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September 23, 2010 - Image 4

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The Michigan Daily, 2010-09-23

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4A - Thursday, September 23, 2010

The Michigan Daily - michigandaily.com

i #itidiigan 0aU
Edited and managed by students at
the University of Michigan since 1890.
420 Maynard St.
Ann Arbor, MI 48109
_ -" - _.,_, , ,.cothedaily@umich.edu


It's a great day for children.
Children deserve a loving home."
- Florida Gov. Charlie Crist, discussing Florida's recent decision to stop imposing a ban on adoption by
members of the LGBT community, as reported yesterday by The Associated Press.




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.
O .... ..........e n
Opening counc il doors
Ann Arbor City Council must improve transparency
an July of 2009, the Ann Arbor City Council was accused of
violating the Michigan Open Meetings Act. Less than 15
months later, City Council is again being accused of violat-
ing the act. On Friday, The Ann Arbor Chronicle filed suit against
the City of Ann Arbor for having a closed-door meeting on the
moratorium for medical marijuana. Though it remains to be seen
if the meeting was actually a breach of the act, City Council's
meeting violates the spirit of the law. City Council should be con-
siderate of residents who want to stay informed on local issues
and increase its efforts to be transparent.

A silly study

ANN ARBOR, Mich. - If you
use your cell phone to talk
about news of the day or to
express opinions about issues, you are
more likely to be
civically and politi-
cally engaged, a
new study says,"
says a Sept. 13 Uni-
versity News Ser-
vice report.
All names have been WILL
withdrawn. GRUNDLER

I'm wondering is this: What about
those people who aren't using their
phones to talk about issues and poli-
tics and stuff?
RESEARCHER 2: Hmmm. Probably
worth investigating?
RESEARCHER 1: Mind reader in the
building. Do we still have that student
cell phone data?
RESEARCHER 2:I just saw it some-
where... (Looks under Jenga tower.)
Here it is - Aw, crap.
Ha ha. We won't count that, though.
Okay, let's see what we got here. Texts
AND calls, very nice. Should we show
them to readers?

The suit was filed in Washtenaw County
Circuit Court on Friday, according to a Sept.
20 article on annarbor.com. The suit focus-
es specifically on a meeting allegedly held
on Jul. 19 during which City Council mem-
bers discussed the medical marijuana policy
with the city attorney general. Dave Askins
and Mary Morgan - owners of The Chron-
icle - are claiming that council members
are engaged in "secret decision-making."
City Council says that the discussions were
protected by attorney-client privilege, but
Askins and Morgan disagree.
This problem has been addressed before.
In 2009, a group of local businesses sued
City Council after it was revealed that some
members had been sending private e-mails
during public meetings. That lawsuit ended
in a settlement and an amendment to the
rules of the Council that prohibits the use
of electronic communication to discuss city
matters during meetings. But the debacle
apparently didn't impress on City Council
the importance of transparency.
City Council still needs to be reminded
that it has a responsibility to incorporate
Ann Arbor residents' opinions into their
decisions. Issues important to local resi-
dents shouldn't be discussed without the
input of the people they will affect. By
leaving residents out of a meeting regard-

ing the medical marijuana moratorium,
City Council is denying them important
information. The lawsuit should be a wake-
up call to council members that they aren't
independent agents.
Though it's still unclear if the meeting to
discuss the medical marijuana moratorium
counted as a breach of the Open Meetings
Act, city council members shouldn't feel
comfortable with closed-door meetings of
any kind. The Michigan Open Meetings Act
is meant to protect residents' right to know
what is going on in their local government.
City Council is still violating the spirit of
the law. By holding meetings - even if they
are informal and don't technically break
the law - City Council is perpetuating the
sentiment that it is a restricted entity. This
feeling of entitlement is dangerous in a dem-
ocratic society because it lessens demands
for public accountability. City Council
should feel obligated to include the public in
all of its discussions to show residents that it
is working for them.r
City Council must enact a policy 'd total
transparency during meetings and they
need to ,follow the spirit of the Michi-
gan Open Meetings Act. The suit that
The Chronicle has filed should stand as a
reminder to City Council of its responsibil-
ity to Ann Arbor residents.

RESEARCHER RESEARCHER 2: Who's readingthis?
1: Hey, hey, hey. COLUMNIST: No one.
RESEARCHER 2: Aloha. RESEARCHER 1: Excellent point. But
RESEARCHER 1: Is that a lei? we should do it for posterity's sake.
RESEARCHER 2: (touching his lei): RESEARCHER 2: Ilove posterity!
You like it?
RESEARCHER 1: Hey-o, Mr. Stylish *****DATA*****
over here, being all stylish.
RESEARCHER 2: Hey-o, Mr. Nice TEXTER 1: let me tel u sometihng
Guy over there, being all nice. about teh universe
RESEARCHER 1 (sits down in bean TEXTER 2: what?
bag chair): Weeell, they gave us two TEXTER 1: just a little sometingh abot
million for another study. the univerrse
RESEARCHER 2: The University? TEXTER 2: are you drinking?
Didn't we just do one? TEXTER 1: LOL
RESEARCHER 5: Three years ago. So TEXTER 2: dammit
yeah. But it's two mil. We should prob- TEXTER 1: its biig
ably do one. Are those gummy bears?
RESEARCHER 2 (passing gummy *****
bears): Hmmm. Something with the
media? And how it influences us? CALLER1: What do I think? What do
RESEARCHER 1 (picking out red you think I think?
ones): Thank you, Researcher Two. CALLER 2: Oh, don't be a whore,
And that's a great idea. It's bold. It's (name removed).
edgy. The media is all around us. Take CALLER 1: I'M the whore? Please. So
cell phones. what frat was he in?
RESEARCHER 2: Take cell phones. CALLER 2: Shady Phi.
RESEARCHER 1: All around us. I've CALLER 1: Oh for the love of Jesus
got 12. (expletive) (expletive), (name removed).
RESEARCHER 2: Nice! CALLER 2: Oh, shut up.
RESEARCHER1: They've got movies, CALLER 1: Hey, are you watching
music, Tetris. They're a game-chang- "Glee" tonight?
er. Bob andTom down the hall just did CALLER 2: 144lm. {
a study abouti hw people wh ouse cell' CALLERiSCan I come?
phones to talk about pglitics and news CALLER 2: See you thennn. Gotta go.
andastuff are more likelytLbecivifallyCALLERSLaterr.5I ;
and politically engaged.
RESEARCHER 2 (playing Tetris on *****
phone): Oooh, so if you talk about poli-
tics on your phone, you're more likely TEXTER 1: hey u wanna come over
to be interested in politics and engage tonite
yourself in them? TEXTER 2: wow.srsly?
RESEARCHER 1: Basically. I think so. TEXTER 1: yea y not
It might be a bit more complicated, but TEXTER 2: i cant believe u
probably not. TEXTER 1: what
RESEARCHER 2: Fascinating. TEXTER 2: 'what.' god such a moron
RESEARCHER 1: Exactly. Now, what TEXTER 1: what

TEXTER 2: y dont u take me on a date
TEXTER2: ... r u going to answer me
TEXTER 1: what
TEXTER1: just come ovr
TEXTER 2: god u piece of (expletive)
CALLER 2: DUDE. TOUCH - (exple-
tive) - DOWN.
*****END DATA*****
RESEARCHER 1: Good lord. This
is...I think we've got something here.
This was under Jenga the whole
RESEARCHER 2 (frowning): So, um...
students...who aren't talking about
politics and issues...are less likely...
RESEARCHER 1: Are you thinking
what I'm thinking?
RESEARCHER 2: ...To care about
politics and issues?
RESEARCHER 2: Woah...this is...I
feel like this is groundbreaking.
RESEARCHER 1: This is ground-
RESEARCHER 2: We just (experfvt6
owned the ground.
RESEARCHER 1: Wait until Bob and
, 'omheagAbout this.
RESEARCHER 2: Researcher One?
RESEARCHER 5: Yes, Researcher
RESEARCHER 2: What about the
two million?
RESEARCHER1: Oh. Yes.Well,we're
out oftgummy bears, aren't we?
- Will Grundler is an assistant
editorial page editor. He can be
reached at wgru@umich.edu



Global experience 101


At the housewarming event at North Quad
Residence Hall that took place last week, the
University delivered a message that it is shift-
ing its priorities. The University is presenting
itself as an institution whose liberal arts edu-
cation is focused on incorporating an interna-
tional experience.
Considering the large amount of reorgani-
zation, funding and attention being given to
resources and departments that are motivated
by a social justice and global education model,
I foresee the University shifting toward a cul-
ture similar to colleges like Carleton College in
Minnesota, Oberlin College in Ohio and Kal-
amazoo College. These colleges - according to
the Open Doors 2009 Survey on study abroad
participation - sent more than 80 percent of
their students to study abroad at least once dur-
ing their undergraduate career. The University
is on a path to create an atmosphere like these
schools in which it is commonplace for more
than half of LSA's undergraduate students to
study abroad at least once before graduation.
But unlike other institutions, the way that the
University is integrating a global immersive
experience into the curriculum of the College
of Literature Science, and the Arts is unique.
LSA is making efforts to shape its cur-
riculum to become increasingly global. For
instance, the Department of Intergroup Rela-
tions has created the Global Scholars Pro-
gram residential learning community, which
is housed in North Quad. The GSP is distinct
from other residential communities on cam-
pus. It exposes undergraduate students whose
intentional interests are to have an interna-
tional experience within a domestic locale.
Courses like University Courses 178 - Global
Understanding - show that LSA is committing
itself to shaping a global experience. When I was
a GSP student in Global Understanding, I took
classes with students from Seoul University in
Korea and the University of British Columbia
in Canada via video-conference. Students from
both Seoul and UBC were included in the twice-
a-week classroom instruction I was in.
Another instance in which the University is
distinguishing IGR as a leader in global edu-
cation is through its dialogue courses. These
courses give students the opportunity to have

a dialogue with their peers about imagery,
social class, race, prejudices and religion. The
common thread between courses like Global
Understanding, IGR dialogue courses, North
Quad's Global Scholars Program and LSA's
encouragement for undergraduates to study
abroad is the potential for change. The com-
mon theme is hope and a commitment that
demands responsibility.
By encouraging students to go beyond their
comfort zone in IGR courses or study abroad
programs, the University is providing a space
for students to learn from and engage in the
global community in a meaningful way. By tak-
ing strides to internationalize LSA's curricu-
lum, the University is displaying the value that
they place on a liberal arts education.
Globalizing the liberal arts curriculum of the
University gives LSA students the platform to
understand different kinds of people and vari-
ous traditions held around the world. Recently,
when I asked a few of my peers to describe their
study abroad experience, many explained their
experience in a way that described increased
understanding and global consideration. They
remarked that their positioning in the world had
expanded. They have adapted to other schools of
thought and communities of people in a way that
no textbook could have ever taught them. It's a
new kind of learning.
The transition to include more global com-
ponents in education is a positive move for LSA.
With higher value placed on receiving a global
education outside the walls of the University,
school officials will open students up to the pos-
sibility of establishing cultural and social sensi-
tivity that surpasses their own limitations.
The implication of this shift carries great
weight. Perhaps if more students take an active
interest, the cultural dynamic of the campus
will change.
The University has taken on the responsibil-
ity to create globally-minded citizens whose
future decisions might affect the entire world
by prioritizing a global education. I applaud
the University for restructuring their focus.
It's about time that some academics under-
stand that the best learning comes from doing.
Brittany Smith is an LSA junior.

- -- the Call it like you see it. Will Grundler thinks people in libraries are annoying.
*um Asa Smith wonders what the point of re-naming gender-neutral housing
Up U "open housing" is. Go to michigandaily.com/blogs/The Podium.


The crucial Middle East ally


Over 60 years ago, the State of Israel was created as a
refuge for a persecuted people yearning for reunification
with Zion after two thousand years. This state allowed
Jews disjointed by national boundaries to finally real-
ize that the unifying principles of freedom and equality
could empower them to thrive against seemingly insur-
mountable odds. Indeed, it is no coincidence that Israel
was founded on the same enduring democratic principles
as its greatest ally, the United States. As a matter of fact,
Freedom House - an independent watchdog organization
that examines the state of freedom in all nations - gave
Israel its highest and second-highest respective marks
in the categories of political rights and civil liberties. In
an incredibly volatile region marked by unpredictable
and hostile authoritative regimes, Israel stands as the
one crucial American ally in the Middle East prepared
to uphold the mutually fundamental values of democracy
and make rational, carefully calculated decisions in the
foreign policy realm.
Not only does Israel serve as a reliable asset by making
measurable decisions in an otherwise unstable region, it
provides the United States with vast economic, techno-
logical and security-oriented benefits. The U.S. is Israel's
largest state trading partner and conducts billions of dol-
lars worth of business with its Middle East ally each year,
importing a slew of high-tech products developed exclu-
sively in Israel that are applicable to a variety of American
economic sectors. Last year, Israel and the United States
verified over $28 billion in trade transactions.
Some argue that moral obligation and trade relations
don't sufficiently justify a relationship with Israel, a coun-
try that has strained diplomatic ties with Arab neighbors
the U.S. seeks to befriend. These detractors, however, fail
to realize the depth of U.S.-Israel cooperation, a shared
interaction whose strength and comprehensiveness vast-
ly outweighs the unfounded perceptions of certain states.
In addition to sharing essential values and trading goods
with the United States, Israel provides extensive knowl-
edge regarding unconventional warfare with Islamic
extremists and homeland security operations to its
American counterparts. Intelligence exchanges between
the two countries are essential, especially to American

personnel waging two similar wars in foreign countries
marked by unfamiliar geography, culture and political
structure. Furthermore, Israel provides the U.S. with
operational guidance about security measures, ensuring
that the American government is able to simultaneously
maintain an open, democratic society while protecting its
citizens from domestic threats across the country.
Though the content of such high-level security meet-
ings are kept private, U.S. officials don't hesitate to empha-
size their crucial importance. Andrew Shapiro, Assistant
Secretary of State for Political-Military Affairs and former
senior adviser to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, refer-
enced these talks in July when he stated, "our regular and
well-established meetings have recently been supplemented
by an unprecedented number of intimate consultations at
senior levels ofour governments [..which] provide an oppor-
tunity for our governments to share perspectives on poli-
cies, address mutual concerns, explain threat perceptions,
and identify new areas for cooperation."
Arguably the most important aspect of the U.S.-Israel
relationship is the strong connection shared by citizens of
both nations for lasting peace in the region. The American
people have consistently applauded Israel's attempts to indi-
cate a serious desire for peace, whether they are offering
over 90 percent of the West Bank and Gaza Strip to Arafat
for a future Palestinian state in 2000 or executing a unilat-
eral withdrawal of troops and settlers from Gaza in 2005 to
encourage Palestinian independence and development.
More than an alliance based on shared values, trade and
a desire for peace, the U.S.-Israel relationship is at its foun-
dation a bond that aims to extend human advancement. By
supporting innovation and growth in secure and free societ-
ies, the United States and Israel serve as models to all oth-
ers, embodying the comprehensive success associated with
democratic cooperation. The current peace talks show this
vital relationship remains strong: while the U.S. helps Israel
address its unique security concerns, Israel continues to
reach out to the United States and the Palestinians as essen-
tial partners in a questfor peace sorely needed by all.
This viewpoint was written by Max Friedman on
behalf of the American Movement for Israel.


Aida Ali, Jordan Birnholtz, Adrianna Bojrab, Will Butler,
Eaghan Davis, Michelle DeWitt, Ashley Griesshammer, Will Grundler, Jeremy Levy,
Erika Mayer, Emily Orley, Harsha Panduranga, Tommaso Pavone, Leah Potkin,
Asa Smith, Brittany Smith, Laura Veith

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