Monday, June 11, 2012
The Michigan Daily - michigandaily.com
Monday, June 11, 2012
The Michigan Daily - michigandaily.com
Famed author imparts life lesson
'Fahrenheit 451' mation on the internet, t9 becom-
ing the most enthusiastic and active
leaves behind web users I know; headlines are far
less read than tweets.
burning questions Ray Bradbury, as far as I know,
did not have a Facebook or.Twit-
By STEVE ZOSKI ter account. Maybe he was too old
Daily Arts Writer for it; maybe he considered his
remaining time on the Earth too
On Tuesday, the world- precious for liking, poking and
renowned science fiction writer, Farmville invites. Or maybe, he
Ray Bradbury, died at the age of just wanted to spend more time
91. I learned of Bradbury's death with his beloved books.
through Facebook statuses and Born in 1920, Bradbury had seen
Twitter posts. Like many, I knew many mediums - newspapers,
Bradbury because I was required vinyl records, 8-tracks, cassettes
to read his most well-known and DVDs - rise to the top like a
novel, ."Fahrenheit 451" (named hot new band, enjoying popular-
for the temperature at which ity and then receding until cooler,
paper ignites) in high school. My better groups come along. News-
10th grade English class read it papers have given way to online
in the spring of 2007, just a few news (which studies have shown
months before I would use Face- are more skimmed over than print
book for the first time. articles) and Vinyl enjoys a small
Life was simpler then, and resurgence only out of nostalgia
instead of spending time on Face- and hipster-fetishes. Popularity is
book, I spent time reading books. fleeting.
Instead of status updates or Wiki- Printed books are less popular
pedia entries, I would read hun- thanever, and people seem to prefer
dreds of pages. television adaptations and movies.
Now, five years later Facebook Most of my friends choose to watch
has become a more integral part "Game of Thrones" over reading
of our lives than I could ever have "A Song of Ice and Fire." Optimists
imagined. In those five years, like to think that even if printed
parents, uncles, aunts and grand- books go, there are e-readers and
parents have all gone from being tablets that literature can thrive
hesitant about putting their infor- in, but more cynical readers feel
From Page 1A
the state of Michigan held simi-
lar rallies on Friday, according to
He said these rallies were in
reaction to the Obama administra-
tion's unwillingness to compro-
"We have a significant threat
to our religious liberty," Thomm
said. "There has been an inflex-
ibility on the part of the Obama
administration to even hold dia-
logue with the U.S. bishops or
other faith groups."
According to their website, Stop
HHS is a project of Ave Maria Radio
- a Catholic radio station - that is
"committed to reversing the deci-
sion of the Obama Administration
to force Catholic organizations to
provide sterilization, contracep-
tion, and abortifacient drugs in
their health care plans."
LSA junior Joe Lipa, vice presi-
dent of Students for Life, reserved
space on the Diag for the rally on
behalf of his organization, which
was a co-sponsor of the event.
"It's tough always in the sum-
mer, where everyone scatters and
goes home, because maybe 5 per-
cent of students are taking spring
classes," Lipa said.
However, Lipa said he saw a
large amount of young people he
recognized in the crowd.
Though Students for Life's con-
stitution deems itself "non-sectar-
ian," Lipa said the group's beliefs
are aligned with those fighting for
"Pro-life and religious freedom
are not contradicting in any way,
especially when the violation of
religious freedom requires the
providing of abortions," Lipa said.
"That directly impacts our club."
Considering that the HHS man-
date would require hospitals to
provide abortions, Lipa said any
member of Students for Life is also
a supporter of religious freedom.
LSA senior Carmen Allen, for-
mer president of Students for
Life, attended the rally and said
it reflects the open nature of dia-
logue in America.
"The beauty of the United
States is that when the govern-
ment does something that the
people aren't OK with, the people
have the power to make a change
to make an influence in that gov-
ernment," she said. "I think (the
rally) is a testament to that, and I
want to be part of it."
Rackham student Kevin Dahl-
berg also attended the event and
said it follows in the rich history
the University has of social activ-
"I think the University of Mich-
igan ... has a wonderful tradition of
protests, of standing up for what
is right, for what is reasonable,"
Actors perform in Sunday's production of "The Merry Wives of Windsor." See full article, page 11.
I IR MKO/A
Ray Bradbury dies at age 91.
something is lost in this transition.
Tablets are not a pure book-reading
experience. Can anyone get the
same experience reading a book on
an iPad where distractions thrive?
Our generation of television
watchers and internet surfers may
be just as dangerous to printed
books as the firefighters who burn
books in "Fahrenheit 451" are.
Critics, teachers, readers all like
to believe the novel is a warning
against the censorship of books
but Bradbury spent the last few
years of his life trying to convince
everyone "Fahrenheit 451" wasn't
about censorship. Rather, he was
adamant the novel was a caution-
ary tale against the potential evil
of television, or "quicker" ways
of getting information. Bradbury
worried about a society where
people gave up books because they
had easier, faster forms of enter-
tainment and knowledge.
An LA Weekly article by Amy
E. Boyle Johnston from 2007, the
year Bradbury received a Pulitzer
award, elaborated on Bradbury's
fears and highlighted Bradbury's
insistence the book wasn't-about
"Unlike Orwell's 1984, in which
the government uses television
screens to indoctrinate citizens,
Bradbury envisioned television as
an opiate," Johnston says.
Johnston's article notes that
Bradbury feared that formats like
television took people away from
"Useless ... they stuff you with
so much useless information, you
feel full," Bradbury said of televi-
Johnston includes an excerpt
from a letter Bradbury sent to
another writer, Richard Matheson,
in 1951 about how he feared radio
would take away from literature.
"Radio has contributed to our
growing lack of attention ... This
sort of hopscotching existence
makes it almost impossible for
people, myself included, to sit down
and get into a novel again. We have
become a short story reading peo-
ple, or, worse than that, a QUICK
reading people," Bradbury wrote.
Bradbury's fears about radio
and television could just as eas-
ily extend to the' internet and
technology. People like to utter
the phrase "this is so 1984" when
they feel the society they live in
is becoming like the one George
Orwell depicted in "1984," but
when I read about the end of Ray
Bradbury's life in a mere two-sen-
tence status update on Facebook, I
couldn't help but think "this is so
And there is my favorite passage
from the book - where the main
character and another firefighter
discuss why they don't need books:
Cram them full of non-
combustible data, chock them so
damned full of 'facts' they feel
stuffed, but absolutely 'brilliant'
with information. Then they'll
feel they're thinking, they'll get
a sense of motion without mov-
ing. And they'll be happy, because
facts of that sort don't change.
Don't give them any slippery stuff
like philosophy or sociology to tie
things up with. That way lies mel-
ancholy. Any man who can take
a TV wall apart and put it back
together again, and most men
can nowadays, is happier than
any man who tries to slide-rule,
measure, and equate the universe,
which just won't be measured
or equated without making man
feel bestial and lonely ... I just like
So much of Bradbury's book
seems tobe coming true. We aren't
burning books yet, but it doesn't
seem like it will take long for them
to seem more useful as kindling
for the camp fire than something
to crack open.
Bradbury will be remembered
because he left us with so many
burning questions: "Who will
need books when we have kindles
and iPads? Who will need litera-°
ture when we have movies, video
games and the internet? Who will
need truth when we have enter-
From Page 1A
below UHS's target satisfaction
"Our goal is above 90 (per-
cent)," Winfield said. "We don't
want one out of seven people say-
ing this sucked. We could live
with one out of 10 or one out of 12,
but our goal is higher than that."
Other universities have already
started the trend eliminating
walk-ins, including Michigan
State University, which transi-
tioned away from a walk-in-only
system 15 years ago when it wasn't
uncommon for students to wait
over an hour for service during
flu season in particular, accord-
ing to Kathi Braunlich, marketing
and communications manager for
Michigan State University Stu-
dent Health Services.
Braunlich said MSU uses a
hybrid system where walk-in ser-
vices aren't advertised, but time
is set aside every day to facilitate
students' immediate needs:
"We try to start the (begin-
ning) of each day with at least
70 percent of our appointments
open," Braunlich said. "We don't
advertise it as being a walk-in
clinic ... we want people to call
ahead of time."
Braunlich added that forc-
ing students to schedule their
appointments while still leav-
ing time throughout the day for
students to be seen as needed
shortens average wait time for
students at.the clinic.
When asked if UHS ever con-
sidered a hybrid system similar.
to MSU's, Winfield said while the
option was discussed, it seemed
"too confusing" after looking at
the extensive data as well as tak-
ing habits of students into consid-
"The message is complicated,"
Winfield said. "We've also got a
lot of experience with the student
life pattern, and we have to be
respectful of that."
Winfield also said part of the
reason for the change to appoint-
ment-only is that Epic - the new
software UHS is implementing
that UHS will refer to as MiChart
- is difficult to use.
"We don't know how to use
(the software), and I think it's
going to slow us down," Winfield
However, instantaneous com-
munication between UHS and
the University's medical center
once they get used to the pro-
gram is just one of the advantages
it will bring to patient treatment,
"Anything we do is going to
be visible at the medical center,"
Winfield said. "If I see you and
you have abdominal pain, and we
do a blood count and an x-ray, and
I tell you, if you get worse, (to) go
to the emergency room ... they'll
have all of our results, right there,
at their fingertips."
Winfield estimated that it will
take the staff six months to a
year to get back to their standard
operating speed based on consul-
tation with other clinical settings
with the same software.
"We are planning to give clini-
cal staff double time for visits for
6 weeks, and then reassess," Win-
field wrote in an e-mail.
Winfield explained that this
is a $170 million project that will
affect about 200 clinics in the
University medical center. As a
result, during the UHS staff's
transition, patients should expect
to wait longer for treatment.
"This is really, really compli-
cated, and we're a pretty simple
place," Winfield said. "For the
first few weeks, every visit's
going to get 30 minutes so we can
learn how to do this."
But he added that after the
staff has gained familiarity with
the software, UHS might rethink
its current position on walk-in
"I'll consider anythingto make
service work. I am not one of
those people who sticks to some-
thing that isn't working," Win-
In August, UHS will introduce
the "patient portal," allowing
patients to access their medical
records online with a personal
The reason certain changes
have already been put in place
was to avoid a major backlog of
patients once students return
for the school year, according
to Kathleen Miller, operations
manager of the UHS Clinic and
a member of the lead team for
"We're hoping that with
going live in June, people should
become pretty proficient by
August," Miller said.
Managing Editor Giacomo
Bologna contributed to this report.