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February 06, 2003 - Image 4

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The Michigan Daily, 2003-02-06

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4A - The Michigan Daily - Thursday, February 6, 2003

OP/ED

Ulbe £Irgtct auNt

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 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.

NOTABLE
QUOTABLE
Saddam Hussein
and his regime
will stop at
nothing until
something stops
him."
- Secretary of State Colin Powell speaking
yesterday to the United Nation and
delivering afinal ultimatum to Iraqi
President Saddam Hussein.

KARL KRESSBACH UNTIED) NATION
F4c

0i

NASA, we have a problem
LUKE SMITH TIIIERE IS NO I wN COLUMN
H opefully, the missions. Sure, we claimed the moon, but desire to tote the flag to the galactic reach-
explosion of after that? This is a program that hasn't es, let alone Mars. After all the pioneer
the Columbia gotten human beings to Mars yet. Instead, aesthetic of American culture has existed
space shuttle on Feb. NASA's manned space flights serve more as long as America has. The frontier was
2 will force America's as a Make-A-Wish foundation for astro- the West, but now, the cowboys of Con-
hand into a re-exami- physicists wanting desperately to capital- gress utilize NASA for space exploration.
nation of NASA's ize on childhood dreams of space travel. NASA Administrator Sean O'Keefe,
importance. More Scientists and space-case romantics speaking at Syracuse University last April
importantly, under the alike would have us believe there are said, "... our mandate is to pioneer the
guise of tragedy, the countless sentient beings in outer space, future." NASA is inherently interested in
government must take this opportunity to receiving our radio transmissions. These furthering the future, it believes that future
scrutinize the distribution of its civilians' beings beam back responses and we're just is in space. A vast ocean of sky where
tax dollars, billions of which have waiting for their message. Separated by people have found little to no use thusly
financed NASA's endeavors. galaxies and light years, the dialog between Isn't the future of America in its schools
We should question the allocation of us and them is forthcoming. Their ships right now? The excessive spending of
our tax dollars to an organization whose have sub-light engines and are hyperspace NASA isn't producing a return. How long
manned space flights have brought little ready. They are all Wookies and Hutts and can we overlook a program bent on fulfill-
development to the program. a boy on Tatooine who will save the ing individuals' dreams, when we should be
NASA was the bastardized byproduct of galaxy, it's all out there, far, far away. focused on improving the nation as a whole.
the Cold War, an escalation of the arms race Or so we are told. This isn't about the space station that has
of the 1960s. In competition to reach the Scientists at NASA would have us taken billions of dollars to erect or about the
moon and therefore assert national domi- believe that eventually we will be able to billions of dollars spent on NASA as much
nance over the new frontier (the final fron- cull the galaxy of its life, travel the stars in as it concerns the billions of dollars wasted
tier), a space race spawned between us and vehicles George Lucas could only dream when it could've been spent elsewhere.
them (USSR). The program was a financial of, but realistically, NASA's manned space Imagine for a moment the billions of
powerplay for the States, we had the USSR flights are expensive and frivolous. dollars devoted to the space program were
spending billions on the development of The tax dollars of the American people redirected through the public schools.
nuclear weapons; now we had them throw- should not serve these fantasies. Space-age education? How novel. Primary
ing their money away on a space program. As long as NASA invents reasons for and secondary schools in impoverished
Placing aside the quizzical origins that manned space flights shuttles will continue to areas finally receiving the funding their
brought us NASA, it has been a vital part fly into space under inconsequential circum- taxpayers can't support. I think far more
of expanding technology simultaneously stance. Manned space flights are irrelevant; dreams would be fulfilled were this the
shrinking the globe. We reap the rewards there's nothing we can do up there that case, rather than a few engineers, astro-
of satellite television, wireless Internet machines can't handle. The only thing for man physicists and pop stars desire to enter a
and major developments in the under- to do, besides moderate repair work, better galaxy not too far from here.
standing of physics - all due to NASA. suited for mechanics is look down at the Earth
Where we have been left out in the and be taken away by the space's spectacle. Smith can be reached
cold is on the importance of manned space NASA can't be entirely faulted for its at lukems@umich.edu.
LETTERSTO THE EDITOR

Students correct to be offended
by Daily senior edition
To THE DAILY:
Many minority groups are demanding that
the University take action against the newspa-
per regarding the insensitive comments in Fri-
days edition. I could not agree more. Every
year, I read this spoof edition and every year it
upsets me more. The Daily needs to stop hid-
ing behind the First Amendment and start tak-
ing pride in what it produces.
What if the football team decided to
get drunk and give no effort during the
bowl game just because it was their last
game? Whether the Daily is independent
from the University or not, it still repre-
sents the University and its students. It is
embarrassing to think that my school
newspaper pretends to care about the
issues only to publish what it really thinks
about its readers one day a year just
because it can.
MICHAEL YATES
Engineering senior
Rugby team apologizes for
negative portrayal in the Daily
To THE DAILY:
As leaders of the 2003 Michigan Men's
Rugby Football Club, we feel the need to
respond, on behalf of our club, to the arti-
cle published featuring our club in the
Daily's Club Sports Weekly, Plug and play:
Ruggers find their passion on day one
(01/27/03). We feel that the article incor-
rectly highlighted aspects of our club, con-
trary to the true spirit of Michigan rugby.
We assure the readers that the University of
Michigan Rugby Football Club is an athlet-
ic organization, striving to improve the
physical talents of its members and that the
focus of the article did not accurately
describe the true nature of the club. In no
way does the Rugby Club promote or con-
done any activity which detracts from the
abilities of participating athletes.
We are a serious, determined and dedi-
cated club sport, striving to reverse nega-
tive stigmas historically attached to rugby
teams at North American universities.
Athletes competing as part of the Michi-
gan rugby team are expected to be focused
and determined athletes who attend prac-

result of this article. Furthermore, we
extend an invitation to any and all with an
interest to attend a game and/or practice,
where Michigan rugby will no doubt be
more clearly represented.
KURT SARSFIELD,
LSA sophomore
President UMRFC
CRAIG WILLIAMS,
LSA junior
Captain UMRFC
People need to learn to laugh,
spoof edition of the Daily
funny, not offensive
To THE DAILY:
I am writing to applaud the Daily for its
"senior spoof" edition on Jan. 31, 2003. I
remember picking up last year's edition and
wondering what was going on. After reading
more of the paper while sitting in my Engi-
neering 100 class I started cracking up. It was
a great break from the grind of school work
and the stories of violence around the world.
So that brings us to last Friday, and the
newest edition. The moment I picked it up
I knew what it was and anxiously awaited
reading it. Again, I wasn't disappointed.
But I think the most humorous part of the
paper was the letters written afterwards.
Why are people on this campus so sensi-
tive to every little thing?
If you can't take a joke, don't pick up
the paper that day. Some of you say it's
offensive. I am a gay male on this campus
and took no offense to the LGBT joke. I am
not going to think that "All Muslims Suck"
or that even the Daily truly believes that.
Why should I? What does it accomplish? So
now I am mad and start to complain about
it. Take pity on me please. It's just a joke.
When my friends make a gay joke and it's
funny, I laugh with them. If they recklessly
use the word "fag" or refer to something as
"gay" I call them out. If everyone just
stepped back, relaxed and thought about
how silly arguing over a joke is, then maybe
we all could just get along.
AARON TYLER
Engineering sophomore
Enders depiction of Columbia
inaccurate; country is not a

from many other countries each have a
share of the blame in this war against
drugs. But, let it be clear, the government
of Colombia is not a "drug-trafficking
regime" as Enders suggests. In the war
against drugs, there has not been another
country that has lost so many people and
resources and that has suffered as much as
Colombia has. Not only does Colombia
wage direct battles in combating drug traf-
ficking, but the government also finds
itself fighting terrorist groups to which the
drug business has supplied financial and
military strength.
The new president of Colombia, Alvaro
Uribe, was not elected with the help of
"money and influence from drug traffick-
ing, human rights abuses and crimes" as
Enders says. Furthermore, Uribe has made
containing the country's guerrillas his top
priority, and he actually survived an assas-
sination attempt perpetuated by one of
these terrorist groups last year.
We believe that Enders' article, with
such an evident lack of research, distorts
the reality concerning the war that Colom-
bia, the United States and the International
Community are fighting against drugs.
Should someone at the Michigan Daily
decide to write articles about Colombia in
the future, we would like to offer our help
and advice. As Colombians, we have expe-
rienced the critical situation that our coun-
try is currently going through and would,
hence, be able to provide much more accu-
rate and objective information with our col-
leagues here at the University.
We look forward to receiving a response
from Enders.
Jos VICENTE PUERTO
JAVIER RODRIGUEZ
ANDREA WULLNER
Business Administration
ANDREA FANTA
CHRISTIAN JARAMILLO
ANDRtS MARTINEZ
OSCAR TASCON
MARISOL TtLLEZ
LAURA VILA
Rackham

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