4A - Thursday, January 4, 2007
The Michigan Daily - michigandailycom 9
f Mdign a tl
Edited and managed by students at
the university of Michigan since 1890.
413 E. Huron St.
Ann Arbor, MI 48104
DONN M. FRESARD CHRISTOPHER ZBROZEK JEFFREY BLOOMER
EDITOR IN CHIEF EDITORIAL PAGE EDITORS MANAGING EDITOR
Unsigned editorials reflectthe officialposition of theGDaily's editorialboard. All other signed articles
and illustrations represent solely the views of their authors.
Ad-missions on hold
Court's block of injunction adds to Prop 2 confusion
Winter break wasn't particularly relaxing for the Uni-
versity's administrators and lawyers. Courtroom
wrangling over a federal lawsuit led first to a delay of
the implementation of Proposal 2 for the current admissions cycle
- and then, on appeal, to the ban's immediate enforcement.
Though I'd note that the 's' and 'b' keys aren't
all that close to each other, I assume it was
just an unfortunate mistake."
- A spokesman for Sen. BARACK OBAMA (D-Ill.) referring to CNN's confusion of "Obama" and "Osama"
in an advertisement for a special on Osama Bin Laden, as reported yesterday by BBC News.
What's a powerful girl to do'?
The University has announced it will hold
off on making any further admissions deci-
sions until Jan. 10 while it evaluates what to
do next. The delay is a particularly visible
marker of the confusion that leaves a stay of
Proposal 2's implementation for the current
admissions cycle as the only fair option for
implementing the new law. The University
needs to exhaust its options for seeking a
stay - including considering action in state
court - if it is to judge this year's applicants
by a uniform set of criteria.
Along with Wayne State University and
Michigan, State University, the University
of Michigan sought an injunction in federal
court against Proposal 2 in mid-Decem-
ber, citing the difficulty and unfairness
of attempting to follow the new law in the
middle of an admissions cycle despite ongo-
ing uncertainties over the interpretation of
the state constitutional amendment. That
stay was granted in a federal district court
on Dec.19, buta three-judge panel of the 6th
Circuit Court of Appeals blocked it on Dec.
29. Because Proposal 2 was otherwise sched-
uled to go into effect on Dec. 23, it immedi-
ately went into effect after that ruling.
The ruling by the panel of the 6th Circuit
undid a broad agreement reached Dec. 18
between the various parties to Proposal 2
litigation to delay its application to admis-
sions and financial aid decisions until July
1, an agreement that led to the ill-fated
injunction issued by a federal district
court. It is particularly worth noting that
Attorney General Mike Cox signed off on
the delay. Cox was a vocal supporter of the
Michigan Civil Rights Initiative and has
vowed to defend Proposal 2 in the courts.
Even he, however, realizes it would be
unjust to apply Proposal 2 in the middle of
the admissions cycle. It was left to outside
groups, like the Washington-based Center
for Individual Rights, to mount the legal
challenges that led to the ruling by the
panel of the 6th Circuit.
In its ruling, the three-judge panel found
inadequate grounds to challenge the legality
of Proposal 2 under federal law, as the radi-
cal civil rights group By Any Means Neces-
sary has done, and as such denied that it is
appropriate for a federal court to prevent its
implementation. While that's bad news for
BAMN'slong-shotlawsuit, it doesn't address
the valid concerns the state universities
brought forward in seeking an injunction.
The University's concerns - like the
unfairness of judging this year's applicants
by two sets of standards and the fact that a
ruling by the Michigan Civil Rights Com-
mission on the interpretation of Proposal 2
won'tbe available until February - deserve
a full hearing. The University sought an
injunction in federal court in part because
it was already named as a defendant in the
BAMN lawsuit. With much of the public
deeply hostile to any effort by the Univer-
sity to challenge Proposal 2 or to delay its
implementation, filing a motion in federal
court as part of its defense against a lawsuit
filed against it may have seemed politically
more palatable than filing an independent
With that avenue apparently closed, the
University must look hard at seeking an
injunction through a separate motion in
state court. It can't delay making admis-
sions decisions indefinitely, after all, and
the other option - hastily pulling togeth-
er a revised admissions system partway
through the cycle - is unlikely to be fair or
T he day after Republicans
received their electoral
"thumpin'," President Bush
tried his hand at a bit of partisan humor:
He offered to send Rep. Nancy Pelosi
(D-Calif.) "the names of some Repub-
lican interior decorators who can help
her pick out the new drapes in her new
While not ar- ,
like Sen. John
Mass.) botched ;
joke about troops 4
in Iraq, most
agreed the com-
ment was in poor
ering Pelosi is WHITNEY
the first female
speaker of the DIBO
house in a coun-
try thathas yetto seea female president
or Senate leader, one would think Bush
could have come up with classier waycto
welcome the woman third in line to the
presidency. But at the end of the day, I
was too pleased about the thumpin' to
be particularly riled.
I had almost forgotten about the joke
until I opened up this month's issue of
Vanity Fair. Inside was an article about
ric. In addition to some astute observa-
tions about the CBS Evening News's
feeble ratings, there were six small pho-
tographs of Couric in different anchor
attire, each labeled with cutesy cap-
tions like "Sexy-Librarian Katie" and
"Desperate Housewives Katie."
As I read through the article, I real-
ized even the shrewdest comments
author James Wolcott made about
Couric's journalistic failings were
peppered with chauvinististic humor.
Wolcott refers to Couric as a "damsel
in distress" and calls for "a grown-up"
to "step in and play Project Runway
headmaster before anyone gets hurt."
Wolcott wraps up the piece with an
assessment of Couric's identity crisis:
"Katie Couric is caught in a tug-of-
war between her serious journalistic
side and the girlie side that wants to be
everybody's darling. It's the girlie side
that needs to go."
Was Wolcott implying that hard-hit-
ting journalism is to man as fluffy jour-
nalism isto woman?
Would President Bush have com-
mented on Dennis Hastert's interior
decorating tastes? Would Vanity Fair
have obsessed over Bob Shieffer's fall
fashion? Of course not.
Still, even Couric is second banana to
the poster child for feminine scrutiny,
Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-N.Y.)
Endless commentary on her different
color pantsuits and on-again-off-again
maiden name are all the rage as the
2008 election approaches. CNN even
conducted a poll to gauge voters' views
on Hillary - based on the inclusion of
"Rodham" in her name.
From the president's drapery com-
ment to the hype over Katie Couric's
clothing to the fuss over Clinton's
maiden name, it's all embarrassingly
obsolete. Sadly, although we'd like to
believe otherwise, the stereotype of
woman as homemaker/decorator/fash-
ion-maven is still alive and well, - even
for America's most powerful politicians
So what is the correct formula for
a powerful woman today? Apparently
it's not America's sweetheart. But the
ambitious careerwoman image hasn't
really worked for Clinton either, who is
repeatedly accused of being robotic and
"hard to get to know."
When looking at Couric and Clin-
ton, both at the top of their respec-
tive games, the plight of the powerful
woman becomes clear: Couric shows
too much and Clinton shows too little.
Couric is too feminine and Clinton
isn't feminine enough. Couric has been
asked to mask the truth about her girly'
self, while Clinton's critics wish she
would open up.
Image is important for today's
powerful women. A recent study
by the White House Project found
that "Women candidates must avoid
appearing too casual or too glamor-
ous, as those images undermine their
credibilityinvoters' minds." So which
do we want, America? The skirt-wear-
ing Couric or the pant-suited Clinton?
And more importantly, why does it
If the American public is going to
take issue with these women, at least
let it be for competence as opposed
to cosmetics. Let's not have the criti-
cism undermined by juvenile jeers like
"Katie Couric is too girly!"
And love her or hate her, there is
no denying Clinton did a fine job with
her first term as senator. But if you still
cringe when her name is tossed out as
a potential presidential candidate, at
least make sure it's for the right rea-
for lousy reasons.
sons. Be sure that gut-instinct is not
just residual resentment thatbHill didn't
leave Bill after his rendezvous in the
Clinton's choice to "stand by her
man" is not indicative of her abil-
ity to lead the country, and neither
is her choice to wear pantsuits nor
keep Rodham in her name - just like
Couric's outfits and sweet attitude are
not indicative of her journalistic tal-
ents. While it may be difficult for the
American public to distill legitimate
criticism from lingering stereotypes,
it's important we ditch the grudge and
look at these women for their skills as
opposed to their style.
Whitney Dibo is a Daily associate
editorial page editor. She can be
reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Iraq is our responsibility
The U.S. military is mired in conflicts in Iraq
and Afghanistan. Casualties are mounting, and
we as citizens feel for the families that have lost
loved ones.It's a difficult choice to keep those dear
to us in harm's way. As the situation in Iraq dete-
riorates into mass sectarian strife and national
newscasts bicker over whether to label the con-
flict a "civil war," those of us at home watching
these events unfold are driven to choose between
our desire to bring the troops home and to con-
tinue our involvement in the area.
The mechanistic processes of the war effort
are undoubtedly out of our reach. We are sub-
ject to the choices of those in the military and
within the walls of the Pentagon. Regardless,
we do hold sway over this effort with the power
of the ballot
We must be responsible with the power we
have. Americans would be wise to note the
recent history of the 20th century - ignoring
the overtures of Adolf Hitler and appeasing his
subsequent military strikes led to the biggest
war the world has seen. In the effort to avoid
conflict through appeasement; we only exac-
erbated it on a worldwide scale. Those events
drove the development of nuclear weaponry, the
Cold War, mutually assured destruction and the
hodge-podge of alliances that stabilized Ameri-
ca on a global scale - until now.
We again come to a point where such a critical
decision must be made, and the stakes are just as
high. Do we leave Iraq under the noble pretense
of preserving American lives? In considering
this, it is critical that we review the consequence
of Iraq falling under the influence of Iran. Who
are we - driven by a despotic, Islamic, funda-
mentalist who flaunts in his rhetoric his disbelief
of the Holocaust - to take him by anything but
his word? To do otherwise is beyond gross negli-
gence. To do so isto betrayour future generations
and force them to deal with an ever-growing
threat to the democracies and freedom that have
been fought for in the past centuries.
We dishonor our ancestors and betray our
nation's future by leaving them subject to the
historical inertia of our shortsighted, reaction-
ary and politically driven decisions to not finish
a vital job. If Iran is able to control Iraq, it will
become even more difficult to pressure with
economic sanctions, and our future options to
stop Iran from getting nuclear weapons may be
limited to drastic, military means.
We as a nation are called upon, for our own
survival and for the stability of the world, to set
aside our prior disagreements in order to stabi-
lize this incendiary situation in the Middle East.
Our decisions are final, and our generation is not
the only one that will have to deal with them.
Patrick Wycihowski is ans LSA senior,
Marching band's fortitude and
dignity worthy ofcommendat ion
TO THE DAILY:
Like many students here at the University, I have taken
great pride in our marching band. They continually rep-
resent our school with dignity and respect, and their hard
work and commitment is inspiring. This past Tuesday
they surpassed themselves yet again. Having woken up
early Monday morning to march in the Rose Bowl Parade
and subsequently the halftime show, the band members
voluntarily chose to forgo their only free day in Los Ange-
les. Instead of finally taking a break from practicing and
performing and staying in California to enjoy the weather,
the band flew back to Michigan to perform at the cere-
mony for President Ford. The band again represented our
school better than any of us could have asked. So thank
you, Michigan Marching Band - you are trulythe leaders
and the best.
Ross School senior
New design for North Quad an
TO THE DAILY:
Baseball great Ted Williams offered a two-part for-
mula for good hitting: Bat according to your style and
wait for the right pitch. All too often the University
Board of Regents ignores both pieces of advice when
approving building designs. Examples include the Life
Sciences Institute and the School of Social Work. How-
ever, with North Quad - the proposed dormitory for
the northern gateway to Central Campus - they let a
bad pitch sail wide of the plate and waited for some-
thing they could hit.
While the original designs for North Quad seemed
to be drawn by architects who had never visited Ann
Arbor, the new design feels like home. What a fantastic
bookend to match the elegant Weill Hall, the new pub-
lic policy building that stands at the southern entrance
to campus. These two most impressive structures com-
pliment the great Michigan campus buildings from the
1920's and '30s instead of trying to win prizes for their
designers with steel and glass contraptions.
What a relief! North Quad could have been, and was
nearly, a disaster. Now, I look forward to its making a
great campus even greater.
Needless closures of Wolverine
Access illogical at best
TO THE DAILY:
The logic put forth in The Michigan Daily's article on
why Wolverine Access closes nightly (Why does Wolver-
ine Access close?, 11/02/2006) is ridiculous. Claims that
the website must be inaccessible for three hours every
night (and more on weekends) so that server mainte-
nance and data backups can be performed are simply
silly. There is no legitimate technical reason that a
website should regularly need that much time for any
sort of maintenance or back-ups.
Wolverine Access does not have more data than
sites like Google, whose search crawler uses more than
SEND LETTERS TO: TOTHEDAILY@UMICH.EDU
850,000 gigabytes of information. It also does not have
more personal or financially sensitive information than
e-commerce sites like Amazon.com, which store credit
card information for each of its tens of thousands of
customers. These sites are never closed to back up data
or perform back-end maintenance - it is all done while
the site is live.
The University should have the resources to design
its "gateway to administrative systems" website so that
back-ups and maintenance can be done while the site
is up and running. The fact that the site is inaccessible
so often contradicts the University's claim that it gives
it students the best. If the site is maintained in-house,
I suggest a complete overhaul. If an outside compa-
ny is being paid for this, changing companies is the
best choice. In either case, the site needs to be avail-
able 24/7 (except for scheduled maintenance). It also
requires major usability changes. Freshmen don't need
backpacking tutorials because the concept of pre-reg-
istering for classes is confusing. It's the interface which
renders the back button useless, uses confusing terms
and links as well as requiring five clicks for a simple
operation that frustrates freshmen and seniors alike.
Michigan man's homage to No. 38
TO THE DAILY:
As a Michigan man, I admired Gerald Ford's work
ethic and decency. And as a Michigan man, I applaud-
ed his self-sacrifice in making tough decisions to help
bind our nation's wounds. And most of all, as a Michi-
gan man I have been immensely proud of him for his
honesty, integrity and courage as he refused to acqui-
esce to mass media's wishful rewriting of Michigan
football history. He never let himself be baited into
taking credit for his All-American teammates' gridiron
accomplishments. Fielding Yost, Willie Heston, Adolph
'Germany' Schulz, Harry Kipke, Bennie Oosterbaan,
All-American teammates Chuck Bernard, "Whitey"
Wistert and Herman Everhardus as well as all the
other Michigan greats enshrined in Wolverine Valhalla
have surely approved and reserved him a special place
J. Charles Bernard, Jr.
The Daily welcomes viewpoints from its readers
Viewpoints have one or several authors, though prefer-
ence will be given to pieces written on behalf of indi-
viduals rather than an organization.
Editors will run viewpoints according to timeliness,
order received and available space.
Viewpoints should be no longer than 700 words. The
Daily reserves the right to edit for length, clarity and
Send viewpoint submissions to editpage.editors@
umich.edu, or contact the editors at that address to
arrange one in advance.
ALEXANDER HONKALA |
A-c ..as T C.ia Hl V 48
s-r-osu 0s i~i "-'c
57 A .~
Editorial Board Members: Reggie Brown, Kevin Bunkley, Amanda Burns, Sam Butler, Ben
Caleca, Devika Daga, Milly Dick, James David Dickson, Jesse Forester, Gary Graca, Jared
Goldberg, Jessi Holler, Rafi Martina, Toby Mitchell, Rajiv Prabhakar, David Russell, Kather-
ine Seid, Elizabeth Stanley, Jennifer Sussex, John Stiglich, Neil Tambe, Rachel Wagner.