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July 11, 1986 - Image 10

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Publication:
Michigan Daily, 1986-07-11

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OPINION
Friday, July 11, 1986

Page 10

The Michigan DoilyI

Vol. XCVI, No. 8-S
% Years of Editorial Freedom
Unsigned editorials represent the majority views of the Daily's Editorial Board
Cartoons and signed editorials do not necessarily reflect the Daily's opinion.
Privacy rights
TAST WEEK'S Supreme Court stitution protects that behavior. For
ruling upholding the right of example, the court has ruled that
states to outlaw 'consensual' sodomy states cannot have laws against in-
unjustly limits privacy rights. The terracial marriage or ones that
ruling is particularly disturbing as it restrict the right of women to have
seems to add to a backlash currently abortions. These rulings went against
underway against homosexuals past legal traditions. They argued
fueled by the AIDS scare. correctly that insuring the protec-
The court ruled in a case involving tions inherent in the Constitution was
a Georgia man who had been more important than maintaining a
arrested for engaging in oral sex in misguided sense of community
his home. The majority of justices morality.
argued that sodomy laws are deeply The court's decision also seems
rooted in American legal tradition likely to reinforce the current
and history, and that the laws reflect backlash against the rights of gays.
the communities' desire to see their Recently, the Justice Department
moral beliefs legally sanctioned. approved regulations making it
The court's ruling was hostile and easier for employers to fire em-
insensitive toward homosexual and ployees whom they believe have
hetersexual conduct, the majority AIDS. Gay rights groups have argued
ruling referred solely to that the ruling makes it possible for
homosexuality. courts to deny custody of children to
The minority ruling, in contrast, gay parents or for employers to
was much more concerned about the discriminate against gays in hiring.
issue of individual liberties and the Michigan is one of 24 remaining
right to privacy. It noted that the states with anti-sodomy laws on the
court has previously ruled that in books. Though seldom enforced,
cases where a lifestyle is central to these laws grant legitimacy to
one's life and its exercise does not homophobia and should be overtur-
violate the rights of others, the Con- ned.
Drug testing

LETTERS:
Code ignores problem
To the Daily:
Much has been said about the proposed code the tuition waiver for credits beyond 6 was
of student conduct. What is not dealt with is the exempt; (2) Since there was no department ini
fact that the University Code is provided by the University giving support to all its studen-
those that brought the University the problem. ts, no one should be covered by the Form K
The University gives students the impression exemption.
that anything goes. Then they get upset when The union president in response to these
students act on this impression. What is needed points volunteered that this is why the Univer-
is for University policies to tske a more sity refuses to get a tsx court ruling on the tax
honorable turn. Given this leadership, I expect status of graduate salaries - they are convin-
students will follow. ced they would lose on both counts.
In concrete terms, I offer the following ab- We are not lawyers; our arguments may be
servations. The wages of graduate students are n in error. But what is not in error is that the
in the form of cash, tuition wavers, and Form University has told the GEO that if this matter
K tax exemptions. went to a tax court, they would lose. This con-
The tuitionwaivers are such that all stitutes criminal intent. The behavior of GEO
graduate assistants pay less tuition than the shows that the University has successfully
stated resident rate. Furthermore, the Univer- transmitted its values to the next generation.
sity tells the students that the waiver is tax In our opinion, more honorable behavior
exempt. The Form K is for paid employment from the top will lead to more honorable
that is part of the degree program. This exem- behavior from those on the bottom.
pta the cash portion of the TA's salary. - Fredrick W. Barney
At a GEO meeting, it was argued that the Joseph M. McCallum
University was wrong on two counts: (1) Only July 4, 1986
Contras wreak havoc in Nicaragua
To the Daily: people just like us. They do get on with their
I recently received a letter from the family I lives in spite of it all. They write that, "the
stayed r wit las sume r in icaragua whi children are fine, they are studying and are
their town was under seige by contras. They very optimistic with the school year." They
write, "Adam, help us, you, your friends, and are, however, no more well suited to having
all the North American people, so that we, th riends and family killed by terroritsts than we
Nicaraguans, who only want to forge our own Hearing their request, and realizing that we
destiny, can live happily in peace." through our government are responsible for
It seems an understandable request, con- the ufn roughtovenmencaraguespnsibyethe
sidering thatathey haveknown little peace, ex- t u wrought on Nicaraguans by the
pecially not last summer. The contras to contras, I urge people to immediately com-
whom $27 million in "humanitarian aid" had municate with their elected representatives
just then been released, were busy wresking demanding denial of aid to the contras, and to
havock on a number of civilian as well as become involved in some of our many fine local
military targets, and wounded and desd-in- solidarity groups, like the Latin American
eluding two of my family's friends-were being Solidarity Committee, the Nicaraguan Medical
Aid Project, the Amistad Construction
I hope that readers will hear this Nicaraguan Bre and te ann ar ECityTs
family's plea, and understand that they are Fre onm e. -dmEge
June 23

N THE WAKE of the tragic deaths
of University of Maryland basket-
ball player Len Bias and Cleveland
Browns football player Ron Rogers
from cocaine, the sports world has
begun a crackdown on drug use. The
problem is serious enough to warrant
drug testing, such as the plan
proposed recently by NFL com-
missioner Pete Rozelle, but the tests
should be used with restraint.
Rozelle's plan has been opposed by
players who believe it violates their
rights because the tests are random,
and unannounced, and seem to carry
a presumption of guilt. Obviously
there are problems with Rozelle's
proposal. It requires tests during the
preseason physical which would only
reveal off-season drug usage, not
relevant to their jobs. In addition, the
tests are not always accurate.
To protect players, the league
should follow the suggestion of
Detroit Lions player Doug English

that players be given test results
before they are released so they may
retake the test if the results are in-
correct.
It is important that athletes set an,
example by agreeing to tests because
of their influence over society. Sports
stars are idolozed and imitated,
especially by young people; the
example athletes set is important.
At the same time there is a danger
that as more and more employers
outside of professional sports begin
testing their employees for drugs,
rights will be violated. If testing
becomes too widespread society
could begin to resemble a police
state. Many employers are now going
beyond the use of drug tests,
requiring their employees to also
submit to personality tests which at-
tempt to determine from a person's
attitudes their employability. Per-
sonality and drug tests are invasions
of privacy and should be restricted.

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