fourth
woman to be executed in the United
States since the Supreme Court in
1976 allowed the death penalty to
resume. She was the second woman
executed in Texas since the Civil War.
She gave no final statement as she
lay strapped to the death chamber gur-
ney. She made no eye contact with the
victim's family, but smiled at relatives
watching through a window at her
side, She continued smiling as she
slipped into unconsciousness.
Death penalty opponents and
domestic violence organizations had
urged Bush to grant Beets a 30-day
delay, arguing it would be consistent
with his description of himself as a

"compassionate conservative" in his
presidential campaign. The delay was
Bush's only option, since the state
parole board did not recommend that
her sentence be commuted to life in
During his 5 1/2 years as governor,
120 convicted killers have been exe-
cuted in Texas. He has spared one con-
demned inmate.
"After careful review of the evi-
dence of the case, I concur with the
jury that Betty Lou Beets is guilty of
this murder," Bush said in a written
statement after returning to Texas from
California, where he was campaigning
for the Republican nomination.
"I'm confident that the courts, both
state and federal, have thoroughly
reviewed all the issues raised by the
Beets and her lawyers insisted the
former bartender-waitress, convicted
of fatally shooting fifth husband

Jimmy Don Beets nearly 17 years ago
and burying his body under a flower
garden, was the victim of years of
domestic abuse and should be allowed
to live.
Yesterday the 5th U.S. Circuit Court
of Appeals in New Orleans rejected an
appeal that accused the state of not fol-
lowing its own rules in reviewing
Beets' case. The arguments were dis-
missed Wednesday by a federal judge
in Austin as a delay tactic.
Beets' lawyers also took the matter
to the U.S. Supreme Court, which
rejected it without comment.
According to the governor's office,
Bush had received 2,108 phone calls
and letters opposing Beets' execution
by yesterday afternoon, and 57 calls
and letters favoring it.
"A decision to stay the execution
of Ms. Beets would demonstrate
your compassionate conservatism
and that you are willing to do what

is right even in the face of potential
criticism from your constituents,"
the Rev. Jesse Jackson wrote Bush
Steven Hawkins, executive director
of the National Coalition to Abolish
the Death Penalty, implored to Bush
grant a reprieve "so evidence of her
being battered ... may be fully evaluat-
"Far from receiving careful consid-
eration, the role of domestic abuse in
Betty's crime has been continually
swept under the rug by the Texas court
system," Hawkins said.
Before Beets, the last woman exe-
cuted in Texas was Karla Faye Tuck-
er, on Feb. 3, 1998. Tucker hacked
two people to death with a pickax
but said she had a religious conver-
sion in prison and appealed for
mercy. Bush was criticized for
mocking Tucker in a magazine inter-
view last year.

More gas price hikes on the horizon
WASHINGTON -Already facing sticker shock at the gas pumps, motorists
likely will experience more price jolts this spring and summer, energy experts
said yesterday.
With crude oil prices high and supplies low, refiners are not producing as
much gasoline as normal, a recipe for costlier fill-ups in the months ahead.
"There's going to be some finger-pointing if we enter the summer with $2-a4
gallon gasoline," predicted Sen. Frank Murkowski (R-Alaska), chairman of the
Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee.
While heating oil prices are beginning to ease, the Energy Department said
similar price spikes could flare in the summer, a heavy driving time, and' the
American Automobile Association warned of possible short supplies then.
Many motorists are paying nearly $1.50 a gallon and even $2 for regular gaso-
line, according to various studies.
The national average this week was $1.41, a nickel higher than the week
"We will likely see even higher prices this spring," John Cook, petroleum
director at the Energy Information Administration, testified.
Cook said low inventories of crude oil and heating and diesel stocks, com*
bined with soaring crude prices, led to the extremely sharp and sudden price
increases in heating oil late January and early February.

Continued from Page 1
school here," Michigan coach Red Berenson said.
"This is why you come to Michigan is to play in
games like this. These are the most fun games, and
the games you remember as a player when your
career is over."
Tonight's game will be the first meeting between
the two teams since Jan. 7, when Michigan came
away with a 2-0 victory. The game, which ended in
an all-out bench-clearing brawl, is still fresh in the
memory of both teams.
"We know what went on last time we played
and they know it too," Michigan center Mike

Comrie said. "Both teams still have that in the
back of their mind and we'll both probably use it
as a motivator. They're a good team and we know
that. We've got to bring our A game if we want to
The two teams will go at it again on tomorrow
night in a non-conference game at Joe Louis Arena.
Although the game will have no bearing on con-
ference standings, it may play a role in the way
NCAA Tournament selection committee seeds the
two teams in next month's tournament.
But standings and rankings take the role of the
undercard in a hated rivalry like the one these two
teams share.
Tomorrow night's game between these two


heavyweights will provide tonight's loser with
one last chance for redemption, and a chance to
throw one last punch before the post season
"The game on Friday is a huge game for both
teams, but the game on Saturday is a huge game to
the team that loses on Friday," Berenson said.
"Our point of emphasis is that we need, to play
the best Michigan hockey we've played this sea-
son. Offensively, defensively, special teams - all
the little things need to go our way. If we do that
the game should end up in our favor, but they're
saying the same thing. They have to have their
best game to beat us and we have to have our
best game to beat them."
Continued from Page 1
exemplifies the fact that the United
States is still not a place where inte-
gration is practiced rightfully.
"At the highest moment of its authori-
ty, the Supreme Court said that where
there is separate, there can never be
equal ... In the 1960s, the fight to inte-
grate higher education had never been
inferiority-based on science, but on
social inequality," she said.
Rackham student William Copeland
initiated a 19-second silence period
followed by a 19-second cheering ses-
sion to recognize each day the Stu-
dents of Color Coalition has occupied
the Michigan Union Tower in protest
of the senior honor society Michiga-
Copeland said the University's pas-
sivity in resolving the SCC's concerns
surrounding Michigamua represents
the University's stance that "it has
more pressing issues than answering to
the public folk."
But first-year Law student David
Boyle said he believes yesterday's rally
to fight for affirmative action is not
entirely a reflection of SCC's attack on
Michigamua. "It's not exactly the same
issue, but it is related to the amount of
respect that the University is paying to
minorities," he said.
Boyle added that the tower occupa-
tion may be the result of the Universi-
ty's failure to respond to students'
concerns about minority issues.
"If the University paid more attention
to the drop in minority enrollment, the
tower takeover may not have happened
in the first place," he said.
After the rally members delivered a
petition signed by 2,500 students
demanding increased enrollment of
underrepresented minorities as well as
an agenda of concerns for the Univer-
sity to address.
Included in their agenda was Michiga-
mua's right to exist as a student group at
the University and the fact that black
enrollment for incoming freshmen
dropped 10.4 percent in Fall 1998 to Fall
1999, according to University records.

Peacekeeper role has said he expe
problem to be r
could have more risk possibly without
WASHINGTON - NATO's France, whose p
struggle for ethnic calm in north- charge of the et
ern Kosovo has raised the stakes Mitrovica area, is
for U.S. involvement in a peace- 600 to 700 more trc
keeping operation that has no end
in sight. Plan could
The 22nd Marine Expeditionary ,
Unit, aboard ships in the Mediter- Medicare
ranean, is standing by as potential
U.S. reinforcements, although Pen- WASHINGTON
tagon spokesman Kenneth Bacon administration rene
said yesterday that NATO comman- a Medicare overha
ders have not asked for the Senate Republican
Marines. substantially incre
Expanding the U.S. troop presence costs for retirees.
in Kosovo would raise the risk for a The plan could d
force that has largely escaped casual- miums up by as mu
ties. not including extra
In Washington and other allied cap- prescription drug be
itals, there is no appetite for a major letter from Health a
additional buildup of troops in Koso- Department actuary
vo. But NATO feels it cannot let The letter, dated
the flare-up of ethnic violence in time for Democra
the city of Mitrovica go unan- distribute it at a Se
swered. mittee hearing yes
Defense Secretary William Cohen legislation was und
U.N. aproves Congo brooke has said th(
not provide troop:
cease-tre monioitoring logistical support.
Many council n

cts the Mitrovica
esolved shortly,
t U.S. reinforce-
eacekeepers are in
hnically divided
preparing to send*
pops to the area.w
q -- The Clinton
wed its criticism of
ul plan favored by
s, saying it would
ease out-of-pocket
drive Medicare pre-
ch as 47 percent -
charses for a new
nefit, according to a
nd Hunian Services
Richard Foster.
Feb. 23, arrived in
atic lawmakers to
nate Finance Com-
sterday, where the
er discussion.
e United States will
s but may provide
members recognize

UNITED NATIONS - Half a that sending such a small mission to a
year after six nations and three rebel country a quarter the size of the United
groups signed a cease-fire on Congo, States with few roads and poor commu-
the U.N. Security Council yesterday nications may not be militarily effective
authorized a 5,500-strong observer but can be politically important.
force to monitor its implementation
and lay the groundwork for possible Pope visits Egypt,
deployment of a peacekeeping force. P p iisEt
The former combatants are already denounces violence
pressing for the United Nations to
send peacekeepers, but the Security CAIRO, Egypt - Denouncing
Council first wants the opposing sides violence in the name of religion a-
to honor the cease-fire. "an offense against God," Pope
The 15-member council unani- John Paul II called for tolerance
mously agreed to the U.S.-drafted yesterday as he began a visit to
resolution to send 500 military Egypt, where clashes between Mus-
observers, supported by 5,037 lims and Christians recently left 23
security troops and logistics per- people dead.
sonnel. In beginning his pilgrimage to
The group will verify that all par- retrace some of the epic passages
ties are observing last summer's from the Bible, John Paul became
cease-fire aimed at ending a 1 1/2- the first Roman Catholic pope to
year war in Congo that has destabi- visit predominantly Islamic Egypt.
lized central Africa.
U.S. Ambassador Richard Hol- - Compiledfrom Daily wire reports.
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