The Michigan Daily - Monday, March 14, 2005 - 7A
Continued from page 1A
mission, the event was quite a success.
He said that it felt good to see such a
Brittany Allen, Co-Chair of the
LGBT commission said of the rally: "I
am glad it pulled together well." For
the past two months, she and others had
been putting a lot of work into organiz-
ing and publicizing the rally.
She added, "I'm glad to see new
faces ... it is very satisfying to me."
Both she and Betka said they were
pleasantly surprised at the turnout.
The rally lasted almost two hours
and shortly before 1 p.m., Allen stood
at the podium and announced, "This
is the time we've been waiting for!"
The rally ended with good-natured
kisses and hugs.
Continued from page 1A
Bush administration's determination to
see a Palestinian state, and the Palestin-
ians' desire to see one as well.
"The Palestinian public is exhausted.
They want a normal life," Ross said.
As for the time frame, Ross insisted
that jobs, freedom of movement and a
political plan for Palestine needs to be
achieved now, or any hope for peace in
the Middle East would be gone.
The theme of the conference at which
Ross spoke was "Israel: A Diverse Per-
spective." Speakers included Israeli
Defense Forces spokesman Jacob Dallal,
women's health specialist Wendy Keter
and the most controversial of all speak-
ers, Walid Shoebat, a self-proclaimed
former Palestinian terrorist who said he
once threw stones at Jews and laughed
at the idea of the Holocaust being real.
That changed in 1993 when Shoebat did
a close study of the Tanach - the Jew-
ish Bible - and in turn became a lead-
ing advocate for the Jewish people and
set out to educate the world on Israel.
Shoebat's presence at the conference
triggered the protest that took place out-
side the League during the conference,
said Tarek Dika, LSA senior and vice
chair of Students Allied for Freedom
and Equality. The demonstration was
co-sponsored by SAFE and Jewish Wit-
nesses for Peace and Friends.
"He has no academic credentials,"
said Dika. "He has no place at an aca-
demic conference." He added that Shoe-
bat was openly racist.
LSA senior and SAFE member Ted
McTaggart said that Shoebat had "insane
ideas" and inviting him was a shameless
insult to the Palestinian people.
SAFE members said another reason
for the protest was the conference's fail-
ure to address the Israeli occupation of
"It needs to be addressed some-
where," McTaggart said about the
occupation. He added that the goal of
the protest was to create awareness.
"They are completely ignoring the
realities of the occupation," McTag-
Jewish Witnesses for Peace and
Friends said it had sent a letter two
weeks prior to the conference to the
co-chairs of the conference, Megan
Martin and Naama Yaron and Hil-
lel Staff Advisor Samara Kaplan.
The letter was an invitation for a
debate on the present state of rela-
tions between Israel and Palestine
and what was required of America
in the situation.
Protestors claimed that Martin, Yaron
and Kaplan did not reply to the letter,
and an open seat sat outside the League
with a sign reading "Chair reserved for
Yaron, an Education senior, said the
demonstrators were free to come in the
conference and discuss their viewpoints
Even though Yaron said the letter had
indeed been sent, she added that it had
not been received until after the protest
had been decided upon and therefore
she, along with others organizing the
conference were not interested in reply-
ing at that point.
While introducing Shoebat, Yaron
said that he was brought to the confer-
ence because of his unique experience,
adding that a chance to learn from him
Shoebat's speech was centered on his
experiences growing up in Bethlehem,
from the ideas his family and com-
munity taught him about Jews to way
he viewed the Bible. He said he did
not interact with Jews often, but when
he did, it was not in a friendly way.
Shoebat quoted the Bible numerous
times in his speech, saying that doing
so was commonly frowned upon, but
that to him it was not an issue.
Dallal spoke on the relationship
between what actually happens on
the field in a war and what comes out
through the media.
"It's important to try to get the ini-
tial version of the story out there,"
Dallal said. He added that working
actively with the press was essential
and that it was important not to think
of the press as an afterthought of the
events, but as an integral part of what
occurs in the war.
WRJTE' FOR THE
420 MAYNARD ST.,
OR CALL 7634459.
Continued from page 1A
recover to the point they were," Kaufman said
in an earlier interview.
She added that women's health programs would be
hurt if MCRI passed because they're gender-specific.
Coleman also argued that gender-specific poli-
cies in academia are necessary for the health of
the American public. She noted that medical
research conducted at the University must address
the health concerns of ,both men and women.
She held that women's health issues could only
be adequately addressed if women were actually
conducting the research.
She went on to say that research is funded by
the federal government and taxpayers' dollars
should not support a system that does not serve
the entire population.
Judy Karandjeff, executive director of the Mich-
igan Women's Commission, presented statistics
from a 2004 study by the Institute for Women's
Policy Research that revealed women in the state
still lag far behind men in earnings and the holding
of managerial positions. Michigan ranks the sec-
ond worst in the nation in wage equity.
But the study also shows some positive trends,
including relatively high rates of political partici-
pation by Michigan women.
"If we abandon affirmative action programs
in Michigan ... it will reduce the gains we have,"
Karandjeff said, visibly moved. "I don't want this
kind of report card again," she added. "It's pitiful."
But Zarko said Coleman and the other panelists
were confusing outcomes with process and argued
a fair process can lead to unequal outcomes.
"Attempting to correct societal discrimination
with preferences is inappropriate. You end up
increasing ... the resentment," he said. "To end
societal discrimination, you have to end govern-
ment preferences," he added.
Using the same distinction between outcomes
and process, Zarko said MCRI allows programs
that do not formally exclude men but attract
women almost exclusively.
He also said MCRI does not seek to eliminate
outreach programs that recruit women for male-
dominated, higher-paying fields - as long as
those programs are available to everyone. Pro-
grams such as these that exist at the University
are Women in Science and Engineering.
Elizabeth Bunn, secretary-treasurer of the
United Auto Workers, attributed the wage ineq-
uity revealed in the study in part to occupational
segregation - when men dominate higher-paying
fields. The study also showed a low percentage of
women professionals in the Michigan.
While Bunn supported the use of gender-spe-
cific programs to boost women's salaries, she also
suggested that the wages be- raised in female-
dominated professions, though she did not speci-
fy how this could be accomplished.
Another solution she proposed was the forma-
tion of unions.
"Those (wage) differences in unionized work-
places don't exist," she said.
Lansing Community College President Paula
Cunningham said the scarcity of women in cor-
porate boardrooms may be partly the fault of
"We don't know the art of negotiation," she
said, referring to the reluctance of some women
to seek promotions and raises. "We don't ask."
Gender-specific programs are necessary, pan-
elists argued, to teach women the skills they need
to advance their careers.
"If you're not smart about the system, oppor-
tunities and choices you might have aren't
available to you," Michigan State University
President Lou Anna Simon said.
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