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October 16, 2000 - Image 4

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 2000-10-16

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4A - The Michigan Daily - Monday, October 16, 200

ib £irbign DaliUg

Al Gore: Another case of me being born too late


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

Editor in Chief
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.

Events promise to cut through rhetoric

A I Gore, here I am, a voting virgin,
waiting to be swept up by your strong,
caring arms.
You've got yourself a girl, but Tipper
(does she make anyone else think of Easter
eggs?) and her infamous televised
smooches aren't
You need women,
lots of women, to win
this election, 'cause
suddenly females are
the hottest demo-
graphic around.
And there's nothing"
we girls love quite
like being pursued.
Unlike men who
are genetically pro- E
grammed to easily Emily
make their own deci- Achenbaum
sions, Gore and Bush
both know we ladies
will never hop into {":;x..
the voting booth
without a well-plotted seduction.
I watched Total Request Gore when
MTV came to campus boring but sweet
'n' preppy, he could just as well be Carson
Daly's dad.
I wanted to join the sorority, wear an
"Al's Girl" T-shirt, get the weekly fan club
newsletter and post his autographed pic-
ture above my bed.
I wish I could fall hard, head-over-heels
for Al Gore, yet I can barely muster a
crush and am definitely far from being
smitten. I like him, but don't 'like him-like

The senior prom is coming up and I'm
not going to be dateless. I've registered to
vote, followed the campaigns and picked
out a dress.
The man with the Clark Kent features
needs to step away from the Kryptonite if
he really wants to be Superman.
Gore tells me he's his own man, he dif-
ferentiates himself from Clinton: You
called me strong, you called me weak -
but still your secrets I will keep. You took
for granted all the times I never let you
My parents would love it if he were the
type of guy I brought .home, but that
doesn't mean he's The One -for me. Even
though our relationship has been pretty
casual, things are heating up now.
I think we should have The Talk.
Education, at all levels, is a big deal to
me. I know, I know, you feel the same way.
But standardized testing is a ass-backward
way of improving public schools.
Standardized tests do not offer any con-
clusive information about the academic
potential of students; they will not magi-
cally make teachers accountable. Don't
cop-out. Furthermore, hey - wait. Where
are you going? I'm just getting started
Gore has been doing a lot of interrupt-
ing, grumbling, avoiding and sighing (not
cute). Is it really necessary to interrupt
Bush during all the debates? Let him talk:
chances are that something mockable will
come out of his mouth. And Bush's plans
aren't all cracked.
There's a reason why the two are so
close in the polls. If you're talking, you're

not learning. Shut up, Al. Bush's tax cut
proposal is winning more hearts than all
your talk on education, a "female" issue.
The female vote is considered the differ-
ence in this election - as if all women are
going to vote the same way. We only go the
bathroom in groups, thank you very much.
Maybe that's why Gore is obsessed with
Scantrons. Maybe that's why his interest in
women does not include the MTV genera-
tion: I'm at least a decade away from being
lumped into the education-adoring "soccer
mom" demographic.
You know I'll never really be a real soc-
cer mom anyway, as I fully plan on teach-
ing Greg, Peter and Bobby how to drive at
age eight so they can haul themselves to
practice, driving the Blazer I'll buy them
with the extra funds resulting from my
hostile takeover of Mike's architecture
firm, armed with lunches made by Alice's
replacement, my poolboy/stableboy/gar-
dener Antonio who just loves to cook.
So I'm probably not going to turn out
like Karenna.
Gore doesn't have to beef up my elemen-
tary school to woo my parents, he doesn't
have to promise me better deals on pre-
scription drugs like Viagra so I can woo
my spouse. But that doesn't give him the
right to slight me. Al, I'm only 21, but I'm
not too young for you.
My state might be called swing, but I'm
straight and monogamous. I'm about to
cast my first vote ever and I might give it.
to you. Can't you try a little bit harder at
wooing me ?
- Emily Achenbaum can be reached via
e-mail at emilylsa@lumich.edu.

The University has never been a lace
to shy away from activism an dthat
will be more evident than ever when the
limelight of academia and activism will
be focused squarely on campus over the
course of the next ten days.
The Peace and Justice Commission of
then Michigan Students
Assembly, in conjunction A few hi
With a myriad of student, a Math,
university, labor and
community groups has Today
sponsored a series of Racial and 2,
education programs S.Cial construt
about affirmative action. th Fallaeyaf3
The events, known col- Schorling Audi
loctively as "Affirmative Educatio,
Action 102," are'
designed to furmish back- Tuesday
ground information for E tnB
students to understand tv: The Researc
the affirmative-action it om D1270,f
lawsuits against the Uni- 2 p.m
versity, which are sched-
uled to go to trial later on Wednesday
this year. 2rit~ r
Most importantly , iev
Affirmative Action 102 he "Affirmat
is intended to raise ifiner
awareness of the impor- R a26, Eas
tance placed upon theE
outcome of the two law- Thusday
suits. To this end, Rflly and Marc
researchers, scholars and The Diag, 12 nH
activists from around the
country will be descend- Frid
ing upon Ann Arbor to D. Jfn, c
offer information and l ckham Adp,
spur community involve-
ment. Saturday
No matter which side T'he Civil R i
of the affirmative action Anderson Roi
controversy you support, Unior I p m,
everyone should partake
in this series. Experienced activists and
novices alike can learn something from
the events being hosted. The series is a
unique opportunity to go beyond the typi-
cal superficial slogans that surround a
controversy such as affirmative action
and learn about the issues firsthand from
many of the leaders in the field. The peo-
ple who will be making presentations and
speeches during Affirmative Action 102
have had exceptional experiences and
insights and want to pass those on to us
- we as a community owe it to ourselves

a r

to hear them out.
For example, one of the events'being
showcased," The Civil Right Movement,
Then and Now" will feature a speech by
Bob Moses. At a time when the nation
was confronted with the harsh reality of
racial inequity and violence, Moses not
only participated in
9h ts of the protests movement
Action 102* but stepped in the
forefront of the civil-
rgihts movement as
nder Bias, the the leader of the Stu-
ion ofRace and dent Nonviolent
adardi2Cied ets. Coordinating Com-
>riun, School of mittee (SNCC) in
.m. Mississippi during the
early 1960s. In 1964
Moses organized the
sf Divers-"Freedom Summer"
Cas 'which brought over a
nes School 1,000 volunteers (pri-
marily white students
from elite colleges
and universities) to
° , n t-ull Mississippi in effort
cn a patof to boost black voter
,e Action 102" registration and edu-
cation. Needless to
Quad, -3 p~m. say, a speech by
Moses wi llgive stu-
dents a first hand look
at not only the civil
on. rights movement but
the perspective of a
long-time civil-rights
c activist on affirmative
heate 4pm. action as well .
There are a multi-
tude of other worth-
is Mavcmn t while events being
rn D, Michigan presented as well. The
series will be a forum
for awareness and dis-
cussion on scientific, legal, political and
social issue connected to affirmative
For the next ten days, students will
have the opportunity to hear about affir-
mative action in relation to everything
from standardized testing to student
mothers. The entire country is debating
the issue of affirmative action as Novem-
ber draws closer; as students of the Uni-
versity we have to set the bar even higher
by becoming aware and active in an issue
that directly affects our community.


'How do I answer that question? You don't ask me why
my eyes are the color they are. That Is who I am.'
- Kevin Kinsella, singer/guiatist for John Brown s Body, on how he developed his
geniune Jamacian accent growing up in Ithaca, NY

Medicine for
Cheaper pharmecuticals can save lives

Millions of people are dying and
nothing is being done about it. The
reason: Pharmaceutical companies do not
find it cost-effective to help people who
cannot afford to pay for the high cost of
medicine. This problem is a popular cam-
9i issue on the national level, but the
ghcost of medicine has alarming inter-
national consequences.
f The AIDS epidemic is spreading at a
rapid rate in third world countries, yet the
people who need medicine the most are
not getting it. About 85 percent of the
people infected with HIV live in underde-
veloped countries, yet the drug industry
ignores that population because their lives
are not worth the loss of a few million
Although companies are in business
to make money, making medicines more
affordable to citizens of third-world coun-
tries is of higher importance. To the aver-
age person, a few million dollars sounds
like a lot of money, but compared with
the yearly gross of major pharmaceutical
companies, this is a very small amount.
To anyone who values a human life, it
seems like the only thing to do is to use
some of this wealth to help the less fortu-
Although there is still no cure for
AIDS, great strides have been made in
curbing the effects of the disease. But
these drugs can cost around $15,000 per
year - and the average yearly income in
a country such as Uganda is about $330
per year. The majority of pharmaceutical
companies also have copyrights on their
drugs that do not allow cheaper, generic
versions to be produced. If companies
would be willing to do away with these
copyrights, they could save countless
lives. They may lose some money, but not
enough to make a dent in their pocket-
Another option would be to sell these

drugs at cost or even give them away.
There have been efforts to do this, but the
lack of support by most companies has
halted such progress. Companies may not
have a legal responsibility to make their
drugs affordable, but they do have a
moral one. Right now, their greed could
be indirectly 1inked to the millions of
lives that are lost each year.
AIDS is not the only disease that is
being ignored. Curable diseases, such as
malaria and tuberculosis, are killing mil-
lions of people who cannot get the medi-
cine they need. Only 1 percent of new
medicine between 1975 and 1997 was
designed to combat diseases of this sort.
As time goes on, increasingly less
research is done to find cures for dis-
eases that are only found in the third
world. This is due to the fact that
researchers know that they will not
make a profit off of these drugs. Money
makes society run; therefore, heads of
multi-million dollar corporations are
willing to overlook morals and look only
at financial gain. As a result, time and
money are put into research for items
such as Viagra and Rogaine. These
products may not save lives, but they are
in demand from people who can afford
to make these companies richer. Impo-
tence and baldness bring in money,
humanity does not.
People in wealthy countries often
seem to detach themselves from nega-
tive situations in other countries. What
they tend to forget is that it is just by
luck that they were born in a first world
nation rather than a third. The heads of
the pharmaceutical companies could
just as easily be one of those millions
dying from a preventable and often
curatIe disease. If the tables were
turned, they would want the aid that
they are so unfairly denying their fel-
low humans.

Race influences
black, white jurors
Regarding the short article ("Study
shows race affects juries," 10' 12 00) about
research I conducted with Professor
Phoebe Ellsworth. As flattered as I am that
the Daily would deem this study worthy of
mention in the.paper, I was greatly dis-
turbed by the misleading depiction of our
research the Daily provided.
The article seems to be based on a
longer press release about the research. In
editing it down for size, however, the arti-
cle misses the point. Our research has
demonstrated that both white and black
mock jurors are influenced by the race of
the defendant in a criminal trial, though
situational factors (e.g., whether or not
race is an important issue in the trial) are
also important considerations. The manner
in which the Daily edited the press release
in the article suggested that only black
mock jurors demonstrated bias, which is
an inaccurate and irresponsible conclusion
to draw. The version the Daily printed is
not only misleading, but it makes no sense
when read through.
Org. Studies is still
available to students
For students who have been adversely
affected by the termination of the Organiza-
tional Studies Individual Concentration Pro-
gram, the possibility of declaration for
organizational studies still exists. Students
who can make a justifiable case that they
have already embarked upon this course of
study should go to Academic Advising
immediately because exceptions can still be
made. The flexibility that the College of Lit-
erature, Science and the Arts is providing
will only be in place for the next week or so.
This organizational studies case illus-
trates the importance of early concentra-
tion declaration, which is non-binding for
students. Upon declaration, students are
not subject to subsequent changes in a
concentration' s requirements unless a stu-
dent elects to adhere to the new require-
ments. Academic Advising, located in
1255 Angell Hall, is a valuable resource
available for students to utilize.

The actual number of times guns have been
used in self-defense is highly controversial.
Some studies have reported that guns are used
in self-defense 108,000 times per year and it
has also been estimated that guns are used in
self defense as many as 2.5 million times each
year. There is no consensus as to the accuracy
of this information. On the other hand, the high
price in human lives lost because of gun own-
ership is clear.
According to the New England Journal of
Medicine, people in gun-owning households
are 500 percent more likely to kill themselves
and 300 percent more likely to be murdered
than people in gun-free households. According
to the National Center for Health Statistics in
1996 there were 18,166 suicides using guns,
14,037 homicides, 1,334 accidental deaths and
only 290 legal shootings. I'm sure we all agree
that we need to do something to reduce vio-
lence in our society. Guns are not the solution.
Nader's candidacy is
based on fear
1 was walking to my Astro lab last monday
night when I was subjected to the sight of
numerous postings reading "Don' t Vote
Scared - Nader for President" I found this
humorous, of course, because no candidate in
the presidential field is more of a fear-monger
than Ralph Nader. To fully agree with the
Green Party, you must be afraid of:
]) Anyone associated with an established
political party, especially Democrats, who
are obviously all in the pocket of special
interests, even the ones who aren' t running
for public office. 2) Special interests -
which would have to include such malevo-
lent organizations as teachers' unions and
civil rights groups - who have the gall to
give money to political candidates they like.
How unfair! 3) Corporations, whose sole
concern is the almighty dollar. 4) The gov-
ernment, so much so that they wish to abol-
ish 'the aristocratic U.S. Senate.'
The interesting thing is that the Green
Party seems intent on making people scared
of the tens of millions of Americans who have
ideological beliefs they want to support and
are proud of the work they do everyday, even
if that work is for a multi-national corpora-
tion. Or maybe it's just that Ralph Nader does

want you scared - of everyone but him and
his 'policies' that would 'help' America.
Affirmative action
remedies inequalities
Inequality, not gender or race, necessitates
affirmative action. Because racism and sexism
exist in this society against black and other
minority people and against women of all
races, something is needed to counter that
racism and sexism. The only successful mea-
sures to fight inequality and to integrate this
society have been affirmative action policies.
In 1999, median income for women was
$26,000 in America. For men it was $36,000.
This inequity has increased for the second year
in a row. Women are underrepresented in elite
technical education and employment including
at the University.
On average, women score worse on the
SAT, ACT and LSAT. Women are not less aca-
demically capable than men; standardized tests
are statistically normed to men.
For Nicole Muendelein to say in her in her
letter ("Gender is not a factor in admissions
process," 10/3/00) that she does not need affir-
mative action is true - none of affirmative
action' s beneficiaries need affirmative action;
it is the inequality, prejudice and discrimination
(sexism and racism) we face that requires affir-
mative action.
When Carrie Lapham says "the lawsuits
involve affirmative action admission polices,
not hiring" she misses the point ("' U' affirma-
tive action policies don' t include women,'
10/4/00). The fate of affirmative action hangs
on these cases - all affirmative action. Affir-
mative action in hiring will not survive if affir-
mative action in education is outlawed.
The progress forced by the Civil Rights
Movement and the policies it secured, includ-
ing affirmative action, have opened many doors
of opportunity for women of all races.This
period also saw the legalization of birth control
and abortion and the emergence of the les-
bian/gay rights movement. Progress has been
made for women of all races and for minorities
of both sexes; much progress remains to be
made. Affirmative action must be defended.

Mid4hrm Meek'
aa, -kUNHEALTRIES't ___-

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