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November 05, 2010 - Image 4

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4A - Friday, November 5, 2010

The Michigan Daily - michigandaily.com

e Nt 'g a n a"t
Edited and managed by students at
the University of Michigan since 1890.
420 Maynard St.
Ann Arbor, MI 48109


Oh, right, y/Fortunately, I've learne
from my mistakes. I
Alright, thatdoes it! party didn't do know how I can do my Actually going
I'msickithallthese sowell this year part to avoidthis in to what,now?
pst-electionstpecials! t feteoin
You mean you're
atuafy going
to vote next




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.
Advancing. recreational pot
Republicans shouldn't stall marijuana use
uesday's elections shook up politics in Michigan and
nationally. With the incoming conservative majority in
both houses of the Michigan legislature and the U.S. House
of Representatives, the future of marijuana laws is more uncertain
than ever. California tried to completely legalize recreational mar-
ijuana use with Proposition 19, which failed narrowly. This ballot
initiative, though unsuccessful, was a positive development in mari-
juana legislation. Michigan should follow California's failure with
success, despite the state's newly Republican government. State res-
idents must put pressure on the legislature to ensure that Michigan
is at the forefront of progressive marijuana legislation.

All up in my Facebook

acebook is kind of an ironic know. The site then uses the informa-
name for something that is tion to make assumptions about what
neither a book nor allows for kind of consumer you are.
any real face time. The ads on the sides of the screen
But it's pointless to are picked according to informa-
quip over the accu- tion that a user puts onto the site. For
racy of the name, example, I always get ads for Stateside
since the website Apartments. Do they sound familiar?
has steadily taken Probably not, because they're not in
over everything Ann Arbor - Stateside is a swanky
and everyone. apartment complex that's located in
By now, a lot of Madison, Wisconsin. I've probably had
people have prob- a few status updates informing all my
ably . seen "The VANESSA "friends" - who probably don't care -
Social Network," that I'm in Madison for the weekend to
the somehow criti- RYCILINSKI visit my brother. This information was
cally acclaimed retained by the Facebook servers to-
film about Mark tempt me in the form of an advertise-
Zuckerberg, a smart mouthed techie ment later. Maybe this targeted adver-
for whom getting dumped catalyzes tising would work if I put up more
the billion-dollar idea for Facebook. about myself and "liked" things more
The other details of the movie often. Facebook would tell me bet-
aren't so important - there are law- ter things to buy and everyone would
yers, partying and Justin Timber- be happy. But somehow, I don't mind
lake. What's more significant though escaping this marketing manipulation.
is that there is an actual movie about Sorry, capitalism.
Facebook, a company that hasn't been Since advertising companies have
around for more than a handful of always been trying to find innovative
years. We already knew that the site ways to get into people's pockets, it
is a cultural phenomenon, but the isn't very shocking that Facebook uti-
fact that there's already a major film lizes this tool. But this storage and
about Facebook indicates how much use of personal information is caus-
the website is part of life. ing some problems.
Facebook has several features According to an Oct. 21 CNN
that firmly cement it into the average article, a recent study conducted in
user's life. Most importantly, the site Germany found that the specific tar-
takes part in "data mining," which is geting of Facebook ads is specialized
the process of extrapolating site data for gay and lesbian users. The study
into real information that is later used six fake accounts, two of which
used to formulate marketing and were listed as men and women who
business tactics. Facebook collects preferred the same sex. All of the
- according to its policy page - only other information on the accounts
"some of the information you post" besides sexual preference was identi-
like friends added, groups joined, cal, but in spite of this, the ads were
photo albums, poking, "liking" posts, different for the two test profiles. If
events attended, sharing videos or a user were to click on one of these,
the usage of applications. It goes even the advertiser would now have the IP
further in stating that information and email addresses associated with
friends provide about you will also Facebook. Virtual footprints from
be accounted for. So in short, Face- one simple click would be trailed
book basically logs almost all of your through the Internet - saving poten-
online pseudo-life, from the actions tially sensitive personal information.
you take to those taken by others you In addition to this problem, Face-

book profiles are impossible to delete.
They can only be deactivated. The
site keeps your information indefi-
nitely unless you either delete all wall
posts and pictures manually or make
requests that your shadow profile be
completely deleted. Even if you do
manage to disengage yourself from
this site, you'll never be able to extri-
cate yourself completely and protect
your privacy.
Facebook shouldn't
track Users' info
to personalize ads.
Facebook is probably going to
grow and grow until every single
thing about us is logged into servers
and we'll all walk around with wire-
less microchips in our heads. Maybe
not even walking - everyone will live
in jelly tank things like in the Matrix
and interactions will occur in cyber-
space. The sun will be blocked out by
a floating monolith of the Facebook
logo, everyone will use a variant of
Newspeak, and we'll spend our time
playing Farmville and discussing
YouTube videos.
Seriously, though, Facebook
shouldn't be doing all of this informa-
tion-hoarding. And though the com-
pany says it doesn't sell your info, third
party apps available through the site
are able share your usage with trackers
and advertisers. There's nothing any-
one can do about it unless we find a way
to delete our profiles and revert back to
actually calling each other to socialize
- or maybe start to pay for the service.
Since the likelihood of either of those
things happening is slim, I suppose
we're all stuck.
- Vanessa Rychlinski can be
reached at vanrych@umich.edu.

On Tuesday, the vote to legalize recre-
ational marijuana use in California failed
54 percent to 46 percent. The proposal
sought to permit the sale of marijuana like
alcohol, making it legal to purchase and
grow for people over the age of 21. The
proposal also would have made it legal for
retailers to sell marijuana. California was
one of the first states to legalize medici-
nal marijuana in 1996. At the time, voters
were in agreement that this prescription
should be taxed to generate revenue for the
state. There are plans to put together a new
initiative for the March ballot to create a
medicinal marijuana tax in California.
Michigan's medicinal marijuana law
has been the subject of controversy since
it passed in 2008 because of ambiguous
wording that makes it difficult for people
to fill their prescriptions. But despite its
problems, the legalization of medicinal
marijuana was an important step for pro-
gressive drug policy. Complete legaliza-
tion should be the next goal. Not only is
marijuana a non-addictive substance, but
it also has the ability to generate tax rev-
enue for the state like any other product.
Among the slew of Republicans elected
on Tuesday is Michigan's attorney gener-
al-elect, Bill Schuette, who doesn't sup-
port medical marijuana. When Shuette
takes office in January, it's important that
he doesn't take advantage of the problems

with the state's medical marijuana law and
go against the voters' wishes. Regardless
of Shuette's stance on medical marijuana,
he has an obligation to fight for concise
legislation supported by the voters who
elected him.
With an incoming Republican majority
in the state House and Senate, it appears
that medical marijuana isn't going to get
much support from the legislative level,
either. So it's up to Michigan residents to
push for progressive legislation. Residents
should contact representatives and sena-
tors to lobby for clear, progressive mari-
juana legislation. The medicinal marijuana
law needs to be revised immediately, so
people trying to receive legitimate pre-
scription medication aren't treated like
Residents should also encourage the leg-
islature to take precedent-setting action
and legalize recreational marijuana. The
push for recreational use isn't over nation-
ally. California made great strides with
Proposition 19. Now, Michigan should lead
the way.
Michigan shouldn't keep riding Califor-
nia's coattails. Michigan must lead the way
for other states to implement more pro-
gressive laws. Residents need to bring this
issue to their representatives and senators
to put Michigan at the forefront of mari-
juana legislation.

Readers are encouraged to submit letters to the editor. Letters should be fewer
than 300 words and must include the writer's full name and University affiliation. Letters are edited
for clarity, length and factual accuracy. All submissions become property of the Daily.
We do not print anonymous letters. Send letters to tothedaily@umich.edu.


Encourage 'U' to buy local No quick fix for health concerns

Several universities have been successful in
providing organic, locally grown foods on cam-
pus for students. Unfortunately, the University is
neither the leader nor the best at this. We have
been considering our school's sustainability for
decades, yet only East Quad's dining hall pro-
vides local produce when the season permits.
Sustainable food purchasing could expand with
increased demand from students, so why aren't
you asking where your food comes from?
The University's Integrated Assessment and
the East Quad dining hall team have worked hard
to have more than 50 percent of East Quad's pro-
duce locally sourced. But this movement toward
sustainable food could spread more rapidly to the
seven remaining dining halls, retail cafes and
convenience stores that Residential Dining Ser-
vices operates if students were more vocal about
consuming consciously.
East Quad's sustainable dining success came
after handling many challenges. These chal-
lenges included connecting with local farmers,
confirming their sanitary practices, transport-
ing food, adhering to University and food distri-
bution services requirements, meeting student
dietary needs, diversifying the menu, coping
with the timeliness of growing seasons and
addressing the corresponding additional costs.
Such challenges deter the efforts of many uni-
versities across the nation that strive for more
sustainable food procurement, especially larger
schools like the University.
According to a 2005 New York Times article,
the Berkeley College dining hall at Yale Univer-
sity serves organic, locally-grown meals because
of Yale's Sustainable Food Project. This program
was so popular that students who didn't live in
Berkeley College were coming up with ways to
gain access to the cafeteria. The project strives
to support area farmers, provide organic, sea-
sonal ingredients and promote environmentally
friendly production methods. The Sustainable
Food Project is staffed, sponsored and has pub-
lished reference literature like sample menus
and purchasing guidelines. Though the program
has seen great success, it's still challenged by the
need to stock food out of its growing season and
overcome additional costs.
Granted,. Yale University enrolls far fewer
students than the University of Michigan. But it
bears similar challenges as a result of its location
in the Northeast region. The rise in interest in
providingsustainable foods has peoplesearching
for solutions to year-round production.
For example, "hoop houses" are covered grow-
ing houses that trap heat and water to extend

growing seasons. On a recent field trip to Goetz
Farm, a family farm in Riga, Michigan, I saw its
newly constructed hoop houses that will provide
beets, carrots and other produce to the Univer-
sity during the winter months.
Though the farm spans about 25 acres, the
University only purchases about 2 percent of its
production. By demanding that the University
invest in bringing more local foods to campus,
we can increase its availability and support local
businesses like Goetz Farm. By supporting the
local economy and reducing long-distance trans-
portation, buying local could help schools to save
money. once these programs gain speed and
improve their approaches, the additional costs
faced by schools like Yale University could poten-
tially be eliminated.
To mediate the challenge of providing a
diverse menu year-round while satisfying stu-
dents' appetites, schools must spread awareness
about local food production and growing sea-
sons for fruits and vegetables. Such concepts are
exemplified in local farmers' markets, but at Cor-
nell University, tasting events are organized to
bring local farmers and Cornell University chefs
together. This way, farmers and chefs can direct-
ly conduct business while establishing personal
And Emory University has even hired a "farm-
er liaison" to establish lines of communication
between area farmers and the school. Besides
informing the community about Emory Univer-
sity's local food program, the liaison encourages
farms to get organic certification. Making efforts
known to the public and bringing local food ven-
ues to campus informs the public not only of local
food availability and access but also of the people
who are already making moves toward conscious
At times, students underestimate the weight
of their opinions on campus. The University of
Michigan constantly requests feedback from
students, whether in teacher evaluation forms
or e-mail surveys. Though the University has
revamped its sustainability efforts with the
newly-instituted Office of Sustainability and is
working extensively to conduct an Integrated
Assessment, there's still a disconnect between
student involvement and administrative efforts.
With more student participation, student groups
like Michigan Sustainable Food Initiative could
have the same clout as Yale's Sustainable Food
Project. After all, you are what you eat, so start
asking questions.
Emily Basham is an LSA junior.

t was hard for me to tear my eyes
from the image of two morbidly
obese people jumping up and
down in celebration
of walking across a
balance beam above
a pool on "The Big-
gest Loser." But as
I watched many of
them head back to
the workout room,
complaining the
whole way, I had to
change the channel. COURTNEY
This show, along F
with many oth- LETCHER
ers, is essentially
rewarding the obe-
sity crisis by offering monetary reward
for losing weight. Is getting your life
back not enough?
I sit on the extreme opposite side
of the spectrum from these people
in terms of lifestyle. As a Division-I
athlete, I work out five or six times a
week, monitor what I eat and try to
make the best possible health deci-
sions to help me perform in my sport.
What I'm learning is that playing a
sport is less about the wins and losses
and more about creating good life-
style habits for my life after athletics.
Sports are of course an easy way for
kids to begin healthy lifestyle choices.
It forces them to exercise, interact with
other kids and compete. Admittedly,
sports certainly aren't for everyone,
but that doesn't mean that exercise
should simply be abandoned. It's kind
of like this: You may not be good at
math, but you're going to have to take
it throughout your education because
it's still an important skill to have. The
samegoes for exercise.
Eating is another crucial part of

a healthy lifestyle. Though I love
pizza, hamburgers and candy, I have
an understanding that they aren't
imperative parts of the food pyra-
mid. We learn most of our eating
habits from our families growing up.
Whether you grew up with family sit-
down dinners, eat fast food frequent-
ly or have home-packed vs. school
lunches will ultimately influence the
way you eat when you're on your own.
The amount of information we see
and hear every day about food and
exercise is astounding. Buy this small
ball and you'll have abs of steel, don't
eat carbs and you'll have the body of
Britney Spears, buy this book and
you'll reach your weight goals. These
products are successful because peo-
ple are looking for a quick fix to their
But when it comes to being ahealthy
person, there are no quick fixes. The
vast majority of people already know
what they they need to do. Just like
we all know smoking is bad for you,
we also know the difference between
eating healthy and eating poorly and
that exercising is important.
Being healthy isn't for the faint of
heart. Making excuses to avoid exer-
cising and eating well takes discipline
and hard work. I had to make lifestyle
changes of my own last year. I made
the commitment to eat healthier
in order to help my athletic perfor-
mance. What I found was that when
I ate better, my athletic performance
improved, I needed less sleep, my
grades improved and I actually felt
happier. While it took discipline and
self-control to not polish off a package
of Oreos or eat a bag of chips, I found
that the way I felt from not eating
them was better than the short-term

satisfactionI got from eating them.
I learned that there is no such
thing as "bad food" - there are sim-
ply healthier alternatives. It's okay to
have dessert occasionally or indulge
in a Starbucks drink from time to
time, but not every day. You can eat
chocolate Graham crackers instead
of Oreos and eat popcorn instead of
chips. You get the same satisfaction
for the same craving.
Having a healthy
lifestyle isn't for
the faint of heart. *
There are more excuses to not make
these changes than there are to do
them - you've got a huge exam, you're
running late, you're tired or yousimply
don't want to. All of these are excuses
to pull through the McDonalds drive-
through or sleep instead of working
out. But the rewards of staying com-
mitted to it are well-worth the work.
You don't have to be a size two or
have abs of steel to be a healthy per-
son. But it also shouldn't take an
extreme situation and an application
to "The Biggest Loser" to get your life
headed in the right direction. Eating
right and exercising is about feeling
good. And if you take the steps that
lead to a healthy life, you're setting
yourself up for a longer, better and
more enjoyable life.
- Courtney Fletcher can be
reached at fletchco@umichedu.

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

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