The Michigan Daily - michigandaiiy.com
4 - Tuesday, March 12, 2012
4 - Tuesday, March 12, 2012 The Michigan Daily - michigandailycom
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JOSEPH LICHTERMAN and ANDREW WEINER JOSH HEALY
EDITOR IN CHIEF EDITORIAL PAGE EDITORS 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.
Imran Syed is the public editor. He can be reached at email@example.com,
Push for public safety
Snyder should call for more police statewide
Republican Gov. Rick Snyder's new public safety plan, which
is slated for the 2013 fiscal year, attempts to reduce crime in
Flint, Detroit, Pontiac and Saginaw - cities with the high-
est crime rates in Michigan. Public safety is an important issue for
any state, and efforts to improve public safety shouldn't be limited
to the most dangerous cities. Michigan lawmakers should increase
funding to other municipalities and local governments that have
been forced to cut important local public safety services.
I'm pretty tough on myself. I make sure I've got it
right. I feel good about what I do.
-Spring commencement speaker Sanjay Gupta, a University
alum told USA Today about his media and medical careers.
omneys ri ghtward stretch
Snyder's proposal would add 180 state
police troopers and 20 forensic scientists,
expand drug and mental health courts in
Michigan and re-open the city jail in Flint.
The plan allocates $15 million for two trooper
recruit schools, $5 million for forensics, $1.2
million for drug courts, $2.1 million for mental
health courts and $4.5 million for additional
jail space in Flint.
While the plan is likely to help Flint, Detroit,
Pontiac and Saginaw, other cities in Michigan
also need assistance to reduce crime. Ann
Arbor and the University have felt the nega-
tive effects of fewer police officers. In June
alone, 20 positions in fire and police depart-
mentswere eliminated due to city budget cuts.
Since then, crime alerts from both city and
University police have caused concern in Ann
Arbor. Recently, police issued a warning after
an unusual upswing in home invasions.
Many other cities across the country are
also feelingthe sting of a reduced police pres-
ence. NPR's This American Life reported
that 103 police officers were laid off in Tren-
ton, N.J. in September. From January 2011 to
January 2012, gun assaults in-Trenton rose
76 percent, robberies with a firearm rose 55
percent, car thefts more than doubled and
break-ins more than tripled. New Jersey Gov-
ernor Chris Christie, a Republican, calls these
cuts "the new reality," but when this reality
threatens the residents of many cities across
the country, it's not worth the savings in any
budget. Cities in Michigan shouldn't have to
suffer the same fate as Trenton.
Lawmakers should take several impor-
tant steps to help all municipalities and local
governments in Michigan in their efforts to
reduce crime. For starters, they should enact
Attorney General Bill Schuette's plan, which
calls for 1,000 additional police officers for
the entire state. While state troopers are an
improvement, local police officers are better
acquainted with the areas they serve. Law-
makers should also pass harm reduction mea-
sures to preemptively reduce crime instead of
overfilling our jails and imposing too many
taxes on Michigan residents as a result of an
inflated corrections budget.
Additional police officers can make the
streets in Michigan safer without the assis-
tance of the National Guard or other unnec-
essary forces. While crime reduction in Flint,
Detroit, Pontiac, and Saginaw would be wel-
comed, lawmakers must work to fix the prob-
This year's GOP presidential
candidate nominating ses-
sion has elicited a wide range
of reactions from
shared by most
people is the
length of the
process - it's
gone far too long.
Americans have DAR-WEI
more than 20 CHEN
and are ready to see one candidate
emerge as the nominee.
On Super Tuesday - the nick-
name for March 6th's 10 primaries
- presumed frontrunner Mitt Rom-
ney was the candidate with the best
chance to take the lead. However,
he wasn't able to deliver the prover-
bial "knockout punch" to eliminate
opponent Rick Santorum, and thus
the lengthy show continues. The lon-
ger the primary process goes on, the
more pandering to the right Romney
has to do in order to gain favor with
the still-powerful Tea Party sect of
the GOP. Since the time before Elec-
tion Day is finite, every day he doesn't
have the nomination sealed is one he
can't spend coming back leftward to
Not only is the extended primary
process allowing President Barack
Obama to take notes on the usually-
moderate Romney's extreme lurches
to the right, it's also going to hurt
Romney's electability in Novem-
ber. Let's look at some of the issues
where Romney has stretched so far
to the right that returning to moder-
ate positions might be difficult, even
with his flip-flopping expertise.
Women's health has been in the
political spotlight for the past few
weeks. In a Fox News interview last
year, Romney told host Mike Hucka-
bee that he would support a consti-
tutional amendment defining the
"beginning of life at conception." Of
course, such an amendment would
outlaw many common forms of birth
control - avicious attackonwomen's
If Romney took this "personhood
amendment" stance to the general
election, voters would roundly repu-
diate him across the country. But in
the GOP primary season, he knows
that this far-right position is crucial
to winningthe nomination. Just how
conservative is this position? Look
no further than to what happened
late last year in Mississippi, a state so
conservative that in 2011, 46 percent
of its residents wanted interracial
marriage to be illegal and another 14
percent were unsure about the issue.
When a ballot initiative for the "life
begins at conception" definition was
brought to a vote, more than 55 per-
cent of Mississippians rejected it.
Romney is more conservative than
Mississippi on this issue.
Even when Obama orchestrated
the killing of reviled terrorist Osama
bin Laden last May, Romney couldn't
quite give credit to the president dur-
ing a time of American triumph. He
once told Fox News' Chris Wallace of
the order to take out bin Laden: "Any
president would have done that, but
this one did, and that's a good thing."
Perhaps we should be glad that he's
not conservative or doggedly anti-
Obama enough to criticize Obama
directly, but he had to throw a bone
to right-wing zealots by conceding
only a backhand compliment. Why
couldn't Romney - or the rest of the
GOP for that matter - justgive credit
where it's due?
So Romney is stretching himself
pretty far to the right on those two
issues. Yet Romney might actually be
at his most conservative on the issue
of the auto industry bailouts. After
reports that General Motors posted
record profits in 2011-just two years
after being bailed out by the govern-
ment - Romney still defended his
2008 New York Times opinion piece
"Let Detroit Go Bankrupt" during
debates. He couldn't seem to care
less about the fact that millions of
jobs were saved and an entire eco-
nomic sector was revitalized - the
anti-government faction of his party
beckoned. Remember, Michigan is
Romney's home state, and Romney's
father, George, was a very popular
governor here. But Romney won
the Michigan primary by only three
points over Santorum. His right-
ward stretch almost cost him what
should've been agimme.
may be hard.
As long as the primaries drag on,
Romney has to keep stretching to
the right. And like a rubber band, if
he keeps stretching in one direction,
he's going to reach a breaking point
where he can't return to a normal
(read: electable) state. vice President
Joe Biden has been campaigning on
the slogan "bin Laden is dead and
General Motors is alive." The con-
viction-deficient Romney probably
wouldn't have had the courage to
call the bin Laden raid, and he all but
declared that he wanted GM dead.
Attacking women's rights isn't a good
demographics-based strategy either,
to say nothing about policy. Looks
like all this stretching isn't going to
help his presidential run.
- Dar-Wei Chen can be
reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Support restaurant workers
- h eMy Ann Arbor: Where to take mend your Saturday morning
hangover? Eliana Fenyes counts down A2's best brunch spots.
Go to michigandaily.com/blogs/The Podium
The recruiting game
Each year, employers get away with treat-
ing their workers like slaves. Yes, I am talk-
ing about employers in the United States, not
India. The metro Detroit restaurant indus-
try gets away with paying salaries that only
allows around 13 percent of their employees
to make enough money to live. For a single
parent to raise just one child, the estimated
cost of living per year is $36,447 in Wayne
County, yet on average restaurant workers
earn $15,092 a year.
With more than 80,000 food-serving
establishments in the United States, the
annual sales in this industry are more than
$630 billion, with a profit margin of 4.4 per-
cent. Michigan alone make about $12 billion
in restaurant sales each year. To say that
these employers do not have the money to pay
better wages is inexcusable.
One in ten Americans currently work in
the restaurant industry. It has one of the
highest employment rates of any private-
sector industry. Almost 400,000 Michigan-
ders work in this industry. These people
are bound to be our parents, siblings, family
members or close friends. We do not want to
see the people we love work full-time only to
still struggle to pay their mortgage. Improve-
ment is necessary.
The Wages Act and Healthy Families Act
were recently introduced in Congress and
are focused on improving this industry.
The Wages Act will mandate an increase in
tipped employees' minimum wage from a
menial $2.13 per hour to nearly $5 per hour
hour. Considering a normal full-time work
week is about 40 hours, this extra few dollars
an hour could increase an employees' yearly
salary to almost $6,000 a year. That is signifi-
cant step in the right direction.
If enacted, the Healthy Families Act would
require that restaurants with 15 or more
employees grant themeach at least seven paid
sick days per year. Almost every other job
position in the private sector grants a certain
number of paid sick days. In Michigan, only
13 percent of restaurants do this. This would
not only help workers, but patrons to these
establishments as well. Who knows what ill
employee will touch your food because they
were so desperate for money that they came
to work anyway? It's a health risk to allow
this kind of employee treatment.
This is just the tip of the iceberg, but if both
bills pass the industry would become signifi-
cantly more humane. Both bills have yet to be
voted on in the House of Representatives. Be
an advocate and speak out to your representa-
tives in Congress. Or even write a letter.
In the meantime, stick it to the industry
and show them you will not ignore their injus-
tice. Support restaurants that are loyal to their
workers.A few places in Detroit, Michigan that
have been recognized for paying over required
minimum wage and granting paid sick days
are: Avalon Bakery, Colors, Five Guys Burgers
and Fries, Le Petit Zinc, Russell Street Deli,
Slow's BBQ, and Wolfgang Puck's Grille.
Paige Taliaferro is an LSA freshman.
By this time every year, many students have secured
an internship for the summer. After applications and
interviews, they've hopefully found what they think is
their dream job. Still, others are continuing the gruel-
ing search, worried they'll be stuck as a camp coun-
selor for yet another summer.
Thankfully, I've figured out my summer plan. But it
hasn't come without stress, worry and hard work. As
a Business student, the recruiting season wasn't for-
eign to me. My older brother graduated from the Ross
School of Business last year, and I had seen him go
through two years of internship recruiting and a year
of full-time job recruiting. Even with that in mind, I
wasn't prepared for the experience. And I realized
something very quickly: The entire thing was a game.
Yes, a game. A game with rules and regulations.
Right off the bat, many people disagree with the
way candidates for a job or internship are initially
screened: through a resume. Judging someone based
on one piece of paper isn't always fair. Someone may
be extremely qualified for a job, but if their resume
doesn't reflect that, they're passed over. Unfortunately,
it's something we must all learn to live with.
Once I had been offered several interviews, the prep
work began - another necessary evil. To me, it seemed
logical that everyone would know a little bit about the
company before heading into a job interview. I real-
ized this isn't always the case. In one case (I won't be
using company names throughout for privacy purpos-
es), I was asked for a basic run-down of their website.
Obviously, I had taken the time to review it, butI was a
little taken aback that I had actually been asked for the
summary. Again, this serves as one more way to weed
Many of the companies that recruit in the Business
School fly students to their company headquarters for
"superdays," which consist of four to eight interviews
throughout a day. I was invited to two superdays. When
I received my flight confirmation e-mails, I noticed
that the price of the ticket was always at the bottom.
These prices were astounding. In one instance, my
ticket to a nearby state and back - a one-day trip -
cost more than $900.
At the time, I didn't give it much thought. A month
later, I made travel arrangements to visit another com-
pany, this time for only one half-hour interview. It
was strange that they would fly me out for a half-hour.
When I saw the ticket price, I was amazed. $1,100 for
one plane ticket, for one day of travel. The amount of
money these companies spend on recruiting is abso-
lutely ridiculous. But if these executives don't have
time to make campus visits, it's another part of the
game that must be played.
If you're lucky enough, these interviews will hope-
fully turn into internship offers. So, now you've received
an offer and are thrilled that you won't be working at
McDonald's this summer. And while you like the compa-
ny you've been invited to join, you're still waiting to hear
back from your dream employer... so what do you do?
In my experience, employers will typically give you a
two-week window to accept or decline anoffer. But what
do you do if at the end of thattwo weeks you're still wait-
ing to hear from another company? This is where things
get tricky and where playing the game rears its ugly
head. I was in this situation just a few short weeks ago,
and I didn't know what do. I could ask for an extension,
but that could also make me look like I wasn't that inter-
ested in the position. Or, I could accept my current offer
and then go back on it later if I was accepted into my
top choice company. Neither of these alternatives were
favorable. Unfortunately, many students find themselves
in this position. In a professional setting, you don't want
to burn any bridges. When a friend of mine was being
recruited for a full-time position in finance, he strung a
company along for three weeks only to accept an offer
elsewhere. The director at the company he turned down
actually proceeded to call him on the phone and yell at
him -while using profane language - for 30 minutes.
This is an extreme case, but it can happen.
Thankfully, my situation resolved itself. But I spent
many nights on the phone with my parents and older
brother stressing about what I should I should do and
what decisions I should make. Recruiting is stressed
heavily in the Business School, but it's applicable to
all areas of study. As young students, sometimes we
don't know how to deal with tricky situations and play
these types of games. But the internship experience
is often stressed as a huge factor in determining your
full-time job out of college, and it can consume the first
few months of the year for many. As you're searching
for internships and jobs, remember the one thing that
I learned this year: Everything will work itself out. It
sounds clich, but it's almost always true.
Ashley Griesshammer is the Daily's co-editorial
page editor and a Business sophomore.
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