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April 06, 2004 - Image 4

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The Michigan Daily, 2004-04-06

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4 - The Michigan Daily - Tuesday, April 6, 2004

OPINION

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

EDITED AND MANAGED BY
STUDENTS AT THE
UNIVERSITY OF MICHIGAN
SINCE 1890

JORDAN SCHRADER
Editor in Chief
JASON Z. PESICK
Editorial Page Editor

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
Terrorists can't
stand freedom."
- President Bush yesterday in a speech
at Central Piedmont Community
College in Charlotte, N.C., as reported
by The Associated Press.

COLIN DALY IHE MICHIGAN DALY

Asking is for X-mas presents, demanding is for justice
JESS PISKOR JOIN THE PISKOR
ometimes you need power on this campus. Maybe if we stu- demanded that the University do it. The racist
to negotiate peace- dents, lecturers, graduate students and pro- secret society Michigamua was forced out of
fully. Sometimes fessors had more of a voice and didn't feel the Michigan Union and made to change
you need to sit down at a so disenfranchised and separate from the some of their rituals not because of students'
bargaining table and hash administration of this university in the repeated requests, but because a coalition of
out a deal. Sometimes you first place, it wouldn't have to be this way. students engaged in a 37 day sit-in and forced
need to flip over the table But after a series of years when student the University to act correctly.
and get ready for a brawl. and teacher unrest and unhappiness with The University will respond to
In her letter to the various services were met with commit- demands and direct action and it really
many students upset over tees, advisory boards, lip service and little doesn't matter if they like to or not. This
top-down changes to student services, Uni- to no real action, it should hardly come as Thursday, after nearly a year of weekly
versity President Mary Sue Coleman said, a surprise that real demands rather than negotiations, the Lecturers' Employee
"I am not interested ... in responding to a gentle negotiations are necessary. It has Organization plans to stage a one-day walk
set of demands where no real discussion been too long. We have been ignored for out. This action is not rash, radical or reac-
can take place. I believe that progress on too long. The administration might not like tionary. It is a thoughtful escalation of tac-
important issues can only come from dia- it, but it will respond to our demands and tics that is only necessary because the
logue." Coleman can spin it any way she direct action. University has continuously stalled and
likes, but when you read the rest of her let- The main victories in the last few years refuses to budge on several key LEO
ter, you will realize that it is in fact a on campus and in Ann Arbor came not demands - among them that the Universi-
response to a set of demands. through negotiation alone, but through ty pay lecturers with doctorates more than
Making demands and following up with demands and direct action that confronted untrained middle school teachers with no
direct action like protests, picket lines or sit- those who thought they were in positions advanced degrees.
ins is often the only way to create change. of power. The arts of diplomacy and negotiation are
More confrontational tactics have a time and Borders's employees negotiated for a year vital means through which students and
a place, and should always come after negoti- to get a fair contract, and it was only after teachers can achieve justice. They are the car-
ation and dialogue, but it is through the exer- they went on strike that they achieved their rot that can lead administrators to build a bet-
cise of non-violent direct action and through demands - even though Borders had said it ter university. Usually, direct action is not
demands that an institution as slow-moving was impossible. The Graduate Employees' necessary. But sometimes a carrot isn't
and bulky as the administration is changed. Organization negotiated with the University enough - sometimes students and teachers
Students need to snap out of the mind- to no resolution for months, until they forced need to use a stick to show the University
set that if we ask nicely the administration the issue and held a one-day walk out - a who has the real power. Direct action brings
will act more responsibly. The administra- week later they had a contract with childcare. results far more often than the administration
tion is not our friend. It does not like The University belongs to the Worker Rights wants us to believe.
change. It likes the status quo, no matter Consortium and has a code of conduct that We have asked nicely to no avail. Now we
how unjust. People need to stand up and helps to ensure fair labor practices not demand. We control this University, not a
demand justice from the administration, because the University wanted to sign on or committee-lovin' president.
not act as supplicants and beg for it. because students asked nicely for it. Instead,
Sure, Coleman doesn't want to respond after being rebuffed by the University in
to demands. That's because she does not negotiations, Students Organizing for Labor Piskor can be reached at
want us to remind her that we hold the real and Economic Equality started a sit-in and jpiskor@umich.edu.
LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

Student Voices in Action
sends mixed messages
TO THE DAILY:
I consider myself a liberal and believe
that many of the ideals held by Student
Voices in Action do hold promise for the
University community. In my opinion, the
idea of a student committee participating
in administrative decisions can only help
to create an academic atmosphere that fur-
ther allows students' needs to be met and
input to be encouraged. I find its request
to the University to investigate the prob-
lem of minority admissions to be not only
appropriate, but commendable. However,
despite my agreement with SVA's goals, it
is its tactics that bother me. By continuing
its trend of overly aggressive demands,
SVA turns a possibly productive relation-
ship between students and the administra-
tion into an adversarial one. This also
seems to hold true for its relationship with
the student body itself. Despite its call for
action, SVA seems to attack the exact
same students it asks for support if they
disagree with any element of the organiza-
tion. This irony was made explicitly appar-
ent in a letters to the editor (SVA calls
students to untie, hold admin. accountable,
04/01/04). On one side of the section, SVA
had written a passionate letter to students
in which it calls on the student body to
"raise its voices in demanding the Univer-
sity listens." However, this "call" for stu-
dent participation was immediately
followed by a letter by SVA member Clair
Morrissey attacking the reputation of Dan
Adams for disagreeing with some of the
group's goals and platforms. While Mor-
rissey has every right to confront any
aspects of Adams's article she felt were
unfair or incorrect (Liberals behaving
badly, 03/31/04), her personal attacks on
Adams's character were completely inap-
propriate and uncalled for. She announces
Adams's disagreement with the tactics of a
University group is an underlying sign of
Adams being "sexist, racist and heterosex-
ist." I was appalled to see someone seek
to brand a person with such a vile, disgust-
ing reputation, based on an extremely
broad and incorrect interpretation of their
ideas. Adams said nothing of marginalized

SVA wants the aid of students' voices, it
seems to be completely opposed to listen-
ing to them. I encourage SVA to take part
in the same productive dialogue it
demands from administrators with stu-
dents who have minor disagreements with
their organization. Perhaps then, a united
voice can be actually realized.
JOSHUA SLEDGE
Business junior
For women, abortion can
be induced by emergency
contraceptives
TO THE DAILY:
In an article (Fem Fair addresses issues of
violence, choice, 04/05/04,) the Daily quotes
nurse-midwife Lisa Kane Lowe saying "It is
a common misconception that contraception
is related to abortion." Lowe is incorrect.
Hormonal contraceptives such as the pill and
emergency contraceptives especially can
behave as abortion-inducing drugs.
Emergency contraception, since it is
taken after intercourse, can only work if it
either prevents conception or if it prevents
a fertilized egg from implanting in a
woman's uterus. If it acts to prevent con-
ception then the emergency contraceptive
truly works as a contraceptive. If the emer-
gency contraceptive prevents implantation
of a fertilized egg (a birth-prevention
mechanism that it shares with the pill)
then it does not act as a contraceptive; it
acts as an abortifacient. If you believe that
life begins at conception, preventing a
newly conceived human life from implant-
ing in the womb is in fact a very early
abortion.
TOM BRESS
Undergraduate laboratory coordinator,
Mechanical engineering
Student needs to change
perception of YAF,
funding at 'U'
TO THE DAILY:

group of people that live in a large house.
They each have to pay a certain portion of
the phone bill to stay in the house. A cou-
ple of them never use the phone, but they
are still forced to pay their portion of the
phone bill to stay in the house even as the
cost each has to pay for the phone bill
keeps rising to unbelievable amounts. I
think there is a large group of students
here at the University that feel the same
way as the people who never use the phone
in the house. For those like Rezmovic, who
don't want the funding cut for the "extras,"
don't try to force everyone else to pay for
them, raise the money yourselves. I'm also
deeply offended by the way Rezmovic
stereotypes Young Americans for Freedom.
He says we are all "wealthy" and "Repub-
lican." I am actually a poor Libertarian
from Kansas. This whole funding topic is
very pertinent to me because I am going to
have trouble in the next few years finding
the funds to keep up with my rising out-of-
state tuition. When you complain about
funding cuts to the "extras" and try to
argue that this University needs the
"extras," you are trying to speak for every
student that pours money into the Univer-
sity's funds, but I ask you: Please don't try
to speak for me and my money.
P.S: Rezmovic, since I don't think you
know the meaning of fascism, here it is: A
political philosophy, movement, or regime
(as that of the Fascisti) that exalts nation
and often race above the individual and
that stands for a centralized autoc atic
government headed by a dictatorial le er,
severe economic and social regimentation,
and forcible suppression of opposition. I
invite you to attend one of our YAF meet-
ings to learn how we are probably the stu-
dent group that is most opposite of
fascism there is on campus.
JEREMY FERTNER
Engineering freshman
Campus Director YAF
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