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January 18, 2001 - Image 4

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 2001-01-18

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4A - The Michigan Daily - Thursday, January 18, 2001

cat Ike firtich- Fm ttil

La-di da-di, we likes ta party

420 Maynard Street
Ann Arbor, MI 48109
daily. letters@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

Unless you've been planning your
evenings around multiple airings of
"Footloose" on TBS, I'm sure you've
noticed that these past couple of weekends
have been pretty live around town: Lots of
people going out, lots of things to do and,
most expectedly, lots
of parties.
It's common'
knowledge that these *
first few weekends of
a new semester are
prime party opportu-
nities. Class is not a
big time-consumer
yet, it's too early in
the term to be making
trips back home and
Saturday Night LiveC
currently is not worth C is
watching, so every- Kula
one's itching to get
out and find a good U
house party where Ann '
they can place their
hands in the air and wave them such as they
do not care.
And because everyone and their twin
sister chooses these first few weekends to
throw the next great American party,
you've certainly got options. Take tomor-
row night, for instance: It's a pretty safe
bet that every other house on (fill in street
name here) will be jumpin' jumpin' by
11:30 p.m. and the only reason that the
neighboring houses are silent is because
they had their respective parties the previ-
ous weekend (or because they're house
monkish grad students who'd really appre-

ciate it if you kept it down while they read
their Joyce, thanks).
Yet even in this time of tremendous
party prosperity, there is just no escaping
the same tired cliches that plague seeming-
ly every party in every house, apartment,
dorm room or back alley behind what-used-
to-be Taco Bell. It's almost enough to
make you want to stay home and watch
Kevin Bacon cut loose and kick off his
Sunday shoes.
"So, who do you know here?"
My God, what an inane question. How
conversationally inept must you be to
spring into small talk with an inquiry
straight off a census form? Let me guess,
did you already comment on the weather,
the economy and/or the Cubs? Or are you
just so crippled by your own paranoia -
"Answer me, damn it, who do you know
here?!" - that you must interrogate your
fellow partygoers like a 1950s McCarthyist
seeking out the Reds?
And the answer you receive, does it
really make a difference to you? "Oh, you
know Keith? Whew, that's a load off my
mind - I thought you might know Sven,
and Lord knows how we feel about Sven."
"We want music to dance to!",
All night long (all night), those two,
girls on the living room-turned-dance floor
have made this futile demand during the
first 10 seconds of any song that doesn't
feature Destiny's Child-style beats or Mys-
tikal-esque ass-shaking commands. They
don't understand the tricky nature of craft-
ing an awesome mix tape.
The big booty grind-wit'cho-man mater-
ial must be separated by old-school jams

(the Commodores' "Brick House," Koo*
and the Gang's "Celebration") and the
occasional rock anthem (AC/DC's "'You
Shook Me All Night Long," for instance).
Old Michael Jackson? If you have the
means, I highly recommend it - it's so
choice. Then throw in some "Brown-Eyed
Girl" for the white girls and some "Play
That Funky Music" for the white boys and
you're looking at the best dancing this side
of Mr. Bojangles.
"Are there any cups left?"
Yes, in fact, there are so many cups left,
people have grown tired of their ready
abundance and have instead taken to rins-
ing out crusty coffee mugs and '89-'90 Bad
Boys commemorative cups that they've
scavenged from the kitchen sink. Ditto for
the folks drinking out of empty Faygo two-
liters, as well as the guy who's drinking
from the orange juice carafe that is clearly
Denny's contraband. Oh yes, there are
plenty of cups.
It's been proven in a North Campus lal
that, no matter how large the supply, plastic
party cups will never last past midnight. I
believe the blame should fall on the sorry
jokers that inevitably take it upon them-
selves to act as "keg guys" and spend the
entire evening pouring beer in the kitchen,
relishing the fact that, if just for one night,
they're somebody special.
"Hello, is there anybody in there?"
Are these Pink Floyd lyrics, or the lase
thing you hear before the bathroom door
swings open on you? Either way, please
pull up your pants.
- Chris Kula can be reached via e-mail
al ckula@umich.edu.

'U' community should be skeptical of deal

T uesday, the University announced that
it has signed a seven-year licensing
and supply contract with Nike. Despite
condemnation of the move by progressive
campus activist groups like Students Orga-
nizing for Labor and Economic Equality,
the administration argues the move signals
the beginning of a unique, mutually benefi-
cial and (above all) socially responsible
relationship between the University and
Operating on the dubious assumption
that the University had to sign a contract
with Nike to remedy recent athletic finan-
cial shortfalls to begin with, we think it is
uncontestably good that the contract with
Nike at least included some kind of human
rights provisions. However, student
activists, the Michigan Student Assembly
(as evidenced by its near-unanimous
approval of two resolutions Tuesday) and
the general student body
are right to be pes-
simistic about the con-
tract's ability to fulfill
ethical obligations that
ought to be at the heart of ""
all the University's business
The burden ought to fall on the admin-
istration to prove to the University commu-
nity that the Nike contract can protect
workers' rights as well or better than the
Code of Conduct approved by the Standing
Committee on Labor Relations and Human
Rights on Jan. 10. Starting Jan. 9, labor
activists have been circulating reports of
egregious labor and human rights viola-
tions being committed at the Kukdong
International factory in Puebla, Mexico -
a major Nike contractor.
Since there are overwhelmingly com-
pelling reasons to believe the recently-
signed contract with Nike is not the best
way for the University to promote workers'
rights, all future licensing contracts must
contain the Code of Conduct approved by
the committee; not the "enhanced" Colle-
giate Licensing Company Code written
into the agreement with Nike. Discussion
on writing codes other than those approved
by the University's committee into other
licensing agreements should only com-
mence in the event that the agreement with
Nike has proven at least as effective at the
University's own code at promoting and
preserving workers' rights.
The University's first long-term Nike
licensing and supply contract signed in
1994 had no human rights provisions. Over
the six-year period the original contract
was in effect, Nike provided the athletic
department with $7.8 million in equipment.
This spring, Nike announced that it
would not renew the original contract in
response to the University's joining of the
Worker's Rights Consortium - a student-
developed labor rights organization -
unfairly criticized by big business to be
unorganized and idealistic with ties to radi-
cal ideologies.
Not having a licensing deal, Athletic
Director Bill Martin told the Daily, would
have strained athletic department finances
- already stressed enough from past bud-
get deficits. To top that off, Martin said,
student athletes and coaches overwhelm-
ingly wanted a Nike contract. Bollinger

said having human rights stipulations in the
Nike code is a step in the right direction. It
is, but the agreement should have used the
committee's code, not the CLC code.
There are fundamental flaws and dan-
gerous loopholes in the University's con-
tract with Nike that could allow labor
abuses to go unchecked and leave the
University with few options and little
power if the administration wants to chal-

whichever is higher." But the University's
own Code of Conduct goes further by
requiring that "(l)icensees shall ensure that
wages and benefits ... are at least sufficient
to meet the worker's basic needs." The sub-
stantive differences between these two
codes are significant.
In many Third World nations, workers
making the "prevailing industry wage" live
in squalor and barely make enough money
to feed their families. This state of affairs is
woefully inadequate and should not be tol-
erated by the administration or the Univer-
sity community. In auditor reports available
on Nike's own website, 90 percent of work-
ers in El Salvador (where Nike has the
most contractors) stated that they were
unable to save any of their salary or use any
part of it to support others outside of their
immediate household.
The numbers are telling - it is highly
w probable that
if these
workers cannot save
any of their salary, they are
also unable to meet their "basic
needs" or save for retirement or an emer-
gency. No one is asking that the University
require its suppliers and/or licensees to pay
foreign workers as well as American work-
ers. It is, however, not unreasonable or friv-
olous to demand that workers be paid
enough so that they can meet their basic
human needs - this is a human rights
issue and yet the University's contract with
Nike blatantly ignores it.
The "Supplemental Standard on
Women's Rights" in the agreement - an
addition to the original CLC code - lacks
the teeth it needs to have. In the contract, it
is explicit that the University can terminate
the agreement under certain conditions if
the actual CLC code is breached.
However, if the "Supplemental Stan-
dard on Women's Rights," is violated, it is
less clear if the University has the power to
do anything. In the words of University
General Counsel Marvin Krislov, "... as
with anything, we might have a debate with
them about that ... if they were in a material
violation of our policy, it is more likely
than not it would be a violation of the CLC
code ... If we're talking about a serious vio-
lation I think that it would be a violation of
the same thing. As with any contract, the
language is a starting point for a discussion
..." Of course, no contract or labor stan-
dards code can be perfect but the Universi-
ty community should be uncomfortable
with a contract that only appears to implic-
itly provide protection for women's rights,
such as the right not to be fired if she
becomes pregnant.
Clearly, serious skepticism about the
quality of the enhanced CLC code of con-
duct is warranted.
After all, if most of the differences
between the two codes are just semantic,
then Nike should have been more than
happy to sign a contract with stronger,
more explicit workers' rights provisions.
Still, the administration ought to be given a
chance to prove to the University commu-
nity that the new agreement truly is a "win-
win" situation, both for the athletic
department and for poor workers.
That chance is embodied in how the
University responds to the alleged conflicts

in Puebla.
The agreement with Nike allows the
University to terminate the contract within
certain parameters if any workers' rights
are breached. The University needs to
exploit the contract termination clauses
when the situation arises when Nike is in
violation of basic human rights the Univer-
sity claims to embrace.
Assuming the allegations being made

'He did the wrong analysis and he did
the wrong analysis wrong.
- University General Counsel Liz Barry commenting on the six-hour testimony
of Center for Individual Rights chiefstatistician Kinley Larntz, yesterday
during the Law School admissions trial in Detroit.

Cohen, Lehman did
not contradict one
another in viewpoints
Law School Dean Jeffrey Lehman and I
each wrote a short essay on Grutter v.
Bollinger, appearing in the Daily on Tuesday.
I wrote: "For Justice (Lewis) Powell (the only
Supreme Court justice who ever addressed
'diversity' in this context) ... an array (of char-
acteristics weighed) is a necessary condition,
never a sufficient condition for the considera-
tion of race." Lehman wrote: "The five-justice
majority (no, this was not Justice Powell
speaking alone) declared ' ... the courts below
failed to recognize that the State has a substan-
tial interest that may legitimately be served by
a properly devised admissions program
involving the competitive consideration of
race and ethnic origin."' I write now to explain
that Lehman and I were both entirely accurate
in our reports and did not (in these passages)
contradict one another.
Powell's opinion in the Regents v. Bakke
case had many parts. All that he said about
"diversity" as a possible justification for the
consideration of race in admissions was said in
Parts IV-D, V-A, V-B and his Appendix. No
other justice, then or since, joined Powell in any
one of these portions of his opinion. Powell was
indeed the only Supreme Court Justice who
ever addressed "diversity" in this context.
The passage quoted by Lehman is the
whole of part V-C of Powell's opinion, in
which four other justices, led by Justice
William Brennan, joined. All five held that "a
properly devised admission program involving
the competitive consideration of race" might
serve legitimate state interests. But the inter-
ests the Brennan group thought legitimate
were remedial and had nothing to do with
diversity. Powell had carefully considered and
rejected all remedial objectives as justifica-
tions for race preferences in university admis-
So, lest it be thought that one of us was not
reading carefully, I emphasize the point that
Lehman, my learned colleague and a distin-
guished legal scholar, reports accurately in this
matter, of course. Five justices did think one
reason or another might serve. And I report
accurately also: Only one Supreme Court jus-
tice, Lewis Powell, has ever addressed diversi-
ty as a justification for the consideration of
race in admissions.
BSU disrupted BAMN
rally to show hatred
Personally, as a member of the Coalition to
Defend Affirmative Action By Any Means
Necessary (BAMN), I am really tired of the
hate and the anger that still exists amongst
BAMN and the Black Student Union (BSU). In
celebration of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.,
instead of rejoicing and placing all bitterness
aside, the BSU chose to come to the Diag dur-
ing the affirmative action rally and try to dis-
nlav their hatred for BA MN.

laborating, but even if this does not occur, that
does not mean that the BSU can't still take part
in the movement.
The BSU held up signs on the Diag that
stated: "This is Our Fight," placing particular
emphasis on "our." Yes, this is the fight for all
minority students on this campus and nation-
wide, but we cannot win this fight through
being exclusive of white students either.
The cause that we are fighting for has noth-
ing to do with the organizations themselves. The
fight has to do with the dream of King and the
goal of creating equality for all people in this
nation. Being exclusive of one another pulls us
away from the dream of King and keeps us from
obtaining a just society. I write this not to cause
an uproar amongst BAMN and the BSU,
because enough of that was portrayed on MLK
Day. I write this to formulate peace and tell the
BSU that the battle for equality is for minority
students to fight but it is also a battle in which
we can use white students and even of people
who don't attend the University in order to win.
Knowledge of
Ecstasy is key to
safe use of the drug
As the director of DanceSafe Detroit, the
local chapter of a national harm reduction orga-
nization, I applaud the Daily's efforts to educate
the students atthis University about trends in,
as well as effects of, Ecstasy use. However,
there are some inaccuracies in the article
"Ecstacy use rises among teenagers," (1/16/01).
The article starts out by naming some
"potentially fatal side-effects," including
hypothermia and dehydration. If anything,
Ecstasy intake may cause hypothermia, or over-
heating, but this effect is more likely caused by
the environment in which Ecstasy is frequently
taken, such as clubs or raves. Similarly, dehy-
dration is not a direct effect of the drug, but
rather the effect of dancing for hours in hot
crowded environments without drinking
enough water. While the stimulant properties of
the drug do raise blood pressure, hypothermia
and dehydration certainly aren't effects that can
be attributed to Ecstasy itself.
Next, while I strongly agree with the state-
ment that "the biggest fear with ecstasy is the
probability that it is laced with more dangerous
drugs, which can produce fatal effects," the Uni-
versity student claiming there may be cocaine in
the pills is misinformed. Cocaine is hardly, if
ever, added to pills, since the practice of "cut-
ting" pills with non-ecstasy substances serves
the purpose of driving down cost. Much more
common are inactive substances such as aspirin,

clay or chalk, psychoactive substances such as
methamphetamine, caffeine or ephedrine, or
even dangerous substances such as DXM or
PMA. The latter two are the biggest concern, as
DXM in combination with MDMA can increase
the chance of heatstroke by dehydrating th.W
body, while PMA can raise body temperature to
dangerous, even deadly, levels. Harm reduction
efforts are underway.
Finally, Lloyd Johnston's claim that "people
don't realize the long-term consequences,
which include neurological disorders, respirato-
ry failure, anxiety and liver damage" gives the
impression that these effects have been con-
firmed. While frequent or high doses have been
linked to neuron damage in laboratory animals,
it is still unknown whether such damage occur
in humans, or, if it does, whether this has any
long-term negative consequences. Also, I am
not aware of any lung damage derived from
Ecstasy use, perhaps it is another factor that can
be attributed to environment.
Education is one of the key components in a
safe and healthy lifestyle but is easily tainted by
false publicity. The University has a student
group dedicated to providing unbiased informa-
tion about these substances (Ann Arbor Harm,
Reduction Project), the members of whichl
would be happy to speak with anybody planning
to make public statements about Ecstasy in the
Campus Crusade for
Christ tried to be
'open and honest'
I was deeply grieved to read that Rob Good-
speed found the recent outreach programs spon-
sored by Campus Crusade for Christ deceitful
and not forthright in "Dan Korem, Scott and
trickery in evangelism," (01/16/01). We hoped
to be very open and honest about our intention
by printing our beliefs in bold print in the Daily
during Scott week, by placing our sponsorship
on the advertisements for Dan Korem and by
handing out leaflets to all in attendance at Dan
Korem's presentation describing the intent of
the program.
We want the campus to have a clear oppor-
tunity to decide for themselves what they
believe about God. Sadly, it seems that our
intentions have been misunderstood. On behalf
of the leadership team of Campus Crusade for
Christ at Michigan, I apologize to those who felt
deceived in any way. I would love to speak with
anyone who has further questions or concerns.


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