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April 17, 2007 - Image 5

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The Michigan Daily, 2007-04-17

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The Michigan Daily - michigandaily.com

Tuesday, April 17, 2007 - 5


Coleman must do
more to help students
cope with tragedy
I want to express my discontent
with the email University Presi-
dent Mary Sue Coleman sent out
last night regarding the shooting
at Virginia Tech University.
She did not offer any insight
into our university's prepared-
ness to handle a similar situation,
which is a fear many students
are struggling with in the wake
of this tragedy. She didn't even
indicate that answers to these
questions would be forthcoming,
or that the administration was
reacting at all beyond being "sad-
dened and horrified."
Furthermore, I find her com-
ment "If you feel the need to talk
about this" to be far too flippant
and insensitive. The wording
implies that seeking counseling
is somehow unnecessary, or an
overreaction. I can admit that
I may be biased because of my
involvement in promoting mental
health resources on campus. But,
I am very concerned that she did
not provide nearly enough infor-
mation about resources available.
Counseling and Psychological
Services provides free and con-
fidential help on a walk-in basis.
It is imperative that she send out
another email addressing these
issues immediately in order to
avoid an increase in student con-
cern during an already perplex-
ing time.
Diana Parish
LSA junior
Daily overlooks
charity from Greeks
More than two weeks ago, a
student organization made up of
roughly 15 percent of the student
population concluded an event
that raised over $70,000 for char-
ity. Yet to this day, aside from two
one-sentence photo captions, not
a word has been written by the
Daily about these events. While
I played no role in the planning
or administration of Greek Week
2007, I cannot help but feel a bit
slighted on behalf of friends who
helped run the event, as well as
the Greek community as a whole.
Greek Week 2007 was an over-
whelming success that involved
the participation of 42 chapters
representing the Interfraternity
Council, the Panhellenic Asso-
ciation, the National PanHellenic
Council and the Multicultural
Greek Council. Over the course of
the semester, thousands of Uni-
versity students from the Greek
community came together in the
spirit of competition to benefit
eight local charities. While the
idea of Greeks doing something
positive may rattle the "Ani-
mal House" stereotypes held by
the Daily, it's time to give credit
where credit is due.
Josh Young
Kinesiology senior
Step it up in the war
on global warming
This Saturday, April 21, Ann
Arbor will become part of his-
tory by participating in the Step
It Up 2007 National Day of Cli-
mate Action. Along with more
than 1,300 events hosted around

the country, this Ann Arbor rally
will make a statement: We want
Congress to cut carbon emissions
by 80 percent by 2050.
With the support of more than
26 organizations, this movement
is somethingthateveryoneshould
care about. The issues of climate
change and global warming need
to be confronted. Although the
University has taken positive

measures by providing recycling,
more could be done to reduce our
ecological footprint.
This day is meant to show Con-
gress that we care about climate
change, and believe that without
government support of the issue,
the effects of global warming will
not be prevented in time. We only
get one shot at the world, and it is
up to each and every one of us to
make it clear where we stand and
what we care about.
Step It Up is the local chapter
of a national movement focused
on reducing carbon emissions
and becoming less wasteful as a
society. Step It Up is only the first
of many events, initiatives and
actions to come.
Monica Musialowski
Engineering and
LSA are different
The author of Friday's letter to
the editor (LSA kids at Daily jeal-
ous ofengineers, 04/13/2007) was
well-intentioned in his attempt
to clarify potentially mislead-
ing conclusions presented by
the Daily's coverage of academ-
ic integrity among engineers.
Unfortunately, he made an inane
statement, which for me, after I
reread it several times in disbe-
lief, fatally undermined the cred-
ibility of the entire letter.
The letter writer claims that
"The College of Engineering
is founded on the premise that
our students are smarter then
the students in LSA." However,
according to its website, the Col-
lege of Engineering's mission is
to be a "world leader in engineer-
ing academics and research." No
mention is made of the proposed
"founding principle" that engi-
neering students are smarter
than those in LSA.
Irrespective of the ridiculous-
ness of this notion, I am most
interested in dispelling the myth
that LSA students are less intel-
ligent than engineering students.
One may argue that students
entering the College of Engineer-
ing have higher standardized test
scores on average. However, this
trend is the result of lower accep-
tance rates and stricter admis-
sions requirements in the College
of Engineering, not some con-
spiracy to hoard the most intel-
lectually capable students at the
expense of the University's other
Furthermore, it is impor-
tant to note that most students
choose to enter LSA as a result
of their interest in its courses
of study, not because they were
too academically inept to gain
admission to the College of Engi-
neering. Suffice it to say, LSA
students at The Michigan Daily
staff are likely not "jealous of
engineers." They just appreciate
the excellent academic opportu-

nities and other benefits that are
offered by LSA.
Derek Peters
ESA senior
Students already
part of the solution
In response to Thursday's
news story A magnet for grads
(04/12/2007), Itam also amechan-
ical engineering major who loves
cars yet have a very different
mentality about the automotive
industry in Michigan. If talent-
ed people wait for companies to
recover from a slump, then who
will be responsible for this recov-
ery? Now is the time to step up
and do what we do: have a posi-
tive impact.
So why aren't students from
the University taking the lead to
help the ailing Michigan econ-
omy? We are. As a testament to
this, our student chapter of the
Society of Automotive Engineers
was recently recognized, out
of 400 university-level groups
from around the world, as the
Outstanding Student Chapter of
2006. The SAE earned this award
through the quality of SAE-host-
ed on-campus events and the per-
formance of three student-run
competition vehicle teams. On
campus at this year's Michigan
LeadershipAwards, SAEwasvery
well represented. Next Septem-
ber on Elbel Field, the University
of Michigan Car Show will focus
on increasing student interest in
the automotive industry.
I would especially like to high-
light the Formula SAE race team.
This group was invited to the
global competition in Japan last
fall and came home with a third
place trophy. After a complete
redesign of last year's car (includ-
ing Magnesium wheels and a tur-
bocharger), they have built a new
vehicle from the ground up and
are set to race in England this
summer. All of these talented stu-
dents are determined to succeed
in the auto industry.
We could sit and talk forever
about these problems, but I'd
rather be an active part of the
Dave Clark
Free speech not a
factorfor Imnus
In response to calls for the
firing of Don Imus, I've heard
the right to freedom of speech
invoked quite often on his behalf.
There is obviously a misunder-
standing about this right. Free-
dom of speech offers mostly
unfettered protection of speech
without fear of censorship or
prosecution. This is not equal

to "you can say what you wish
and continue to both represent a
major corporation and receive a
huge paycheck."
imus was not, and will not be,
held accountable in a court of
law for his comments. However,
as a public figure who uses the
airwaves to entertain people, he
can and will be held accountable
by his audience. In other words,
when your public actions upset
enough people that the people
who are paying you (the advertis-
ers) chose to stop paying you, you
can and will lose your job. This is
not the first time Imus has made
publicly unacceptable statements,
and the only thing he is sorry
about is that someone confronted
him about it.
Finally, the call for removal
was loud enough to shut him up.
Sean Serraguard
Scientists already
on the right track
In regards to Thursday's view-
point (Innovation worth funding,
04/12/2007); I first wish to con-
gratulate the author on bringing
the issue of the HIV pandemic to
light. And I certainly agree that
HIV is not only an issue of health
but also of poverty, oppression
and liberty. The issue is compli-
cated and its solution, as the let-
ter writer notes, must include
the social, political and economic
factors that allow the disease
to spread. That aside, I need to
address some of the author's
points about the state of aca-
demic research and the novelty
of network analysis.
The author claims that "aca-
demia sucks." Not a problem. I
can't argue with this argument
any better than if had he said,
"orange juice sucks." My issue is
with his suggestion that science
is somehow not concerned with
making a difference in the real
world. In the University's School
of Public Health, there are many
professors working on practical
problems in HIV prevention, like
how to aid the hardest hit areas
or understanding exactly how
different social factors affect the
spread of HIV. Manyofthese peo-
ple are physicists, chemists and
biologists. The only difference is
that they apply science to making
a difference in the real world.
In the words of Louis Pas-
teur, "Science knows no country,
because knowledge belongs to
humanity and is the torch which

illuminates the world." Although
this might be true, I sympathize
with the author's frustrations
with academia. Academia can
seem pedantic, overly abstract
and slow moving, but to condemn
science for these frustrations
seems, at the very least, overkill.
The author also claims, "No one
has ever done (network analysis
on HIV)before."This is incorrect.
There are hundreds of empirical
and theoretical studies that have
examined the role of networks in
HIV transmission. In fact, it was
mathematicians and scientists,
including many from the Univer-
sity, working in the realm of the
abstract that developed the tools
in network analysis that are now
being applied to HIV.
Network analysis is a fascinat-
ing and quick moving discipline
in applied sciences, but it is not
a panacea. Stopping the spread
of HIV is an absolutely essential
element of an ideal future. The
author's passion is an important
part of the solution, but soare the
often unnamed and unappreci-
ated contributions of thousands
of scientists working globally to
stop this pandemic. These sci-
entists are not just working in
molecular biology and medicine
but also in economics, epidemi-
ology and international policy. It
is together as a collaborative net-
work that we will eventually stop
the destruction caused by HIV.
Ethan Romero-Severson
SOLE, SDS on the
workers' side
Workers everywhere deserve
fair treatment, decent pay and
respect. This is what all mem-
bers in Students Organizing for
Labor and Economic Equality are
striving for. Just this semester,
SOLE members volunteered with
the union UNITE HERE! and its
organizing campaign at a local
airport, in addition to pressuring
the University to adopt the Des-
ignated Suppliers Program and
become sweatfree.
We stand with Robert Overmy-
er and support his disappointing
experience as a temporary work-
er here in Ann Arbor (SOLE's
struggle should start at the 'U'
itself 04/11/2007). In fact, in
addition to bringing attention to
the Sweatfree Campaign, SOLE
members are supportive of Stu-
dents for a Democratic Society's
Temporary Worker Organizing
Campaign here at the University.

We encourage Overmyer and oth-
ers who have experienced injus-
tice at the University to contact
SDS for more information.
Aria Everts
LSA junior
Memberof the Universitychapter of
Students Organizingfor Labor and
Economic Equality
The law must be
enforced for now
The next time Aaron Willis
writes a letter to the editor he
should do his homework first.
His last letter notes that leather
product manufacturer Michael
Bianco, Inc. of New Bedford,
Mass. was raided by immigra-
tion enforcement officials back
in March, resulting in the arrest
of more than 350 illegal immi-
grants (A governmental waste of
time, 04/03/2007). The letter also
points out that the company is
"struggling to maintain its con-
tract obligations," notably several
multi-million-dollar contracts
with the U.S. government to
manufacture peripheral tactical
equipment for the military.
Willis, however, paints the
company as the victim, con-
veniently omitting several key
facts. During the raid, which was
organized following an 11-month
investigation, several company
officials were arrested as well.
The indictment states that owner
Francesco Insolia "knowingly
and actively hired. illegal immi-
grants to expand his workforce."
It is also alleged that his staff
assisted illegal immigrants with
obtaining fake documents.
The allegations of illegal activ-
ity do not stop there. Workers
were purportedly subjected to
deplorable working conditions, a
common abuse of undocumented
immigrants who cannot go to the
authorities for help.
Willis states that the govern-
ment "needs to decide if it is more
important to arrest people try-
ing to make a living and harming
nobody or properly protecting
our soldiers from very real harm."
I'm all for protectingour soldiers,
but how can an investigation into
fraud and worker abuse turn a
blind eye to hundreds of illegal
workers? Law enforcement offi-
cials were just enforcingthe laws
on the books. Until those laws are
overturned, they should continue
to do so.
Matt Williams

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