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October 25, 2005 - Image 3

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The Michigan Daily, 2005-10-25

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NEWS

The Michigan Daily - Tuesday, October 25, 2005 - 3

ON CAMPUS
Medical School
* prof to lecture on
stem-cell research
Medical School Prof. David Gater
will lecture today on how stem-
cell research may help individuals
with disabilities.The event will take
place at noon today in Room 4025
of Forum Hall, which is located in
Palmer Commons.
Career Center to
offer workshop on
interviews for med
school applicants
Students looking for help with
medical school interviews can
attend "It's Showtime! Mastering
the Art of Being Interviewed for
Medical School" from 6 to 7:30
p.m. tonight in the Maize and Blue
Auditorium of the Student Activi-
ties Building. The Career Center is
sponsoring the event.
RC lecturer to give
talk on evolution
of women's roles
at 'U' since 1870
RC lecturer Margaret Steneck
will give a talk tonight at 6 p.m.
about how women's roles at the Uni-
versity have evolved since 1870, the
first year women were allowed into
the school.
The event will take place in the Uni-
versity Club of the Michigan Union and
is free of charge.
CRIME
NOTES
Stockwell staffer
refuses medical
care after fainting
A male staff member requested an
ambulance for a female staff member
who passed out in Stockwell Residence
Hall for unknown reasons Sunday
around 1:30 p.m., the Department of
Public Safety reported. Because she
refused medical treatment, she was
escorted back to a dorm room by the
DPS unit on call.
Man transported to
hospital, another
arrested after fight
in back of 'U' bus
A University bus driver reported a
fight in the back of a bus at 5:30 p.m. Sun-
day that resulted in one subject bleeding
profusely. The three men involved in the
scuffle, who are unaffiliated with the Uni-
versity, exited the bus at North Campus
Commons. One of the men was arrested,
and the injured subject was transported
to the emergency room of the University
Hospital. The third person left the scene
before DPS arrived.

Abdominal pain
causes caller to
request ambulance
A female caller requested an ambu-
lance for herself after feeling severe pain
in her left abdomen while studying at the
Shapiro Undergraduate Library yesterday
morning at around 12:15 a.m. She was
subsequently transported to the emergen-
cy room of the University Hospital.
THIS DAY
In Daily History
Regents vote to
lift ban on South
Africa investment
Oct. 25, 1993 - The University
Board of Regents voted unanimously
to lift a 15-year ban on investing in
companies that do business with South
Africa. The University now has the
same policy as the United States and
the United Nations, which both recent-
ly ended sanctions.
University Chief Financial Officer
Ferris Womack said one of the benefits

Former U.S.

rep tackles disability issues

Tony Coelho, principal
author of the Americans
with Disabilities Act, says
people with disabilities face
constant discrimination
By Ashlea Surles
For the Daily
An epileptic woman working for the
Central Intelligence Agency was given
an ultimatum in 1995: Either wear a
bizarre mask with eye-slits and a mouth
slit big enough for only a straw to fit
through, or be fired.
Epileptics and other people living
with mental and physical disabilities
face this type of discrimination all
too often, according to Tony Coelho,
former U.S. representative from Cali-
fornia and Al Gore's top campaign
advisor for part of the 2004 election.
Coelho spoke about this topic and
other disability issues yesterday dur-
ing his keynote address for the Uni-
versity's "Investing in Ability" week
in Auditorium 4 of the Modern Lan-
guages Building.
Coelho was a principal author of
the Americans with Disabilities Act
of 1990. The legislation is regarded by
many as the most important piece of
civil rights legislation since the Voting
Rights Act of 1965. The act is chiefly
aimed at preventing discrimination
toward disabled persons in employ-
ment by allowing those who feel they
have been discriminated against to sue
employers. In Coelho's words, the act
aims to "make people focus on the abil-
ity, not the disability."
Before the ADA, a person in a wheel-
chair could be legally kicked out of a
movie theatre as a fire hazard, and a
blind person could be turned away from

a restaurant for his inability to read a
menu, Coelho explained. With the pas-
sage of the ADA, these and other acts of
injustice are no longer permitted.
Since 1990, 29 cases have been
taken to the U.S. Supreme Court under
the ADA. But while Coelho admitted
that "we have made progress," he also
acknowledged that before more signifi-
cant changes can be made, "we have to
change the public attitude" about people
with disabilities. He said one factor
contributing to the public perception of
disabled people is the community's low
rate of political participation.
Coelho is particularly knowledgeable
on issues pertaining to the disabled com-
munity because he is an epileptic and has
himself struggled with the same employ-
ment discrimination that the 54 million
disabled people living in America today
are often forced to confront. Following a
severe head injury as a boy, Coelho began
to suffer from sporadic seizures but was
never officially recognized as an epilep-
tic. Despite his disability, he graduated
from Loyola Marymount University with
a bachelor of arts in political science.
Upon graduation, Coelho decided
to enter the seminary but was rejected
on the basis of Church doctrine barring
epileptics - who were supposedly pos-
sessed by the devil - from entering the
priesthood. As a result of his condition,
Coelho was required to check a box
indicating he was an epileptic on every
job application he filled out, branding
himself as undesirable and leaving him
unemployed. He began to drink heavily
and sank deep into depression.
After a personal epiphany, Coelho
became motivated to turn his life around
and began his quest to attain equal rights
for disabled citizens.
Provisions of the ADA have become
law in 50 countries and are now being
considered by the United Nations as,
required policy for all member nations.

Tony Coelho, former U.S. rep. from California, lectures on disabled rights as Barb Chaffer Authier translates his
words into sign language in Auditorium 4 of the Modern Languages Building yesterday.

But Coelho said this piece of civil
rights legislation, like most others,
faces an uphill battle that closely par-
allels the affirmative action movement.
Coelho said the two are linked through
sobering statistics, such as the 90 per-
cent unemployment rate for disabled
persons of color.
According to Coelho, an increasingly
conservative U.S. Supreme Court has
made it difficult to enforce the ADA, and
many of its provisions have faced bud-

get cuts and been put on the back burner
in recent years. But Coelho continues
to push, saying that the self-sufficiency
"that comes from getting a job is critical
for those with disabilities."
When asked if he is an underdog,
Coelho said "yes," explaining that
although he is successful, he has come
from behind and overcome obstacles that
the average American will never have to
confront.
Coelho's speech kicked off a week-

long University celebration of the mul-
tifaceted community of disabled people
and the contributions they have made.
Jack Bernard a lawyer in the University's
general council office and coordinator of.
the event and chairman of the Univer-
sity's Council for Disability Concerns,
stressed the importance of this week's
events, explaining that for those who are
disabled, "it is difficult enough just to get
your laundry done. It's not easy to mobi-
lize to inform the public."

Fast aids victims of Katrina, earthquake

Local businesses will donate
to relief efforts based on the
number of participants
By C.C. Song
Daily Staff Reporter
Are you hungry?
If you are, Liz Lassiter may make you think
twice about running to the nearest Wendy's by
telling you about her experiences with fasting
over the past three years during the Fast-a-
thon, an annual event coordinated by the.Mus-
lim Students' Association. Lassiter said she
is going to participate in the program for the
fourth year in a row.
"I usually get hungry at around 3 p.m. (when
fasting)," she said. "And in my freshman and

sophomore years, I took naps in the afternoon
and woke up after sunset."
In spite of the hunger, she still participates in Fast-
a-thon because for every person that signs up, local
businesses make donations to help the victims of
Hurricane Katrina and the earthquake in Pakistan.
Started at the University by MSA four years ago,
Fast-a-thon is a national event that collects funds for
people without food and raises awareness of Islam
during the month of Ramadan. During Ramadan,
which celebrates the revelation of the Koran to the
Prophet Muhammad, observant Muslims fast from
sunrise to sunset. Fast-a-thon encourages Muslim
and non-Muslim students to go without food for
one day so others don't have to.
At 6:30 a.m. tomorrow, students who have
signed up to fast will receive an e-mail reminding
them that they have pledged to not consume any
food during the day. The fast ends at 6:30 p.m.,

when participating students join MSA members in
the Wedge Room in West Quad for a dinner spon-
sored by local businesses.
"Through fasting, we get a feeling of people
who don't have food in Asia and in New Orleans,"
said LSA sophomore Ashhar Ali, MSA's com-
munity service chair.
Ali also said that though students can learn
about fasting through textbooks, newspaper arti-
cles and other media, taking part in a fast offers a
completely different perspective.
"Through actual fasting, people come to under-
stand the benefits of it on a spiritual level," he said,
explaining that depriving oneself of food and water
requires dedication.
MSA Vice President Wajeeha Shuttari said that
through Fast-a-thon, more people have realized the
significance of Ramadan.
"We hope to increase awareness of the religion

through the event, letting students and faculty know
that people are fasting on campus," she said.
Lassiter said she came to admire the dedica-
tion of Muslims through her involvement with
Fast-a-thon.
"I think you definitely notice how much com-
mitment Muslims have for their religion (when)
they fast for 30 days. I don't think people real-
ize this," she said.
So far, 300 students have volunteered to stay
hungry, and MSA is aiming for about 400 partici-
pants by the end of Tuesday, Ali said. Because the
amount businesses donate depends on the number
of participants, Ali encouraged more students to
take part in the event.
"(The Fast-a-thon coordinator) and I 'really
believe that the number can speak for the aware=
ness of the issue of hunger and the religion that
people have on campus," he said.

(Proposal would limit business tax

LANSING (AP) - Michigan business-
es would pay $1 billion less in taxes over
six years with the potential for more relief
under a Republican plan that also would
limit state spending.
The state Senate intends to vote Tues-
day on business tax cuts aimed at stimu-
lating the state's sagging economy, a day
after GOP senators unveiled their revised
tax proposal.
Future tax cuts would be tied to a mea-
sure that would limit state spending growth
to no more than the annual inflation rate
plus 1 percentage point.
Critics have said that's unwise because
state revenues are in a trough and the state
would struggle to restore cuts to universi-
ties and other programs. They point to
problems in Colorado that have arisen
because of spending caps passed there.
The Senate plan would make up $519
million of the lost revenue by eliminating

tax exemptions, changing the way commer-
cial rental property is taxed and stiffening
the penalties for late tax payments. But it
also would bring in $483 million less in tax
revenue than if the cuts weren't in place.
Senate Majority Leader Ken Sikkema
said Michigan must do everything possi-
ble to turn around its high unemployment
rate, which fell to 6.4 percent in September
but has hovered around 7 percent for the
past year. Some of the tax cuts would take
effect in January.
"It's business that provides the jobs
for our citizens," the Wyoming Repub-
lican said Monday. "I am convinced that
to encourage business growth and attract
business investment, the business tax bur-
den has to be reduced."
The bills would provide tax relief of
$100 million in the fiscal year that ends
Sept. 30, 2006. The revenue loss would
not hurt the current state budget because

it would be paid for with extra money left
over from last year's budget and bringing
in more revenue through changes in the
tax code.
Businesses could receive another $1.4
billion in tax cuts over six years if state rev-
enues increase over the proposed spending
cap. If state revenue _ excluding federal
dollars _ exceeded the spending cap, the
extra money would trigger more business
tax cuts and other dollars would go into the
state's rainy day fund.
Sikkema said the legislation builds off
business tax cuts approved by the GOP-
controlled House in August.
Democrats on Monday were skeptical,
and at least one economist said the plan did
little to help manufacturers, which have
had a spate of bad news lately with Del-
phi Corp. declaring bankruptcy and Ford
Motor Co. announcing it plans future plant
closings.

GRE
Continued from page 1
it will have more questions involving
data interpretation because graduate
programs value that skill..
Graduate schools, Payne said, had
criticized the GRE because it did not
test the intellectual skills they are inter-
ested in, and it was these complaints that
motivated the ETS to modify it.
Because of problems with test secu-
rity, test questions will no longer be
reused on the new GRE. Payne said that
students in Asia were memorizing ques-
tions when they took the test and sharing
them with future test-takers. To prevent
this from reoccurring, Payne added,
each testing date will have a unique set
of questions.
Currently, a student can take the GRE
whenever he feels prepared to,but it will
now only be offered 29 times per year.
Liz Wands, director of graduate mar-
keting for Princeton Review, a test prep
service, said allowing students to take
the GRE whenever they wish has caused
problems in the past. I
Wands said creating the huge pool
of questions needed for continuous

testing is expensive and time cor-
suming, as is maintaining the com-
puters used for testing.
Many subtler changes have also been
put into place, such as a brand new grad-
ing scale for the test. Instead of using
the traditional scale, which ranges from
200 to 800, a new one has been created
for the GRE, Although ETS has yet
to determine the range of the grading
scale, Payne said, the maximum and
minimum scores will be somewhere
between 100 and 200.
Test-preparation companies are
engaged in adapting their books and
courses to the new test. "We know how
to get the information we need to change
to meet the new test." Baron said. "But it
takes an effort."
With a glut of information avail-
able about the existing test, experts
suggest that students take the old
one while it is still available. "The
test is changing fairly drastically;'
Wands said. "Students may be well
to take it before it changes."
The ETS posted sample questions
from the new GRE to its website, and
Payne said that a full practice test will
be available this spring.

GORE
Continued from page 1
Performing Arts at the invitation of the School of Natural
Resources, Gore conceded that there is no established link
between the frequency of hurricanes and global warming but
said the higher intensity of recent storms is a result of warming
- and that disasters like Katrina will serve as a wakeup call.
"Something happened to the way we think about global warm-
ing when Hurricane Katrina drowned New Orleans," he said.
Beyond disastrous weather, Gore pointed to major changes
to the Earth's geography - changes that, as the United King-
dom's chief scientific advisor noted last year, could redraw
world maps - as the next major threat of global warming.
Using photos and illustrations, as well as past examples of
rapidly melting glaciers, Gore argued that the glacier cover-
ing Greenland is in real danger of melting and raising ocean
levels by seven meters, which would displace tens of millions
of people by placing coastal areas like Beijing, Shanghai, the
San Francisco Bay, Calcutta and much of southern Florida
below sea level.
Gore rebutted those who present human-induced global
warming as a theory debated among scientists. He said the

lines more typical of a stump speech than an academic lecture:
After mentioning former President Clinton, Gore added in an
aside, "I thought he and I did a pretty good job on the environment
and the economy," prompting hearty cheers from the crowd.
The tension between Gore the politician and Gore the environ-
mental activist was even more apparent on two occasions when
the former vice president approached sensitive political issues.
When be brought up a graph showing human population
growth over the past 100,000 years or so, Gore at first made
light of recent debates over the origins of human life: "You
don't have any new laws here I should know about?" he quipped
before labeling the point at the beginning of the graph "Adam
and Eve," provoking laughter. But then Gore adopted a more
prudent tone, adding, "In all seriousness, I really do not see any
conflict between my religious faith and sound science."
Later in the presentation, when discussing automotive fuel
economy standards, Gore - speaking at a venue about an hour
from Detroit, and in the midst of some of the worst months in
the history of the U.S. auto industry - seemed to pull some of
his punches. "Forgive me if this is a sensitive topic," Gore said
before producing a chart that showed American fuel economy
standards far below those of the European Union, China, Japan,
Australia and Canada.

U U

Gain real world.

FRESHMEN!
SOPHOMORES!
JUNIORS!.® RESuME!!
Work as a Daily Advtertising Account Executive for
The Michign y vaila.ble during :psrng,
Summer, and Fal o semestersi

a

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