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April 19, 2005 - Image 14

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The Michigan Daily, 2005-04-19

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z - ine vMiinigan uaily - special Graauation section - luesay, April 19, 2005N EW S
Proposal passes, same-sex unions banned

November 3, 2004
By Karen Tee
Daily Staff Reporter
Voters in Michigan approved a ballot pro-
posal yesterday to amend the state's constitution
to ban gay marriage and other similar unions.
With the adoption of Proposal 2, the constitution
will now define the union between a man and a
woman in legal marriage as "the only agreement
recognized as a marriage or similar union for
any purpose."
About 63 percent of voters approved the pro-
Kristina Hemphill, spokeswoman for Citi-
zens for the Protection of Marriage, the group
that collected petition signatures in order to
put the proposal on the ballot, said, "When we
saw the number of signatures collected during
the petition drive, we knew Michigan citizens
understood the issue and wanted to protect the
meaning of marriage."-
Speaking during the group's victory party in

Lansing, Hemphill said, "We are now celebrat-
ing the victory, that the voice of the people have
been heard."
Opponents of the proposal have voiced their
disappointment over the outcome but are not
willing to concede that their cause is lost. Rocky
Byington, a member of the Coalition for a Fair
Michigan, said, "If Kerry becomes the next
president, there is still hope that something can
be done at the federal level to preempt what is
being done at the state level."
In fact, it is very likely the constitutionality of
the amendment will be challenged in the courts.
Andrea Knittel, co-chair of the Stonewall Dem-
ocrats - the gay and transgender arm of the
College Democrats - said, "We are arguing
that this amendment puts discrimination into
our constitution. The last six words are so vague
and poorly worded that we don't know what the
amendment will do." Members of the Stonewall
Democrats have been campaigning against the
proposal on campus, talking to potential voters
on the Diag every day for the past week..

Knittel said the amendment threatens
to take away benefits that were offered
to couples in domestic partnerships and
civil unions. As such, unions will no lon-
ger be recognized under state law. This
means benefits such as health insurance for
domestic partners and their children may be
taken away now that the proposal has been
However, Hemphill argued that all the
amendment aims to do is to protect the tra-
ditional meaning of marriage. "This has
never been about taking benefits away from
people. The last six words of the amend-
ment were added on the advice of our legal
counsel in order to precisely define mar-
riage. Even the court of appeals agreed that
this was the best way to protect the defini-
tion of marriage."
"With Proposal 2, the goals of the bal-
lot were very intentionally left out, unlike
other proposals," Knittel countered. "The
proponents do not want people to know how

broad the amendment is, and what it will
actually do."
University Law School Dean Evan
Caminker said, "There is sufficient passion
on both sides to bring this case to the courts
in order to define exactly what the amend-
ment means."
A possible position opponents could take
is to challenge the constitutionality of the
amendment based on the way it is worded.
Mae Kuykendall, professor of law at Michi-
gan State University's College of Law,
explained, "The wording of the amendment
is a poor match for what its proponents
claim it should achieve - that is, to protect
marriage from an assault by state judges.
This amendment goes much farther, appear-
ing to invalidate private arrangements and
civil unions."
She noted that state laws already ban gay
marriage and that Michigan's conservative
courts currently would not use the state con-
stitution to overturn the statutory ban on gay

marriage. Hence, according to Kuykendall,
the wording of this amendment is hostile to
homosexual people as it denies them ben-
efits that domestic partnerships and civil
unions offer.
While unmarried heterosexual couples
will suffer a similar loss of benefits that
normally come with civil unions - because
the amendment says that the state can only
recognize marriage as a type of legal union
-gay couples will bear the brunt of the pro-
posal, she added.
Despite the proposal's outcome, the Uni-
versity said it will still offer benefits to
same-sex and heterosexual couples. Presi-
dent Mary Sue Coleman has said the Uni-
versity will continue offering health care
and other benefits to same-sex domestic
partners of University employees. In a letter
to University faculty and staff on Oct. 14,
Coleman wrote, the University will "vigor-
ously defend (its) right to offer such ben-
efits," regardless of the amendment.

The war in Iraq: two years on



March 6, 2003
By Emily Kraack
Daily Staff Reporter

Students sounded off on the idea
of war against Iraq in a debate yes-
terday as part of the "Books Not
Bombs" student strike. The debate,
held in the Chemistry Building,
pitted Michigan Review Editor
in Chief James Justin Wilson and
Managing Editor Ruben Duran
against Nursing School junior Abby
Schlaff and Amer Zahr, a student
in Rackam and the Law School.
Wilson said that the Persian Gulf
War ended with a truce contingent
on Iraq's disarmament and said
Iraq's possession of banned weap-
ons constitutes a violation of this
truce. "As far as I'm concerned,

we're in a constant state of war,"
he said.
Wilson said he approves of an
American invasion of Iraq. "I sup-
port the use of military force that is
justified," he said.
Schlaff emphasized the need for
domestic spending, rather than war
spending. "It's not possible to have
a tax cut, an expensive war and
increased domestic spending," she
said. "So many human needs are
getting shortchanged."
Saddam Hussein has put the
United States into a position where
only military force is acceptable,
Wilson said. He quoted John F.
Kennedy, saying, "Those who make
peaceful change impossible make
violent change inevitable."

February 16, 2004
By Laura Van Hyfte
Daily Staff Reporter
In the wake of last month's land-
mark elections in Iraq, many experts
on the region are crossing their fingers
in hopes of a lasting democracy in
the Mideast nation. Though they are
uncertain of the future, many schol-
ars see the elections as an important,
albeit flawed, first step.
The polls did not, in fact, represent
all of the Iraqi people. Many Sunni
Arabs, who make up 20 percent of the
population, did not vote on Election
Day. Instead, many stayed at home out
of fear of violence or to support a boy-
cott organized by clerics opposed to
U.S. occupation.
"The results reflect the intimidation

and fear the Sunnis have regarding the
unstable system of government that they
do not have a voice in," Communication
Studies lecturer Lawrence Pintak said.
The election resulted unfavorably for
temporary Prime Minister Ayad Allawi,
the U.S.-backed secular Shiite who has
led Iraq for the past eight months. Allawi's
ticket finished a distant third behind the
Shiite-dominated United Iraqi Alliance
and The Kurdistan Alliance.
The United Iraqi Alliance received
4,075,295 votes, roughly 48 percent
of all votes cast. The Kurdistan Alli-
ance, an alliance of two Kurdish par-
ties, finished second with 2,175,551
votes, roughly 26 percent. Allawi,
who headed the Iraqi List, stood
third with 1,168,9343 votes. nearly
14 percent.

March 20,2003 May 2 Jan. 28,2004 June 28 Nov.8 April 11
U.S.launches air Bush announces Flmr.U.S.weaponsin-- U.S.and-coalition- U.S.begins as U.S. commanders
attack in Iraq. "major combat spector says he and U.S. transfer sovereignty sault of Fallujah. reportedly consider
Operation Iraq operations"are were wrong about Iraq's to interim Iraq gov- partial withdrawal of
Freedom begins. over. bio and chem weapons. ernment. troops by early 2006.
Apil9De.13Ar 30 so ab Sep1,00A.r7 as avTee.~l an. 30, 2005
Fall of Baghdad. U.S. Saddam Hussein Pictures of prisoner abuse 1,000 Americans have been killed 8.5 million Iraqis
helps Iraqis tear captured in a hole- at the Abu Ghraib prison and about 7,000 injured since vote in their first
down statue of Sad- by U.S. soldiers. in Iraq a released to the war's start,:Attacks on-U.S.forces truly democratic
dam Hussein. reach their heght. election.

U.S. soldiers help Iraqis tear down a statue of Saddam Hussein.

Bush celebrates victory,
Kerry concedes election

November 4, 2004
By Farayha Arrine
Daily Staff Reporter
WASHINGTON - President Bush accepted his re-
election yesterday by addressing the nation and vowing,
as he did in 2000, to unite a partisan population.
"Today I want to speak to every person who voted for
my opponent," the President said, standing alongside his
family. "To make our nation stronger and better, I will
need your support, and I will work to earn it. I will do all
I can do to deserve your trust."
After a night of vote tabulations and shifting predic-
tions by pundits and political analysts, it was largely con-
ceded yesterday morning that by winning the crucial state
of Ohio, Bush had won the popular and electoral vote.
Acknowledging Bush's insurmountable lead in Ohio,
Democratic candidate John Kerry conceded yesterday
afternoon and pledged to do his part to unite the nation.
Vice President Dick Cheney spoke briefly before intro-
ducing the president at the Ronald Reagan building in
Washington and thanked supporters for allowing him to
preside over a more Republican-controlled Senate.
On stage, the President departed from his usual
approach by making -almost no mention of terrorists,
homeland security or his commitment to continue the war
on terrorism. He avoided these topics that his campaign
considers its strong suits, but which have earned criticism
for playing with the fears of Americans. The only hint at
the topic of terrorism was when Bush credited his admin-
istration for bringing "the enemy to justice" by going to
war in Iraq.
The president also described a general plan for the
nation, mentioning five themes that would take priority
in his second term: economic recovery, war, education,
Social Security and moral values.
Although no specific details were offered, his mention
of each issue indicated continuity with the first four years

of Bush decision-making.
Despite far reaching criticism of his decision to go to
war in Iraq, Bush's statements on the topic aligned with
the status quo. On the war, he maintained that fraq and
Afghanistan would grow in strength and defend their free-
dom, adding that the emergence of democratic regimes in
these countries would earn soldiers the respect and honor
they deserved.
Bush also reiterated a Social Security overhaul he
has been advocating in the last four years: privatization
through personal investment accounts. He also pledged to
reform an "outdated tax code," which he has done in the
last four years by lowering taxes to spur economic recov-
But Bush resonated with the audience best when he
mentioned conservative morals and values, a position
that some say was most appealing to Republicans in this
election and was also a wedge issue used to court those
opposed to abortion and gay marriage.
A pledge to return to "family and faith" appealed to
most people present.
"Bush's speech was wonderful because it gave glory to
God and will unite the nation," said Michelle Wicker of
Georgia, who along with her two children and husband
carried Bush/Cheney signs.
While others present at the event voiced similar beliefs,
outside of the Republican victory party, just 9 percent of
the District of Columbia voted for Bush. Thus most bars,
restaurants and streets remained quiet as citizens went on
with daily activities. Cab drivers driving around down-
town Washington said the city lay quiet, an observation
many others made.
On buses, subways and street corners, much of the city's
black population expressed dismay about Kerry's loss and
concern about what Bush would do for them.
"Four more years of this president means once again
(the black community) will be ignored," said Washington
resident Ron Jamison.

Voters elect first female
governor of Michigan

November 4, 2004
By Louie Meizlish
and Jordan Schrader
Daily Staff Reporters
DETROIT - State Attorney General
Jennifer Granholm cruised to victory in

"Today we won a victory not for one
candidate, not for one party, but for the
future of our state," Granholm said in
declaring victory a little after 11 p.m. At
the same time, Democrats were hoping
they would be able to hold onto the attor-
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