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April 15, 2004 - Image 4

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The Michigan Daily, 2004-04-15

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4A -The Michigan Daily -Thursday, April 15, 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
One thing is for
certain, though, about
me, and the world has
learned this: When I
say something,
I mean it."
- President Bush, during a press
conference on Tuesday.
No comment how that relates to Bush's
Oct. 11, 2000 statement that
"We're not in the
business of nation building."

COLIN DALY THE MICHIGAN DALY
W~hT DDYou TALk A5o0UTS EIAYa-
-
-1 -
jT
"aguic~h

01

End of the vulcans
JASON Z. PESICK ONE SMALL VOICE
henever I go Palestine, as my former editor pointed out. cause is wrong would only bring more harsh,
back to my high This incestuous crew of campus activists insulting and hurtful attacks.
school to see a always claims to be supporting the downtrodden There were meetings held to discuss the boy-
play or a skit that my - supporting the oppressed (minorities, women, cott, and one of them was intended for "minori-
younger brother is in, I gays) from the oppressors. They frame every ties only." Whites were not supposed to attend.
always feel bad for the kids issue in these terms, and they brand anyone who But many of these "minorities" (they use differ-
whose lives have clearly disagrees with them with some of the most pow- ent definitions of such words than I) stopped
peaked. They strut around erful words in the parlance of our times. Two boycotting the Daily when the divestment confer-
the stage, trying to draw all weeks ago, one of the leaders of this band of ence, which advocated that the University not
the attention to themselves activists responded to a column on this page with invest in Israeli companies, rolled around and
while feeding their insatiable egos. This is it for a letter to the editor calling the columnist's cri- they needed the press coverage.
them; nothing they will do later in life will ever tique of the activists' tactics "offensive, as well as It was also a little bizarre that so many mem-
make them so happy. sexist, racist and heterosexist." Their strategy is to bers of the campus ACLU supported the boycott
A similar breed exists on campus; only here launch flippant attacks loosely grounded in slip- and demanded that this newspaper change so
they're not the leads in the school play (in fact pery semantic logic that could only be based in many of its practices. Even stranger, these advo-
they're not even half as nice as the drama kids), reality if one were to invert the definition of reali- cates of civil liberties (I think freedom of speech
but activists who tirelessly champion whatever ty, as well as disregard the true meaning of the and freedom of the press could at least be loosely
causes present themselves for these activists to word racist, bastardize the term for personal con- referred to as civil liberties) never questioned the
seize upon. Over the past few years, a specific venience and discount the valiant work true civil boycotters' strategy of stealing copies of the
collection of a half-dozen or so characters has rights advocates have done. Daily so people couldn't read them.
graced the University with its presence. This It's impossible to have a serious conversation So I won't shed a tear when these self-glo-
group is motivated to advocate on behalf of a about issues such as race, sexism, homophobia rified hatemongers graduate. In the few per-
given issue by some combination of the afore- or the other issues these advocates discuss sonal encounters I have had with them, I have
mentioned insatiable ego - only to such a because of their vitriol. found their rhetoric and their approach to
degree that insatiable is far too weak a word for In the interest of full disclosure - something advocacy enraging and hurtful at the same
their condition - and a sense of responsibility to we rarely receive from even those advocates who time. I feel lucky that I am only a sophomore
the University's legacy of activism. claim to have a thorough knowledge of journalis- and did not have to go through college with
After four years, finally, they're graduating. tic integrity - these are also the same people them and constantly deal with their painful
One of my predecessors as the editor of this who boycotted the Daily. I have never believed accusations for four years.
page - a brilliant, thoughtful human being that the boycott's leaders were sincere in their But I.do think that some of them might be
whom these activists tried to tear apart for person- criticisms. In fact, the way they ran their cam- shedding a few tears when they leave Ann
al reasons - once referred to them as the "anti- paign only made it impossible to make any real Arbor. They should. Because their silly cam-
people" because they're always campaigning improvement at the Daily. paigns at the University were their zenith; I pray
against something, never for anything. Whatever's One member of this activist contingent they'll never feel so important again. And I
going on, they're against it. They're anti-Israel, recently referred to the boycott as "a multiethnic know that this University will be a much more
anti-administration, anti-war, anti-Daily, anti-who- coalition of student organizations." This is despite decent place without them.
ever is making them mad for the two or three the fact that one of the movement's leaders said
weeks they have the patience to organize a coali- that he could control "the black groups." But to Pesick can be reached at
tion. These people are never pro-peace or pro- say that co-opting minority groups for a personal jzpesick@umich.edu.
LETTER TO THE EDITOR

Syed provides solid
critique, has every right
to question Bush
TO THE DAILY:
In his letter (Syed goes too far in his criti-
cism of Bush, America 04/10/04), Brett Lyon
employs the same tactic that President Bush
has been credited with ever since he took
office - masterfully avoiding the real issues.
While responding to a very well-written
viewpoint, Lyon fails miserably to even
attempt to answer the real questions and criti-
cisms that Syed had brought up. If his letter
was truly in the defense of the Bush agenda
(read: propaganda), I don't believe it did the
Bush administration any good. No one can
follow an administration of liars except for
people who blindly follow their leaders and
not question their motives - Al-Qaida and
do the Taliban are only two examples. If this
nation starts to exhibit the qualities of the
fore-mentioned organizations, it won't be
long before chaos engulfs America too.
To me, Syed's viewpoint was not
designed to launch a personal attack on any

part of the American community, but a
reflection of generalized attitudes. While that
may not have been the best way for him to
address the issues, I did not feel he resorted
to personal attacks in his rhetoric - except
those aimed at Bush himself. I was offended
by Lyon's attack on Syed, however, and this
"American's" treatment of Syed as a second-
class citizen of this country - unless he
knows surely of Syed's status as a naturalized
citizen. Even then, the rights which are
extended to all citizens of this country
(including the right of free speech), natural-
ized or not, are the same constitutional rights
as of the American-born citizens. I guess
Lyon would not have had a problem with the
author's citizenship if the same article was
written by a Chris or John or by someone
who unambiguously came across as an
"American;" Lyon could not accuse them of
being "proudly welcomed into this country
with open arms who then have the audacity
to address our president by his first name out
of disrespect". Lyon's assumption of Syed's
status in this country, based solely on his
name and Pakistani affiliation, was a contra-
diction of his letter in itself.

The only thing the Bush administration
has been good at is generating lies and igno-
rant, close-minded people like Lyon who can
(and do) only resort to "petty arguments"
because they have no substantial argument to
make of their own! They choose to ignore the
facts and believe in the scripted press confer-
ences designed to satisfy voters like Lyon.
Then again, their attitudes are a reflection of
the leadership they so adamantly support.
SANA HAFEEZ
LSA junior
PAY YOUR TAXES -
THE ARMY NEEDS MORE
TANKS FALLWA..
DAHY OPrNIOt:
TAX EXEMPT.

S
4
0

VIEWPOINT
Where the Republicans stand

BY STEPHEN MACGUIDWIN
You're George W. Bush. You're a 57-year-old
father of twin daughters and husband to Laura,
a former librarian and teacher. You graduated
from Yale and Harvard Business School. You've
served your country in the National Guard, your
home state as governor of Texas and have been
alcohol-free for over 10 years now. You even
beat out the man who invented the Internet to
become president.
Does this introduction sound familiar?
No? Check out yesterday's Daily viewpoint
for some passe Bush bashing from a nonstu-
dent and former Daily columnist (The day Sad-
dam's statue fell, 04/13/04).
I speak on behalf of the entire undecid-
ed population of students when I say, "It's
getting old, guys."
Bush isn't Satan, and he's not God. He isn't
a liar, murderer, cheater, racist, sexist, elitist or
any other derogatory term that these Bush bash-
ers misuse. He is a cowboy, and there's nothing
wrong with that. Rather than waste your time

from spending, but Republicans believe that tax-
payers and corporations should be the benefac-
tors of the spending. Tax cuts create new
jobs,and improve the quality of life for all
Americans. That money promotes consumer
spending, which creates jobs for factory work-
ers and corporate spending on new equipment
and the operators that they require.
Terrorism - Not in our country, ever
again. The United States is an equal-opportunity
terrorism exterminator. If you're supporting ter-
rorism, we couldn't care less about your race,
religion, ethnicity or gender; we're going to stop
you. We want to feel safe in our own country, as
do the citizens of all countries in the free world.
As long as terrorist cells exist, none of us are
safe. At home, we need to give law enforcement
the power to quickly react on tips of domestic
terrorism through laws like the Patriot Act.
Abroad, we believe that the United States needs
to work with other nations (Pakistan,
Afghanistan, even France) to root out their
domestic terrorist networks, and we can't be
afraid to intervene when national governments

We got Hussein, his sons and his regime
leaders. The war in Iraq not only thwarted a
volatile regime, ended Saddam's genocide of a
half-million Iraqis, but it persuaded Libya and
North Korea to disclose their nuclear intentions.
Furthermore, we are committed to instilling a
democracy where there once was only tyranny.
Education - Teachers and schools need
to be held responsible for properly educat-
ing their students. National standards are
essential to ensure that every American stu-
dent receives a quality K-12 education and
not just a paper degree.
We believe that all parents should have
the ability to choose their student's school, be
it public, private or in another district. Final-
ly, public education needs to be better funded
by the states, and more affordable for all.
Federal Pell grants made education afford-
able for collegiate scholars, but are no substi-
tute for state funding.
Now that you're all well-versed in
Republican thought, I implore each and
every one of you to make your own educat-
I a - _.+.~ - .+. +~ ---

J

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