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December 07, 1999 - Image 4

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The Michigan Daily, 1999-12-07

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4 - The Michigan Daily - Tuesday, December 7, 1999

420 Maynard Street HEATHEF
Ann Arbor, MI 48109 Editor
dailyletters@umich.edu a
Edited and managed by JEFFREY
students at the DAvID

in Chief
age Editors

University of Michigan

Editorial P

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.
Stalled out
Code review process should pick up the pace

Its about time Exploring questions on the millennium
(1 n'' yells the raucous crow d in the Observatory reports the atomic clock is millennium. It also i nores olor calendar;
T imes square as confetti falls and accurate to "one second in 1,400.000 with differinL dates for ithe Ie s ir
noisemakers toot. Only nine seconds years.' Nice of this information to coic alon
remain until the big ball drops and all four It's little wonder then that the .S. Naval and screw everything up. \\e'e already got
numbers in the date turn over for the mile- Observatory is "the official source of time plans to ring in the ness millennium. Maybe
stone -2000. for the Department of Defense and the you'll be in Miami for the Orange Bowl.
We love to count standard of time for the United States." Maybe you'll be in Times Square whooping
down the last ten see- Because one atomic clock wouldn't be it up. But you'll be a year early.
onds. But I started enough of an accurate measurement on its It's irritating because 2000 is a nice,
wondering how we own, the Observatory operates 70 of them, round number to begin with. It's made to
know exactly what and averages their measurements. This is all start a millennium. but like us, it's arrivinI
time it is. Hos do we in the name of good science. and keeping be fore its time.
get our measures of with the requirements of good science. it's I think I have a perfectly unscientific pla*
time? cool. to make everything work: Let's say there
I found out all I If you would like to get into the heavy-duty was a year 0, and that nothing happened.
needed to know. For specifics of atomic clocks and time measure- Year 0 was completely unremarkable, so
example, with each ment, check out the U.S. Naval Observatory's we'll make no mention of it.
second, we're actual- Website (tvcho.usno.narm.til). Ironically, you The year is the equivalent of a kid getting
ly counting down David could lose track of the time exploring all the home from school. Father Time asks. "So,
from more than 9 Wallace information. what did you do today, Zero'?"
million. E .. So I'm reasonably confident we can tell "Nothing." Zero replies.
It's true. I looked it exactly what time it is when the year "Got any homework?"
up on the U.S. Naval changes over. But I'm not confident we're "Eh." A shrug of the shoulders, and he
Observatory's Website entering a new millennium, disappears into his room.
(nacho.usno.nav.mil/cesiiint.html). In 1967, Plenty ofadvertisements tout "the new mil- Think about it. We'll suspend anythin*
the 13th General Conference on Weights and lennium." I even considered calling this col- that carries over from B.C. to A.D. to pre-
Measures defined the second as, stay with me umn "my final column of the millennium.' serve the dates.
here, "the duration of 9,192,631.770 cycles of Of course, I knew some nerd would point No wars. Nobody is born and nobody
microwave light absorbed or emitted by the out, "The millennium doesn't start until dies. No end of the year best and worst lists.
hyperfine transition of cesium-133 atoms in Jan. 1, 2001." Positive developments remain largely
their ground state undisturbed by external This is technically correct, because our unnewsworthy. The year was good, but
fields.' Atomic clocks use this standard to calendar does not incorporate a year 0. bland.
give us our most accurate measure of time. Instead, our calendar was arranged to It's completely unscientific, but let's
Ugh. Now I remember why I'm an reflect the first year of Christ's life, and just say year 0 exists, and then never
English major. But here goes nothing. As I begins at I A.D. So if a millennium com- speak of it again. That way, the millenni
understand the process in unscientific prises 1,000 years, the first millennium um begins Jan. 1, 2000 and we're a
terms, the atomic clock measures the fre- A.D. ends on Dec. 31, 1000, and our own happy.
quency of microwave light absorbed and millennium ends not on Dec. 31, 1999, but As for this no wars business. maybe we
emitted from cesium-133. And we decided Dec. 31, 2000. should try to have more years like 0. Years
that 9,192,631,770 oscillations form one Of course, this ignores that Christ likely we find completely unremarkable.
second. This is like the pendulum of a, was born a few years earlier than 1 A.D., so Of course, that would be remarkable.
clock, marking a uniform unit of time. But if we're counting millenniums since Christ's - David Mallace can he reached over
it's far more accurate than a pendulum - birth, we're likely already into the second e-mail at davidmw@umich.ed.

ime after time, the University has
delayed the review of the Code of
Student Conduct. As another year concludes,
the Code remains virtually the same as it was
a year ago. While we strongly encourage
University President Lee Bollinger to abolish
the Code, in the meantime the University
needs to speed up the review process.
In the beginning of this year, the Michigan
StudentAssembly and the Division of Student
Affairs carried out reviews of the Code. The
University Board of Regents was expected to
"use these reports to review the Code in
'February, but since then the momentum has
The Code violates basic student rights as
the University uses this as an excuse to raise
the social standards of students higher than
those of the criminal justice system. Students
choose to attend the University so they can
develop personal values and beliefs. Instead,
the Code forces a set of values on students
which hinders the development process.
These include "equality, freedom and safety"
among others, all of which are "dedicated to
maintaining a scholarly community."
The Code of Student Conduct puts too
'much power in the hands of administrators. It
allows the University to put itself in a position
beyond the legal system. Crimes committed
outside the University environment are still
subjected to punishment under the Code, thus
putting the student in a form of double jeop-
ardy - one of many unfair aspects of the
Code. Even the Code states "its standards of
conduct, while falling within the limits of the
law, may exceed federal, state or local require-
ments" The Code should not be in such a posi-
tion in the first place.
Students can be cited for violations under

the Code even if charges are resolved within
the legal system. Although a student may have
fulfilled the required punishment under the
legal system, students still face disciplinaay
action from the University.
One just has to be reminded of former
Michigan football player Jason Brooks to
illustrate the violation of double jeopardy.
Under the Code, six sanctions were placed on
him. But prior to this decision, Brooks had
already resolved the fourth-degree criminal
sexual conduct charges brought against him in
the Washtenaw County court system. In a
country where double jeopardy violates the
Constitution, the University is not justified to
punish a student a second time for committing
a single crime.
The Code also lacks a formal procedure.
The Code arbitration hearing is a closed
process. All participants in Code hearings are
required to sign a confidentiality statement
and thus leave the student body in speculation
as to the effectiveness of the Code. Decisions
made by this panel are based highly on per-
sonal bias towards an individual case and
inadvertently lies down different standards to
which students are subjected. Trying to seek a
precedent on appropriate punishments is
therefore virtually impossible. Furthermore,
hearings can drag on for more than a year,
during which the panelists reviewing the case
Unlike the Engineering Honor Code, the
Code of Student Conduct is non-academic.
Student rights are left exposed to the adminis-
tration. They must be protected. There are no
reasons for the delay. Bollinger must seize the
power vested in him by the Regents to make
many necessary changes to the Code, if he
will not abolish it altogether.

T HE Ei DeT-
Snowball fight
illustrated poor
group behavior


Covering our eyes,
Bill infringes on the rights of young adults

T rips to Ypsilanti's adult entertain-
ment nightclub Deja Vu may soon
end for University students if representa-
tives ainthe Michigan State House get
their way. Under a bill proposed by state
Rep. Michael Bishop (R-Rochester),
chair of the House Constitutional Law
and Ethics Committee, adults under the
age of 21 would be forbidden from enter-
ing adult establishments, such as strip
clubs, massage parlors, book stores and
topless bars. The bill also includes other
regulations that increase the amount of
state control within the adult entertain-.
ment industry. This bill infringes on the
rights of citizens more than 18 years old,
but younger than 21.
The concept behind the adage that
helped lower the drinking age during the
Vietnam War, "if you're old enough to die
for your county, you're old enough to
drink," applies beyond the statement's
surface. After reaching 18 years of age,
people are legal, voting adults. The feder-
al government can both conscript them to
fight in war and execute them for capital
Eighteen-year-olds are free to run in
most state and local elections and deemed
fit to purchase both pornography and
,',-tobacco. Yet certain House representa-
tives feel that although 18-year-olds can
even serve as mayor of their hometowns,
they are not mature enough to enter estab-
lishments providing adult material.
Regulating the activities of adults over
the age of 18, but younger than 21, con-
"'tradicts the notion of adulthood. Once
people turn 18 in our society; they are
given the standing of legality and the

honor to participate in government. This
regulation of adults over the age of 18
implies a half-adult standing, where half-
adults are allowed some rights but denied
If this is the case, denying people
under the age of 21 access to adult estab-
lishments sets a dangerous precedent to
deny other freedoms to people more than
18 years of age but less than 21.
A problem with the bill is it hinders an
18-year-old's right to purchase pornogra-
phy by limiting access to it. Lawmakers
seem content with the idea that people
under the age of 21 can own pornography
but cannot go anywhere to buy it. The
idea that 18-year-olds are mature enough
to own pornographic material, but not
enough to purchase it, is a contradiction
of terms.
Nudie bars may not be on the pathway
to academic enlightenment, but the First
Amendment protects their existence.
Lawmakers who would like to see the end
of the adult entertainment industry try to
.skirt the U.S. Constitution by effectively
regulating the trade out of business. The
bill currently in discussion does so by
forcing all adult entertainment business
to close by 10 p.m.
Without actually participating in the
constitutional amendment process, law-
makers find loopholes, like closing time,
to take away First Amendment rights and
undermine the U.S. Constitution's purpose
as a safeguard against zealous politicians.
If politicians believe adult entertainment
is truly inappropriate, they should attempt
to change the law in a proper manner
instead of sneaking through backdoors.

I had a great time at the West/South Quad
Snowball throwdown Sunday night, but near
the end I found myself disgusted with
(in)human nature. A group of people decided
that no snowball fight would be complete
without kidnapping an opponent ,throwing
them on the concrete and roughing them up.
And once West Quad had claimed victory,
dozens of people raided the lobby of South
Quad dumping garbage over and destroying
fuimiture. The mob ruled.
It seems that whenever people get riled
up over a common goal. they start to act like
idiots (ie. Seattle: "Let's bust some sin-
dow's for 'the m'osemetnt!"'). Out with the
morals and in with whatever someone sug-
gests. I can see sshere comunits gets its
strength. You don't wise to wake eseryone
believe in your cause. just get them to do
what eseryone else is doing. I douibtatty
one person would brag about how they went
apeshit and trashed a lobby, but if a bunch
of people do it, it's great fin!
It's group pride that always seems to
lead to wrongdoing. I'd find it utterly
incomprehensible if esery person there did
not stop and think, "this is just wrong and
stupid." But,they went ahead and did it any-
way. I fear to think that these people may
one day be running the government.
People tmight say'. "it's just a friggin'
lobby' bit it's the same reasotnthat fiercely
patriotic countries always seem to be at war
(except Canada).
I believe in the strength of humanity, but
we have to start acting like humans, rather
than animals. What good is intelligence if
we're no better off than four-legged critters?
The kind of animal behavior displayed last
night won't end until people start thinking
of themselves as self-sufficient entities,
rather than part of a group. Down with
group-identity movements! Burn every flag
for the sake of humanity!
Snowball fight was
It started getting really big around 11:30
p.m. Screams of "West Quad sucks" coin-
ing through the window. A snow ball fight.
"It's too cold and we'll get hit" could not
compare to the embarrassment of not
defending West Quad's good name. So, we
went outside.
The snow was awesome for packing.
None of that fluffy shit. No, this was just
right. Almost too right - almost ice. We
grabbed as many snowballs as our arms
could carry and went through Murfin's
Hundreds of people on both sides of the
street. The ground and grass stripped bare
of snow. Everyone using cars as a blockade
... even moving ones. The moving ones had

one advantage, though. They had more
Each side rushitig the other side.
"WVest Quad sucks!"- "South Quad swal-
lows!" Battle cries thundering from each
side. There ssere cops watching and
laughing ... They evet just laughed when
were stopping cars and grabbing people
from South Quad to white wash and throw
on top of cars.
South Quad seemed to be weakening
and thinning out. We all rushed and
forced them back into their dorm. "West
Quad! West Quad!" Trapping them in
their piddly little dorm. Once they were
inside, we made sure we declared our vic-
tory properly. We ran inside and chanted
"Ohh Ahh!. I said we own this bitch!"
West Quad had officially won the first
snowball fight of the year.
Minimum wage
does not provide
enough to live
Minimum wage is basically fluffed up
slavery. If you work for me for minimum
wage, then I am paying you the smallest
wage possible that I can get away with.
Minimum wage is by definition the amount
of money that it takes to keep a person alive.
In other words, you are working for me sim-
ply to get enough money for you to survive
to work for me tomorrow.
Now, of course, the brutality is for the
most part absent, but then slavery was
never about the brutality, it's about acquir-
ing labor. Slave owners throughout histo-
ry had to feed and house their slaves, but
today we have the key to keeping that labor
without the necessity of feeding and hous-
ing the workers.
Under the guise of minimum wage, we
are allowed to acquire someone's labor
without feeding or housing them. We give
them a pittance and then say "see you
tomorrow!" This pittance allows the person
to feed themselves, and find temporary
housing if they're lucky. And we all know
that a family cannot possibly survive on

minimum wage, but that's too depressing a
thought so let's just ignore it, OK?
Bell tower music
distracts and
I am a first year student and I live on
North Campus. All I wanted this past week-
end was some peace and quiet so I cou
relax. But throughout the entire weeke*
people were playing music in the Bell tower.
First it was "Jingle Bells," then it was
"O Tannenbaum," and finally, what I
assume was an attempt at religious equal-
ity, it was "Dradle DradletDradle." This is
very annoying. I wish the people who
play the music would find something bet-
ter to do withtheir time.
Store clerks should
improve their
I am getting sick of hearing the follo*
ing phrase grating on my ears every time I
order fast food: "May I help who's next?"
This is not just a phenomenon at the Union,
but has spread throughout Ann Arbor.
Anyone who is old enough to work has
obviously passed third grade and should
realize this phrase is not proper English.
What is even more disturbing is some of
the people I hear this from are University stu-
dents. Why not try "May I help you?" "Cat
help the next person in line?" of if the employ
ee doesn't want to change too much, "May I
help whoever is next?" So next time you hear
this phrase, ask the employee why they have
decided to embarrass themselves.

'" i.6Y@tt. CnSGhy-.lww~w~x~exlllI.ri

Apply to be a Daily columnist for next semester!
Bring three 4,500-character sample columns and a cover letter.

by Jan. 7 to the second floor of
the Student Publications Building, 420 Maynard St.
E-mail Emily at emilylsa@umich.edu with any questions.


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