4 - The Michigan Daily - Wednesday, November 27, 2002
iFbe Sirbigan +L
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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.
What we are
saying is that the Holy
Koran has clearly
stated that whoever
insults the Prophet of
should be killed."
- Zamfara, Nigeria State Commissioner of
Information Umar Dangaladima Magaji, on
the state's recent urging of Muslims to kill Isioma
Daniel, whose article stating that Mohammad
would likely have married a Miss World contestant
sparked riots last week, as quoted by Reuters.
SAM BUTLER TE sOASPBox
AN MVINCd "k
The emerging Students First majority?
ZAC PESKOWITZ TuE LoWER FREQUENCIES
C apitalizing on gence of a post-industrial worldview, the con- - that could serve to improve the situation
subtle yet signif- tinual evolution of the Ann Arbor ideopolis would be the immediate elimination of political
icant demo- and, most importantly, an appealing interior parties. Although political parties are the con-
graphic trends at the decorating scheme. "I just really like orange," stant subject of criticism for their cynical cen-
University, the Students said an unidentified LSA sophomore. Howev- trism, they usually serve as an effective way for
First party had a stun- er, continued success of the party is not a voters to filter political information and make
ning showing in last given. An RC freshman, who wished to remain their judgment. In the case of student govern-
week's Michigan Stu- anonymous, found it difficult to identify with ment, these advantages are less apparent.
dent Assembly and LSA the color coordination. "Orange doesn't speak At this point, blame should not be placed on
Student Government to my generation," he argued. Rapid changes individual parties, but on the entire party struc-
elections. Securing 16 of the 20 open seats in in color preference among younger students ture. Parties serve to reinforce and institutional-
the MSA balloting and seven of nine in LSA- could prove to limit the party's appeal in future ize the most irritating and unproductive aspects
SG the party delivered a walloping blow to the elections and may leave the door open for a of student government. Each party is its unique
last vestiges of Blue Party prestige. grassroots movement to challenge Students subculture with its weird and slightly discon-
In its rapid rise to assembly dominance, the First hegemony in the near future. The party certing rituals. Forcing candidates to run as
party has transformed itself from a feisty chal- however remains unperturbed by the possibili- independents will obligate them to advance
lenger to the Blue Party to the undisputed ty of future discontent. their messages. No one will be able to rely on a
champion of University politics. Their strategy To the victors go the spoils. And with coattail effect to gain a seat in one of the
is sure to serve as a model to disaffected cam- their victory, Students First executives are assemblies. Candidates will have to shape their
pus leaders across the nation. Pundits have certain to usher in a stunning new era of um own agendas and depend on their own skills to
already claimed that this Students First victory ... um ... something or other. win election. There are serious drawbacks to
will represent a watershed moment in the sto- Something is rotten in the state of student this approach, but the obsequious clubbiness
ried history of University student governance. government. From blatant ethnic politicking and corruption that has made these parties more
The Students First message rang out like a clar- (see: Blue Party flyers "He's Jewish, She's Ital- problematic than productive.
ion call even beyond the hallowed walls of the ian,") to vague and vapid pseudo-agendas cam- The successes that have occurred in MSA
University. The party's inclusive message is paigns are dominated by idiocy. I agree with and LSA-SG have been the result of individuals
seen by some strategists as a model for broker- the sentiments of the best GSI at the University, showing initiative and not the work of political
ing peace in the Middle East. A consensus has who bluntly advised his students at the end of coalitions. The most useful developments, like
emerged among experts on the Arab-Israeli the summer, "Stay the fuck out of MSA." He Fall Break, have occurred from hobnobbing
conflict that any organization which can suc- was right and this election showed that he is with administrators and not through resolutions.
cessfully unite Eric Reichenberger and Brad going to be right for a long time. My vain Student government needs to work to make
Sugar on the same ticket can surely reconcile attempt to make some sense out of the Students itself relevant. This is an imposing task that
the differences between Prime Minister Sharon First triumph speaks to the gaping void at the will require a synthesis of ideas and dedication
and Chairman Arafat. But, Students First is still center of the University's excuse for student from a wide swath of government-oriented stu-
committed to focusing on the domestic agenda government. All of the effort and energy put dents. Abolishing parties is the first small step
in the approaching months. into late nights spent plotting at the Fishbowl toward fruitful reform.
In a power luncheon with anonymous and early mornings chalking campus build up
political analysts, the strategists argued that the to nothing more than a fragile whimper. Zac Peskowitz can be reached
key to Students First's success was the emer- The one solution - and it's a drastic one email@example.com.
LETTERS TO THE EDITOR
Tuesday ad misrepresented integrity that must be met by advertisers in
order that the Daily maintain its reputation ATTENTION WRITERS:
Wiesel, called into question as a high quality publication.
Daily's joutrialistic integrity The misrepresentation of Mr. Wiesel is TIRED OF TURNING IN
journalistic misrepresentation of the worst
kind. By co-opting Mr. Wiesel's message STELLAR PAPERS NO ONE BUT
(that we should not tolerate people being YOUR GSI WILL SEE?
TO THE DAILY: unjustly persecuted) to support a cause
I am writing in regards to the anti-abor- which many see as seeking to unjustly per-
tion insert in the Daily yesterday. The back secute people, the messages of both causes UPSET THAT NOBODY NOTICED
of the insert contained a quote from Elie are lost. WHEN YOU USED "PRAXIS"
Wiesel talking about the Holocaust. Should the Pro-Life movement have a
The quote was supposed to be in sup- voice? Of course. Should they be able to CORRECTLY AT LUNCH?
port of the pro-life movement but there misrepresent noted scholars to deliver their
was nothing in the quote that referenced message. That is their prerogative. Should THINK ASKING A SERIES OF
abortion at all, nor do I think Mr. Wiesel the Daily help in this misrepresentation?
intended that meaning. My issue is not so Probably not. If the Daily expects to main- QUESTIONS IN QUICK SUCCESSION
much with the organization taking the tain any sort of integrity with its readers, it IS THE EPITOME OF RHETORICAL
quote grossly out of context to support should be a little more careful about the LAMENS
their movement but rather with the Daily journalistic integrity of everything it prints,
printing it. The Daily should not be limited including the ads.
in the type of advertising it can run, but I AARON OSTROVSKY DAILY OPINION WANTS YOU.
think there should be a level of journalistic Law School
Indian culture more than dancing girls, rap beats
BY SRAVYA CHIRUMAMILLA
Maybe it was the PT Cruiser stationed out-
side the Michigan Theatre blaring Hindi film
songs or the large placards announcing the
newest DaimlerChrysler arrivals, but as I
entered the 2002 Indian American Students'
Association's cultural show, Prathanjali, Satur-
day night, I realized I would be leaving the the-
atre very frustrated. To IASA's credit, the
cultural items in the show itself were better
than I expected; the participants' hard work
really paid off as the colorful, while unfortu-
nately homogeneous, dances were lively
crowd-pleasers. IASA's attempts to represent
the Indian Americans on this campus, however,
were unrepresentative to say the least.
One of the many videos the board put on
was supposed to show the history of India, yet
elements of this video were erroneous. Primari-
ly, the video was chronologically out of order
and more importantly, it shied away from the
most historically relevant events that define
present-day India, including but not limited to
the India-Pakistan wars, the recent Gujarat riots
and the ever-present Kashmir issue.
The most disturbing of all were the numer-
ous DaimlerChrysler commercials within the
rare when you do not hear Dr. Dre's sampling
of Lata Mangeshkar's melodies mixed with the
crass tenors of Truth Hurts. This "culturally
insensitive" and all around awful song is almost
acceptable in comparison to Redman's barking
in conjunction with Desi (another term for
South Asian) music in one of his newest releas-
es, "React." Perhaps girls in skimpy clothes and
dots on their heads belly dancing (darned if I
remember that being an Arabic dance form)
shall be India's contributions.
In essence, IASA offering the corporations
commercial time can be justified considering
the logistics and financial burdens of putting on
such a large show, especially since the proceeds
were being donated to charity. What cannot be
explained, however, is the hypocrisy behind
IASA's message to bring together the Indian
community. Similar to most organizations on
campus, IASA offers the platform to promote
one's name and image. However, since the
cliques within the community are steadfastly
held, getting ahead in leadership positions is
near impossible, resulting in the same twenty
people holding leadership positions in almost all
South Asian organizations.
In fact, the best videos at the show were not
the ones with the "Lassi Man," which showed
roaring with laughter until it realized just how
accurately the video portrayed the importance
of conformity not only in IASA but in the
entire Indian American community.
The breadth of Indian American organiza-
tions is vast and well-represented in organiza-
tions such as Association for India's
Development and Students Educating and Vol-
unteering for Health Awareness, which are stu-
dent groups that fundraise and increase
awareness about many atrocities, such as the
horrendous conditions in Bhopal and about the
escalating rates of cancer related deaths due to
the rising tobacco use, respectively. IASA
offered them a venue to educate the audience
through public service announcements at the
cultural show, a commendable act since these
organizations were able to educate more people.
Keeping in mind the necessity of an active
Indian American community, IASA should
focus its attention and efforts to make its spin-
off conference, the South Asian Awareness
Network, a success. This conference, which
will be held next semester, has the potential to
succeed in educating both the South Asian and
University community about prevalent South
Asian issues. In order to accurately portray the
many views that represent South Asia, the
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