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November 26, 2001 - Image 4

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The Michigan Daily, 2001-11-26

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4A -The Michigan Daily - Monday, November 26, 2001

OP/ED

ArP~~Ki, You'~ IAOT TOO. t~v

c~be £irbtgu failig

420 MAYNARD STREET
ANN ARBOR, MI 48109
daily. letters@umich.edu

EDITED AND MANAGED BY
STUDENTS AT THE
UNIVERSITY OF MICHIGAN
SINCE 1890

GEOFFREY GAGNON
Editor in Chief
MICHAEL GRASS
NICHOLAS WOOMER
Editorial Page Editors

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.

NOTABLE
QUOTABLE
~We have the
wind at our backs
and we don't
want to lose it."
- A senior Washington official as quoted in
the Sunday Times of London saying that
War on Terrorism will move to
Sudan, Yemen and Somalia.

EMI', tiN LOVE W(OU.No
I PLEDGE. ALLEGIANCE~
To IYo,

DEVTOORTo YOU IS UNOUESTlo4AL(..a.
v N

Fraternities and a heightened rape culture
AMER G. ZAHR THE PROGRESSIVE PEN
must say I was quite dominant-female submissive attitudes? do bars. In fact, I would suppose that many
disturbed. As I was Colby Nordheimer, a woman who was more students visit bars than ever visit frats. On
walking through the raped at a fraternity party at the University of the side of vice, frats are a hub for underage
Diag in the beginning of the Arizona, gave an interview to the Arizona Daily drinking. Bars house underage drinking, but
school year, during the first Wildcat in 1996. When asked how much frater- much less, since they check identifications and
waves of the fraternity rush nity culture played into her being assaulted, use stringent standards since they are actually
period, I saw an interesting Nordheimer replied, "I am a Greek ... I don't held accountable for allowing underage drink-
banner. It encouraged rush- think all fraternity men are rapists necessarily, ing. Back on the side of benefit, frats, like other
ing for Chi Psi, a campus but I do think that at times, there's a certain dis- students groups, carry out many community ser-
fraternity, using the attrac- respect for women. It becomes a game, and vice activities, helping the local community.
tive slogan, "Chi Psi, The Gentleman's Fraterni- sometimes they cross the line without necessari- Bravo. Well, bars do the same thing. In fact,
ty." Better yet, the black banner with white ly knowing they've crossed it." bars help the community not only by creating a
writing also included a white cutout of both the So what exists here is a number of studies social outlet, but also by creating a countless
Playboy bunny and the Dj Vu logo (a "gentle- and personal accounts showing that an overall number of jobs for students as waiters and wait-
man's club" chain). American rape culture is highly and dispro- resses, line cooks, hostesses, bouncers, etc.
What we had here was the laying of a foun- portionately prevalent in the campus fraternity That's community service if I ever heard of it.
dation for a fraternity culture that is, at best, pas- environment. But this must concern us here in In the end, frats=bars. The Union houses an
sively encouraging male dominative roles or, at Ann Arbor to an even higher degree. Our uni- Office of Greek Life. For fairness' sake, it
worst, outright misogynistic. Should we be sur- versity, unfortunately, holds the fraternities to should also house an Office of Bar Life. Greek
prised after seeing such a banner, embodying no standards and to no accountability. Our Life representatives visit resident adviser train-
such an attitude, that campus women have university almost pretends like the frats don't ing sessions to explain how they will relate to
reported being raped at the local Beta house a exist, except for, of course, the Office of students' lives. Representatives from local bars
few weeks ago? Should we be surprised that Greek Life. The office is located in the Michi- should be afforded the same privilege. I don't
Scot Boeringer, in a 1996 article titled "Influ- gan Union, and like other organizations, reap- see why not.
ences of Fraternity Membership, Athletics, and plies for office space every year. They are, My proposal is that we treat the bars as we
Male Living Arrangements on Sexual Aggres- however, unlike other groups, in no danger of treat the frats. Now, another idea may be to treat
sion," asserts that there exists more significant ever losing their space. They employ a direc- the frats as we treat bars. In other words, we
use of intoxicants and non-physical verbal coer- tor, an assistant director and an administrative could treat the frats as if they don't exist. Sure,
cion in obtaining sex by fraternity members? coordinator. They also house the four govern- students can join them, and participate in all
Should we surprised that the journal Gender and ing boards of the Greek community. It is a their virtues and vices, but not on the Universi-
Society published a study in which interviews quite sophisticated operation. One would think ty's penny. Close down the Office of Greek
with fraternity members found a tendency to that if such an organization were so prevalent Life. Let them seek private space to lease.
give alcohol to women on the theory that in the Union's student organization office Or, finally, and probably most practically,
women who were drinking would be less resis- space, and such a visible presence on campus our administration should create standards and
tant to sexual advances? Should we be surprised and in many students' lives, that our adminis- regulations that the fraternities must live up to.
that Peggy Reeves Sanday, in her book "Frater- tration would hold them to the same types of And it must create real sanctions that make frats
nity Gang Rape," argues that alcohol is a tool standards as we hold other students and other think twice before they create the kind of envi-
that men in fraternities are taught to use to organizations. ronment they are currently encouraging. Unfor-
"work a yes out" of unwilling women? Should In my oWr view, the fraternies perhaps cre- tunately, ir the current context, it does not seem
we be surprised that in their article, "Fraternity ate as much benefit as other entities, while creat- we are making any progress in stopping fratemi-
and Sorority Membership and Gender Domi- ing much more trouble. They are comparable to ties from egging on a dangerous misogynistic
nance Attitudes," Linda Kalof and Timothy "no student groups. A fraternity;toi me; actually, attitude, and viewing themselve-asan ntoeh -
Cargill found a substantial difference in domi- is much more like a bar. They are cut from the able "gentleman's club."
nance attitudes among Greek and non-Greek same cloth. Frats encourage social interaction
students. Concluding that affiliation with Greek between members. Bars do the same (have you Amer G. Zahr can be reached
organizations is associated with traditional male ever seen Cheers?). Frats cater to students. So via e-mail at zahrag@umich.edu.
V LETTERS TO THE EDITOR
Severity of campus that is being ignored - that is, to stop victim women do not come forward after experiencing
blaming and focus on the act that has been some form of sexual assault, and we in part
rape incidents goes reported. attribute this on the "blame-the-victim" mentali-
The Daily quoted the sorority and the sorority ty that often pervades investigations of sexual
unreported sisters involved, as saying that they are designat- assaults. The result is that many women blame
ing one woman to watch over the the other sis- themselves for the crime that has been perpetrat-
To TIHE DAULY:ters at future parties, and reviewing their policies ed against them - they should have been more
to prevent further incidents. It is not the responsi- careful, less trusting, more infonned. But in real-
This letter is in response to the headline, bility of these sororities to make sure that the ity, for however much women are educated on
"Pledges: 'We let our guard down"' in the Nov. men take responsibility for their own actions. the dangers of the drinking scene, rapes still
5 issue of the Daily. We would like to address Two women have come forward to the occur, even among the least trusting and most
the severity and misrepresentation of rape on police, their friends, family, and this campus informed. These University students may have
this campus. The article spoke about the recent after they had been drugged and raped. There gone to the party to drink, but they did not go
situation that arose at an unregistered semi-for- has been no focus on the severity of rape or the there to get raped.
mal hosted by Beta Theta Pi fraternity on Oct. crime that has been committed. There has been a We would like to know what steps have been
25. Two 18-year-old Delta Delta Delta pledges focus on the environment and the women who taken in the investigation the potential rape of
have had the courage to come out and say that came forward, but what about taking a look into two of our fellow students and what is being
two men at that party drugged and sexually the reasons and motivations that these accused done to teach men that rape is a serious offense
assaulted them that night. men had for raping a woman? Our culture tends and will not go unpunished. Mostly, we offer our
One main focus of this investigation has to focus on the victim and the steps necessary to support to these women for their courage to
been on whether or not the fraternity and sorori- prevent a rape from happening to a woman, but come forward.
ty were supposed to be having a party and if what about the steps necessary to prevent a man
they should be penalized because it was not a from raping woman? What can we teach men so Tis letter was jointly-submitted byhSaseniorsLann
scheduled party. Another emphasizes how that they know this is wrong? oLano, Haruna Madono, Stephane Dionne, Bess
women need to be more careful at parties and Another aspect of this case that we have Rozwadowski, Wendy Whitfeld, Courtney Love, illFin-
how they should not "let their guards down. found disturbing is just how often this crime Meyer, Rackham student Dawn Lawhon and women's
Although both of these points are crucial to rec- occurs on our campus and in our community - studies lecturer Jane Hassinger.
ognize, there is a significant aspect of this case and how infrequently it is reported. Many
YrVIEWPOINT
Palestinian statehood: An all or notbing affair

Al

Y IN PASSING

UNIVERSITIES MUST CONDUCT
COMPREHENSIVE REVIEWS FOR ADMISSIONS
Unfortunately, the University of Califor-
nia's innovative and fair new admissions poli-
cy - comprehensive review - which takes
into account students' personal record, includ-
ing economic and educational disadvantage,
has come under fire from both affirmative
action opponents, who call it "back-door affir-
mative action," and supporters of affirmative
action who think that race should be consid-
ered in the admissions process.
Comprehensive review will achieve
diversity fairly and without igniting the
legal and political battles that affirmative
action has. Minority populations on cam-
puses such as Berkeley and UCLA, which
decreased after Proposition 209, stand to
increase under comprehensive review, even
though it makes no distinction with regard
to race. Because educational and economic
disadvantages pose obstacles for larger per-
centages for minority populations, minori-
ties stand to be the biggest winners under
the new policy. Racial status is no longer
an explicit factor in awarding admission -
only the implications race might pose in
4-...-.of c n.rnl 1 iA AdctncrP arP T i

important new distinction will reward all
students who demonstrate merit in over
coming disadvantages.
Unlike affirmative action, other margin-
alized groups will be considered fairly.
Comprehensive review also recognizes the
reality that class, geography, parental level
of education, and high school quality can
play just as large a role in the lives of dis-
advantaged white students as skin color can
in the lives of some minorities.
Policies like comprehensive review
should have been in place far before univer-
sities' race-based admissions procedures
faced litigation and other legal troubles. If
universities are sincerely interested in
admitting a diverse student body, they
should be concerned with more than stan-
dardized test scores, grades and race. Com-
prehensive review possesses the holism,
social idealism and individual attention
lacking in most state university systems'
admissions departments.
-Paul Neuman
In Passing views are those of individual
members of the Daily's editorial board
but do not necessarily represent the
views ofThe Michigan Dailv.

BY DAVID POST
Israel and Palestine are twins. They were
given the right to self-determination by the Unit-
ed Nations and born on the same day. In Israel's
Declaration of Independence Israeli Prime Min-
ister David Ben-Gurion stated, "We appeal to
the Arab inhabitants of the state of Israel to pre-
serve peace and participate in the building-up of
the state on the basis of full and equal citizen-
ship and representation...We extend our hand to
all neighboring states and their peoples in an
offer of peace and goodwill, and appeal to them
to establish bonds of cooperation and mutual

David in 1998, Ehud Barak proposed a Palestin-
ian state that would have contained East
Jerusalem, 95 percent of the West Bank, 100
percent of the Gaza Strip, and given the Pales-
tinians joint control over the Temple Mount.
However, Yasir Arafat irrationally rejected
these unprecedented concessions. Arafat was
not willing to end the suffering of the Palestinian
population by accepting a Palestinian State with-
out the fulfillment of all of his conditions: 100
percent of the West Bank, all of East Jerusalem
and, fatally, the resettlement of 4 million to 5
million Palestinians in Israel. Once again, an
Israeli prime minister offered peace to the Pales-

Palestinians? Second, it is clear through what is
being taught in Palestinian schools, vicious
propaganda in the Palestinian media, and com-
plete non-compliance by the PA in cracking
down on terrorism, that the Palestinians return-
ing through the Right of Return would not be
peaceful neighbors; they would be enemies
(see www.memri.org for more information).
One-thousand UN resolutions could not nullify
Israel's first obligation is to provide security to
its citizens. Third, considering that a Soviet era
tank can cross Israel in 45 minutes, it is clear
that the mountains of Judea and Samaria are a
necessity for the security of Israel; a nation

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