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The Michigan Daily -- michigandaily.com

Page 4 - Friday, September 5, 2014 The Michigan Daily - michigandailycom

Mc i a at ip
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.
The socioeconomics of school

What's a survivor to do?

hoever believes that the "Ameri-
can Dream" is alive and well for
everyone is simply incorrect.
Though every adult strives
for success and happiness,
many childhoods come
with unchangeable factors
that hinder or strip future
success. These inhibitorsA
are systems of oppression.
In my experiences at
the University (and in life MICHAEL
in general) I've noticed SCRAMM
that lower socioeconomic
status is consistently and
blatantly swept under the rug. It's an oppres-
sor that its victims hate talking about, but its
consequences are cripplingly harsh.
Over the next few columns, I'll be tackling
some ways that socioeconomic status affects
children. First, I'd like to discuss the effect
of poverty on education. I choose education
because it's connected to a variety of benefits,
including income, diversity in career choice
and general happiness. The education gap
between wealthy and impoverished children
is significant. Students with parents in the
bottom 50percent of income ranges constitute
only 14 percent of undergraduate students.
That's an enormous number, and it has
already had a huge effect on every student's
daily life. Think about how this affects your
own life. How many incredible people are
missing from your college experience solely
because they didn't have financial advantages
to help them gain admittance?
Discrimination based on class
fundamentally affects children right from the
start. When wealthier parents settle down,
they're able to choose cities and districts
with thriving public education systems or
send their children to private schools. Lower-
SES parents are financially limited in terms:
of housinggofen forced-to settle in districts
that can't compete with the larger tax
base and renowned public schools in more
privileged towns.
Next we reach the college prep phases
of high school: junior and senior year.
Standardized tests like the ACT and SAT
are strongly correlated with parents' income
level. Studies have found that each $20,000
increase in parental income is associated
with 42.33 extra points on the SAT. That's
an estimated 378-point difference between
parents with incomes less than $20,000 and
more than $200,000. A few factors seem
to cause this gap. The previously discussed
educational differences in public schoolshave
now been present at least since kindergarten,
translating into discrepancies in different
schools' standardized testing scores.
Additionally, SAT and . ACT preparation
programs are grossly expensive. Online study
materials and courses can cost up to $600
and private tutoring ranges from $95 to $250

an hour. With lower-SES students unable to
afford such programs, their ability to achieve
high scores to gain admission into reputable
colleges is hindered.
Plus, let's not forget that affluent high
schools offer more college preparatory AP
classes that prove crucial for students to gain
an upper hand for acceptance at elite colleges.
Even if lower-SES students have equivalent
grades and scores, they're still less likely
to attend elite colleges. Only 50 percent of
low-income valedictorians applied to one
of the top 61 colleges - all private schools
- as opposed to 80 percent of middle- and
upper-class valedictorians. This difference
comes from schools with lower-SES families
being underfunded and consequentially
decreasing one-on-one assistance from
guidance counselors. These counselors are
more likely to provide college information
in a generalized format. Furthermore, these
counselors rarely possess the knowledge to
provide information on elite, distant schools.
What's worse is thatlower-SESvaledictorians
would likely go to these better schools if they
applied. Once these students were accepted
to these schools, they received funding
comparable or greater than local universities
and were as likely to accept admission as
the wealthier applicants. Therefore, a lack
of resources is one reason why poor, yet
academically successful students don't apply
to elite schools.
Let's not forget that college tuition fees in
America are substantially higher than the
majority of the world. So if you're a mediocre
student getting accepted to colleges, you
may have to turn them down unlike your
intellectually-equal-yet-wealthier peers that
also gain acceptance.
It's a compilation of these factors and many
more that help to explain the very drastic
achievementgaps and what's worse is that the
oppression continues to cycle. It is well docu-
mented that college educated parents tend to
make more money than uneducated parents.
This means that children from low income
environmentstend togrow into impoverished
adults that then raise poor children in an
endless cycle.
And I'm throwing all of these statistics and
dismaying realities so something is pounded
in your head: we live in a country with serious
problems, and we need to fix these problems.
We must evaluate whether programs and
policies like No Child Left Behind, Teach
for America, Common Core and Race to
the Top narrow the achievement gap for
impoverished students, and if they don't, we
must continue to inquire and seek solutions
until this gap is fixed.
Because those oppressed by this system
don't have the power to fix this on their own.
- Michael Schramm can be reached
at mschramm@umich.edu.

Currently in the United States,
there is a charged discussion sur-
rounding sexual assault. However,
much of this discussion has focused
on the perpetrators and does not
consider the view of survivors or
what they desire. Highly publicized
cases such as the Steubenville, Ohio
trial have highlighted the issues of
victim blaming in American society,
and the recent "permanent separa-
tion" of former Michigan football
kicker Brendan Gibbons from our
own University of Michigan has
highlighted institutional biases
against survivors of sexual assault.
Yet, the focus of these cases has
been on the perpetrators, rather
than the victim. According to the
Rape, Abuse, and Incest National
Network 1 in 6 American women
will be survivors of a completed or
attempted rape, and 3 percent of
men will as well. Rates are higher on
college campuses,awith t in 4 Ameri-
can women surviving an attempted
or completed rape. A recent study
on the University of Michigan cam-
pus by University research fellow
Michelle Munro found that 80 to 90
percent of rapes were perpetrated
by someone known to the survivor,
which is consistent with national
data. RAINN also reports that 60
percent of sexual assault cases go
unreported. It is essential that we
begin to focus on the experiences,
needs and desires of survivors.
. Millions of survivors have
endured the effects of sexual
assault, such as physical injury,
unwanted pregnancy and sexually
transmitted infections. Yet, a 2012
study with a nationwide sample
found that only 21 percent of sur-
vivors actually sought post-assault
medical services. Low conviction
and reportingrates forcases and the
small percentage of survivors seek-
ing medical care clearly indicate the
need for programs that comprehen-
sively address a survivor's health
needs, while providing evidence
and information to navigate the
challenge of pursuing prosecution.
Currently Sexual Assault Nurse
Examiner programs are the gold
standard approach to providing this
type of holistic care.
Before the advent of SANE pro-
grams by now-director Linda
Ledray in the late 1970s, survivors
seeking medical attention gener-
ally went to the emergency room.
Here they could experience long
wait times and treatment by doc-
tors and nurses who were not famil-
iar with post-assault care. These
lengthy stints in the waiting room
and inexperienced care could lead
to "retraumatization" for the sur-
vivor. Not only were forensic exams
done inadequately, but should a case
be pursued by law enforcement,
the healthcare professionals who
had treated the survivor were often
unable to testify. The implementa-
tion of SANE programs has served
to remedy these problems.
SANEs are nurses who have
received special training in post-
assault care and forensic evidence
collection. During their training,
SANEs are instructed in compas-
sionate care for survivors, which
can include administration of treat-
ment for injuries and of prophylac-
tics (medicine for the prevention of
pregnancy or STIs), and the collec-
tion and documentation of forensic
evidence. SANEs are also available
to testify. There are more than 700
SANE programs operating in the
United States, Canada and Aus-
tralia. SANE programs are housed

in hospitals, advocacy centers and
community organizations, oper-

ate 24 hours a day, and collaborate
with relevant community service
workers, such as sexual assault
advocates and law enforcement
personnel, all in order to improve
post-assault care and increase effi-
cacious prosecution of a case. In
order to find a SANE program near
you, use the search engine provided
by the International Association of
Forensic Nurses.
The process of SANE care
begins with an introductory visit,
obtaining consent for a medical
examination, and then addressing
immediate health needs. Some facil-
ities have specific rooms for SANE
exams, and the exam should always
be conducted in an area that guar-
antees privacy for the survivor. The
SANE will then ask for and record
a history of the survivor and the
assault. A head-to-toe examination
of the survivor is next, checking for
injury and evidence. These parts of
the exam can involve physical evi-
dence collection, such as hair, blood,
semen or vaginal fluid and photog-
raphy to document injury. Survivors
can say no at any point in the exam,
and they do not have to consent to
the exam kit being shown to law
enforcement. After the exam, the
SANE nurse will discuss and pre-
scribe any necessary prophylactics.
It is possible that a survivor may
ask for an advocate to be present for
part or all of the examination.
Data from a2012 study by Rebecca
Campbell, a psychology professor at
Michigan State University, suggests
that participation in a SANE exam
can lead to sexual assault cases pro-
gressing farther in the justice system
and can increase conviction rates for
perpetrators. The study underlined
the utility of DNA evidence: cases
with DNA evidence were almost
twice as likely to progress further
in the criminal justice system. This
highlights the importance of SANEs
as forensic evidence collectors. In a
separate study, Campbell indicated
that SANEs might also encourage
participation in the criminal jus-
tice system by attending to survi-
vors' feelings of guilt or blame and
by acting as an advocate during the
prosecution of a case. SANEs can
also dispel fears or myths like that
sexual assault always leaves injuries
(a large majority of sexual assault
survivors do not exhibit evidence
of physical injury). An important
note is that the collection of foren-
sic evidence does not yield defini-
tive results immediately and can
take months or years to be fully ana-
lyzed. Additionally, it is ultimately
up to the prosecutor to determine
the timeframe for the evidence to be
analyzed. These circumstances often
leave survivors feeling frustrated
and disempowered.
It is also important for survivors
to understand their rights in the
post-assault period, in order to fully
access the care that they desire. In
the past, in some states, in order
to receive a SANE exam, survivors
were obligated to agree to cooperate
with law enforcement and report
the assault. Changes made in 2005
to the Violence Against Women
Act, a fundamental piece of legisla-
tion in the protection of survivors
of domestic violence and sexual
assault, stopped this requirement,
making even those not wishing to
report the assault eligible for an
exam. This means that all survivors
now have the option to have forensic
evidence collected and stored, and
have a longer time to decide on pur-
suing legal action. However, while

states cannot require that survivors
report an assault, it is possible for

states to require hospitals to do so.In
Michigan, law enforcement is autd-
matically contacted when a SANE
exam is given. If law enforcement
is contacted, survivors are under
no obligation to cooperate with the
investigation, and may. choose not
to speak with officers. Some states,
including Michigan, also have man-
datory reporting laws for injuries
that appear to have been caused
by another crime, such as wounds
from knives or firearms, which may
have been perpetrated during a sex-
ual assault, or the require health-
care personnel to report when
the survivor is a minor or person
with disabilities.
Another provision of VAWA 1994
created STOP Violence Against
Women Formula Grants, in order
to better victim services and the
criminal justice system's response
to violence against women. In
states receiving these grants (all
states and the District of Colum-
bia), healthcare institutions must
provide forensic evidence exams
to survivors of domestic violence
and sexual assault without charge.
Survivors or survivors' insurance
cannot be asked to cover the exam.
This does not apply to the medical
examination, injury treatment or
any prescriptions that are received
in the course of a SANE exam.
However, states do have crime vic-
tim compensation programs that
can defray medical costs from an
assault. Though the title of VAWA
seems to indicate that its programs
are specifically for women, the law
actually applies to all sexes and
genders, including trans* individu-
als, and everyone is entitled to a
SANE exam.
Some survivors may choose not
to have a SANE exam or one might
not be available to them. In these
circumstances it is important that
survivors are aware of their other
options for care. Survivors can still
go to the emergency room for inju-
ries and prophylaxis, or schedule an
appointment with a general practi-
tioner, though by the time a general
practitioner is available, it may be
too late to collect forensic evidence.
Additionally, survivors can pursue
over-the-counter emergency con-
traception, in order to prevent preg-
nancy, Plan B, a form of emergency
contraception, is available over-the-
counterregardlessofage, sex,orgen-
der, andisusuallyabout$50inalocal
pharmacy and $40 at the University
Health Services (a $10 coupon can
be found at www.planbonestep.com
on the Plan B homepage). Survivors
can also seek services at rape crisis
or advocacy centers, such as SAPAC,
and with mental health profession-
als. They also have the choice of just
reporting to law enforcement. Col-
lege-age survivors can also choose to
report to their Office of Student Con-
duct. And finally, survivors can also
make the choice not to pursue any
form of care. It is critical to under-
stand that pursuing post-assault care
is ultimately the survivor's choice,
and they should not be pressured
into obtaining services that are out
of their comfort level. However,
survivors should be given informa-
tion about all of the post-assault care
options that are available to them, so
that they can make autonomous deci-
sions about what care is best for them
in the post-assault period.
Alexandra Dulin is an LSA junior.
Her UROP mentor Michelle Munro
is a Research Fellow at the School of
Nursing. This article is published in

its entirety with additional resources
on The Michigan Daily website.

Those who compromise

If I were to tell you last week that House
Majority Leader Eric Cantor would lose
to Tea Party challenger and Randolph-
Macon College professor David Brat,
you probably would have thought that I
was crazy.
For Brat, his primary upset win over Cantor
was a "miracle."
If you look at the campaign finance
numbers and Cantor's election history, it
would seem that way. Cantor spent almost $5
million while Brat spent a meager $207,000.
Additionally, in terms of polling data, Cantor's
internal pollsters projected that he was going
to win by about 34 percent. In fact, according
to the graphic, Cantor was never really
challenged in a primary or general elections.
The smallest margin he had in an election was
17 percent.
So, for Cantor at least, there was no reason
for concern, right?
In this case, there was. Cantor's loss is one
of the most surprising upsets in quite some
time. In explaining Cantor's loss, the issue
that I have heard more often than not from
analysts is that the decider was immigration.
Thatmakes sense since America's immigration
system is in need of repair.
What surprised me the most in this was
the fact that people thought that Cantor was
a "liberal" and that he was being too soft on
immigration. First of all, Cantor is not a liberal

by any stretch of the imagination. After all, he
did support all of anti-Obamacare legislation. I
would define him more as a fairly conservative
Republican based on his track record. How-
ever, just because someone supports immigra-
tion reform doesn't mean that they support
"amnesty" (not to mention that the bill was a
conservative version of the DREAM Act!).
The message that I'm getting from all of
this is absolutely amazing and concerning
at the same time. To me, when a Republican
or any congressmen in general tries to reach
across the aisle and come to a compromise
with Democrats, it becomes a crime that must
be punished. It seems that Americans would
rather have members of Congress that are
sticking to their guns and voting along party
lines rather than creating solutions for real
change. People wonder why the legislature
has turned into a "Do-Nothing Congress." The
lack of compromise is one of the reasons.
I know this has been going on for some time,
but it needs to be stopped now. Right now,
we need our leaders back. The ones that are
willing to compromise that is.
Whether or not you think it actually was a
"miracle", you should be concerned about the
changes that this election may be pointing
towards in the future.
- Paul Sherman can be reached
at pausherm@umich.edu.

Jaekwan An, Berry Belmont, Edvinas Berzanskis, David Harris,
Rachel John, Nivedita Karki, Jacob Karafa, Jordyn Kay,
Aarica Marsh, Megan McDonald, Victoria Noble, Melissa Scholke,
Michael Schramm, Matthew Seligman, Paul Sherman, Allison Raeck,
Linh Vu, Meher Walia, Mary Kate Winn, Daniel Wang, Derek Wolfe
Heterosexuals get drunk and pregnant, producing unwanted children;
their reward is to be allowed to marry. Homosexual couples do not pro-
duce unwanted children; their reward is to be denied the right to marry.
Go figure.'
- 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals Judge Richard Posner said in the court's unanimous decision
overturning the gay marriage bans in Wisconsin and Indiana.



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