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January 28, 2004 - Image 4

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4 - The Michigan Daily - Wednesday, January 28, 2004

OP/ED

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420 MAYNARD STREET
ANN ARBOR, MI 48109
letters@michigandaily.com
opinion. 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 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.

NOTABLE
QUOTABLE
I was a wrestler
so I used a wrestling
move."
- Comedian Al Franken, on
body-slamming a demonstrator
who was shouting at Democratic
presidential candidate Howard Dean, as
reported yesterday by The New York Post.

SAM BUTLER THE SOAPBOX
aid hi hGs
4I~~ C
arm --

My president was born to run
ARI PAUL I FoUGHi THE LAW

've been on an elec-
toral rollercoaster late-
ly. I abandoned the
Howard Dean train after a
disappointing loss in Iowa.
I've also been impressed
with Gen. Wesley Clark's
intellect and unassailable
patriotism, but without the
political machinery he's
useless. And while I like the idealistic platform
of Dennis Kucinich, let's get real.
This columnist is making a political
endorsement. In the Michigan Democratic cau-
cuses, I will vote for John Edwards.
Kate O'Beirne of the National Review
recently opined, "Edwards has adopted the
portrait of widespread, dire poverty
famously depicted in Michael Harrington's
'The Other America,' without checking its
publication date ... Over 40 years, and
hundreds of billions in welfare spending
later, Harrington's, and now Edwards's,
'Other America' doesn't exist."
Oh really, O'Beirne? Perhaps you need to
do some fact checking. Forty-five million
Americans are without health care coverage.
Social programs are being closed and unem-
ployment is still a plague. Business Week,
hardly known for its liberal bias, commented
last month that we're currently seeing "an
erosion of one of America's most cherished
values: giving its people the ability to move
up the economic ladder over their lifetimes
... The best economy in 30 years did little to
get America's vaunted upward mobility back
on track."
O'Beirne is right about one thing. The gov-

eminent has spent billions in welfare over the
past 40 years. The government has given away
tax incentive after tax incentive to suburban
developers and corporations, keeping them on
the teat of the American people while the
industrial, urban poor and working class were
completely forgotten. Where she goes wrong is
when she says that the "Other America"
doesn't exist - it has merely been sidelined by
the government. So to the establishment and
the mainstream media, this "Other America" is
perceived not to exist.
Edwards is the only candidate adequately
focusing on this growing gap between rich and
poor America. He is also the only candidate
with a realistic chance of success who has
actually lived through the American nightmare
of working-class isolation.
Other candidates are trying to go after Bush
on Iraq. I say focus on the economy; Iraq will
crush Bush from within. It's one thing for anti-
war protesters to say that the weapons of mass
destruction don't exist, but now a former
weapons inspector and Secretary of State Colin
Powell have publicly cast their doubts. Iraqi
elections are going sour and the Shiites are get-
ting restless. Bush will screw this up himself.
I also like Edwards because he revealed
that his favorite album of all time is "The
Essential Bruce Springsteen." This may sound
like petty cultural favoritism (Clark is automat-
ically out of the running after announcing his
affinity for Journey. Bleugh!), but this yields
important insight into Edwards' understanding
of the American economic landscape.
The Federal Government has been subsi-
dizing middle- and upper-middle class devel-
opment in the Sunbelt suburban wastelands of

Arizona, Nevada and Southern California for
decades turning a blind eye to the Rustbelt,
working-class cities of Detroit and Cleveland.
Springsteen used this tragedy as the inspiration
for his art. Edwards was "born in the U.S.A,"
in America's forgotten working class, as
Springsteen famously mused.
Edwards has several traits that logistically
make him the best choice for the Democrats.
Many analysts have asserted that in today's
political landscape, a candidate needs to appeal
to southern voters if he or she wants to come out
on top in the Electoral College. Edwards could
not only win his home state of North Carolina,
but he could appeal to voters in poorer southern
states like Kentucky and West Virginia. If the
Democrats run an establishment Yank like Dean
or Kerry, they can kiss the South, and the elec-
tion, good-bye.
Also, it is clear that Edwards has a good
shot of winning midwestern blue-collar states
like Michigan and Wisconsin if he continues to
play the class card. That, plus key Southern
states, plus coastal "blue" states equals a
Democratic victory. No other candidate has the
credentials to replicate this formula.
Unlike Dean or Kerry (or Bush for that
matter), Edwards has actually lived the Horatio
Alger tale of pulling himself up by the boot
straps. America needs an American president,
not some artificial production of the establish-
ment elite. Working America needs a candi-
date who understands class issues, but has the
talent and charisma to win enough electoral
votes. America needs John Edwards.
Paul can be reached at
aspaul@umich.edu.

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

'U' incorrect to alter regu-
lations on student-teacher
relations hips
TO THE DAILY:
It was with profound shock that I read the
article regarding the modification of student-
teacher relations ('U' to look at student-prof
dating regulations, 01/23/04) This is not due
to the fact that I saw anything that expanded
my horizons, but because people in this,
according to the propaganda, leading institu-
tion of higher learning in the United States
and by extension the charted cosmos, consider
themselves to be the pinnacle of what conver-
gent evolution has to offer.
Why is it that Americans have to be able
to do what they want, whenever they want to?
Is dating a teacher really the final hurdle
between us and educating those Nobel Prize
winners? And furthermore, why are a collec-
tive of suits who individually make more
money than the entire GSI body spending
time on this issue? Is it not their job to create
divine tuition-raising mandates which they
rationalize using logic that would make Kafka
tear his hair in madness? It truly is baffling
that America can legitimately claim to be a
superpower with such flagrant displays of stu-
pidity within the ranks of the intellectual elite.
If we legitimize student-teacher relation-
ships, why not stretch the concept to its limit?
I envision a time when we will have the "cop-
a-feel the provost" day, the "make out with a
DPS officer" Friday, and better still, the
"make love to a shotgun so that you don't
have to deal with this idiocy" night.
If you have to date a GSI or student, the
answer is waiting until the semester is over.
Four months is not an eternity. It doesn't
make it less disgusting, but at least it becomes
more acceptable.
The last thing this place needs is another
striking resemblance to "Friends." Please, let
our leadership focus on raising tuition, not on
this drivel.
NORHAL H. EL HALWAGY
Rackham
President Bush needs to
earn our respect

ship." Under the Patriot Act, American citi-
zens lose their right to privacy, their right to a
lawyer and can be thrown in jail without just
cause for months on end. Basically they lose
their right to be Americans. Now that we have
begun a world-wide crusade against terror, it
seems as if everything that the President does
is acceptable and is in the name of freedom
and God. We can go to war on the ridiculous
premise that "they might attack us," kill about
7,000 civilians, lose more than 500 troops,
and still, only the brave dare question our
courageous leader. What's going on with our
country? We were made to question, made to
stand up for our basic civil rights and made to
be arigry at a president who so blatantly disre-
gards the Constitution, lies (yes, lies -
weapons of mass destruction, Saddam's ties
with al-Qaida, Iraq was an eminent threat -
just to name a few biggies) to our faces
repeatedly, mocks world leaders and goes to
war because of want rather than need. If you
are upset with the lack of respect people are
showing toward the president, please provide
us with the evidence showing why he
deserves any. I, personally, welcome those
people that want to speak out against the pres-
ident and don't simply award him respect
because of his title.
DAN EICHINGER
LSA junior
Abstinence has failed
before, will fail again to
prevent spread of STDs
To THE DAILY:
In response to Matt Schaar's letter to the
editor (Abstinence education is a logical way to
stop the spread of STDs, 01/23/04), it would be
helpful if President Bush, instead of promot-
ing a policy that makes him feel good -
funding for abstinence-only programs -
would utilize research to allocate scarce feder-
al funds so that he gets the outcome he wants.
The Minnesota Department of Health
recently released the results of Minnesota's
abstinence only sexuality education program,
Education Now and Babies Later. The evalua-
tion indicated there was an increase in sexual
intercourse, as well as an intention to have sex
before finishing high school among the sur-
veyed teens in the year after they participated

Dr. Douglas Kirby, the foremost researcher on
effective teen pregnancy prevention programs
and to European countries where attitudes are
more liberal about sex, but where teens have
fewer pregnancies, fewer STDs and fewer
abortions, and start having sex at a later age
than their U.S. counterparts.
EVAN MACFARLANE
Engineering senior
Christian faith about love
and compassion, not about
passing judgement
To THE DAILY:
I'm writing in response to Jordan Genso's
letter which presents some misguided notions
regarding the foundation of the Christian faith
(Reader: Christian faith 'prejudiced' against oth-
ers, 01/26/03). Genso suggests that the Christ-
ian belief system is prejudiced and slanders
everyone who is not a Christian. Genso writes
that because he is an atheist, no matter how he
acts, Christians would believe that he is a bad
person who is deserving of hell. The main
point that Genso misses is that all Christians
believe that all people, including themselves,
are deserving of hell. The process of being
"born again" involves acknowledging that you
are sinful and deserving of hell and in turn
asking Jesus Christ to be your savior. Upon
being born again, Christians are called to live
a new life which includes continually asking
God for forgiveness and spreading the faith to
others. Contrary to Genso's implication, this
is not a system of beliefs that slanders non-
believers or calls people to judge others or
label them "good" or "bad." Christianity
stresses that only God can judge. It is not a
religion meant to insult non-believers - it is
meant to include others and enrich lives.
MARCUS RINGNALDA
Engineering junior
LETTERS POLICY
The Michigan Daily welcomes letters from
all of its readers. Letters from University stu-
dents, faculty, staff and administrators will be
given priority over others. Letters should
include the writer's name, college and school
year or other University affiliation. TheDaily
will not print any letter containing statements

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