4A - Friday, September 13, 2013
4e Michioan l 4:lat,*lv
The Michigan Daily - michigandaily.com
Edited and managed by students at
the University of Michigan since 1890.
420 Maynard St.
Ann Arbor, MI 48109
and ADRIENNE ROBERTS MATT SLOVIN
EDITORIAL PAGE EDITORS MANAGING EDITOR
EDITOR IN CHIEF
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.
FROM THE DAILY
Invest in second chances
Michigan Prisoner Reentry Initiative shouldn't be cut
ver the last several decades, the United States has seen its
prison population increase to more than two-million people.
One of the biggest causes of growing incarceration rates in the
United States is repeat offenders. The state of Michigan created a pro-
gram called the Michigan Prisoner Reentry Initiative, aimed at using
community organizations to prevent recidivism among returning citi-
zens. The program helps ex-convicts find stable housing and steady
employment while counseling them on staying out of the penitentiary
system. Despite a great deal of both anecdotal and empirical evidence
displaying the MPRI's success, the Snyder administration has chosen
to cut the initiative's budget almost in half. These types of programs
give attention to the nuanced issues of such marginalized populations
and should be, at the very least, maintained, not weakened.
You're a freshman in Ann
Arbor, and it's time to live
out those Michigan Football
You're ready for-
the first game of
2013. You put on
your maize and
blue and head out
to pregame with
your new Mar-
kley Residence MAURA
Hall friends. LEVINE
Everything is _
going as planned:
red Solo cup in
hand, dancing on a front lawn, not a
care in the world. You make it to the
game, revved up along with the rest
of the chanting crowd. You get ready
to enter the Big House.
Suddenly, a cop stops you on the
sidewalk and asks you to blow a
Breathalyzer test. You freeze. You're
not sure how much you've had but
it's probably over the legal limit of
.08 percent. Actually, your mind
races, that doesn't even matter.
You're only 18 years old! The .08
rule only works for legal adults.
You see your life flash before your
eyes and you get ready to hurl.
You've been caught.
Cops love to stop college kids on
game day or on a Saturday night and
ask to test their BAC. As a minor,
the law says you cannot imbibe
alcohol. And your parents always
told you to listen to the cops. But
you have rights. The police invade
our privacy as students, as pedes-
trians and as individuals when they
submit us to Breathalyzer testing
under these circumstances.
So, do you have to take that
breath test? Will you get hauled off
to jail if you refuse? The answer is
no. What so many college minors
fail to realize is that in the state of
Michigan you are not required to
take a breath test as a pedestrian
- underage or not. You can refuse
as long as the police don't have a
warrant with your name on it. This
case law may not apply, mi
if you are driving a car ore
you are inside Michigan S1
with a beer in your hand. I
it undoubtedly violates stu
rights to privacy to be aske
blow a breath test while si
walking on campus.
Let's break it down. The
Amendment of the U.S. Co:
tution prohibits "unreason
searches and seizures" wit
search warrant. This was h
to protect our privacy after
ish soldiers of pre-Revoluti
America would search the
at random. In 2003, U.S. Di
Court Judge David Lawson
that allowing police to stop
trian students under the ag
campus and ask them to bl
first, a breath
a "search" and, Am
without war- refu
rants are illegal
under the U.S.
The Michigan Court of A
upheld this decision in 200'
that it is unconstitutional to
a minor without a warrant.'
American Civil Liberties Us
sidered this case a breakthr
students' rights because it p
our ability to walk down the
Unfortunately, even tho
the law is on our side, that
mean the police won't still
you to take a breath test w
warrant. As their role is to
students, police should be1
to educate students rather
taking advantage of ignora
Furthermore, if you do t
test and blow over .02 perc
legal limit for a minor - yo
arrested and/or given a tic
nd you, Minor in Possession, a charge that
even if can have serious long term implica-
tadium tions on your future. Just by hold-
However, ing an alcoholic beverage in public,
dents' you're still subject to arrest and a
ed to Minor in Possession citation - with
mply or without being Breathalyzed as
evidence. MIPs make you subject
Fourth to criminal punishment and stay on
nsti- your criminal record forever, ham-
able pering your chances of getting a job
hout a in the future. Since a high number
ncluded of students participate in underage
the Brit- drinking, this penalty is a harsh one
onary to pin on so many students' futures.
settlers Consideringthe large incidence
strict of underage drinking, the MIP
ruled penalty is also failing to serve its
pedes- purpose as an incentive to reduce
e of 21 on drinking amongminors. If the goal
ow into is to ensure student safety and dis-
s within your -was well as
rights as an trust between
erican citizen to law enforce-
ment - needs
ise a breath test. to be encour-
aged more than
of students with excessively harsh
9, saying Be cautious if you drink, but
search understand that if a police officer
The asks you to take a breath test as a
nion con- pedestrian in the street, it's within
ough for your rights as an American citizen
'rotects to refuse. This isn't an endorse-
e street ment for going hog-wild and buck-
ing authority on game day or in
ugh any other drinking situation. In
doesn't fact, you should generally listen to
ask the police and follow the law. But
ithout a always be aware. You have consti-
protect tutional rights to privacy as an indi-
looking vidual living in the United States
than - underage student or not. So know
nce. your rights, Wolverines, and please
ake the drink responsibly.
Michigan prison population has dropped
by more than 16 percent between 2006 and
2011, saving the state hundreds of millions in
its corrections budget. The state has allocated
nearly $2 billion for the Department of Cor-
rections for fiscal year 2014. The MPRI was
given $20 million in 2013 but will see only
$12 million for 2014. Despite the fact that this
relatively inexpensive and effective program
has saved money and helped a vulnerable
population, the state legislature has decided
it isn't worth the cost. Instead of making
investments that save money, help people
and reduce crime, the budget slashed another
important government program.
Over the last three years, the Snyder
administration and the Republican-con-
trolled Michigan state legislature have torn
into some of the state's key programs in the
name of balancing the budget. Secondary
and higher education have seenfunding evis-
cerated, while the .governor has called for
an increased gas tax to pay for road repairs.
The state's budget in recent years has taken
a sharp turn against lower- and middle-class
people, cutting programs that help those
in the toughest situations while proposing
Building better schools and taking steps
to reduce crime will exponentially improve
the state. A balanced budget should certainly
be a major priority for a state, especially one
with Michigan's recent economic history.
However, a balanced budget can only do so
much. The state must invest in its people if it
wishes to thrive in the future. There are cur-
rently more than 40,000 people incarcerated
in Michigan, the vast majority of whom will
one day rejoin society. Their chance of finding
a home and a place to work, all while avoiding
falling back into old habits, can be increased
through effective organization and policy.
Giving the MPRI a few million dollars will
stop future crimes, thus improving public
safety and saving the state billions in prison
costs. The state must stop its obsession with
short term budgets and focus on investing in
its people's future.
ent - the
o can be
ket for a
-Maura Levine can be reached
EDITORIAL BOARD MEMBERS
Kaan Avdan, Sharik Bashir, Barry Belmont, Eli Cahan,
Eric Ferguson, Jesse Klein, Melanie Kruvelis, Maura Levine,
Patrick Maillet, Aarica Marsh, Megan McDonald, Harsha Nahata,
Adrienne Roberts, Paul Sherman, Sarah Skaluba,
Daniel Wang, Derek Wolfe
ZAK WITUS I
Good luck, brother
MICHAEL PUSKARI VIE WPOINT
Eliminate in-state tuition
For years,cost hasbeenone ofthe main prob-
lemslimitingstudentsfrom acollege education.
In particular, students settle for a school other
than the best one into which they are accepted
due to high price tags. Much of this problem
has to do with out-of-state tuition being higher
than in-state tuition. This pressures students
to remain in-state, even if out-of-state schools
offer better education.
According to U.S. News and World Report,
28 states do not have a top-50 university and
18 states do not have a top-100 university. For
residents of these states, finding a high-qual-
ity college education may not be an option, as
the differences between in- and out-of-state
tuition can be substantial. Take, for example,
the University of North Carolina at Chapel
Hill. U.S. News and World Report ranks it
as the 30th-best university in the U.S. and
the fifth-best public university in the United
States. Its in-state tuition is $7,694 per year,
but its out-of-state tuition is $28,446 - that's
nearly four times as high.
These high differences in tuition costs
discourage students from attending the best
school. Not only is this price discrimination
unfair, it hurts these individuals in the long
run. This can lead to lower-quality education,
and, therefore, lower-paying, less successful
careers for these individuals. Lower-quality
educations also hurt the economy, as a lesser
educated workforce is usually a less produc-
Instead, the practice of discriminating
against students by charging more for out-
of-state tuition should be stopped. This will
level the playing field, improve fairness and
lead to a better education system. Under such
a plan, all students in the country will have
access to the best schools. This will also pro-
duce more competition among schools, driv-
ing costs down and quality up. Under the
current system, the best public university in
each state has an advantage in attracting in-
state students. Thus, there is little incentive
for these schools to drive down the cost of
attendance or to improve its quality of educa-
tion further due to a lack of competition from
comparable schools. Removing these schools'
cost advantages against out-of-state schools
for students will give these schools a greater
incentive to lower their costs and to improve.
Currently, states are afraid to practice such
measures as they worry about their students
having costs unfairly slated against them. If
just one state charged the same price for in-
state and out-of-state students but the others
did not, then the students of that state will
have to compete with students from out of
state to go to that state's public schools, but
will still have to pay out of state tuition if they
themselves go out of state. This could lead to
these students failing to get into their state's
best public school and not having the money
to go to other states' best schools, leadingto a
decline in the average education that state's
students receive. The way to get around this
problem is to have all states stop their price
discrimination with a federal law.
States may worry that this would lead to
students, and therefore money, leaving their
states as students go to other states for col-
lege. This would largely be counteracted by
students from other states coming to that
state's own schools. If states want to attract
more students and money into their own
states, then they should improve their aca-
demics at their universities to attract stu-
dents from other states. This could also solve
other problems, such as the controversy of
whether to charge undocumented immi-
grants in-state or out-of-state tuition. Instead
of wasting time having this debate, just get-
ting rid of out of state tuition should solve
this problem. It's long overdue that we pass
tuition equality, but late is better than never.
Michael Puskar is an LSA sophomore.
As I write, I imagine my friend
Joshua Sider in full combat gear,
running time trials up and down
Israeli sand dunes. If this last year
had gone differently - had Sider
not postponed his admission to the
University of Michigan; had he not
instead gone to Jerusalem for an
experiential education in the Arab-
Israeli conflict; had Sider not spoken
with Jewish Israelis, Arab Israelis,
Arab Zionists, Jewish anti-Zionists,
etc.; had he not visited the death
camps and concentrations camps
in Eastern Europe - perhaps Sider
would be moving into Alice Lloyd or
East Quad Residence Hall this week.
Instead, on Aug. 9, Sider's airplane
kicked its wheels up from Detroit
Metropolitan Airport, and he began
his three-or-more year bid in the
Israeli Defense Force.
The University accepted Sider
days before Christmas 2011, like they
accepted me and most of our other
friends from suburban Detroit -
Huntington Woods and West Bloom-
field, Michigan, to be specific. But
Sider decided not to enroll in class-
es for the Fall 2012 semester, and,
in July of this year, Sider officially
declined his offer to Michigan.
The University, as well as friends,
family and foes, were asking: Why?
Why do this? Why go to war in far
off land, for a country that you aren't
a citizen of, ina bloody, volatile con-
flict that has little chance of being
(peacefully) resolved soon (or ever)?
His grandparents asked him if it was
because he worried about nothaving
friends in college. "Don't you like it
in Ann Arbor?" they wondered.
Unlike a few other Americans
I know that have joined the IDF,
Sider doesn't seem motivated by
prejudice against Arabs or hunger
for bloody vengeance. Sider said his
decision rested on logic, thoughtful
deliberation and his principles. As
I alluded to earlier, Sider's Arab-.
Israeli conflict program introduced
him to a diverse range of perspec-
tives. Sider witnessed firsthand
the state of things in Israel, and
the condition of Jewish people in
Israel, Europe and parts of Africa.
He learned more about the history
of his people and the Jewish state
than could be learned in a book.
So when Sider returned for the
holidays last winter, he returned
resolute. He had carefully prepared
his reasons, anticipating his parents'
critical response and tears. When
I spoke with him, Sider told me his
reasons for joining the IDF. In my
friendly contrarian way, I challenged
his arguments, but in the end, we
agreed that his decision made sense
for him. Where I come from, Sider
is a rebel, an independent thinker
and an anomaly. Summer-camp-
like us don't fight in wars. My mom
wouldn't even let me play full-con-
tact football growing up. Kids like us
are supposed to watch Woody Allen
films and joke about being our high
school's freestyle fleeing champions.
If the draft returned, we're supposed
to run away to Canada or exempt
ourselves with our college-student
status. But, alas, Sider independently
sought out military service.
I believe Sider's story can be use-
ful and helpful for anyone, but espe-
cially college-age people. At a time
when so many of us are lost in one
way or another, Sider has already
confidently chosen his life's direc-
tion. He seems sure of who he is
and what he's doing. On the other
hand, what the fuck am I doing?
The direction of my life's next four
years are anybody's guess. Writer?
Surgeon? College-educated hermit?
Who the fuck knows? Sider is pret-
ty much set. He'll be an Israel sol-
ider with sturdy principles. Unlike
skeptical and contrarian me, who
spends more time challenging his
principles than acting upon them,
Sider will be championing a cause
in which he believes. I applaud him
for that. Say what you will about the
Arab-Israeli conflict; our opinions
of it are irrelevant to the beauty and
greatness of Sider's tale.
So what's the moral? Maybe Sid-
er's story is a reminder of how much
one person is willing to do, and can
do, for his cause. Maybe it's to dis-
suade our fear of risks, threats and
obstacles in pursuing our goals.
Maybe. I don't know. But it definite-
ly gives me a sense of urgency about
establishing my life objectives, pas-
sions, etc. If I am indeed "lost," in an
emotional teenager kind of way,then
maybe remembering Sider's ongoing
adventure pushes me toward being
"found;" that is, toward finding pur-
pose and direction.
This has been a friendly salute
to Joshua Sider, born and raised
in Huntington Woods, Mich., now
training and fighting in Undis-
closed Location, Israel.
Good luck, brother.
Zak Witus is an LSA sophomore.
CONTRIBUTE TO THE CONVERSATION
Readers are encouraged to submit letters to the
editor and viewpoints. Letters should be fewer than
300 words while viewpoints should be 550-850
words. Send the writer's full name and University
affiliation to email@example.com m.
INTERESTED IN CAMPUS ISSUES? POLITICS?
SEX, DRUGS AND ROCK'N'ROLL?
Check out The Michigan Daily's editorial board meetings. Every Monday and Thurs-
day at 6pm, the Daily's opinion staff meets to discuss both University
and national affairs and write editorials.
E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org to join in the debate.