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4 - Friday, March 11, 2011

The Michigan Daily - michigandaily.com

4 - Friday, March 11, 2011 The Michigan Daily - michigandailycom

4

Edited and managed by students at
the University of Michigan since 1890.
420 Maynard St.
Ann Arbor, MI 48109
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STEPHANIE STEINBERG
EDITOR IN CHIEF

MICHELLE DEWITT
and EMILY ORLEY
EDITORIAL PAGE EDITORS

KYLE SWANSON
MANAGING EDITOR

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.
Allow group therapy
State needs to allow compassion club gatherings
The Michigan Medical Marihuana Act was passed with 63
percent of the vote in 2008, legalizing the use of medical
marijuana under state law. Though a majority of Michigan
voters approved the ballot initiative, legislators and law enforcement
officials have been trying to supersede the democratic wishes of the
electorate by making the bill confusing and tightening restrictions.

4

Make Tressel lose

The latest of these attempts comes from
Rep. Rick Jones (R-Grand Ledge), who has
introduced legislation which aims to outlaw
marijuana clubs where medicinal marijuana
patients gather. The Michigan Legislature
needs to respect the wishes of the electorate
and stop trying to place undue constraints on
medical marijuana use.
Medical marijuana clubs, often referred
to as compassion clubs, started opening after
medicinal marijuana was legalized in Michi-
gan. The clubs are intended to provide a place
for patients who have certified medical mari-
juana cards to gather for social support. But
since their inception, compassion clubs have
been a source of controversy and a target of
law enforcement. Multiple clubs have been
raided, and club owners as well as patrons
have been arrested.
Jones has said the reason for outlawing
the clubs is to prevent patients from driving
after using marijuana. But this is completely
flawed logic. While the concern is legitimate,
it doesn't provide a sufficient reason to out-
law the clubs entirely. Drinking and driving
is certainly a safety risk and concern, yet no
legislator is pushing to make bars and night-
clubs illegal.
The legislation hinders a citizen's Consti-
tutional right to gather and associate, espe-
cially when that gathering is to use a legal
prescription that is medically beneficial. Not
only is the logic behind the bill inconsis-

tent with standing policies, but it serves as a
witch hunt against medical marijuana users.
If there are concerns about patrons traveling
safely home from compassion clubs, then that
should be addressed, but banning the clubs
entirely is not the solution.
The root of the problem is that Michigan's
medical marijuana law is clouded by unclear
guidelines and regulations. Since the clubs
aren't explicitly mentioned in the law, they
have fallen into a legal "gray area" that has
left them open to raids by police and legal
charges and fines. But the clubs aren't out-
lawed either, and they should be allowed to
keep servicing the medicinal marijuana com-
munity without any interference from law
enforcement.
In order to solve the problem and stop
innocent patients from being arrested for
using a completely legal substance, the state
Legislature needs to clarify its medical mari-
juana laws and make them more transparent,
including retaining the legality of marijuana
clubs that provide an important - and legal -
service to medical marijuana users.
The easiestcwayto make the marijuanalaws
clearer is to completely legalize marijuana.
This would make it simpler for law enforce-
ment and stop users from being wrongly
arrested. In the meantime, the state Legisla-
ture should vote down Jones's misguided and
inconsistent bill in order to protect marijuana
clubs and their innocent patrons.

When it comes to NCAA
violations, the Ohio State
University hardly lacks
experience. Since
2000, the school
has reported 375
violations to the
NCAA. Several of
them have come
from football.
The recent
scandal regard-
ing OSU football ERIC
coach Jim Tres- SZKARLAT
sel's knowledge
of his players'
improper benefits, and his deceit
and mismanagement of the situation
proves what we have always known:
Integrity is not, and will never be,
colored scarlet and gray.
The program at OSU has been
darkened for a long time. Former
OSU football coach Woody Hayes,
known for his results on the field,
was known better for his temper. For
those of us too young to remember,
Hayes - OSU's historical coaching
icon, much like our Bo Schembechler
- was dismissed fromthe university
for punching a student-athlete on
the opposingteamwhen OSU played
Clemson University in the 1978
Gator Bowl.
Hayes was a good coach, prob-
ably with a lot of psychological
problems, but his conduct shows
the type of blood that has histori-
cally run through the veins of OSU.
Earle Bruce was hired as Hayes's
replacement. He was said to have
been Hayes's favorite for the job. But
Bruce followed eight strong seasons
with one poor season, when he went
6-4-1, and OSU dismissed him. In
doing so, the school set a precedent
that has carried through to today:
Buckeyes care about one thing, and
that thing is winning.
Coach John Cooper fared a little
better. He followed multiple Big Ten

championships with consecutive
6-6 and 8-4 seasons, and in spite of
the upward trend, he was released
because of his 2-10-1 record against
us. Talented coaches weren't good
enough for Ohio State. Nothing
short of near-perfection would be
accepted.
At last, OSU found its man. Tres-
sel, like a dark horse rider, came in
and has dominated the Big Ten since
his arrival. As much as I hate to
admit it, he has lost only one game to
Michigan in 10 years. And since that
one loss, he has led OSU to a Big Ten
Championship each year. His abili-
ties on the field are not questionable.
But his ethics off the field cer-
tainly are.
Gordon Gee, president of OSU,
seemed completely to subordinate
the stakes here. Speaking on wheth-
er he'd fire Tressel, he said: "I'mjust
hoping the coach doesn't dismiss
me." In doing so, he basically denies
all wrongdoing on Tressel's part,,
making the miniscule two-game
punishment look like even more
of a joke, if possible. Accept this as
Gee's admission that Jim Tressel,
not Gordon Gee, runs the Ohio State
University.
Michigan rivals still cite the
phrase, "The pride cometh before
the fall," in reference to our football
program. It's no secret that the past
few years for us have been anything
but glorious. Sure, we had a talent-
ed offense for two of three, but not
much else. And yet now it seems that
pride will be Tressel's undoing.
Or at least, it should be. But Tres-
sel seems to be the kingpin of the
shoddy operation that is OSU athlet-
ics. Gee and OSU Athletic Director
Gene Smith don't look much better.
After what many are calling a "slap
on the wrist" to Tressel, some think
that the NCAA ought to be harsh on
OSU and specifically Tressel. Who
could disagree? The coach effective-

ly lied to the NCAA during its inves-
tigation of his players and protected
student-athletes who he knew were
doing improper things. Rather than
being an educator or leader, Tressel
chose the game of football over the
"game of life" that he talks about in
his book, "The Winners Manual: For
the Game of Life."
The Buckeyes
value winning
over integrity.
The Big Ten conference deserves
better leadership and representation
from one of the most storied pro-
grams amongits ranks. Buckeye fans
deserve to be able to say they won
fair andsquare. The student-athletes
of the Buckeye football team deserve
a better educator. We, the arch nem-
eses of all things Ohio State, deserve
a fair game every November. Grant
Freking of OSU's student newspaper
The Lantern recognizes this, and
said Tressel should be fired.
But it's unlikely that will happen.
Gee won't do it. Tressel won't resign.
It would be too ethical for him. No,
Tressel will continue to be the head
of OSU football for another year, at
least. But one thing should be clear
to NCAA football coaches. There is
only one way to undo Tressel, and
only one way to undo the Ohio State
Buckeyes football team. Let this be
a lesson to Michigan football coach
Brady Hoke and all other coaches in
and outside the Big Ten. Make them
pay on the field for their ethics viola-
tions. Make them lose.
-Eric Szkarlat can be
reached at eszkarla@uniich.

A

EDITORIAL BOARD MEMBERS:
Aida Ali, Will Butler, Ellie Chessen, Michelle DeWitt, Ashley Griesshammer,
Melanie Kruvelis, Patrick Maillet, Erika Mayer, Harsha Nahata, Emily Orley,
Harsha Panduranga, Teddy Papes, Asa Smith, Seth Soderborg, Andrew Weiner
ERIKA MAYER I
Facebook oversharing

AIDA ALl I
Don't turn Libya into Iraq

4

A girl I went to high school with just went
through a very nasty divorce. I haven't talked
to her since she got married and left - and not
even really since the 8th grade - but I couldn't
help but notice all the dirty details of the
divorce because they were plastered all over
my Facebook newsfeed.
Other than firmly confirming my sus-
picions that she and her now ex-husband
weren't mature enough to get married in the
first place, their divorce is the most recent
example of people posting their dirty laundry
all over Facebook. From nasty statuses tar-
geted at an "anonymous" (but very obvious)
friend, to long rants about all the failings of a
current boyfriend, it seems like Facebook has
become less of a social network and more of a
private journal.
I could detail the break ups and fights of at
least four different couples, and I'm not close
to any of them. And while I do occasionally
partake in some good natured Facebook stalk-
ing, all I had to do to find out aboutthese break
ups was sign into myFacebook account. I don't
remember issues like this when I first got my
Facebook, but maybe the introduction of the
stalker-assisting newsfeed has just made it
more apparent.
Maybe I missed the memo when it suddenly
became acceptable to have huge public fights.
But I think what's really at the heart of these
Facebook fights is a sense of protection from
not having to look the person you are bad-
mouthing in the face. As far as I can tell, it's

still rare and shocking to see people stand on
the street yelling at each other about how she
cheated with an ugly, balding, middle-aged
man, and he never calls when-he says he will
and spends all of his time playing World of
War Craft and is the worst boyfriend in the
world. Facebook, though, is a completely dif-
ferent story.
It's sad that it has to be said, but Facebook
is not your diary. If you hate your boyfriend,
tell him that he's a jerk. Don't tell all 534 of
your not-so-close "friends." If your status
update is a direct message to a specific per-
son then it isn't a status update, it's a public
e-mail. Think of how embarrassing it would
be to send a private e-mail meant for your
girlfriend to your entire address book. That
is what Facebook is - a big "send all" button.
Clearly that concept is completely beyond
comprehension for some people.
While it is usually just annoying and a lit-
tle funny to watch these fights on Facebook,
sometimes people's feelings are really hurt.
It's the foundation of cyber-bullying - people
have more confidence when they don't have to
look someone in the eye. Until people feel they
are responsible for what they say online, dirty
divorces, fights and cyber-bullying are going
to continue to be plastered across the web.
Just remember, everything on the Internet
is public. And we don't want to hear about your
divorce anymore.
Erika Mayer is an LSA junior.

One can't think of Iraq today without picturing
dusty soldiers, frightened children and wounded civil-
ians, and it has become difficult to envision this coun-
try in happier times. Iraq was once the center of the
Sumerian civilization - the earliest known civilization
on Earth. It was the birthplace of the first writing sys-
tem and the core of so many empires throughout his-
tory that it has been called the "cradle of civilization."
All this has been forgotten in light of recent circum-
stances and represents a history that Iraq's current
young generation can't even imagine. Watching the
protests in Libya on the news now makes me wonder
what challenges this country will have to face, how its
people will choose to proceed and if the face of this
country will forever be scarred beyond recognition.
The recent protests in the Middle East and North
Africa have been an eye opener for the world, making
us aware of the injustice being done to the people in
those countries. The peaceful protest that began in
Tunisia in December sparked similar uprisings in 16
other countries in the region, and its effects were felt
as far as China. Though these protests received violent
reactions from the governments - especially in Tuni-
sia, Egypt and Libya - the uprising was necessary and
inevitable. People deserve the rights they ask for.
Foreign countries have rightfully decided to step in
and provide any possible support to the people of Libya.
While some countries, including those of the European
Union and Canada, have decided to support Libya in the
form of humanitarian aid, the United States also has
chosen to impose military pressure on Muammar Gad-
hafi, the leader of Libya for 42 years. More than 1,000
U.S. marines were stationed in warships off the coast of
the island of Crete in the Mediterranean as of March 4,
according to The Sacramento Bee. Souda Bay navy base
spokesman Paul Farley explained in an arabnews.com
article that this would give President Barack Obama
"flexibility on a full range of options regarding Libya."
Amid the threat of U.S. military action, the French
government emphasized the importance of humani-
tarian aid over military action. The French are right.
It's important for foreign military to not interfere in
the dealings of Libya and its people. We should offer
help, but only in the way of providing our moral sup-
port, shelter to refugees, medical aid to the injured
and imposing economic sanctions. Foreign military

interference may prompt the emergence of nationalist
groups as the true freedom of the country will again
be questioned. This will increase the struggle of the
people and deter the country's recovery.
After the U.S. invaded Iraq on the pretext of secret
nuclear weaponry, life in Iraq has become difficult.
Granted, it was difficult even during the Iraq-Iran war
and the invasion of Kuwait, but after the U.S. inva-
sion and execution of Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein,
the country has never been at peace. Civilian deaths
due to bombings in Iraq have become an everyday phe-
nomenon not worth more than a couple of minutes of
coverage by news channels. Militant groups are a big
cause of the instability in the country, but so is the
prevalence of foreign military power. Iraq is currently
stuck between militants killing anyone in their path
and a foreign army claiming to protect the people, but
instigating these militants at the same time. And this
struggle has come so far that it's not easy to under-
stand what the country would be like without one of
these forces.
While the Iraq invasion and military aid to Libya
may arguably be very different, the outcome of for-
eign intervention in these countries might be quite
similar. Libyans are fighting for themselves, and we
should allow them to do so by themselves. Libya and
its people will undoubtedly face a great struggle if or,
as I believe, when Gadhafi is overthrown. The oppor-
tunity for a fresh start, and the process of launching a
new government is when a country needs to make most
sound decisions and needs to remain decisive and,
most importantly, patient. This is also the time when
nationalism, patriotism and self-reliance emerge as
strong sentiments. A little bit of chaos in the aftermath
of Gadhafi's downfall is inevitable, but foreign military
interference will not be welcomed.
It's important for us to sympathize with the situa-
tion in Libya and understand the consequences of our
actions. As we see Libyans fight for justice from the
comfort of our homes, we should be willing to urge our
government totake steps in the right direction. We are
all witnesses to what the voice of a people can do, and
we should make sure we don't turn yet another nation
into a battlefield.
Aida Ali is a senior editorial page editor.

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