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January 05, 2007 - Image 4

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 2007-01-05

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4 - Friday, January 5, 2007

The Michigan Daily - michigandailycom *

Edited and managed by students at
the University of Michigan since 1890.
413 E. Huron St.
Ann Arbor, MI 48104




Unsigned editorials reflect the official position of the Daily's editorial board. All other signed articles
and illustrations represent solely the views of their authors.
A missed opportunity
State HPV vaccination law killed in final House session
W hen the state Senate almost unanimously passed a bill
last September to require that all girls be vaccinated
against the human papilloma virus before starting the
sixth grade, it seemed Michigan was poised to lead the nation in
fighting the sexually transmitted disease that causes cervical can-
cer and genital warts. But apparently, preventing a disease that
infects half of all sexually active Americans was too controversial
for members of the state House.

For our daughters
and our
today we have bro-
ken the marble ceil-
- Speaker of the House NANCY PELOSI
after being sworn in as the nation's first
female speaker yesterday,
as reported hy CNN.com

t7 KM U!- 7UDK'D
~ ~
/ 7

With supporters in both parties, the
House originally passed the bill by a 58-45
margin, but dissenters pushed for a sec-
ond vote. With just hours remaining in the
Legislature's 2006 session, enough legisla-
tors switched sides to kill the measure.
Opponents have no trouble finding
excuses for voting it down. They claim it
should be parents' choice whether to vac-
cinate their daughters and that vaccina-
tion forces a premature discussion of sex.
Worst of all, they gasp, it encourages these
young girls to have sex. Lots of sex.
But the bill simply puts the HPV vac-
cine on a list of mandatory school vaccines
and allows parents to opt their child out.
And an HPV vaccine is no more likely to
encourage promiscuity among pre-pubes-
cent girls than a diphtheria vaccine would
stop children from washing their hands.
The bill's sponsor, Sen. Beverly Ham-
merstrom (R-Temperence), has said that
most insurance companies will pay for the

vaccine, and that the federal government's
vaccines for Children program will cover
uninsured children. Still, the vaccine
is expensive - $360 for the three-shot
sequence - and some families whose insur-
ance plans don't cover the vaccine may be
left out. New Hampshire just became the
first state to offer the vaccine to girls ages
11 to 18 free of charge. Legislators should
act similarly and subsidize the vaccine for
families who lack the insurance coverage
and don't qualify for federal assistance.
While most cases of HPV clear the body
without symptoms, in some cases it can be
deadly. Cervical cancer infects 9,700 and
kills 3,700 women annually, and 70 percent
of all cases are associated with HP. vacci-
nating all girls before they become sexually
active is the best way to prevent these deaths
and the spread of the disease. The House's
reversal on the HPV vaccine last month is
shameful, and it's up to the incoming House
to promptly reintroduce the life-saving bill.

"When men have realized that time
has upset manyfightingfaiths, they may
come to believe that the ultimate good
desired is better reached byfree trade in
ideas - that the best test of truth is the
power of the thought to get itself accept-
ed in the competition of the market."
The above quote by Supreme
Court Justice Oliver Wen-
dell Holmes is often used to
expound on the importance of free
expression anda thriving marketplace
of ideas - one where ideas compete for
Analogous to an economic market
where only the best products succeed,
upholding a
robust market-r
place of ideas is
the best way to
filter out those
that aren't valid.
events over the"
past few years
have indicatedR
that this mar- AJV
ketplace is in PRABHIAJKAR
danger of being - -- --
shut down and dismantled - that
most people don't respond to opposing
viewpoints with meaningful and infor-
mative discussions but with personal
attacks and censorship.
In January of 2005, the president
of Harvard University, Larry Sum-
mers, notoriously remarked: "It does
appear that on many, many different
human attributes - height, weight,
propensity for criminality, overall
IQ, mathematical ability, scientific
ability - there is relatively clear evi-
dence that ... there is a difference in
the standard deviation and variability
of a male and a female population ...
that in the special case of science and
engineering, there are issues of intrin-

Let's talk
sic aptitude, and particularly of the
variability of aptitude, and that those
considerations are reinforced by what
are in fact lesser factors involving
socialization and continuing discrim-
ination." His suggestion that men may
be innately better than women in the
fields of math, science and engineer-
ing sparked an immediate and intense
furor. Women walked out midway
through his speech because they were
offended by his statement. Summers
was attacked from all sides and finally
forced to recant and apologize for his
In the midst of the controversy,
unfortunately, the evaluation of the
validity of his comments was entirely
ignored. Few of those who criticized
Summers addressed the possible valid-
ity of his comments, which in fact had
some statistical backing. The criticism
leveled at Summers was not intended
to counter his argument, but rather
to reproach him for even suggesting
something that people found offensive.
Summers intended for his speech to
provoke - and hence promote - further
research and debate on why women are
underrepresented in the fields he men-
tioned. He intended for his speech to
inject life into the marketplace of ideas.
It didn't work.
Such is the problem even at the
University of Michigan, an institution
of higher learning that is supposed to
foster intellectual discussion. You'd
never get that from reading letters
to the editor in The Michigan Daily,
though. Over the past year, it has
been almost impossible to have a civil
discussion about issues such as affir-
mative action. People throw around
accusations of racism at others who
take stances that they don't find pal-
atable. The Daily ran a pro-MCRI
cartoon on its opinion page and all
hell broke loose. Apparently, writing

countless editorials supporting affir-
mative action just wasn't enough.
With the election over, one might
expect the crossfire to lessen. Instead,
the personal attacks over affirmative
action have simply been replaced by
identical attacks regarding the poli-
tics of the Middle East. Even with
an issue that is thousands of miles
removed and has little direct impact
on most University students, it's still
impossible to have a civil discussion
where both sides listen to one anoth-
er and don't simply shout each other
Freedom of expression is an often
touted phrase that nobody disagrees
with, but few people actually practice
it in its entirety. Free speech is mean-
ingless if we simply censor oppos-
Censoring the
absurd gives it
undue importance.
ing viewpoints. Being tolerant and
respectful of opposing stances is in all
our best interests.
Five hundred years ago, everyone
thought that the sun revolved around
the Earth. Two hundred years ago,
millions of Americans saw nothing
wrong with slavery. It's likely that our
descendants will find a number of our
beliefs incredulous, too. As Justice
Holmes said, "the best test of truth is
the power of the thought to get itself
accepted." An opinion that is valid
does not require special protection.
An opinion that is invalid won't suc-
ceed, even if left uncensored.
Rajiv Prabhakar can be
reached at rajivp@umich.edu.


Cartoon disrespectful of be an effective coach, then he should rest on
his laurels properly - in retirement.
former president s passing

Andrew Petrovich
LSA senior

The Michigan Daily should be ashamed
of itself. Gerald Ford has been in his final
resting place for less than 24 hours, and a
Daily cartoonist has already used his image
to take a cheap shot at the sitting president
(Fetid Chumbucket, 01/04/2007). It would
have been one thing to quote him in opposi-
tion to the war in Iraq - he said such things
while he was alive. But to imply that the
University's most distinguished graduate
would allow such a divisive statement to be
attached to his image is disheartening.
The cartoonist has used Ford, a man who
did so much to heal our country, to poke a
wound and revive a controversy that should
be long over. Perhaps the cartoonist cannot
get over the 2000 election, but I'm sure that
Ford would want him to move on and work
to make a better America.
Nathan Zenero
LSA jutiior
Carr' s mentality will not
help win games

better ti
As a proud
in California
mater take or
Rose Bowl. H
pathetic effo
letic Director
What ane
was. Shortly
ing just takes
roll was jun
team on the:
adjusting his
gan. On the o
content with
offense thatI
life to the M
ing to the sa
sive yards to
altogether. M
- not includi
about when

TO THE DAILY: can only assi
While the reasons for Michigan's humili- the ineffecti'
ating loss to Southern Cal are too complex of Carroll's c
to pinpoint the single most important prob- passing on of
lem, I am compelled to disagree with Matt I was prep
Singer's comment that if the Wolverines had better team,
only played a better game, then the inept them take su
play-calling by 'the coaching staff would there as if the
have been overcome (Blue proves it's not elite, or worse, did
01/04/2007). Actually, even if our team had Carr coasts b
played its best game of the season, it would ing class whi
have been in vain against USC's apparent game and dr
prescience regarding our strategy. Our boys State. I'm tir
played a pretty good game, making big hits Jim Tressel a
and getting very physical despite the oppres- coaches." I'm
sive California heat. Unfortunately, USC opponent rat
was prepared in advance for everything we the perennia
threw at them. But Pete Carrol and staff are to be. Michig
no soothsayers, they just know how to read, Lloyd Carr to
analyze and adjust.
Our gameplan, on the other hand, could Luke Klipp
best be described as sterile and incapable of Class of2000
creating innovative opportunities for suc-
cess. The Michigan strategy was not flexible
enough to succeed in the face of a skilled and
adaptive competitor. This is not surprising, Le
given that even a fan who has only watched a
few seasons of Michigan football can predict
with fair accuracy what our next move will All reade
be in many situations. mit letterst
I offer no decisive solutions to our team's include the
problems, but one thing is clear to me: Con- class stan
sidering our predictable and stubbornly affiliation.
old-fashioned strategy, in addition to Coach
Lloyd Carr's perpetually uninspiring pre- Letters s
and post-game commentary, I am led to 300 word
believe that Carr has lost his spiritual vigor reserves th
for the game. Since he is clearly a man of clarity and
honor, fond of taking the moral high ground,
perhaps he should consider stepping down Letters w
and makingway for a coach whose soul burns miness, orde
with unyielding passion to win every single of space a
game. Carr seems complacent in his already sent to tot
successful career. Maybe he has coached, can be rea
won and lost too many games to care about umich.edu.
any single game anymore. But that mental-
ity isn't good enough to win national titles. If
Carr cannot regain the vitality necessary to

in football deserves
fan Lloyd Carr
d Michigan alum now residing
, I was thrilled to see my alma
n the hated USC Trojans at the
owever, havingseen Michigan's
rt, I have three words for Ath-
r Bill Martin: Fire Lloyd Carr.
embarrassment the Rose Bowl
after halftime, with USC hav-
m a 10-3 lead, Coach Pete Car-
aping up and down with his
sideline, pumping them up and
s game plan to pound Michi-
other side of the field, Carr was
continuing the same boring
provided no spark and gave no
aize and Blue as well as stick-
me defense that gave up mas-
a team that abandoned the run
dichigan's one successful drive
ing the late touchdown - came
they abandoned the run. One
ume that Carr was oblivious to
veness of his game plan in lieu
onstant blitzing on defense and
pared to see Michigan lose to a
but I was not prepared to see
ch a beating and keep standing
ey didn't know what hit them -
n't care. I'm tired of feeling like
y on the strength of his recruit-
le losing bowl game after bowl
ropping three straight to Ohio
ed of having to look at Carroll or
nd think, "Now those are good
ntired of Michigan playing to its
her than establishing itself as
al powerhouse that it deserves
an deserves better. It's time for
tters Policy
ors are encouraged to sub-
to the editor. Letters should
writer's name, college and
ding or other University
hould be no longer than
Is. The Michigan Daily
he right to edit for length,
ill be run according to time-
r received and the amount
vailable. Letters should be
hedoily@umich.edu. Editors
ched at editpoge.editors @

The time of year when the spirit of giving and buying is
at its greatest is just ending. Now, as the new year begins,
any budgeting errors made in the past four months can
become painfully obvious. Developing a successful bud-
get, even one that takes the aftermath of the holiday sea-
son into account, is an easy thing to do, but it's also an easy
thing to neglect.
As an LSA junior, I admit that budgeting and credit man-
agement haven't exactly been my top priorities. I only have
one credit card (my parents are on the account) and a debit
card that I use to pay for my books, rent and utilities (again,
handled by my parents). I've always had a summer job to
earn a little extra spending money, but I've never worked
during the school year.
I am lucky enough to have some flexibility with my bud-
geting, especially when unpredictable expenses pile up. But
what about after I graduate and can't lean on my family
the same way? What about getting a job and an apartment?
What about my loans?,I'm starting to realize that my cred-
it history is just as important to my future success as my
resume. It's obvious that at some point between now and
graduation, there are a few important things to learn about
money management. OK, maybe more than a few.
For starters, pay off your credit card bills on time -
every month. This is one of the most important things that
you can do. When you carry a balance on your credit card,
you are paying a higher price for it.
For example, let's assume that your creditcard carries an
interest rate of 18 percent. Now let's say that you paid your
bill in full every month and avoided all interest charges.
That's a guarantee of 18 percent more cash in your pocket
each month than you would have otherwise had, and that
doesn't even account for compounding interest.
If extra cash doesn't motivate you to be more aware of
your finances, how about improving your reputation? As

college students focused on our careers and futures, we
put a lot of time and effort into perfecting our resumes and
transcripts with the goal of helping us land an ideal job or
But your credit history can be just as important to your
future as your resum6. It speaks volumes about how con-
scientious and responsible you are, yet many people who
will pull all-nighters to ace a final or send loads of appli-
cations to land a good summer internship still won't give
a second thought to making sure their credit history is
sending the right message.
You can find your complete credit history on your credit
report. These reports are pretty comprehensive and they
follow us throughout ourlives. For me, checking my report
was a pretty foreign process. If you aren't familiar with
your report, the following information should be helpful.
What is on it? It includes a complete summary of your
credit cards, loans, late payments and a lot more. It also
lists businesses that have checked your report, like utility
companies and Internet service providers.
How can you keep track of what's on it? Order a copy of
your credit report once a year. Review the report for errors
and cancel any credit cards you don't need. This will improve
your credit rating and protect you from identity theft.
Who can review your credit report? A lender can do so
prior to granting a loan or a new line of credit. Apartment
landlords and even some potential employers can access
your report.
This all seems pretty daunting, but there are several
websites that offer financial literacy programs to guide
students. There is no reason to avoid getting on top of your
finances now while you are still in the comfortable confines
of Ann Arbor. Come graduation day, you'll be glad you did.
Asa Lopatin is an LSA junior.

Post-holiday credit wisdom

Editorial Board Members: Reggie Brown, Kevin Bunkley, Amanda Burns, Sam Butler,
Ben Caleca, Devika Daga, Milly Dick, Jesse Forester, Gary Graca, Jared Goldberg, Jessi Holler,
Toby Mitchell, Rajiv Prabhakar, David Russell, Katherine Seid, Elizabeth Stanley,
Jennifer Sussex, John Stiglich, Neil Tambe, Rachel Wagner.
+, / J .S t d i w ~ y4' '. r'


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