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April 09, 2003 - Image 4

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 2003-04-09

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4 - The Michigan Daily - Wednesday, April 9, 2003


V~cvJ~. e.nou~Y' 4~OQ~dE

ape ouchumm i ttilg


SINCE 1890

Editor in Chief
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.

" This coalition
does not target
- U.S. Brig. Gen. Vincent Brooks, after
yesterday's U.S.-led strike on.the Palestine
Hotel in Iraq killed three journalists, as
quoted by The Associated Press.

'00 11 vi ' nex ,1cm




Every writer gets one of these: Read mine
I've told very few pletely dry. nizations. It happens in the classroom or in the
people this before: Then, literally within a few days of my laboratory. It can happen in your dorm room,
On Sept. 10, 2001, consideration to quit "Hornography" came with your circle of friends.
I was considering the what will prove to be the defining event of The drug is raising your voice and being
abandonment of this our ever-shaping generation. I wrote a col- heard. I'm addicted and you've got to get
column. It's a weird, umn that ran on Sept. 13 and pissed off a yourself some of it. There is an expression
pathetic, desperate lit- lot of people. There were also many who in Hebrew, "Tikkun olam," which means,
tle nugget of informa- expressed their similar-mindedness, and "Repair the world." For the last couple of
tion, but my final thanked me for what I had written. There years I have been able to say that, at worst,
column is as good a was conflict. I was generating discourse. I was doing my part to repair the world
place to share it as any. It's the kind of thing Game on. every two weeks. College in general, and
that lingers - an aftertaste - in every col- Here's the point of this sprawling, des- the University of Michigan in particular, is
umn I have written since. I sometimes feel as perate, masturbatory reflection: My life, the place to find your voice, and begin a
exploitive and opportunistic as the politi- and my priorities, were completely process of community participation that
cians and media I deride. reshaped by Sept. 11. Duh? Duh. But bear has unlimited potential.
It was late summer - school was just with me. In the last two years I have found Thank you Emily Achenbaum, for giv-
underway - and I was a junior, preparing the drug of bi-weekly columnist to be intox- ing an ambitious freshman with a bad sense
for a semester of 18 credits and increasing icating. I was awarded a platform my fresh- of humor, bad ideas and bad prose a plat-
responsibilities on this newspaper's sports man year, and it took a shock of lightning form on this editorial page. And thank you
staff. Writing a column every other week on halfway through to get me dancing on it. to Mike Grass, Nick Woomer, Johanna
the thriftiness of Jimmy John's or the moral Readers - students, professors, alumni, Hanink, Aubrey Henretty and Zac
applications of "The Big Lebowski" to cam- Lynne Cheney - responded to what I said Peskowitz for sustaining it. You guys have
pus aesthetics hardly seemed worth the and I became a full participator in some- given me an opportunity for the most unan-
effort. Fuck it, I thought. I had written for thing ... something bordering on the fringes ticipated and wonderful kind of personal
two years and, whatever, it was fun. of democracy, and carrying the weight of growth. I hope, and like to think, that
Once in a blue moon my celebrity pre- vital political and social discourse. "Hornography" has been a worthwhile use
ceded me, and at parties I met cute freshmen This drug is amazing and I don't want to of this page's precious space.
girls who had perambulated over my smiling give it up. I have had the privilege of partici- To everyone else - thank you for read-
face every Tuesday and Thursday when they pating in the affairs of this campus communi- ing and participating in this process with
walked into their psychology lecture. "Oh, ty, this state, this nation and this world in such me. See what you can do about finding your
um ... Do you write a column for the a unique and rewarding way, and I will shortly platform, your drug, your voice. Ifit turns
Daily?" With my best keg-party chic, I tried find myself in withdrawal when the platform out to be half as rewarding as this has been
to turn that innocent question into legitimate is taken from under my legs. I encourage for me, I promise that your college years
flirtation, but I found little success. everyone reading this - especially under- will be a success.
So "Hornography" wasn't producing the classmen, but everyone - to fmd a way to do
hordes of groupies I had anticipated, and the same. It doesn't have to be a column in the Horn can be reached
my well of subject matter had run com- Daily. It happens in political and social orga- at hornd@umich.edu.
Passing my loyalty test with flying colors
"I, (the undersigned) tion and am skeptical of the value of nation- circumventing the Constitution or any-
do solemnly swear (or alism and undying loyalty to a nation. thing. Furthermore, I really doubt the gov-
affirm) that I will support Examining it line by line gives me pause. ernment will call on me to go out with my
=x the Constitution of the Now, I really do think the Constitution is a shovel and nail gun to deal with some ene-
United States and the good thing, but at first glance I'll have a lit- mies of the Constitution.
Constitution and laws of tle trouble signing this. Let's examine it, But on further inspection, I think I can
the State; that I will bear line by line. Support for the Constitution? sign this with a clear conscience. I fact, I
true faith and allegiance Sure, I can swear to support its ideals, but will argue that my actions and worries are
to the same, and defend supporting the ideals of the Constitution exactly at the heart of what this oath is all
them against all enemies, requires not blindly following it, but active- about. The best way to defend the Constitu-
foreign and domestic, and that I will faithfully ly engaging it and questioning it. So my tion is to hold leadership accountable, raise
and impartially discharge the duties according support will only go far enough to mean that questions, be involved in democracy, and
to the best of my ability, so help me God (or I will behave as a citizen in a free country. voice dissent if necessary.
'so I do affirm')." Now here is where it gets a little tricky, The more I think about it, the more the
I have to "bear true faith and allegiance to wording and this oath appeals to me. It talks
T hat's the text of the loyalty oath that the same." Does that mean I have to have about the Constitution and ideals, not cur-
I, along with every other govern- faith that the Constitution is perfect and rent policy. It leaves open the opportunity
mental employee, am required to that anyone who doubts it is not "in alle- for me to decide for myself what constitutes
sign to work for the federal government giance" with it? a threat to the ideals of the United States.
this summer. It's a great job doing preser- "Defend it against all enemies, foreign While that no doubt includes the vague
vation work with the National Park Ser- and domestic?" Who gets to decide who its threat of international terrorism, it can also
vice, and I don't plan on passing it up, but enemies are? If I can decide, then OK. But include repressive police tactics at public
this oath gives me pause. if the Bush administration gets to tell me demonstrations, elimination of basic civil
It's nice that I can choose to rephrase the who the enemies of the Constitution are, liberties, and the erosion of social programs
God part. Though not particularly religious, then I will not necessarily defend it. In our without which the American dream of free-
I probably won't bother and will just sign it day and age, when Democratic presidential dom is impossible for millions.
with the God part anyway. No need for any- candidates are described as just short of ene- If the government's goal with this loyal-
one to know I'm a heathen. However, I am mies of the state simply for voicing the need ty test is to assure that people are informed
going to a least pause and consider the for a different outcome in the next election, about the value of the Constitution and are
implications of what I'm signing. I don't really feel comfortable defending the willing to freely engage in participatory
I'm a little troubled by McCarthyite Constitution against every "enemy." democracy, then this loyalty test is right up
fears - loyalty tests bring up disturbing Of course, this oath could be seen as my alley. But if by signing my name the
images of black lists and evoke memories of mere formality. Every year millions of Bush administration sees me in allegiance
un-American activities commissions and governmental employees are required to with it, they are sadly mistaken. I'll take this
Red Scares. It's a little troubling to have to sign this oath. It probably won't be a bur- oath seriously, and it won't silence me.
affirm my loyalty to anyone. den on me and following this oath is easily
And perhaps I should be troubled. After in line with my activities - it's not like Piskor can be reached
all, I am an ardent critic of this administra- I'm busy overthrowing the government or atjpiskor@umich.edu.

Daily's editorial on WEMU
contained factual errors
As a music show host on WEMU-FM, I
want to point out incorrect information printed
in Monday's Daily (Whitewashing radio,
04/07/03). The editorial board apparently based
its opinion upon hearsay and have not verified
the facts in the case of Terry Hughes. Firstly: the
Daily mistakenly reported that Hughes' Bone
Conduction Radio Show included newscasts.
Bone Conduction was one of the few shows on
WEMU that did not have hourly newscasts. Fur-
thermore: Rather than opting for nonstop talka-

announcing over the air that "NPR News is
nowhere - get your news from Fox TV." Last-
ly, let it be observed that the management of
WEMU offered to have him back on the air if he
would air newscasts like everybody else. Hugh-
es refused this offer. The wounds are self-inflict-
ed. He got himself taken off of WEMU and he
kept himself off of WEMU.
LSA Media Services
Former teacher agrees with
criticism of MEAP

teaching to standards to be found on the test,
and not allowing for true teaching and experi-
ences necessary for positive growth. I became
a secretary to tests, scores and standards. I was
recording online, in my grade book and report-
ing to everyone from principal to board of
education. The stress on my students not to fail
was overwhelming. I felt it was also a great
insult to my students because, as always,
scores are posted in the local paper. Most peo-
ple don't realize how the test is scored, and by
only one point they can show failure, instead
of showing their successes. Not that we don't
need some sort of standardized tests, but what
we do with MEAP scores afterward also dis-
tresses me.
Hopefully, in these times of violence,






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