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September 05, 2003 - Image 4

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The Michigan Daily, 2003-09-05

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4 - The Michigan Daily - Friday, September 5, 2003



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.

(( Honestly, I think we
should just trust our
president in every
decision that he makes
and we should just
support that, you know,
and be faithful in what
- Pop singer Britney Spears when asked
about the war in Iraq in an interview
Wednesday with Tucker Carlson on CNN.

Eac. r, FeeJ 1 Ke. 4ti+ los4-- Preshman
wavy de-mnc n e- dios on the first o
- .


Ann Arbor linked to greatness


or the thousands
of students
returning to cam-
pus, Ann Arbor seems
different not only
because of the young
fresh faces eager to
dominate campus but
also due to the many
changes that took
place during the sum-
mer. While people noticed the re-routed
downtown and two-way traffic, which
have led to some slight congestion down-
town, most have missed out on two of the
most exciting additions.
Earlier this summer, after facing bud-
get obstacles and low ridership, the Ann
Arbor Transportation Authority was forced
to close some lines that reach neighboring
towns, Dexter and Saline. Riding on the
heels of this loss, however, arrived a new
line catering to commuters in need of a
quick trip downtown and to campus.
The Link, funded through the Federal
Transit Administration, promotes environ-
mentally sound public transportation. The
18-month Congestion Mitigation Air Qual-
ity grant has provided for the five buses
that take turns running the routes. Three
buses travel 24-minute loops between 11
a.m. and 10 p.m. allowing for passengers to
get on a bus every eight minutes for a fare
of just 25 cents. Not only are the posh,
state-of-the-art buses air conditioned dur-
ing the summer and heated during the win-
ter, but they are also a part of AATA's
fleet of low-sulfur buses.
Most notable about the Link are
AATA's efforts to familiarize residents


with the purple buses: AATA has pur-
chased advertisement space in local papers,
placed banners on main roads and is offer-
ing rides this month for free.
Not only does the Link help children and
special cardholders reach dining and enter-
tainment venues on a dime, but the AATA
offers weekly rides for seniors in nursing
homes to get around town for grocery shop-
ping or for a movie matinee.
My excitement comes not just from the
24-stop route, but for what this could mean
for the expansion of public transportation in
this state. After former Gov. John Engler's
11th hour veto of the Detroit Area Regional
Transit Authority, area government officials
have been working on overdrive to revive a
similar transit program. They have, however,
faced numerous problems due to bickering
and a dearth of cooperation with Macomb
County. DARTA has been limping along in
its efforts to unite the two inefficient bus
systems in the area and needs a boost such as
a success in a neighboring town. Following
in the footsteps of Ann Arbor, the Detroit
area should finally be able to attain an effec-
tive transportation system.
The summer is known for drawing
large crowds for bourgeois events such as
the monstrous Art Fair; however, the com-
munity felt at events such as the nightly
concerts and movie screenings for Top of
the Park, a three-and-a-half week gather-
ing located on the roof of the Fletcher
parking lot, is the true character of the
town. All too often students forget that
this campus is just one part of a vibrant
city that is famed for its legacy.
The Downtown Development Authori-
ty's Citizens Advisory Council, the City

Planning Commission and the City Coun-
cil helped extend our knowledge of the
history behind several corners around
town. Due to the Ann Arbor Historical
Street Exhibit Program, one can read up on
the first Borders bookstore or the financial
district on Main Street or student activism
on South University Avenue by just walk-
ing around. The University was also
instrumental in providing material for the
project, as the Bentley Historical Library
furnished many of the photographs and
stories found on the lithographs. The his-
torical plaques located on main corners are
noteworthy themselves as they are the
product of a 15 year collaboration of dedi-
cated councils.
These two additions have brought to
Ann Arbor residents knowledge of the his-
tory surrounding us and an effortless
means of accessing downtown locales.
They will hopefully also herald partner-
ships in lagging cities around the state to
promote similar endeavors.
Since taking office, Gov. Jennifer
Granholm and Detroit Mayor Kwame Kil-
patrick have repeatedly focused on the need
to attract younger residents. Ann Arbor has
maintained its vibrancy as it is somewhat of
a pod distanced from its neighbors because
of what it provides its residents. Its dedica-
tion to offer educational and engaging
events must be emulated in order to provide
a quality of life for the rest of the state that
is comparable to the one enjoyed in the
bubble known as Ann Arbor.



Chirumamilla canbe reached
at schiruma@umich.edu.



Greenbelt, A2 two-way traffic
more problematic than Paul's
crag rants on neocons
While Ari Paul's hysterics over neocon-
servatives once again take their place on the
editorial page, What the hell is a neocon
(09/03/03), where is the concern for the needs
of students (you know, the people returning
to campus)?
Over the summer, the city of Ann Arbor
has "accomplished" making many streets
near campus two way, making it harder to
drive or walk near campus without being hit
or run over. Meanwhile, the city is contem-
plating a greenbelt resolution to raise the cost
of living in the city (property taxes and what
else; the cost of which, of course, to be borne
by students as well) in order to "prevent
sprawl" on the outskirts of Ann Arbor.
The city is talking about a long-term plan
to make the city even more crowded and
expensive; according to The Ann Arbor
News, $40 million or so needs to be raised
over a 30-year time span in order to pay for
the open land in the greenbelt.
Isn't this more worrisome than Paul's
rants over "neocons?" Millions of dollars in
waste, and students over the long term will
definitely be paying for this nonsense.
LSA senior
Divestment discussions sup-
ported by many students

Africa." He went on to say that he saw "the
humiliation of the Palestinians at checkpoints
and roadblocks, suffering like us when young
white police officers prevented us from mov-
ing about." (BBC News, April 29, 2002)
Don't believe me, don't believe Aghion.
Believe those who have experienced
apartheid in all its horror, for they are most
able to recognize it again.
Law School
Students should agitate
for University to divest
During the 1980s, when the global com-
munity began isolating the racist apartheid
regime in South Africa, Israel stood by their
ideological allies, sending them aid and arms,
until they were finally forced out of power. It
appears that support for this apartheid regime
indirectly continues to this day by some of
Israel's supporters.
In his letter, Students on campus do not sup-
port divestment from Israel or other nations
(09/04/03), Daniel Aghion counters calls for
divestment by stating "Divesting from a sov-
ereign country is not the correct path to take."
With this logic, by divesting from apartheid,
but sovereign, South Africa in 1984, the Uni-
versity erred. In reality, after the University
divested, over 100 universities followed suit
until 1986 when Congress finally cut their
ties to that political system.
Today, the parallels between the two
states extend beyond common calls for
divestment. South African anti-apartheid
heroes from Nelson Mandela to Jewish
leader Ronnie Kasrils have referred to
Israel's domination over the Palestinians
as "apartheid." Archbishop Desmond Tutu
has called for divestment from "apartheid
in the Holy Land," praising the student
As one student among many other con-
cerned students, I support divestment from
apartheid Israel, just as I support divestment
from apartheid South Africa.
LSA senior
Minority Affairs Commission chair,
Michigan Student Assembly

the point at which students are more satisfied
with their grades at the time course evaluations
come around.
2. What we do need, though, rather than
studies that point out the obvious, is for profes-
sors and administrators (like the article's anony-
mous English professor who speaks about grade
inflation and course evaluations) to cease being
anonymous, and to actually speak up about the
tremendous flaws that are part of both the grad-
ing system and the hiring policies for and treat-
ment of non-tenured faculty at large universities
like ours. Until people like this anonymous
English professor publicly acknowledge the fact
that course evaluations are being misused in
deciding who should and should not teach our
undergraduates, and then begin to encourage
administrators to seek fairer and more sensible
hiring policies, I'm not sure that the problem of
grade inflation will ever get fixed; instead, we
will have, as it seems we are at least starting to
have now, a permanently "adjusted" grading
scale. But maybe this really is a new era, a post-
C age for the university? (Or really, a post-B
minus age, or a post-B age...)
Lecturer I, LSA English
Daily website an eyesore;
restart from 'square one'
I am a frequent visitor of your website,
www.michigandaily .com, and I was personally
appalled when I recently noticed the "face lift"
which has been applied to it. I must say that in
my eye the new layout is a step backwards and
reflects poorly on an otherwise wonderful pub-
lication. Most noticeably, the link in the upper-
left hand corner is one of the most horrendous
things I have ever seen, or actually barely seen,
since it pretty much blends in to the back-
ground. It looks as if a monkey was hitting ran-
dom buttons in Photoshop. Also, only about
two-thirds of the full width of my screen is uti-
lized by this fixed-width design, wasting a
good deal of space. The advertisement at the
top is obtrusive and poorly placed, since the ad
is centered (along with the footer), while the
actual body is not. Personally, I would go back
to the old site and start from square one. You
must consider the large audience who is out of
reach of your circulation and relies on the web-
site for their perusing. An eyesore such as the


Danny Aghion has got a few of his facts
wrong, Students on campus do not support
divestment from Israel or other nations
(09/04/03). First of all, many students and
faculty on this campus do in fact support
divestment from Israel. And many don't. It is
a debate that is lively, creating much worthy
discussion. Those who try to portray that
there is no support for divestment are only
trying to kill the debate. It should be noted
that pro-Israel groups on this campus have
repeatedly refused to publicly debate this
issue, a clear sign of their distaste or perhaps
fear, of sharing their true ideas. There is, in

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