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February 12, 2003 - Image 4

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Cracking the (former) Code
Students should attend hearing on statement

- Karhn Cecere. o f Wevhe-Sudwevhe
Donal Rums eld. a quie in
L-ondon ~s Sunday Telegraph

hen University administra-
tors chose last year to
change the abrasive name of
the Code of Student Conduct to the
more innocuous-sounduizStatement of
Student Rights and Responsibilities,
their motive was clear: to dryw attention
away tram this n tzvIlyove'bearing
document in hopes that swdents would
forget which of their rights it violated.
The statement is up for revision this
year, and tomorrow, students will have
an opportunity to pay much-needed
attention to the injustices contained
within it. From 2 to 4 p.m. tomo in
the Kuenzel Room of the Michigan
Union, the Student Relations Advisory
Committee of the Michigan Student
Assembly wil b-hearing comments on
and suggestions to the proposed amend-
ments to the Statement. It is important
that students attend this hearing and
Voice their concems to the SRAC.
The Students' Rights Commission
of MSA has proposed seven amend-
ments to the Statement. While these
amendments do not address all of the
problems with the Statement, they do
address some of the most severe
inf-ngements on students' rights. They
clarify a wide range of issues. such as
gender identity and the timeline for
appeals of a decision made by the dean
of students regarding a violation of the
statement. One amendment would
restrict the University's jurisdiction to
punish behavior that takes place off of
University property. Another would
allow student to have legalrepresenta-
tion at hearings in which criminal
charges have been filed or are likely to

be filed. In addition. there are amend-
ments allowing the accused party to
open hearings to the public and to
ensure that there is always the requisite
number of students on the panel.
Former University President Lee
Bollinger misled students byinforming
them that the vst majority of their con-
cerns had been addressed when the
Code was last revised two years ago.
when in actuality, most of the changes
were simply grammatical. This year
marks the first oppormnity that students
have had to propose amendments'
If the proposed amendments do find
their way through the complex maze
leading to approval. President Mary
Sue Coleman will ultimately decide on
the final version. Coleman should sup-
port and approve these amendments;
however, her record as president of the
University of lowa is not encouraging.
During her tenure there, the University
of Iowa curbed students' rights with a
restrictive alcohol policy and a crack-
down on student protest. President
Coleman would go a long way toward
achieving her stated goal of making the
University a more humane place by
exerting leadership on this issue.
Only a few years ago, students uni-
fied to rally against the Code. Since
then. only a small group of students,
lead by the Students' Rights Commis-
sion. have fought to preserve the rights
of University students by challenging
the statement. Students should attend
tomorrow's hearing en masse to bring
this issue tote light and to ensure that
basic student rights are protected now
and in the years to come.

Washington, we have a problem
KASHIF SHEIKH FRM THE XAITEBIN OF HISTORY

he state of the
union is utter con-
fusiot. President
Bush's address to the
nation last month did lit-
tle to quell uncertainty
surrounding Iraq or the
economy. but was
instead candy coated
with jingoism to boster
supporT for polcies that will beneit either the
wealthy or no one at all. With a quick update
on the war on terror rwe're winning. stern
warnings to ptential rogue governments rif
they don't act. America will' and the firm
resolve of he cotry free people will set
e course of history-. he went on to cloud
nearly eve-r domestic concern withmi several
levels of abstraction. leaving much to the
cytti's Imagination.
Sure. there were bits about Washington's
reckless spending habits. hydrogen cars. cor-
porate dishonesty and creating jobs. but the
details were spread as thinas the effort we'd
ever expect Bush to extend towards these
issues Instead. more pressing matters ncluded
those damned dividend taxes and details of the
bloated defense budget, all of which he excit-
edly flaunted but poory justified.
Yet almost half of this hour-long tirade
was devoted solel? to Iraq. as if half our
union's problems lay with some fat dictator
ho has. coincidentally. unlimited sums of
that coveted. precious oil. in fact. Osama
wasn't even mentioned. nor was Palestine.
w hch is the rea, cauldron in the Middle East
and the prime source of anti-American senti-
ment there. With such slanted priorities. it
comes as no surprise that it takes this flat

black and white. good -s. evil reasoning to
make. at best. an asinine case for war.
Fast-forward a week ahead to Secretary of
State Coln Powell's presentation to the U.N.
Security Council, when the world was pre-
sented with audio intercepts. satellite images.
and pure speculation attempting to prove Sad-
dam's ongoing deception. Sadly, we have a
record of fabricating audio to win public sup-
port. and the use of hearsay from anonymous
Iraqi defectors casts doubt over the reliability
of some findings. On these grounds. this evi-
dence alone would be insufficient to make the
case in an American court of law; to apply a
double standard on such a grander and more
destructive scale is dangerous at the least. But
even if we were to take the secretary's word
for all it's worh, he only reinforced to the
world that war is unnecessary and the mspec-
tions should continue. by force if needed.
After running out of cogent arguments.
Powell desperately threw in a potential
Iraq al-Qaida link, despite senior FBI and
CIA officials who still maintain there is no
connection between them. He went on to
detail Abu Musab Zarqawi and his network.
- notorious individuals who are malicious
enough to be absent from the FBI's most
wanted list. The secretary's insistence on this
issue aroused more skepticism after repvealing
a satellite image of an active al-Qaida training
camp in northern Iraq. and why it would be
left standing if it were such an imminent
threat. More importantly. however. is why it
is located in the U.S.-backed Kurdish region
well outside Saddam's control. Unfortunate-
ly. there was no question and answer session.
There was also the matter of integrity. A
British intelligence report. described by

Powell as "a fine paper" and used as a
resource in his presentation. was exposed by
the United Kingdom's Channel 4 News as
being plagiarized from a graduate student's
paper and Jane's Intelligence Review -
grammatical errors and all. The stupidity of
British intelligence is striking, but the
incompetence of American officials to blind-
ly reiterate whatever fits their agenda is
deplorable. There goes their credibility.
What has resulted from Bush's odd fixation
is a county that can no longer distinguish Sad-
dam from Osama. Iraq from al-Qaida. unjust
from evil terrorism from counter-terrorism. A
survey by the Princeton Survey Research Asso-
ciates shows that. out of 1.200 Americans. a
pitiful 17 percent know how many Sept. 11
hijackers were Iraqi. The answer is none. of
course. which clearly illustrates America's col-
lective disorientation thanks to Dubya's mess.
So when Americans unanimously trust our
Middle East with the secretary of state rather
than the president, according to a recent Gallup
poll. it should not be that suprising (or reassur-
ingi. though something is still amiss. But when
former Secretary of State Madeline "1.2 mil-
lion dead Iraqis ain't so bad" Albright has
qualms about Bush's Middle East policy, pnor-
itizing North Korea and the War on Terror
instead, destroying Iraq might not be such a hot
idea after all. hen the case for war hasn't yet
been justified by an evident physical threat to
the United States, its allies or Iraq's neighbors
(almost all of whom agree that Saddam poses
no real danger to them), it's high time that we
put an end to this dishonesty.

0

Sheikh can be reached
a ksheiikhaumich.edu.

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

9

Fighters under fi e
City should give adequate funding to AAFD

It's hard to miss them: dozens of
Ann Arbor's off-duty firemen,
picketing in the cold on Huron
Street outside City Hall After examin-
ing its fiscal situation, the city found
thet due to over ime expenditures near-
ing $1.2 million, the Ann Arbor Fire
Department would land over budget
some S700.000. To correct the prob-
lem. a plan was implemented on Jan.6,
temporarily shutting down one of the
cities six fire stations if operation caus
es some of the firefighters to work
overtime. Granted bigger is not always
better, even when the issue at stake is as
important as a town's fire protection
services. Government services are
expensive. but funding them adequately
is essential for the public's well-being
and, in this case, safety.
The first real test of the city's new
plan played out at a large fire that
engulfed the Wells-Babcock Apartment
Complex on Jan. 27. When responding
to the call, 15 firefighters and five
trucks were able to arrive within 10
minutes. The fire was extinguished. and
it seemed apparent to the city that the
plan worked as promised.
However, the city cannot argue that
its overtime policy did not in some wvay
hamper rescue operations. As a result
of this policy the AAFD had three
fewer firefighters and one fewer truck
with Which to fight the fire and handle
other emergency calls. While the blaze
was being fought, one lone fire truck
was left to deal with all calls from the
rest of the city for nearly two full hours.
This truck responded to nine calls that

day, many of them medical in nature.
The strain was so great that ,ien a call
came in from Briarwood Circle con-
cerning an unconscious person, fire
dispatch didn't have a truck to send.
Fire units should be able to
respond to dire medical calls, as their
response times are usually faster -
crucial in a life or death situation.
Unfortunately, the city's overtime pol-
icy left Huron Valley Ambulance.
whose average response times are
several minutes slower, to arrive and
treat the individual. This is an
extreme limitation to the AAFD's
ability to deal with multiple scenarios
simultaneously and a disregard to the
safety of Ann Arbor citizens.
Even at the scene of the fire, the
initial response of the AAFD could
have been made stronger by the pres-
ence of another truck. The events of
Jan. 27, as serious as they were, could
have been worse. The fire ultimately
did not cause any serious injuries. but
this cannot be the bar by which we
measure the success or failure of this
initiative. We should measure and fund
our emergency services to be cost
effective, but also able to handle the
needs of the city at uncommon levels
of emergency. This does not mean the
city should continue to pay huge sums
in overtime; it should simply hire the
firefighters necessary to keep the ones
we do have off overtime. The bottom
line as it concerns emergency services
should not be dollars; it should be the
reasonable and efficient protection of
Ann Arbor citizens.

Reader prefers 'rational
arguments' to 'hippie rhetoric'
To THE _..DAILY:
hle reading the account of Sunday's
Peace Rally Peace parde isplas grouing
a i~r sern'en: it. Ann .rr. 02 10 03,). I
was oercome by a sense of disgust that I
have not felt since listening to Democrats
whine and complain after the2(1 presiden-
tial election. The sheer ignorance of the argu-
ments and sentiments expressed by the
protesters makes me wonder how any of
them made it out of high school.
Let's start with comments made about the
Iraqi people. Two students expressed their dis-
approv for war because Iraqi civilians will be
killed and "human nghts I be lost." Under
Saddam. the Iraqi people enjoy no human
rights; they are dened food and shelter, there
are no free elections and. if they oppose the pre-
sent regime. they are murdered. A war to oust
Saddam woud offer the Iraqi people the liberty
and freedom that we take for granted. just as it
has for the people of Afghanistan. Another
ndicuous quote was that a war on Iraq "could
not psibly be justified." As I already men-
tioned. Saddam is actively oppressing his peo-
ple, and let's not forget he tried to exterminate
the Kurds with banned chemical weapons a few
years back. both of which are clear violations of
international law. He's in material breach of
two .N. Securit- Council resolutions., which is
grounds for the use of force. He suppots. finds
and suppies terrorists. He's even threatened to

use his populace as a human shield against
bombings and invasion. What more will it take
to justify removing him - a mushroom cloud
over Manhattan? It seems to me that the only
thing that isn't justified is why we haven't gone
in there and ousted him,,vet.
For the sake of the Iraqi people and the citi-
zens of the world. Saddam must go now. Call
me a warnonger. but at least I can validate my
position with rational arguments. as opposed to
moronic hippie rhetoric-
JAY SCH"r.R
Engi nerng senior
heeere her hec e
Sdet- seb- Cnr S x - an
Litman's use of 'G>
disrespectful to institutin
of U.S. presidency
To THE DALE:
I am tired of seeing Joseph Litman refer to
President Bush as "G-dub" in his columns
( The senaora uho cried toIf. 02 1 (3i .It is
immature and highly disrespectful. Regard-
less of one's stance on the policies of the
Bush administration, it is still important to
respect the institution of the American presi-
dencv. If Bush were standing in front of hin.
I highly doubt Litman would call the presi-
dent "G-dub" to his face.
EI SEGA;.r
LSA jnor

Daily applauded for
supporting lecturers' right
to organize labor union
To THE DAILY:
Thank you for coming out in support of
the establishment of the Lecturers
Employees Organization (Po er points,
02 11 03i. Undergraduate students are
becoming aware of the appalling treatment
received by non-tenure-track faculty at the
University.
Some lecturers have worked at the
University for more than a decade and are
still considered "temporary" workers.
Many are paid less than graduate employ-
ees on this campus. despite their doctoral
degrees. Lecturers are an important part of
the University community and deserve to
be paid living wages and granted the dig-
nity of real job security.
Undergraduates understand that when
non-tenured faculty face a stressful and
non-sustainable working situation, we, the
students, are likely to receive lower quality
teaching. We stand in solidarity with the
lecturers and will be prepared to support
the LEO in any job action that may be nec-
essary as they build their union and fight
for a fair contract with the University.
Mum MEDOW
LSA junior
T-nwiter is a member of Snidents
Organngfor Labor & Economic Equalit

6
6
0

VIEWPOINT
'Go forth and be equal' won't narrow education gap

BY BRIAN STEPHENS
Constantly. I find myself unable to
intellectually 'grasp the reasons why affir-
mative action is not wholly supported by
society and our government. The same
government that used its constitution to
preven! minorities from getting educated.
ensured them that equal housing and work
could not be attained.
Then. hundreds of years later. the go.'-
ernment says. "Oops' Our bad. no more
barriers. go forth and be equal. even
though ou are starting from a point well
behind the original makers of the law and

Andover High School's ACT a:'erage is
25.0. which leaps over the national aver-
age of 21.2: in contrast. in 2002, Kettering
High School's ACT average was 14
points. Giaen that Kettering High School
offers curriculum like cosmetology. culi-
nary arts and manicuring entrepreneur-
ships,. it is painfully apparent that some
Detroit high schools are preparing youth
i(which consist nearly all of blacks) for
blue-collar employment and not for higher
education.
The first reaction for many is to pour
money into Detroit's school system, but
how much can you dump in to sate the dis-
parity Bloomfield Hills spends S11,775

incredible amount of money needed to
make the Detroit Public Schools a com-
petitive driving force at this time. While
the Detroit schools have made steps in
improving education, especially within
Renaissance High School. whose mean
ACT score has improved four points since
1997, there is a lot of work to be done
with the rest of the 213 schools. Even if a
miracle happened and S_ billion w as
dropped in the hands of the Detroit School
policy makers. it would decades to mod-
ernize hundreds of old and dilapidated
buildings.
In its current state. affirmative action

0
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