Wednesday, April 21, 2004
Harper explains the
student affairs budget
The Realest says
Daily Arts swings into summer... Arts, Page 20
One-hundred-thirteen years ofeditorialfreedom
www.michigandaily.com Ann Arbor, Michigan Vol. CXIII, No. 139 ©2004 The Michigan Daily
MCRJ officials divided on
concerned about funding
By Aymar Jean
Daily Staff Reporter
During the next two months, the campaign to
end race-conscious policies in public education
and employment will make critical decisions
for its petition drive. But with a deadline fast
approaching, the group is facing financial and
A response to the U.S. Supreme Court's
affirmation of the University's race-conscious
admissions policies last summer, the Michi-
gan Civil Rights Initiative needs 317,757 sig-
natures by July 6 to get a constitutional
amendment banning "race and gender prefer-
ences" on the November ballot.
But MCRI is now in a state of uncertainty.
While it has several contingency plans in place,
MCRI faces a rift in its campaign structure,
questions concerning its financial situation and
Several proponents of the initiative have
recently questioned its direction. Former treas-
urer Leonard Schwartz posted an update on the
state Libertarian Party website last week stating
that the petition drive had been "suspended."
"MCRI decided that continuing the petition
drive now would be a waste of time and
money," he wrote.
Schwartz also wrote that the initiative could
start up next year to get on the 2006 ballot, an
option echoed by some other MCRI officials.
But Schwartz's positing highlights a disagree-
ment in the campaign. Others in the organiza-
tion disagree with delaying the initiative.
MCRI spokesman Chetly Zarko said the ini-
tiative should focus on the 2004 ballot, whether
or not a state appeals court rules in favor of the
initiative's current petition form.
A state judge ruled that MCRI's petition
forms were invalid because they did not state
the text of the constitution article the initiative
In many ways, the future of the campaign
hinges upon the appellate ruling. Until the
decision is made, the campaign will not make
any definitive choices on future strategies. If
MCRI loses the appeal and must redo the peti-
tion, all the signatures collected since January
would be invalid.
Ample finances will also be critical to the
initiative's success, as MCRI officials say it
will soon pay circulators to collect signatures.
Opponents of the initiative have wondered
whether Ward Connerly, the University of Cali-
fornia regent and chief promoter of the initia-
tive, will provide the funds necessary to obtain
the required amount of signatures.
Connerly's most recent ballot initiative in
California, Proposition 54, which sought to
prohibit the government from collecting racial
information, was reportedly underfunded and
See MCRI, Page 9
THE TRADITION CONTINUES ...
'U': Essays may
be cause of fewer
By Donn M. Fresard
Daily Staff Reporter
An across-the-board decrease in under-
graduate applications to the University this
year may have been caused by reluctance
on the part of high school students to write
the extra essays included in the new appli-
cation, according to a preliminary admis-
The LSA application, which
the University implemented at
the beginning of this school
year after the U.S. Supreme
Court forced it to discard its
policies, includes a set of three
essays designed'sothat appli-
cants provide more informa-
tion about their backgrounds.
While the current admis-
sions cycle is not yet over, preliminary data
released by the Office of Undergraduate
Admissions indicate significant drops this
year in applications. The number of total
applications received as of March 30 was 18
percent lower than the number received by
the same date last year, and applications
from underrepresented minorities decreased
20 percent over the same period.
The number of accepted students mean-
while dropped 3.5 percent, while minority
admissions decreased 11 percent.
According to a background report on
undergraduate admissions released by the
administration, the new application's exten-
sive essay portion may have discouraged
some students from apply-
ing to the University. The
because the new application
is relatively time-intensive,
students for whom the Uni-
versity was not a first- or
second-choice school may
- have decided that the added
effort was not worth their
time. According to the
report, this speculation was
based on discussions between University
staff and high school counselors.
Melissa Pierce, a guidance counselor at
Grosse Pointe North High School, estimated
that applications to the University this year
from her students have dropped 10 to 20 per-
See ADMISSIONS, Page 11
Students run from Lorch Hall through the Law Quad and the Diag at 11:00 last night. They are running an alternative Naked Mile, a day early, in an attempt
to keep the tradition going without the interference of the police.
Mile day earlier than expected
Hmm ... B-E-E
Students hope to keep tradition
alive, avoid police patrols
By Donn M. Fresard
and Andrew McCormack
Daily Staff Reporters
Seeking to keep an 18-year-old tradition alive,
a group of University students and alumni par-
ticipated in an alternative Naked Mile run at
11:00 last night.
They evaded a police campaign against the
run by scheduling it one night early and altering
All Naked Mile participants reached for
comment requested that their last names not
About four years ago, the University began a
campaign with the Ann Arbor Police Depart-
ment to end the Naked Mile due to concerns
about student safety. During the 1990s, the event
had grown into a media spectacle with the run
eventually being broadcast on the Internet.
But the runners didn't have to worry about
gropers or cameras last night. Susan, who said
she rode a bicycle while clothed to scout the
course and relayed information with the run-
ners via cellular phone, described the event as a
"The only problem we encountered was at
the corner of State Street and Washington'
(Street), where a cop car pulled up, but
nobody was stopped," she said. "We all
sprinted away at that point."
The group was reportedly comprised of 13
naked runners, two clothed bicyclists and one
naked bicyclist. Three members of the group
were recent University graduates, while the rest
Runners said they took extra precautions
against police intervention by setting up safe
houses and plans to scatter if they saw a patrol.
Justifications for the run varied among the
participants, with some citing personal and polit-
ical expression as their objective.
"I think the Naked Mile has been deteriorat-
ing, and these grassroots efforts are the only way
to bring it back," said Adrien, a University alum
who participated in the run.
Emilie, an LSA senior, said she felt the partic-
ipants acted in the true spirit of the Naked Mile.
"We ran with the heart of it, with no freaky
men with cameras," she said. "I'm not an exhi-
Some runners expressed defiance toward the
Department of Public Safety and the AAPD for
what they perceived as a crackdown on the
"There isn't a single person who ran here
tonight that wasn't angry at the police," Adrien
said, adding that the runners' outrage was caused
by what they felt was a draconian suppression of
the Naked Mile. "I hope people will be inspired
to do similar acts in the next 48 hours."
See NAKED, Page 11
Student committee to begin
work with administration in fall
Stephen Savage, 12, competes at the qualifying exam for the Ann Arbor
Book Festival Spelling Bee at the Ann Arbor District Library.
Five ears later:
Today s edition is the
last Daily for the aca-
demic year but check
out our weekly summer
edition, which begins
7 1" . !, t
willprepare for committee
during the summer
By Melissa Benton
Daily Staff Reporter
Students and administrators will
work together during the summer
months to establish a student advi-
University Provost Paul Courant
and Dean of Students Ed Willis.
SVA will also be involved in cre-
ating the student advisory commit-
tee. "The group represents a very
representative group of student
leaders on campus. ... Just as a
result there will be plenty of SVA
students involved," said MSA Rep.
Matt Hollerbach, a member of SVA.
Although LSA seniors Jackie
will be briefed and have input on
all decisions regarding the Division
of Student Affairs.
Harper has met with members of
several student groups including
the Native American Student Asso-
ciation, LSA Student Government,
the Latino Law Association and
Students of Color of Rackham.
She said the meetings have been
productive because the different
By Jeremy Berkowitz
Daily News Editor
LSA sophomore Jenisha Evans was sitting
in a high school classroom five years ago
students and one teacher, and injuring sever-
al others. But the effect of the Columbine
shootings, described as the worst school
shooting in the nation's history, spread
nationally beyond Littleton.