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November 04, 1999 - Image 4

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Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1999-11-04

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4A - The Michigan Daily - Thursday, November 4, 1999

&iie £ irbiganDatlg

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

HEATHER KAMINs
Editor in Chief
JEFFREY KOSSEFF
DAVID WALLACE
Editorial Page Editors

Unless otherwise noted, unsigned editorials reflect the opinion of the majorityof the
Daily's editorial board. All other articles, letters and cartoons do not necessarily reflect
the opinion of The Michigan Daily.

Ride fprices
UHS should provide free meningitis vaccines

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A Veruca Salt-style approach to University financing !
d love a freeze on next year's tuition tion was even proposed. It demonstrates the have been well above inflation. But the cost of
increases. It would reduce my student student body's overall inability to under- operating and maintaining a top-notch univer-
loans and make me a happy camper. stand the University's financial needs. sity also has exceeded inflation. To compete
While we're at it, I'd also like the If it froze tuition increases for the year, with the Berkeleys. Virginias and Cornells of
University to buy me a new car. I don't like the University would have to shrink its bud- the country, the University of Michigan must
driving,s o University get, almost definitely cutting valuable pro- provide its departments with adequate funds.
President Lee . - grams and departments. It's called inflation, A tuition freeze would push us behind other
Bollinger should take and anyone who supports a tuition freeze universities.
some time out of his needs to look into its ramifications. As long as its state appropriations stay
schedule each day to For the current academic year, the above inflation, Michigan State University has
be my chauffeur. University's Ann Arbor campus plans to col- agreed to keep its tuition hikes at or below
I'm also sick of , lect almost $500 million in tuition and student inflation. That might work well for Michigan
eating at Wendy's and fees. If the University increased tuition for State, but the University of Michigan is a pre-
Jimmy John's. Sure, next year by 2.8 percent - last year's hike and mier research university - with much heftier
they serve decent the lowest in more than 10 years - it would financial needs than Michigan State.
food, but we can do receive about $13.5 million more than this If students are truly concerned about
better. I propose the year. Most of this would be an offset of infla- tuition costs, they should attack the root of
University subsidize tion and the greater cost of operating a uni- the problem. Gov. John Engler seems to
meals at Jeffrey versity, so there wouldn't be much real gain. care more about funding the corrections
Gandydancer so stu- Kosseff That's not chump change. While a 2.8-per- system than higher education.
dents only have to cent tuition increase would unfortunately cost I covered the state House Higher Education
pay $5 for dinner. me about $500, I'd just suck it up and take out Appropriations Subcommittee for the Daily in
As the bratty w an extra loan or work a few more hours. 1997, and I never once saw a student at the
Veruca Salt said in If the University were to freeze tuition Lansing meetings. The only University repre-
"Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory," increases, that lost $13.5 million would sentative I saw was our lobbyist. Schwarz's
"Don't care how, I want it now." result in devastating cuts - either across- subcommittee has met in Ann Arbor about
This is the brilliant logic of a recent stu- the-board or larger slashes to individual five times during the past 10 years, and
dent government proposal to encourage the departments. While I can easily think of a University students have testified at each
University administration to freeze tuition few departments that could use massive meeting.
increases. But in reality, unreasonably cuts, I'm sure they would disagree with me. "It helps the University's case because
cheap tuition does not go hand in hand with But $13.5 million is the equivalent of the the students tell the members of the sub-
a top-of-the-line education. There are costs salaries of about 300 assistant professors - committee what a financial burden it is to
and benefits to every policy, and this reso- or about 500 romance language lecturers. go to the University," Schwarz said.
lution only looks at the benefits. State Sen. John Schwarz, who has Students should head to Lansing and tell
While a Michigan Student Assembly res- chaired the Senate's Higher Education the legislators why the University needs
olution carries less weight than Calista Appropriations Subcommittee for 10 years, more funding. But when students take a
Flockhart, I'm still glad that 23 members of told me a tuition freeze is "not workable." short-sighted view and propose a complete-
the student government were smart enough "It's a nice-sounding populist ideal, but it ly unrealistic policy that would only hurt
to vote against and defeat this inane resolu- wouldn't work," Schwarz said. "I don't our University's quality and reputation,
tion. It shows me that there are a few stu- think the University of Michigan wants to nobody wins. It's like demanding a golden
dents on this campus who understand the raise tuition any more than it has to." chocolate egg and an Oompa Loompa.
value of attending a first-class research uni- I understand the reasoning behind a tuition - Je TKey Kosseffjcan be reached over
versity. But it saddens me that this resolu- freeze. Over the past decade, tuition increases e-mail at /kosseff aumich.edi.

This must be stated outright: you, as
someone on a college campus, are at
risk of contracting bacterial meningitis.
If you haven't heard already, the Centers
for Disease Control and Prevention has
issued its strongest Meningitis warning
yet to college students against a disease
which can, according to the CDC.
Website, "be quite severe and may result
in brain damage, hearing loss or learning
disability." The CDC encourages all peo-
ple in close living environments to get
the vaccine, which protects against the
viral and especially the bacterial forms of
the disease. University Health Services
has stepped up its campaign to immunize
the community as well, by encouraging
all people in residence halls to get the
vaccine.
But there remains a major flaw in their
attempt to combat this disease. The vac-
cine they are charging students $89 to
receive should be free.
Let's look at the problem more close-
ly. Meningitis is no longer a scare propa-
gated simply by 20/20's investigative
report earlier this fall. It is real. As a seri-
ous public health threat, we can no longer
allow meningitis vaccinations to be given
only to the privileged number of students
who do not have negative checking
account balances.
Meningitis vaccines are a treatment as
important as the prevention of STDs.
UHS offers free condoms, so why not
free vaccines?
Bacterial meningitis can be carried by
respiratory and throat secretions and
spread by kissing and coughing. It also
has been known to spread in situations
where there is prolonged exposure to the
disease.

Fortunately, meningitis is not as com-
municable as the flu or the common cold.
Yet each week there seems to be several
more cases reported every week on col-
lege campuses.
Last week, a Penn State University
football reporter contracted bacterial
meningitis while covering the game at
Illinois. Ann Arbor hosts about 100,000
people for several hours every other week
during the fall, with some sharing
scarves and probably unknowingly
exchanging other fluids. This puts stu-
dents at risk for the possibility.of infec-
tion. There are a lot of people coming
and going here and infections are close to
home.
A Michigan State student was recently
diagnosed with bacterial meningitis but
luckily received treatment before it
became serious.
Bacterial meningitis can be fatal. The
CDC says meningitis can be treated with
any number of antibiotics, but must be
caught early to lower your chances of
dying to below 15 percent.
Since the student was diagnosed,
Michigan State health officials have low-
ered the cost of vaccination from close to
$90, to nothing.
Let's hear that again. A college campus
only an hour away is offering free meningi-
tis vaccines, while we pay $89. St. Joseph's
Hospital of Ypsilanti only charges three
dollars more than UHS. UHS must think
that combating a public health threat is
worth offering students only a three dollar
discount over other health services.
Putting students at risk because they
cannot afford the vaccine is atrocious.
Vaccination should be a right, not a priv-
ilege. Make your voice heard.

t

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CHIP CULLEN

GRINDING THE NIB

M- !CH IGAWS WATHER FORECAST FOR TODAY

I

harshrealitycom
Photosdepict cruelty of electric chair

W hen execution by electric chair
was challenged in the court sys-
tem in 1890, it was adopted as a more
humane way to execute someone as
opposed to hanging. Since then, most
states have abandoned this arcane
process of execution and turned to lethal
injection, which is by no means humane.
That seven states still use the electric
chair demonstrates the vast problems in
our justice system. We support the com-
plete elimination of the death penalty, but
the electric chair is an especially cruel
method that must be eliminated.
Anyone who questions the inhumanity
of the electric chair should see the results
directly - look at actual electric chair
photos currently posted on the World
Wide Web as part of a Florida Supreme
Court justice's dissenting opinion argu-
ing against the electric chair. Available
at www.flcourts. org/courts/supct/death-
warrants/index. html, these are graphic
photos of an atrocious and inhumane
method, so be warned that if you get sick
easily, you probably should not look at
this site.
These photos graphically depict the
reality of how inhumane, unsanitary and
terrifyingly cruel the process of execu-
tion by the electric chair really is.
Forcing yourself to look at these photos
and then argue they do not violate the
process of "cruel and unusual punish-
ment as outlined in the Constitution is

country's court system, the Supreme
Court has agreed to review the process of
execution by electric chair. They have
consented to look into whether it violates
the Eighth Amendment. The Supreme
Court will make a landmark decision as it
will inevitably specify its definition of
cruel and unusual punishment.
Brought to the court's attention by
several flawed executions with Florida's
electric chair, the Supreme Court has
begun to review the history of Florida's
executions. Florida, like Alabama,
Georgia and Nebraska, is one of four
states that still allows capital punishment
to occur solely through the electric chair.
If the Supreme Court rules the electric
chair violates the Constitution, Ohio,
South Carolina and Virginia also will no
longer offer a convicted felon the choice
of the electric chair as a method of exe-
cution.
In reviewing these photos and hearing
the testimonies of people who have wit-
nessed the injustice of the electric chair
first hand, we hope the courts rule the
electric chair unconstitutional.
We hope that with expert witnesses like
Michael Mello, who holds shocking
accounts of cases in which prisoners are
either executed or nearly executed in fla-
grantly unconstitutional circumstances, and
these photos, the court should have the
information to ban the electric chair. If you
look at the photos, you'll find the closer you

Humans' lives are
not more valuable
than animals'
TO THE DAILY:
In its editorial about the use of ani-
mals in medical research, the Daily wrote
that "anyone willing to risk or take a sin-
gle human life for the sake of animals has
a distorted sense of priorities." What's
the matter with you? How did you come
to prefer the worthless, selfish creeps you
encounter every day to rabbits and dogs
and mice'? People are the most dv astat-
ingly harmful animal ever produced.We
are ruining the world for aliost every-
body. There's nothing wrong with placing
the lifespan of the mean animals below
the freedom and comfort of the more
decent animals in your priority list.
I would not argue that animals
deserve kindness as a right. Rights are
not universal: they vary depending on
what country you live in. They are flexi-
ble and often meaningless. So never mind
rights, and think about right. Torture is
not right. Imprisonment is not right.
You're not quite right either.
There are six billion people now. How
many more do we want?
What is the plan? Will we vigorously
battle disease until every square foot is
occupied by another upright jackass,
complaining about his age?
I'd rather there were more rabbits.
CHAD GILCHRIST
LSA SENIOR
Love advice column
lacked creativity
and effort
To THE DAILY:
After reading Scott Hunter's column
"Ask Dr. Scott, your expert on love and
relationships" (11/01/99), I am inclined to
believe that Dr. Scott possesses more
incompetence on the issues of love and rela-
tionships than he commands expertise. I
found much of his column tasteless and bla-
tantly offensive. Once again the Daily has
succumbed to the evils of editorial freedom.
When I first entered the University, I
was excited at the prospect of a student-run
newspaper free from the censorship of
administrators and other higher-ups. With
this most recent travesty though, I am at the
peak of my tolerance for the liberal
nature of this newspaper.
Specifically I was offended by Dr.
Scott's disrespect of Dan Granger. Where
does Hunter get off denouncing one of
his peers to the point of embarrassment. I
cannot find justice in trying to provoke a
few laughs at the expense of someone
else. The young man made a mistake, can
he never live it down? Furthermore, the
often duplicated subject matter - advice
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thoughts of our population, as it is out-
dated.
In addition I cannot comprehend the
idea of any person regarding Hunter as an
afficionado of love and relationships. My
experiences with relationships lead me to
believe that most women value men with
humility and not those with immodest
and disrespectable taste. I cannot see the
parallel between Hunter's claim of exper-
tise in relationships and the coarse
remarks he makes in his column. The
women I know would deny him faster
than a freshman at Scorekeepers.
I do not desire to be subject to works
of an insignificant nature. Hunter's lack
of creativity and effort reflect this
insignificance which runs rampant in the
current state of the Daily.
Please help save the reputation of the
University's student paper and encourage
only the inclusion of meritorious works.
CHRIS MIKULA
LSA SOPHOMORE
Seeing the facts,
it's hard to justify
the death penalty
TO THE DAILY:
I commend the editors of the Daily for
writing and publishing the Oct. 20 edito-
rial "Death to the Penalty." By shifting
the focus of the capital punishment
debate away from mere moral rhetoric
and instead insisting that the death penal-
ty discriminates against certain racial
groups, the article opened a new objec-
tive debate on the issue. However, any
sense of objectivity was lost on Erika
Alea as evidenced by her poorly articu-
lated response in favor of the death
penalty.
We should consider that fairness in
the legal system hinges on a jury of the
people who are subject to prejudices and
misguidedness.
Merely looking at the percentages of
people currently on death row can create
an illusion of fairnes If we, instead

Yankees have bought another World
Series. Others in the legal world question
whether 0. J. Simpson bought his "note
guilty" verdict by hiring an all-star
defense team.
Few of the inmates on death row had
the luxury of getting such quality
defense.
Since 1900, 581 people have been
executed and were later found to be inno-
cent. Eighty-two convicted "killers" have
been released due to overwhelming evi-
dence of their innocence since 1973. If
we consider the cost of the death penalty
to the tax payer to be just the lost tax rev- 0
enue that the person would otherwise
generate in the market, the cost for 105
innocent people exceeds $20 million by
today's standards. On which side of the
issue lies the financial burden to society?
I appreciate a healthy debate about the
issues facing the nation today. On issues
that carry with them high moral price
tags, an emphasis should be placed on an
evaluation of facts. In a time of emotion- e
al strife, I do not know how my views
would change (although I hope they
wouldn't). However, given my interpreta-
tion of the facts, I cannot deny that the
death penalty is unjust.
KEN MASCHKE
ENGINEERING SOPHOMORE

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Isoated Gales

Act would prevent
forced suicide
TO THE DAILY:
The Daily's editorial of Oct. 27,
"Freedom from Pain," was disturbing, to
say the least.
Why anyone would prefer killing a
suffering individual to healing that per-
son is beyond me.
The experts in the field of medicine0
have not come this far so that they can
end the lives of the people who they are
trying to cure.
The Pain Relief Promotion Act will
not infringe on the rights of individuals,
it will enhance them.
With the nacc or thisl eiltiinn

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