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July 28, 2003 - Image 4

Resource type:
Michigan Daily Summer Weekly, 2003-07-28

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4 - The Michigan Daily - Monday, July 28, 2003
letters@michigandaily.com Editor in Chief Editorial Page Editor
---- U STUDENTS AT THE Unless otherwise noted, unsigned editorials reflect the opinion of
UNIVERSITY OF MICHIGAN the majority of the Daily's editorial board. All other pieces do not
SINCE 1890 necessarily reflect the opinion of The Michigan Daily.
S tudent financial aid may be the latest lege education, leading to the great eco-
addition to the casualty list attributed Ra e aiu nomic prosperity the country experienced
to the country's economic troubles. A following the war. The country will only
change in the Department of Education's nl 1 n 1n 1 pay down the road if it does not dedicate
Expected Family Contribution formula 'eu g nts 1 more , "' -, e S itself more fully to the goal of allowing
would reduce the nation's award programs - -every American who wants to attend col-
beginning in 2004, thereby completely pre- versity contributions. change is the effect it will have on other lev- lege the opportunity to do so.
venting many students from receiving mon- The modification to the EFC formula els of financial aid. The New York Times Because this policy seems so ill con-
etary aid for college. came as a result of the Federal Need reports that its consequences will not only ceived and heartless, it may seem as if
The amendment to the EFC formula has Analysis Methodology, which uses the most include the immense decline in the number Congress would strike down the changes.
made obtaining grants more difficult for recent IRS data to decide on the equation of students who are eligible for federal Unfortunately, the Department of
undergraduates. According to a new report representing a family's ability to pay for col- awards, but will also increase "the reliance Education's planned adjustment to the EFC
by the Congressional Research Service, the lege. The difficulty is that the most recent on loans to pay for college." As a result of formula and ensuing aid reduction does not
adjustment to the EFC formula will cause IRS data is three years old and would be bet- the requirement to apply for unappealing require Congressional approval.
the primary source of student financial aid, ter fit for an economy that is not in such a loans, many students could become dissuad- Fortunately though, there is hope for
the federal Pell grant, to be reduced by $270 meager state. Thus, the new formula cannot ed from entering college and might instead students. News of the alterations has
million, meaning hundreds of thousands of accurately reflect the capability of an appli- attempt to enter a job market already caught the attention of Congress as a dis-
students will receive smaller grants. This cant's family to pay for college. strained by a high unemployment rate. guise for cutting education spending. Many
number does not take into account the Furthermore, at a time when students With the economy in such a fragile state, members of Congress are working to pre-
reduction of approximately 84,000 college already cannot afford the costs of college, college is becoming unaffordable for many vent the changes from being implemented.
students that will no longer be eligible for money is hard to come by and tuition is Americans. This is a shame. Creating a The financial devastation arising from the
the federal Pell grants. The figure also does relentlessly on the rise, the loss of financial more educated population has proven to be new rule could be prevented if legislation is
not consider the future curb in awards once aid for so many students is more than excellent economic policy. The passage of enacted to modify the changes. Congress
the formula is applied to the rest of the bil- uncalled for - it is backbreaking. the G.I. Bill following World War II enabled should pass legislation preventing these
lions of dollars set aside for state and uni- Another problem arising from this a generation of Americans to obtain a col- changes from taking place.

Marquis Bush
Bush is out of touch with the American people

Hear the NFL roar
League correct to fine Lions, but policy needs a second look


President George Bush made a visit
to metro Detroit last Thursday for
round of building political support
in Livonia for his 2004 reelection cam-
paign and a round of fundraising in
Dearborn. At his speech to the workers
of Beaver Aerospace and Defense Inc. in
Livonia, Bush explained his tax plan and
how it will supposedly boost the econo-
my and create more jobs.
Bush's decision to come to Michigan
stemmed from the existence of the state's
highest unemployment rate in ten years
and Michigan's critical importance in the
2004 presidential elections. Despite
Bush's intentions to appear receptive to
Michigan residents' concerns about their
jobs and the economy, he is clearly out of
touch with the typical American. Mr. Bush
explained his plan to cut taxes for small
businesses and how he thinks that such
cuts will help small businesses create
more jobs by spending more money. But a
report from Democrats on the House
Small Business Committee states that
"over half of small businesses would
receive less than $500 under the presi-
dent's jobs and growth package." Five hun-
dred dollars is not a whole lot of money in
the world of business and certainly not
enough to expand demand for equipment
in a manner that would create the number
of jobs that Bush claims it will.
Other aspects of the Bush economic
plan raise concern. The checks for the child
tax credit that were mailed out to house-
holds across the country over the past
weekend will not reach the homes that
need the money the most. About 16.5 mil-
lion low-income families will not receive
the benefits because, with their earnings of
between $10,500 and $26,625, they do not

make enough to pay federal income taxes.
And those who receive the checks are more
likely to use the money - about $400 per
child - to pay off existing debts rather
than run to the nearest mall and splurge.
At the evening gathering at the Ritz
Carlton Hotel in Dearborn, Bush
addressed a fundraising dinner of support-
ers who had paid $2,000 a head to attend.
Here, Bush again explained his tax cuts
and spoke about the war in Iraq to cheers
from a partisan crowd.
Bush's stops in Livonia and Dearborn
came on the same day that the Federal
Election Commission issued an important
ruling on the McCain-Feingold campaign
finance law. The FEC maintained the ban
on direct soft money donations to parties
and candidates but determined that corpo-
rations and unions could still contribute,
without limitation to party conventions
and fundraisers. Bush raised over $2 mil-
lion at the dinner in Dearborn, and while
this is not illegal by an means, its coinci-
dence with the FEC ruling only reinforces
the key role that money plays in the U.S.
political system and how the average
American has too little influence over how
his government functions.
While the fate of McCain-Feingold has
yet to be decided definitively - the U.S.
Supreme Court is expected to hear argu-
ments and rule on different aspects of the
legislation this fall - the public can
expect to see more of these types of
extravagant dinners as the presidential pri-
maries approach. Perhaps if Bush wants to
build more credibility with most of the cit-
izens, he can use the next few months cre-
ating a set of policies that benefit all
Americans, even those who cannot afford
lavish dinners at the Ritz Carlton.

ast Friday, the NFL fined Detroit
Lions President Matt Millen
$200,000. The NFL levied the
fine against Millen for a failure to fol-
low the newly enacted hiring policy that
requires every team to make a concerted
effort to interview and consider minori-
ty applicants. In his rush to hire former
San Francisco 49ers head coach Steve
Mariucci, Millen did not interview a sin-
gle minority candidate, violating the
policy that he agreed to follow. While
the league is correct to fine Millen, its
policy is flawed and must be enforced in
an equitable way.
Lack of diversity is a significant prob-
lem facing the NFL when it comes to posi-
tions of management and power. In a league
of 32 teams in which a majority of the play-
ers are black, only 3 teams currently have
black head coaches. NFL commissioner
Paul Tagliabue warned teams that if they
failed to comply with the new rules, they
would face large fines. The issue, however,
only came to the forefront after attorneys
led by Johnnie Cochran put immense pres-
sure on the league. The main complaint was
that teams were simply recycling the
league's white coaches and not giving black
candidates opportunities to have any coach-
ing experience or jobs. A special committee
correctly sought a method to rectify this
problem and its proposed solution is the
current hiring policy, which states that
when hiring new head coaches, teams must
interview a minority candidate.
Millen knew the rules when he tried to
hire Mariucci after the firing of the often
comically inept former coach and local
window advertiser Marty Mornhinweg.
While not an excuse for disobeying a
known and important rule, Millen feared

that if he waited too long, he might lose
his candidate. Furthermore, it was well
known within the league that Millen want-
ed to hire Mariucci, so the five black can-
didates that Millen sought to interview all
declined the offer. They knew he was just
trying to follow the league's policy. The
NFL is right to fine Millen because he
clearly violated an important rule, but it
should be noted that Millen did try to com-
ply. As Tagliabue pointed out in his letter
to Millen however, Millen did not explain
to the NFL that he faced difficulties in ful-
filling his responsibilities.
While Millen's failure to interview
minority candidates is a shame and deserves
to be punished, he should not stand alone in
facing the burden of penalties from the NFL.
San Francisco clearly just led on the black
applicants it interviewed on its way to recy-
cle longtime college and former Seattle
Seahawks coach Dennis Erickson. Dallas
only interviewed former Vikings head coach
Denny Greene in order to follow the policy
en route to appointing veteran coach Bill
Parcells as their latest head coach. Millen did
not follow the policy, but clearly the system
remains faulted. It makes a mockery of the
desire to create a truly diverse head coaching
pool. Millen's fine will serve notice to the
league that Tagliabue and the management
of the NFL support the league's minority
rules in hiring coaches, but merely requiring
that an interview take place is no solution.
The NFL and all professional sporting
leagues need to take steps in order to
ensure that people who better represent the
country's diversity fill coaching, manage-
ment and ownership positions. The nation's
stadiums must no longer be filled to the
brim with wealthy whites watching black
athletes compete against one another.




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