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November 27, 2013 - Image 4

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The Michigan Daily, 2013-11-27

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4A - Wednesday, November 27, 2013

The Michigan Daily - michigandaily.com

4A - Wednesday, November 27, 2013 The Michigan Daily - michigandailycom


Cbe*l Midigan &iIyj

Taking control of your body

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


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.
More meals, less flexibility
The University should offer more options for student dining plans
Beginning in the 2014 to 2015 academic year, student dining will
be shaken up. Currently, students living in the residence halls
can choose between two meal plans: 150 meals and 100 Dining
Dollars or 125 meals and 300 Dining Dollars. Next fall, students living in
residence halls will receive a dining plan with unlimited meals, a Univer-
sity Housing decision that will benefit many students. However, Housing
should think about also including a plan that offers more flexibility for
those students who don't plan on eating exclusively in dining halls.

t all started when I was a soph-
omore in high school and my
dermatologist gave me a pro-
scription for Yaz,
a high-estrogen
birth control
pill that was
rumored to cure
acne. Unfortu-
nately, like many
women who '
begin birth con- EMILY
trol, that initial PITTINOS
visit with my
doctor was short.
Too short. I don't remember being
told many of the side effects and
none of the science was explained
to me. But at the time, I hardly
blinked - I was a painfully zit-faced
teen and was completely convinced
that smoothing out my skin would
change my quality of life. Plus, I
had a horny, hormonal boyfriend
who was bugging me for sex, and
protecting my eggs from his sperm
seemed like a wise decision. So I
did what a lot of people do: I blindly
trusted my doctor.
Looking back on the whole event,
there must have been some sort of
race to prove that Yaz worked as
zit-repellant because my doctor
didn't just write me a prescription.
She practically pushed the pills on
me. It was before the Affordable
Care Act, so my private insurance
didn't cover birth control, and each
pack of Yaz was $75. Instead of pre-
scribing a generic brand, she gave
me 12 free samples and told me to
come back in a year. The next year
she did the same thing.
A few months later, I was home
over Christmas break watching
"Iron Chef" on my parents' futon and
texting my boyfriend like it was my
job. I held my flip phone in one hand
and ate sugar cookies with my other
as a tingling sensation entered my
fingertips. I shook my hand, thinking
it had fallen asleep, but the tingling
only travelled up my arm, my neck
and into the left side of my lips. It was
like I could feel my molecules danc-
ing, or a swarm of microscopic bees
were swimming through my blood-
stream. And then I felt nothing.
Holy shit, I thought. I'm having a

With my right hand, I
parents who were watch
Miami" at my grandmoth
nearby, and we calmly dro
to the tiny hospital in m
town. After a couple hour
feel my face again and the+
came out clean. The e
room doctor told me I w,
ing a stroke. It was a migra
probably wouldn't be my la
I didn't connect my mi
my birth control, partly bec
of the medical professional
over the next few months re
any correlation. The thi
migraines is they're basica
tery to modern medicine
hard to study because the
gered by all kinds of thi
dust to citrus fruit to stres
feine - for awhile, I thougl
ger was raw red onion.
The symptoms are als
different, which makes t
for labs to track
and difficult
to describe Ke
to someone
who's never in
had one. Some-
times, I know a Y
migraine's com- yol
ing on when I
see a glimmer-
ing, like a crack
in the glass of
my vision, which grows u
completely blind for a few
Sometimes I puke like I
the whole night sneaking
the bar, gulping the las
strangers' drinks, creatir
of alcohol and mysteriou
my stomach. I almost al
up huddled in a dark rot
ing hours of class and wo
ing a frozen block of airli:
would just fall through r
and end my misery.
It wasn't until this sumr
years after I pocketed my
sample of Yaz - that I went
versity Health Service for
sexually transmitted disea
ing and the clinician look
chart and said, "I can't beli
on birth control; I recom
discontinue it immediately.
She went on to exp

called my women who take hormonal birth
ing "CSI: control and get migraines with
er's house visual symptoms, like the glimmer-
ve 90 mph ing I mentioned, are at high risk for
y podunk stroke. Stroke! She showed me data
s, I could about every kind of pill and intra-
CAT scan uterine device with estrogen and
mergency- that each one created extreme risk
0sn't hav- for blood clots and stroke in women
ine, and it with migraines of all ages. She said
st. the research was relatively new,
graines to but in terms of medical develop-
ausenone ment that could mean a few years.
.s I visited Years! I was 21 and could have had
ecognized an actual, real-life stroke at any
ng about minute from the time I was 16, and
illy a mys- in all of the check-ups and scans
. They're and blood work I'd had done in that
ey're trig- time, not one doctor had bothered
ngs, from to mention this risk. Their confu-
s and caf- sion about migraines and constant
ht my trig- need to move on to the next patient
kept them from providing the care
;o always I needed.
hem hard My experience makes me won-
der if there is a
flaw in the way
.ep your doctor most doctors
approach pre-
the examining scribing The Pill
room until all toyoungwomen.
This medicine
ur questions are has been around
for decades, and
answered. at this point it's
seen as so safe
and reliable that
until I go it's practically expected that every
minutes. woman will give it a shot some time
've spent in her life. However, it might not
through be the answer for everyone. Ladies,
t sips of if you're thinking of starting The
ng a slur Pill, or are going in for a gynecology
is spit in exam in the future, I recommend
ways end keeping your doctor in the exam-
sM, miss- ining room until you get answers
irk, wish- to any questions you may have, no
ner waste matter how busy she may seem.
iy ceiling Ask about your options, including
all the different types of The Pill. If
mer - five you get migraines, or if all that extra
first free estrogen makes you nervous, think
t into Uni- about non-hormonal birth control
a routine like ParaGard, diaphragms and con-
se screen- doms. Those extra minutes of inter-
ked at my action with your doctor could make
eve you're a difference in your quality of life
mend you and prevent potential risk like, you
know, stroke.
lain that

As opposed to current plans that limit
swipes, the new offerings allow students to
eat unlimited meals. Under the standard cur-
rent plan, a student averages between eight and
nine meal swipes per week, meaning students
could not eat even two meals a day. With the
unlimited plan, students have the option of eat-
ing three or more meals a day without the fear
of running out. Furthermore, since this change
will not increase the price of housing, students
have this opportunity without paying more.
The redesigned meal structure will also
positively impact off-campus students.
Although the details have not been finalized,
new off-campus meal plans with fewer meals
should be more affordable.
Although the new plan could allow stu-
dents to be more flexible, the limited hours
that dining halls are open might prove
restrictive. Dining Dollars and Blue Bucks
provide students the option of eating at loca-
tions open earlier in the morning and later at
night. Thus, University Housing should con-
sider extending dining hall operation hours

to accommodate students' busy schedules.
Although unlimited meals are beneficial to
many, the plan could be more flexible by pro-
viding other options for students. With current
meal plans, students can choose fewer meals in
exchange for more Dining Dollars. Under the
new plan, however, students can only obtain
more Dining Dollars by purchasing a more
expensive meal plan. With making the unlim-
ited plan standard, Housing should provide stu-
dents an option with alimited amountof swipes
and more Dining Dollars to accommodate dif-
ferent preferences.
Besides providing options within the meal
plans, the University needs to consider finan-
cially limited students who would benefit from
opting out of a meal plan altogether. Forcing
students to purchase a plan when other options
may be less expensive is unfair.
The new meal plan structure has room to
improve if more options are made available.
However, unlimited meals and more afford-
able off-campus dining is a large step in the
right direction.

Kaan Avdan, Sharik Bashir, Barry Belmont, James Brennan,
Rima Fadlallah, Eric Ferguson, Jordyn Kay, Jesse Klein,
Melanie Kruvelis, Aarica Marsh, Megan McDonald, Victoria Noble,
Adrienne Roberts, Matthew Seligman, Daniel Wang, Derek Wolfe
Equity over equality
E ,y

Is the University a luxury product?

At this very moment, there exists a silver
spray-painted swastika on the sidewalk of
North University Avenue. Directly across the
street from some of our academic buildings,
a symbol of hatred is lurking, incognito. As a
Jewish woman fighting to navigate my identity
in this Christian-dominated society, stumbling
across this image between classes made me feel
scared, isolated and despondent.
On a campus where roughly 20 percent of
students are Jewish, many of my peers are
quick to dismiss issues of anti-Semitism. To
many, my life, and the lives of my Jewish peers,
seems quite privileged. There are many of us
here walking the same halls, taking the same
classes and living all-around similar lives to
our Christian counterparts. We are a minority
population, yes, but we have large representa-
tion and equal opportunity here, and therefore
our identity struggles are treated relatively dis-
missively the moment we step foot on campus.
I'll be the first to admit that Judaism has
served me relatively well in my ability to main-
tain privilege in society. Fortunately for us,
many Jews are now considered white in a way
that our religious minority peers often are not.
However, our ability to "pass" only gets us so
far. I am often frustrated by the need to educate
my Christian peers on my belief system, or to
speak on behalf of the entire Jewish population.
There are several spaces on campus in which I
might be unwelcome as a Jewish woman, and
I feel uncomfortable throughout December
as Christmas music suddenly surrounds me
everywhere I go. And then there's the swastika

on the sidewalk outside Panera.
Contrary to popular belief, the life of a
Jewish student at the University of Michigan
is far from privileged. Real privilege is when
there isn't a symbol for wanting you dead.
As we continue in our fight for radical
change in our campus's demographic make-
up, I hope that the University is able to see
beyond numbers. The problems on campus do
not go away with higher representation, but
rather a complete reformation of campus atti-
tudes, power dynamics and educational tac-
tics. Last week a professor of mine explained
to me the true difference between equity
and equality. Equality, she said, is a world
in which everyone is given the same pair of
shoes. Equity is a world in which everyone
is given a pair of shoes that fits them per-
sonally. It's not enough for the University to
enroll more "diverse" students, to give them
each a pair of shoes. Racism, classism and
many other "isms" are alive and rampant on
our campus today. Their existence inherently
prohibits minority students from feeling that
our shoes truly fit, no matter how many of us
are walking around in them.
As the University goes forward in its efforts
to diversify, I hope that it's remembered that
the world is much more complex, subjective
and personal than statistics in a handbook.
Numerical representation does not eliminate
oppression, and handing us all shoes does not
make them fit.
Elena Ross is an LSA sophomore.

Ann Arbor is the new Brook-
lyn. Bold claim, you say, to
compare Ann Arbor to the
borough once
considered Man-
hattan's infe-
rior little sister
and now hailed
as the land of
artisan pickles,
handmade felt
hats and Etsy ZOE
shop-owners. If
you think about STAHL
it though, it
makes sense. Last
spring, the independent bookstore
Literati opened, bringing Ann Arbor
almost nightly readings and more
"n+1" magazines than we know what
to do with. The food scene - that has
come to both represent and measure
just how (insufferably) trendy a city
is - seems tres Brooklyn,too. There's
Babo, the Sava-owned boutique pro-
duce market, and then the Wafel
Shop, a restaurant solely devoted to
specialty waffles, indicating Ann
Arbor ranks pretty high on the bou-
gie matrix.
Retail aside, Ann Arbor's built
environment is becoming fright-
eningly similar to Brooklyn's.
Under New York City Mayor
Michael Bloomberg, Brooklyn's
waterfront on the East River dra-
matically changed: sleek glass high-
rises for the 20-to-30-something set
replaced the abandoned factories.
And with the recently constructed
Landmark, Varsity and Zaragon
West, Ann Arbor seems to be head-
ing in the same direction. It doesn't
look as if this trend is going to stop
anytime soon, either. On the corner
of South Division and Huron streets,
another high-rise building is going
up. The local hotelier and property
developer Dennis Dahlmann plans
to build an apartment building com-
plete with ground-level retail and
restaurant complex over the former
YMCA lot, too.
Ann Arbor's local government has
been working hard to revitalize the
city's downtown, and, at first, I was
all for this high-density urban devel-
opment. As a New Yorker, I would
proudly argue the fact that apart-
ment living is better for the environ-
ment. Less square footage means
significantly reduced carbon foot-
prints. Apartment units, arranged in

closer proximity than houses, allow
far less heat to escape. Even more,
denser development in Ann Arbor's
downtown encourages more walk-
ing. Studies confirm what common
sense tells us: residents in city cen-
ters produce significantly less car-
bon emissions than those living in
the suburbs.
And better yet, this downtown
development has helped stimulate
Ann Arbor's economy, challenging
the widely held belief that what's
good for the environment is nec-
essarily bad for the economy. Phil
D'Anieri, University lecturer in urban
and regional planning, wrote in an
e-mail interview, "the density repre-
sented by these high rises is good for
downtown vitality." These high-rises
create demand for new shops - gro-
cery stores, clothing shops and vari-
ous other retail stores - and a more
vibrant economic center.
But that's where the upside of this
type of urban development seems
to end. With

thinking and behavior. As D'Anieri
accurately observed, "the underly-
ing trend these luxury buildings
represent (is) a university environ-
ment skewing steadily away from a
publicly-minded sense of itself and
toward an identity as high-end life-
style product." It seems then that
the University has become just as
much an exclusive, luxury product
as an institute of higher learning.
And it's not all together the Univer-
sity's fault, either. With funds from
the state dwindling, the University
increasingly relies on the tuition of
wealthier and often out-of-state stu-
dents to make ends meet.
To what degree is the Univer-
sity responsible then? They have
worked to create more attractive
housing options with the recent
and expensive renovations of Alice
Lloyd Residence Hall, East Quad
Residence Hall and Northwood
Apartments. However, while it may
be true that these dorms offer alter-
natives to luxu-

- ir the [s/16 sccr

the plethora of
buildings active-
ly advertising
themselves as
"luxury" and
of the good life,"
this housing
trend reflects the
divide between
higher- and lower-i
students - a rare
critical issue consid
cent of University
Pell Grants.
Even more, the
market exacerbate:
By bringing up the
rental-housing stoc
apartment compl
the already stressf
more anxiety-pros
seem to ensure s:
same income brack
Though seemin
the University, the
rise apartments a
wealthy students
linked. By admitti
dents, the Univei
create a demand f
luxury choices in
housing market. A
this increase in hi
a greater shift in

ry apartments,
they simultane-
The luxury housing ously play into
the nationwide
market exacerbates college arms
race for higher-
the class divide income stu-
between students dents, diverting
much needed
funds from
scholarships to
income University attract those able to pay full tuition
'ly discussed, but to the University's campus. In
leringonly16 per- other words, they are designed to
students receive compete with dorms from smaller,
elite colleges for the attention of
luxury housing students. In turn, large swaths of
s this class divide. rising sophomores come to expect
cost of all student this form of housing, making them
, these high-rise all the more likely to turn to these
exes only make luxury complexes after graduating
ul housing search from the dorms.
ducing, and also At the end of the day, it's a deli-
tudents from the cate balance - the University must
et live together. maintain a certain level of funding
gly separate from to ensure it remains a world-class
increase in high- institution. But seeing this vicious
nd the influx of cycle, I couldn't help but ask time
are intractably and time again: Who is this public
ng wealthier Stu- university for? I hope, in the future,
rsity has helped the University remembers rankings
for these sorts of aren't the end-all-and-be-all: serv-
the off-campus ing the whole campus community is.
t its heart, then,
gh-rises indicates - Zoe Stahl can be reached
the University's at zoestahl@umich.edu.



£ I


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