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February 04, 2003 - Image 4

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The Michigan Daily, 2003-02-04

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0

4 - The Michigan Daily - Tuesday, February 4, 2003

OP/ED

abe i hi s ttilq

420 MAYNARD STREET
ANN ARBOR, MI 48109
letters@michigandaily.com

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

LOUIE MEIZLISH
Editor in Chief
AUBREY HENRETTY
ZAC PESKOWITZ
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
I don't
think he would
hurt a fly."
- Marky Ramone, drummer for the The
Ramones, to Fox News Channel yesterday
on influential music producer Phil
Spector's arrest on homicide charges.

X riedje
M~y l1e j oce
US. A,
-Per LJ~clu

u Mt R sP PRESIDENT
.. wki f IW
z N

F A-7-- -
DC5of
UNAte)

KARL KRESSBACH UNTIED N ATION

9

a
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-t.

Will work for food, financial aid
AUBREY HENRETTY NEUROICA

ne thing I like
about this cam-
pus is that no
matter where I am at any
given time, I never have
to look far to find five or
six thoroughly outraged
students. I am secure in
the knowledge that no
matter what's going on
or who's saying what to whom and why,
somebody's always fuming about it; there's
always a vocal opposition. I like that. So
when I heard the University might raise
tuition by 10 percent this fall, I could hardly
wait for the backlash. Much to my horror,
there wasn't one.
Sadly, I doubt anyone will ever start the
Coalition to Reduce Tuition Right This
Second or We'll Set Fire to Ourselves on
the Steps of the Union and Don't Think
We Won't. It's considered uncouth -
even tacky - to discuss finances across
socioeconomic status lines. As with race-
and gender-related topics, we're supposed
to walk on eggshells in mixed company,
never referring directly to the fact that
someone's parents might be richer or poor-
er than ours.
Personally, I've never had much sym-
pathy for the linguistically prudish. More
people really ought to be angry about this.
Even considering state budget cuts and
strained economies, a 10 percent tuition
increase at the most expensive public uni-
versity this side of Mars would be quite
simply inexcusable. But since no one

except me seems to give a damn, I'm
preparing for the worst. I've devised a per-
sonal budget that will allow me to live out
the remainder of this term on a mere $65 a
day. Yes. It's fairly simple, actually - a
very easy plan to follow as long as I never
eat anything or buy any soap.
Sixty-five dollars a day - that's how
much it costs me to live and go to school in
Ann Arbor. The cost of rent and utilities (I
share a small room in a small apartment) for
one term plus the cost of this term's in-state
tuition, books and other non-optional school
supplies (bluebooks, pens, paper, folders,
etc.), divided by 105 days (i.e. the 15 weeks
that make up winter term) equals $65. Add
to that the cost of food, personal hygiene
products, woefully infrequent cups of coffee
with witty poets and any other unforeseen
expenses (e.g. replacement laces for my
boots, duct tape with which to hang paint-
ings and/or repair kitchen appliances) and,
well, let's just say that if this increase goes
through, you may soon see me on a street
corner somewhere with a cardboard sign
("Will Write for Food") and a large coffee
mug labeled, "God Bless."
And if the University's Office of Finan-
cial Aid website is any indication, I won't be
alone. According to the OFA, more than 55
percent of University undergrads received
some kind of financial aid in 2000-2001 and
each year, the OFA "awards more than $8.9
million in scholarships to more than 1,400
entering freshmen." A little number crunch-
ing indicates an average of $6,357.14 per
financially-needy freshman. Though the site

neglects to mention how the average upper-
classman fares, it would presumably be at
least as well.
But averages, on average, are utterly
worthless. First, while that much money
might be a godsend for an in-stater like
me, it would be far less helpful to a non-
resident who pays $25,005 a year in tuition
and fees compared to my $8,435. As any-
one who has ever applied for financial aid
knows, asking nicely to get a meaningful
amount of money from the University is
about as easy (and as effective) as trying to
squeeze gold coins out of a lead brick. Of
those whose parents can't foot the entire
bill, a select few people (cough, athletes)
get full scholarships, a few more get $400
worth of work-study and everybody else
gets loans they won't have paid off until
well after their own kids finish college.
This sounds like a joke, an exaggeration
to prove a point, but in many cases it isn't.
There are humorous elements - the
"Expected Parental Contribution" line on
the Free Application for Federal Student
Aid, for instance, is' a veritable laugh riot
- but the reality that more than half of us
can't afford to be here is not at all funny.
We need a movement, an uprising, an out-
cry, and we need it before those in charge
of the University budget get their hands on
our last $65. Let me know if you need me.
In the meantime, I'll be at the corner of
South U. and Church Street with my sign.

*I

Henretty can be reached
at ahenrett@umich.edu.

VIEWPOINT
The chic do not sleep

BY NEAL PALS
Last year, my inability to fall asleep at
night nearly derailed life. My academic
potential, physical health and even my rela-
tionships eroded rapidly as my sleep-
deprived body failed in negotiating the
rigors of being a student.
Yet, perhaps the most damaging blows
were the ones dealt to my mental well-
being. With every night of sleep lost, my
emotions grew more mercurial. I developed
an acute sense of paranoia. I experienced
hallucinations. My attention span was sig-
nificantly reduced. I became easily con-
fused by simple tasks. If, out of
masochistic desire, one wished to test the
validity of my claim that sleep deprivation
severely inhibits simple routines, a single
stretch of 70 hours without the luxury of
slumber should suffice.
When people ask me if my periods of
sleeplessness are at all intentional, I am
incredulous. Ironically, I am not a "night"
person. I eschew stimulants. To me, sleep is
the greatest pleasure, one that I would sacri-
fice for few things. Therefore, I am stunned
when I observe the machismo of my sleep-
deprived peers. In my time at the University,
I have found the caricature of the wired col-
lege student to be accurate. Our campus is
but a microcosm of a society bent on defying
the command to rest. In this environment, it
is sadly acceptable to wash prescription
amphetamines down with Red Bulls, which,
if you can imagine, is, a slap in the face for

chronic insomniacs like myself.
The need for a greater awareness about
the dangers of sleep deprivation is impera-
tive. In the Dec. 21, 2002/Jan. 3, 2003
issue of The Economist, lack of sleep was
charged as the culprit in several high-pro-
file disasters such as the 1989 Exxon
Valdez oil spill and the nuclear accident at
Chernobyl in 1986. A recent report by the
U.S. National Commission on Sleep Disor-
ders found that half of all traffic accidents
were due to driver fatigue. Four years ago,
BBC News reported that a week's worth of
lost sleep had the potential to result in tem-
porary borderline retardation. These disqui-
eting facts are indicative of the substantial
harm that can be sustained from not receiv-
ing adequate amounts of sleep.
There also exists the need for a greater
scope of information for those whose
sleeplessness is not voluntary. While long-
term insomnia is uncommon, most individ-
uals will briefly contract the disorder at
some point in their adult lives. Most of the
time, chronic sleeplessness can be attrib-
uted to stress, irregular metabolic factors or
some type of other unrelated illness. How-
ever, the understanding of sleep as a phe-
nomenon is still rather nebulous, often
leading to frequent misdiagnosis of various
disorders in patients.
The over-prescription of narcotic medica-
tions is another problem that marks the issue.
Most of the current sleeping pills on the mar-
ket are extremely potent and possess high
habit-forming potential. At various points

during the three years that I have been affect-
ed by insomnia, I have been prescribed dif-
ferent types of pills; the strongest are
considered to be as pharmacologically addic-
tive as heroin. Needless to say, dependencies
did form, and I was left to deal with the fall-
out. Medication should cease to be what is
now a regular treatment for sleeplessness
because of the physical dangers involved
with using such powerful drugs.
Many joke that sleep deprivation is a
staple aspect of the typical college stu-
dent's life; some even go so far as to
endorse it as part of "the college experi-
ence." I lament upon these statements
because I have seen the worst conse-
quences of never sleeping. And I have
watched my affliction give rise to an
entire host of new problems. Most people
are fortunate enough to never reach the
very worst level of insomnia. Neverthe-
less, sleeplessness is a serious issue,
regardless of where it stems from or to
what degree its manifestation reaches.
Students at the University should grow
more aware of the risks and costs of push-
ing their minds and bodies to the extreme.
Everything suffers a little when you're
walking around in the post-"all nighter"
haze. To not sleep when one desires is
also just plain frustrating. I should know; I
did not catch a wink last night.
Pais is an LSA senior and a member of the
Daily's editorial board. He is also the
founder of Insomniacs Anonymous.

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

Sikora should recognize
Blanchard's basketball skills
To THE DAILY:
I am amazed that Naweed Sikora feels jus-
tified in condemning LaVell Blanchard's con-
tributions to the Michigan Basketball team
(Now is LaTime for LaVell ... (02/03/03). Over
his four years at Michigan, Blanchard has con-
tributed far more to this program than anyone
could ask of him. Blanchard has played hard
through some of the worst seasons this school
has ever seen, stepping up as a leader when
nobody else would.
During his entire career, Blanchard has
done the little things - like boxing out and
rebounding - that have continually gone
,nrnticpA byifans as a rpc.ilt of the teaim's

standing hustle, keeping plays alive, saving
loose balls from going out of bounds and draw-
ing attention to himself, allowing his teammates
to reap the rewards. Also, his two freethrows
were the biggest and most important two points
of the entire season - had he missed, the out-
come of that game may have been different.
Against Illinois, Blanchard had 18 points and
six rebounds, giving his team 39 minutes on the
floor; how you can find fault in that is beyond
my understanding. Even at Minnesota -
arguably the toughest place to play in the Big
Ten - Blanchard made difficult shots in the
first half that prevented the Gophers from end-
ing the game early. Had the referees not made
some interesting calls, taking the game out of
LaVell's hands, he may have continued on this
same path of production.
Blanchard has been the leader of this team
since he was a true freshman. Our team would

Students First candidates cal
for moratorium on flyering
TO THE DAILY:
A recent letter to the editor explained why
students hate the practice of postering in the
Dennison and Modern Languages buildings
during student government campaigns. After
reading that letter and considering our own can-
didacies for student government we've come to
a few conclusions. Postering does not reach stu-
dents. It does not help students. It doesn't
address any of their concerns about student gov-
ernment. It doesn't improve students' lives.
We invite all other campaigns to join us in
a pledge to not poster in Dennison or the MLB
during the other campaign. If other campaigns
are serious about this pledge we can all put

01

THE BOONDOCKS

A P

-" I

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