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April 13, 2000 - Image 4

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The Michigan Daily, 2000-04-13

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4A -- The Michigan Daily - Thursday, April 13, 2000
~Ib £Iiriiaut aailg

I became a ghost three months ago, know what Ifound?

420 Maynard Street
Ann Arbor, MI 48109
daily.letters@umich.edu
Edited and managed by
students at the
University of Michigan

MIKE SPAHN
Editor in Chief
EMILY ACHENBAUM
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.

Rogels' donation equals opportunity

There is a term used to describe those
alums that spent a good part of their col-
lege careers on the second floor of the Student
Publications Building putting out a daily news-
paper. They're called Daily Ghosts.
They wander in from time to time, mar-
veling about how the old building still looks
the same. We joke that their stuff is probably
still in the drawers.
No matter what year
they graduated college,
each Daily Ghost tells A
the same stories. They
talk about working for
or meeting Daily leg-
end Tom Hayden.
They stare at the old
dumbwaiter that used "
to carry unpolished
dummy copy from the
top floor to the base- Heather
ment production area.
It hasn't worked for Kamins
years, but the wooden K nd d
frame remains in the
office like an altar for
the Ghosts.
Former news editors always tell about the
times that the production staff would yell up to
the top floor, "Sports, send down a dummy."
"Then one of the news staffers would say,
'which one?"'
The Ghosts are easy to pick out. The dead
give away is the password. Well, not a specific
password so much as general Daily-speak, the
lingo gathered and passed from one group of
students to another. The first one is Daily Pay,
which is obvious. It's the pocket change we
earn, which helps out with rent though we'd all
do it for free. There's the Bat Cave, a hidden
room that looks like a closet, but really it's

home to the Daily's most intense meetings.
And of course there's the Attic and Jeopardy,
two coveted senior traditions.
Even if they choose not to speak to anyone,
the Ghost's give themselves away. Usually they
don't look like college kids. They're older, of
course, and weathered by the real world. But
they're different from strangers or parents, too.
They all have this funny look on their face.
It's like stepping through the leaded glass
door that marks the Daily makes them unable
to see the students running around the office.
Instead, they see those they worked with how-
ever many years ago. They see themselves.
I, and the other graduating seniors on staff,
joined a long and impressive list of Daily
Ghosts nearly three months ago. In that time
I've had the chance to do something I had
always been curious about. I got to be a regular
student with regular hours and free time to
explore Ann Arbor beyond Maynard Street.
I've been able to start papers before 2 a.m.
I went to free skate at Yost Ice Arena. I've
spent nights watching the final episodes of
90210 and eating White Castle. I've attended
art shows, poetry readings and parties on
weeknights. Not to my surprise, during my
excursions I've confirmed two suspicions.
Ann Arbor is a tremendous place to go to
college. It's a perfect collage of intellectualism,
athletics, arts and diversion. You could go
through school 50 times here and never walk
into the same buildings, join the same clubs or
leave with the same ambitions. And while
exploring I did find that I missed out on a lot
during my first three-and-a-half years here.
But I also reaffirmed my highly-held belief
that the Daily is one of the University's truly
special treasures. I'm not just talking about the
Daily as a vehicle for public service. I do think
that the role of the newspaper as the main

source of information on the community's tri-
umphs and tragedies is momentous.
And the Daily as teacher, training genera-
tions of journalists who have gone on to be
leaders in the Civil Rights Movement, win
Pulitzer Prizes and write brilliant novels, also
is extremely significant.
But all of that is just a small part of what
the Daily has been to those who were lucky
enough to stumble unsuspectingly up the 70-x
year old steel staircase into a large carpeted
room full of busy and eager college kids
making phone calls and telling stories.
These are the stories that will become the
Ghosts' stories. They comfort and inspire.
Like most, I never had a close relationship
with my resident advisor in East Quad fresh-
man year, but I had editors and older staffers
who I could ask which classes to take and
who brought me soup when I came down with
mono. I remember watching the then-outgoing
editors cry as they walked out of the Daily for
the last time as staffers. I now understand why.
At the Daily, editors are much tougher on the
writers than editors at any major metro paper
ever would be. Staffers get in fights about head-
lines and the size of photos. Sometimes staffers
get so upset they go home in tears. But the out-
bursts are worthy. The difference between one
word and another is cause for debate because'
the push for perfection is unmatchable. The
pureness of intent is unparalleled. There are no
corporations driving the news, just a bunch of"
kids with complete control. Never again will it
be like this - this genuine.
- Thank you to everyone I have work
with. I can't imagine being locked up in an
old building with a better bunch of people.
This is Heather Kamins'final column for the
Daily. She can be reached be via e-mail at
hbk@umich.edu.
GRINDING THE NIB

Sn an act of remarkable generosity,
Alumni Association President
Richard Rogel and his wife, Susan,
g ave the University $22 million for
out-of-state financial aid this week.
The Rogels are addressing two con-
cerns with their incredible gift. The aid
their donation provides will combat
some of the financial elitism among
out-of-state students that is a conse-
quence of, what is for many, prohibi-
tively high tuition. And bringing down
the cost for out-of-state students will
increase diversity by allowing many
lower income students to attend the
University.
Out-of-state students are often those
who need the most financial assistance,
as not all out-of-state students are
wealthy, as commonly thought. Many
qualified out-of-staters do not even
apply to Michigan because the cost of
attending is overwhelming. This year's
average cost for non-resident under-
graduates is an amazing $19,514. But
even for students who display full
financial need, financial aid usually
falls short by as much as $10,000, for
which Rogel's donation will help com-
pensate.
Making quality higher education

more accessible is vitally important
and the University now has more of the
resources it needs to advance this goal.
We extend our most heartfelt grati-
tude to the Rogels for their incredible
generosity and years of dedication to
the University. Their gift will directly
make a huge impact on the lives of
many students and make this a better
institution in the process.
Their commitment to making higher
education more accessible and to the
furthering of diversity at the University
is an inspiring tribute to this institution
and helps guide it in the direction it
needs to be going.
Like the Rogels, we hope this only
the first of many donations dedicated
to easing the financial burden that
keeps many highly qualified students
from attending the University. They
have set an important and moving
example for the rest of the University
community and deserve our highest
praise and respect.
"If you go to school with people
who look like you, act like you and
who were raised like you, how are you
going to be prepared for the world?"
Rogel said. We couldn't have said it
better.

CHIP CULLEN

Don't repeat Seattle
Protesters must be heard in D.C.

As the end of the term draws near it
is easy to get bogged down in per-.
sonal considerations. But some issues
are so important they merit our imme-
diate attention. The debate between the
International Monetary Fund and its
critics is a matter that demands not
only student awareness, but involve-
ment as well. Often this international
bureaucracy, as well as others like it,
seems far removed from daily life, but
its impact is felt every day by dozens
of nations and countless people.
The IMF, a prime mover in the glob-
al economy, will be holding their
spring semi-annual meeting on April
16th in Washington, D.C. More than
ten thousand demonstrators from a vast
array of interests and backgrounds have
converged to make their dissenting
voice heard. We would all do well to
shift our attention to this weekend's
events in the nation's capital, and to lis-
ten to what these people have to say.
The IMF plays a prominent role in
the intricate economic relations
between states and multinational cor-
porations. As such, its policies have an
immediate effect on millions of lives.
Many of these policies have been
denounced for what detractors see as
contributing to economic hardship in
underdeveloped countries and exacer-
bating the disparity of wealth between
First and Third World nations. In short,
many observers point out that by tying
its loans to stringent debt reduction
policies, the IMF can hurt people in
poorer countries.
Enter the demonstrators. A grass-
roots movement has brought together
labor unions, religious groups, stu-
dents, worker's rights advocates, envi-
ronmentalists, women's groups,
farmers and others to protest the poli-
cies of the IMF and advocate debt
relief for the poorest countries. Rarely
has such a diverse and broad-based
assembly of people united around a
common cause. This remarkable col-
lection, one that cuts across age
groups, political ideologies and even
national borders, underlines just how

significant these issues really are.
A reassuring sign that this coalition
is attracting notice is the appropriate
accommodation that has been made to
ensure a peaceful, orderly, and safe
environment for the protests. The
Washington Metropolitan Police
Department has said that it will close
area streets to make room for the
activists. The George Washington Uni-
versity, situated literally blocks from
the buildings that house the IMF as
well as the World Bank, has opted to
cancel classes for the weekend.
These preparations evidence a com-
munity much more responsive than the
officials who mishandled the recent
protests of the World Trade Organiza-
tion in Seattle. In that instance, a true
dialogue over critical global economic
questions was hindered by the
deplorable images of activists bloodied
by police force. The resulting discord
was unfortunate, especially since the
WTO is another example of a topic that
seems so obscure to most people
despite its powerful influence on world
affairs.
University students can be an active
force for challenging old systems and
effecting positive change. Issues of
environmental protection and sweat-
shop labor are high on the list of causes
that students have taken a major role
in. Yet despite the fact that the interna-
tional financial organizations wield so
much influence in these areas, students
have not given them adequate attention.
The workings of the global economy
are indeed often abstract and unglam-
orous. But there can be no denying that
the IMF, the World Bank and the WTO
have a great deal of influence in how
the business of the world is run. Stu-
dents who desire to be politically aware
have a responsibility to seek out infor-
mation and to educate themselves as to
what these agencies do, and how the
questions surrounding their policies
can be answered. Keeping a watchful
eye and an open mind directed towards
the demonstrations in Washington is a
good way to start.

Letter was 'deluded
and misinformed'
TO THE DAILY:
A word of advice to the avid letter-writer
before you launch a public debate about sexu-
al assault in the letters to the editor - check
your facts. I was appalled to find a significant
portion of the editorial page devoted to a
deluded viewpoint by David Goodman ("Vic-
tims can take steps to prevent sexual assault"
4/10/2000) bashing Anna Philips for her
response to Josiah Silverstein and her
informed explanation of victim-blaming. I
find it sad that the Daily is so quick to publish
(and highlight, no less) a viewpoint like
Goodman's that is so lacking in substance.
If Goodman had taken a moment to
check the official Michigan Criminal Sexu-
al Conduct (CSC) Laws, perhaps he would
have thought twice before wasting ink and
newsprint - not to mention our time. As
Philips stated clearly in her letter, "under
Michigan law, a woman who is drunk can
be legally raped." The State of Michigan
defines Criminal Sexual Conduct as sexual
penetration (not exclusive to intercourse, as
Silverstein's letter falsely implied) or sexu-
al contact, and according to the statute, if
the assailant is aided by the victim's inca-
pacity this is classified as 3rd degree CSC
and punishable by up to 15 years in prison.
The law includes under "victim incapaci-
ty" the term "mentally incapacitated," which
means, "the victim is temporarily incapable
of appraising or controlling his/her conduct
due to the influence of a narcotic, anesthetic
or other substance administered with consent
or due to any other act committed upon the
victim without consent."
Therefore a woman who is (even volun-
tarily) intoxicated cannot, under Michigan
law, be deemed capable of giving consent and
no consent constitutes rape - regardless of
whether her state of intoxication, as Good-
man puts it, "was very likely a contributing
factor to the assault."
Whether she was intoxicated or not, there
is never an excuse for sexual assault, nor is
there any need to label the survivor a "vic-
tim" so that the insecurity and mental anguish

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present after an attack can be worsened and
perpetuated. Goodman - as well as others
sharing his outlook - would be wise to
become more informed about the Michigan
CSC Laws and to take into consideration the
perspective of sexual assault survivors before
passing such ignorant judgment.
CARRIE DOWNES
LSA JUNIOR
'No' to police force
during Naked Mile
TO THE DAILY:
The Ann Arbor police have made it
clear: Engage in your favorite school tradi-
tion and you will be arrested. Celebrate
four years of hard work and effort by run-
ning nude through campus and you will be
placed in handcuffs. Some people believe
that the Naked Mile is a disturbing tradi-
tion. I believe that the greater pathology is
the way the police department is handling
this matter.
What concerns me is the way the decision
has been made to end this event. Students
have demonstrated an uncanny ability to
organize the run and provide safety at a

grass-roots level. And why shouldn't they? It
is their tradition - it means something to
them. It does not mean anything to the Ann ,.
Arbor Police Department. Consequently, if "
this tradition is to end, it should be the stu-
dents who decide to end it. They should be '
trusted and brought into the decision-making
process. Yet have student groups at the Uni-
versity been conferred?
We should encourage democratic deci-
sion-making. If you wish to end the Naked
Mile, do it through appropriate student
channels. Don't end it through the use of
brute force. That method is dangerous. It."
can produce unforeseeable, hostile reac-
tions and put deleterious forces into.a$
motion. Ten thousand people in the streetsZ
of Ann Arbor can be a serious situation.'
Prudence dictates that such a crowd should
not be provoked. But brute force is also
inhuman. The students at the University
deserve to be treated with greater dignity.
University President Lee Bollinger sent a
letter to seniors and urged them to avoid
the run. He should now protect the dignity
of his students and send a letter to Walter
Lunsford and urge him to avoid making
arrests. The Naked Mile can be dealt with
in more sensible ways.
STEPHEN GRODNICK
INDIANA UNIVERSITY 0

Little naked me ... or not

T omorrow, thousands of naked bodies will
be writhing and sweating and praying for
endurance. Yes, it's that time again. Time for
the Naked Mile. But you won't find me
putting on my running shoes and taking off
my clothes.
Now, you might think I would want to do
the dirty deed just one time before I graduate.
Hellillllll nooo! This
woman will not be
caught running
around like a patient
who's escaped from
a high-security men-
tal institution. Yes,
you heard it here
first. I will not be
parading my pasty
little butt around
campus, nor will I
be giving any sur-
prise stretch shows Camille
before the race. N o e
I will not, repeat,
will not be running Last

en mass to horny viewers, I would rake in the
royalties!
Secondly: I'm from Dearborn. Dearborn as
in a 25 minute drive from Ann Arbor as in
both cities share the same local news, which
my parents watch religiously meaning my
face, and a few other choice body parts, on
channel seven at 11 meaning my parents get a
view of my ass that they haven't seen since I
was three.
Third: Many cameras are involved. Many
people will get the privilege of seeing some,
uh, glossy prints, of Joe Blow from English
class and Jenny Jiggles from chemistry.
Unless you're Madonna, this sort of publicity
is worse than being featured on a milk carton.
"Have you seen this girl's clothing?"
Fourth: Film, photos and footage aside: Be
careful what company you keep. The Naked
Mile is a tradition that was begun more than a
decade ago by the men's crew team. They
decided that a lap around town minus the uni-
form would be a good time, and after a year or
two, students of all affiliations began to join
them. Hence the sport was born. However,
thlr nv c it'c n frpP ~fnr all- finecta~tcrsrand

watching. God only knows what would hap-
pen if my "Dinosaurs and Other Failures"
instructor were to cross the finish line behind
me, or if Broomhilda, English instructor
extraordinaire, happens to think that my chest
looks better than hers and she's got a bone to
pick. I need to graduate - you catch my
drift?
Eight: Pain. You know where. I have no tol-
erance for activity without proper attire, and I
don't support the exploitation of plastic cling
wrap.
Nine: In case you haven't heard, the AAPD
is ready and waiting to arrest participants this
year. I don't like cops. I don't like cops seeing
me naked. I don't like resisting arrest while
topless. Comprendez?
Ten: I'd run if I were a man. No one looks
at men! I know for damn certain that I don't.
Let's face it, it's not how it looks bouncing
down the road, but what you can do with it,
hmm? But men watch to see women, and
women watch to see who looks better than
them. Considering I'm not okay with being
scrutinized, I'm not running.
My decision to not run is nersonal. nott

I

rl

. . ..

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