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December 01, 2010 - Image 3

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The Michigan Daily, 2010-12-01

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The Michigan Daily - michigandaily.com

Wednesday, December 1, 2010 - 3A

The Michigan Daily - michigandailycom Wednesday, December 1, 201D - 3A

'Pure Michigan'
campaign in danger
State tourism officials said yes-
terday they will cancel the Pure
Michigan advertising campaign
scheduled to begin airing in Janu-
ary unless they get a funding boost
approved by the end of the week.
Lawmakers and Democratic
Gov. Jennifer Granholm's admin-
istration did not appear close to
a deal to fund the program as the
Michigan Legislature enters the
late, lame-duck stages of its 2009-
10 session.
Republican Senate Major-
ity Leader Mike Bishop said money
could be taken from the state's 21st
Century Jobs Fund to give the pop-
ular tourism promotion program
a short-term boost. Granholm's
administration contends there's no
legal authority to use those trust
funds for tourism promotion dur-
ing the current budget year, and no
time to get authorization by the end
of the week.
Bishop has said he expects to
adjourn for the year tomorrow.
State Dept. cuts
access to files after
WikiLeaks release
The State Department severed
its computer files from the govern-
ment's classified network, officials
said yesterday, as U.S. and world
leaders tried to clean up from the
embarrassing leak that spilled
America's sensitive documents
onto screens around the globe.
By temporarily pulling the plug,
the U.S. significantly reduced the
number of government employees
who can read important diplomat-
ic messages. It was an extraordi-
nary hunkering down, prompted
by the disclosure of hundreds of
thousands of those messages this
week by WikiLeaks, the self-styled
whistleblower organization.
The documents revealed that
the U.S. is still confounded about
North Korea's nuclear military
ambitions, that Iran is believed
to have received advanced mis-
siles capable of targeting Western
Europe and - perhaps most dam-
aging to the U.S. - that the State
Department asked its diplomats
to collect DNA "samples and other
personal information about for-
eign leaders.
Republican leaders,
Obama try to bridge
* differences
Heralding a new era of divided
government, President Barack
Obama and congressional Repub-
licans pledged warily to seek
common ground on tax cuts and
reduced spending yesterday in
their first meeting since tumultu-
ous midterm elections.
Obama also made a strongplea to
Senate Republicans to permitratifi-
cation of a new arms control treaty
with Russia by year's end, raising

the issue first in a session in the
White House's Roosevelt Room and
then in a follow-up meeting with-
out aides present, officials said.
No substantive agreements
on essential year-end legislation
* emerged from the session, and none
had been expected. Instead, the
meeting was a classic capital blend
of substance and style, offering a
chance for Obama, House Speaker-
in-waiting John Boehner and Sen-
ate GOP leader Mitch McConnell
to become more comfortable in one
another's presence despite their
obvious policy differences and his-
tory of mutual distrust.
Students riot again
over tuition hikes
British police made 153 arrests
during student demonstrations in
London yesterday against proposed
university tuition hikes, officials said.
Police reported the arrests fol-
lowing a day of cat-and-mouse
between demonstrators and riot
officers that culminated in a violent
standoff in the capital's Trafalgar
Students are furious over the
coalition government's decision
to allow schools to triple the cap
imposed on tuition fees, allowing
the best universities to charge up
to 9,000 pounds ($14,000) per year
in a bid to reduce the burden on
Britain's debt-laden public sector.
British students currently pay up to
3,000 pounds ($4,675).
- Compiled from
Daily wire reports.

From Page 1A
tunity to do that in a way that
makes a real difference in peo-
ple's lives."
Much of Corvino's speech
focused on responding to the
argument that being gay is
unnatural. Corvino - a fre-
quent speaker on LGBT issues
and columnist for 36gay.com -
explained the New Natural-Law
view to the audience, touted by
prominent academics like Robert
George of Princeton University
and John Finnis of Oxford Uni-
versity. This perspective decries
gay sex for not being a marital or
procreative act.
"The implications of this view
are not just implications about gay
sex," Corvino said.
He explained that this opinion
also includes heterosexual sex that
involves anal or oral intercourse
or the use of contraceptives. In
regard to the argument against
homosexual sex that "the parts
don't fit," Corvino responded sim-
ply by saying: "Yes they do."
The New Natural-Law stance
calls non-heterosexual, non-pro-
creative sex an "illusion based on
gratification," Corvino explained.
He pointed out the false dilemma
set up by the viewpoint that sex
either achieves a biological, mari-
tal good or no good at all.
"This seems wrong," he said. "It
seems to me that sex actually can
achieve a number of important
Corvino enumerated the ben-
efits of sex that this argument
ignores, including the expression
of affection and mutual intimacy
From Page 1A
tative Kyle Summers endorsed
the implementation of a transcript
and audit system reform for cross-
college dual degree and degree
minor students through Wolverine
MSA members also welcomed
new members of the executive
board of officers as well as new
representatives after the final
assembly meeting of the current
representatives last night.
Current MSA executive officers
will still be attendingthe meetings
of the new assembly and will be
available to provide guidance and
input for the newly elected repre-
Representative DeAndree Wat-
son will now serve as the interim
speaker and Representative Sean
Walser will serve as interim vice
speaker of the assembly.
The new legislative branch
positions of interim speaker and
interim vice speaker positions
were internally elected by MSA
on Nov. 16 just before the MSA
Based on the new compiled code
that was adopted in November,
MSA President Chris Armstrong
will no longer preside over assem-
bly meetings, instead the speaker
and vice speaker will assume the
role. Armstrong will continue to
attend the meetings, however, and
provide a more advisory role to the

"I'm excited, of course, and I'm
really excited to have met all of the
representatives,"Watson said in an

"Essentially what (these theo-
rists are) saying here is that either
you buy into this natural-law view
of what sex is supposed toube like
or you might as well be sheep-
fucking," he said.
The last part of Corvino's lec-
ture focused on the concept of
choice. He emphasizedthat while
no one can choose his or her
romantic or sexual interests, one
does have the power to decide
how to live his or her life.
"Beinggyin some sense is more
than just having romantic feelings
or urges," he said. "It's about what
you do with those."
Speaking about the recent spate
of gay suicides across the country,
Corvino highlighted the "It Gets
Better" initiative, a series of You-
Tube videos with the message that
life improves. Corvino said that in
college LGBT students are able to
'avoid some of the prejudice and
bullying that they face on a daily
basis in middle school and high
school because people have more
control over who they spend their
time with.
"The reason itcgets better is that
they getto make it better," he said.
Corvino closed his lecture by
returning to the theme semester
"What makes your life worth
living? The answer is you," he said.
"It's about the choices you make."
LSA freshman MacKenzie
Ramos said she thought Corvino's
lecture provided some valuable
"I am from a country town
where I have friends that are gay,
and they are basically disowned by
the town," she said. "It needs to be
an issuethat's putcoutthere."
interview after the meeting. "They
all seem like theyhave agood head
on their shoulders and they really
want to do some big stuff for cam-
pus. Really, for me, I just want to
help (the new representatives) any
way I can."
Along with the MSA represen-
tatives that will remainon the new
assembly, current president and
vice president, Christopher Arm-
strong and Jason Raymond, will
remain in their executive positions
on MSA.
In an interview following the
first meeting of the new assembly,
Armstrong said he thinks the new
legislative branch positions on the
assembly will help members have
their voices heard more clearly.
"In terms of the transition with
the new speaker, I think it's a
(really) positive change...in aslot of
ways it will makethe assembly feel
more independent and...encourage
debate," Armstrong said.
He added that previously hav-
ing the executive board at the front
of the MSA meetings might have
had an imposing feeling.
In the farewell meeting of the
current body of executives and
representatives, departing MSA
members had the chance to share
parting words regarding their
experiences on the assembly.
In his remarks to the assem-
bly, Armstrong commended the
departing MSA representatives
for their efforts on the assembly
and challenged the new represen-
tatives, noting they will have big
shoes to fill.
"I think (the new representa-
tives are) all really bright people,"
Armstrong said in an interview

after meeting. "From who I've met
they really have alot of really good
projects that they're really inter-
ested in."

From Page 1A
more students began asking about
the origins of clothing sold in the
"The trend is more towards the
'being environmental' aspect of
clothing and the sustainability,"
Narayan said, adding that ethical
manufacturing "hasn't been the
focus of a lot of questions."
At an event organized by Uni-
versity Students Against Sweat-
shops lastcTuesday atthe Ginsberg
Center, an employee from the Alta
Gracia factory, Yenny Perez, talk-
ed about how her experience with
the factory's new management
compares with the old. The fac-
tory was previously operated by
a Korean-owned company, BJ&B,
and manufactured products for
Nike and Reebok until halting
operations in 2007.
In translated Spanish, Perez
said that conditions at the BJ&J-
owned factory were "very harsh."
"If a higher-up or a manager
ever thoughtwe weren't doing our
work correctly, they would take
all of our work and throw itto the
floor," Perez said.
She explained that verbal
harassment was very common and
workers were seldom given per-
mission for sick leave, or to take
time off to care for a sick child.
And after one attempt to orga-
nize a union, she said managers
became "unreasonably suspicious
of any small crowd of workers just
talking" at the factory.
Since the town's economy
depended on the factory, Perez
said that when BJ&B closed it,
citing competition overseas,
"there was nothing to do." Many
residents relocated in search of
employment, but with the reopen-
ing of the factory under Knights
Apparel, there is hope that the
community will grow, Perez said.
The workers are "very excited"

to be part of "a factory that will
serve as an example for all oth-
ers," Perez said. "Every worker
that is in that factory now is just
another benefit to the whole com-
munity," she added.
Students active in the issue
expressed an interest in the label,
saying they would likely buy
clothing advertised as ethically
LSA junior Michaela Goralski,
a member of SOLE, said that some
"don't think college students will
buy (the Alta Gracia apparel) if it's
a couple dollars more." However,
she thinks the brand's ideals will
speak to student consumers.
"Alta Graciais a way of showing
that students care about this, they
will purchase the apparel and
(the factory) will be sustainable,"
Goralski said.
Third-year law student Sarah
Kanter, who serves on the Presi-
dent's Advisory Committee on
Labor Standards and Human
Rights at the University, echoed
Goralski's sentiments on interest
in ethical apparel.
"The University has such buy-
ing power," Kanter said. "I think
it's really important, that's some-
thing we care about - that we
don't just care about the cost."
Since 1999, the University has
required each of its licensees to
sign a code of conduct, which aims
to ensure that workers producing
apparel and other merchandise
with the University's name or
insignia are treated fairly.
Among its provisions, the code
of conduct states that licensees
must "respect the right of employ-
ees to freedom of association and
collective bargaining," and ensure
that "net compensation is at least
sufficient to meet the worker's
basic needs."
Additionally, the University
requires all of its licensees to be
members of the Fair Labor Asso-
ciation, a monitoring association
that receives funding by the com-

panies it monitors. The Universi-
ty itself is affiliated with the FLA
and also the Worker Rights Con-
sortium, an independent monitor-
ing organization.
When a complaint of a poten-
tial breach of the code of conduct
occurs, these organizations inves-
tigate the situation and issue a
report, which University officials
use in deciding how to proceed.
But even with this system in
place, some believe the University
and others like it are not doing
enough to ensure licensees pro-
duce merchandise ethically. In
February 2009, the University
ended its relationship with Russel
Corp. after multiple allegations
that the apparel manufacturer
closed a Honduras plant in 2007
when workers tried to unionize.
"Because we have so many fac-
tories," Goralski said, "it's impos-
sible to monitor whether each
factory is indeed complying with
our code of conduct - it's just
infeasible to monitor anything."
The WRC is currently advo-
cating for a change in the way all
university apparel is produced.
The organization wishes to set
up a Designated Suppliers Pro-
gram, which would require mem-
ber universities to source apparel
through a set of a few hundred
approved factories in order to
ensure ethical manufacturing.
Public Policy graduate student
Charles Clark, who is a member
of the President's Advisory Com-
mittee on Labor Standards and
Human Rights, said that though
some University licensees pro-
duce clothing in ethical condi-
tions, the Alta Gracia label calls
attention to the greater issue of
ethical manufacturing.
"There could be the implica-
tion," Clark said, "that people who
don't have the (Alta Gracia) label
are not treating the workers as
well. But I feel that it's a good ini-
tiative anyway - particularly on
the wages paid."

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'Dead Man Walking -
The Journey Continues'
Sister Helen Prejean, CSJ
. death penalty activist and author
of 'Dead Man Walking'and
'Death of Innocents'
Thursday, December 2nd, 7pm
Blau Auditorium, Ross School of Business
Sponsored by LSA Theme Semester, Law School,
St. Mary Student Parish, the Notre Dame Club
of Ann Arbor, and Women's Studies Department

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