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September 12, 1995 - Image 4

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The Michigan Daily, 1995-09-12

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4 - The Michigan Daily - Tuesday, September 12, 1995

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JA TWENGE

TmE ERASABLE PEN

420 Maynard
Ann Arbor, MI 48109
-Edited and managed by
students at the
University of M ichigan

1 1

MICHAEL ROSENBERG
Editor in Chief
JULIE BECKER
JAMES M. NASH
Editorial Page Editors

Even afterShannon Faulkner,
a treehouse mental~y' thrives

Unless otherwise noted, unsigned editorials reflect the opinion of a majority of the Daily's editorial board. All
other articles, letters, and cartoons do not necessarily reflect the opinion of The Michigan Daily.
Textboks
Despite 'U' efforts, they stdl cost too much

As another semester begins, students are
once again forced to reach deep into
their pockets to cover the cost of course
materials. While books are sold in the open
marketplace and prices are consequently at
the market's whim, the University has the
powerto help drive down bookprices through
a few simple measures.
The University, previously uninvolved in
the relationship between professors and book
stores, advised professors to submit book
lists on time in a letter to academic units last
spring. The letter was effective, increasing
by 30 percent the number of book orders
submitted on time.
Encouraging professors to make their book
lists available months before the beginning
of the semester should save students a great
deal of money. If book lists were made avail-
able for fall semester during the spring, stu-
dents would receive a significantly higher
value for their used books. A book store
would obviously pay more for a book that it
knows it can resell in the fall. However,
when these book lists are not available, the
buyback price ofused books declines signifi-
cantly.
In addition to making book lists available
at an earlier date, the University is beginning
to make book lists available on Wolverine
Access immediately after they are given to
the University. Making book lists widely
available at an early date will serve three
main purposes. First, by making them ob-
tainable to all bookstores, newfound compe-
tition should lower the costs of some books
previously only carried by one bookstore.
Second, by making book lists available to
students before they go home for summer

recess, students can shop at home at local
discount stores. Finally, textbook prices in-
crease late in the summer - if professors
made their book lists available early enough,
this extra cost could be avoided.
Students who have already unloaded a
good share of their cash may be doubly
shocked at coursepack prices. Even while
that battle is still being fought - in a long-
standing lawsuit over publishers' royalties
- the University can help rein in wasteful
coursepack purchases. Many professors as-
sign coursepack reading the first days of
class, but coursepacks are non-returnable.
By assigning readings from coursepacks dur-
ing the first weeks of school, professors are
impeding on students' ability to change their
classes. Those students who do decide to
switch classes are often forced to swallow the
costs of coursepacks, which can cost $50 or
more. The University can help alleviate the
problem by asking its professors not to assign
coursepack readings during the first week of
class, or promoting several smaller
coursepacks in the place of one for the whole
term. Although students would have to trudge
over to copy shops more than once in the
semester, professors and students alike would
benefit from the added flexibility of being
able to include current materials in the
coursepacks.
While the University has taken some strong
first steps, many students still find the cost of
textbooks and coursepacks exorbitant. The
University should discourage professors from
ordering new edition text books which often
have very few changes and eliminate stu-
dents' opportunities to sell back or buy used
books. Only a concerted effort can work.

Y ou've just finished your first week of
classes at Michigan. You've dealt with
the moving, the wait lists for classes, the
ongoing construction, and the growing
workload of classes. It was probably diffi-
cult enough - now imagine doing it all
while receiving death threats, while being
the only woman in your class, and while
going to a school that sued to keep you out.
Shannon Faulkner did all of this at The
Citadel last month, and it's a wonder she
lasted as long as she did.
Faulkner first applied to the all-male
military academy in 1993, when she had her
high-school counselor omit all references to
her gender from her application. The Citadel
admitted her but later withdrew their accep-
tance after officials learned she was a woman.
After a 2 1/2-year court battle, Faulkner
finally joined the entering class in its ritual
"Hell Week" last month. After two days of
exercises in sweltering heat and a three-day
stay in the infirmary, Faulkner couldn't keep
any food down and was ready to quit. When
she returned to her barracks for her belong-
ings, she found they had already been packed
- at least one person was more than eager to
see her go.
Faulkner's critics claim a universal les-
son from her experience: Women can't hack
it. It's a strange conclusion considering the
20 years of women's successes at the more
prestigious military academies. More im-
portantly, her short stint at the country's
most famous all-male bastion yields many
other lessons about men, women and the
society we live in.
Faulkner is not the first high-profile

woman to resign from a hard-won victory
for women. During the 1970s, the first fe-
male umpire in professional baseball quit
after less than a week. Like Faulkner, the
death threats, media attention and high ex-
pectations destroyed her desire to be the
only woman in a fraternity of men.
In both cases, it wasn't that women can't
handle the pressure - it's that anyone ex-
pected to be perfect will necessarily fall
short of the mark.
More than anything else, Faulkner's iso-
lation spelled her demise. "Maybe it would
have been different if there had been other
women with me," she said after quitting. Her
statement expresses more than just a desire
for girl-talk and late-night jam sessions: It
seems to be the universal lament of all pio-
neering women.
Many women claim that universities and
colleges harbor a "chilly climate" for female
students and faculty. Especially for female
professors, this climate is often caused by
isolation. Many departments have a single
"female slot" for faculty; as a rule, profes-
sors who are the only woman in their depart-
ment leave after less than five years. The slot
becomes a revolving door for women who
enter the job and quickly leave it under the
incredible pressure of representing an entire
gender and trying to meet unrealistic expec-
tations for performance.
Two women hired together fare far better
in academic departments, as do women in
engineering or science who take classes with
a critical mass of other women. As for
Faulkner, her fate may have been different at
another academy - when West Point first

admitted women in 1976, there were 119 of
them, 9 percent of the class.
When it came to Shannon's fellow stu-
dents, however, even one woman was too
many. Cadets at The Citadel were exuberant
after Faulkner's announcement, doing
celebratory push-ups, punching the air with
clenched fists, and generally rejoicing at the
preservation of their single-sex paradise.
Outside the campus, bumper stickers ex-
horted passing drivers to "Save the Males"
at The Citadel.
The men at The Citadel are like a group
of little boys with a coveted treehouse: They
posted a "No Girls Allowed" sign, and no
one was going to stop them from enforcing
it. In the treehouse, like in The Citadel, the
group must have a sense of exclusivity to be
meaningful. Getting in to the group must
mean something: like you're popular, or
smart, or, well, male.
. That was Shannon's real mistake. Doing
push-ups in 100-degree heat is easy com-
pared to the vicious onslaught of2,000 males
with a wounded sense of manhood. If there
were girls in the club, the students appar-
ently thought, going to The Citadel would
no longer mean they were Real Men. If any
old woman can do it, why put up with 6 a.m.
calisthenics and being yelled at every day?
By most indications, The Citadel men
had better get used to seeing women on the
front lines: More than 200 have written the
school asking to be enrolled. The treehouse
won't be all-male for long - all Shannon
Faulkner really needed was a larger raiding
party of girls, ready to storm the fortress and
never look back.

MATT WIMSATT

MoouGE's DILEMMA

┬░TrnE LN VEFS '1Y WILL ViDE Yo0u WITH 'fEMfs uP
HEE, HoWdES CANl BE OAKEN 4AT- MAgICLP~y IAL~L

NOTABLE QUOTABLE
'This country is a
party country.
There is no magic
independence of
people who are
just able to stand
up and magically
produce a govern-
ment.'
-House Speaker Newt
Gingrich, remarking on a
possible presidential bid
by Colin Powell

Politics of conformity
Plans for national language smack of elitism

Last week Sen. Bob Dole (R-Kan.)
announced his support for a bill that will
make English the national language. While
this idea has roots in the earliest days of the
American republic, Dole's crusade is rooted
in the politics of today: mean-spirited and
subtly racist.
Measures to stamp English as the official
language have been on the agenda of many
right-wingers for the past several years -
Pat Buchanan endorsed it in his '92 presiden-
tial campaign. Dole has not seized on the
issue until very recently, raising the question
of whether he really believes in the cause or
is pandering to a constituency. Dole seems to
fear the potential candidacies of Sen. Phil
Gramm (R-Texas), Buchanan and Gov. Pete
Wilson of California much more than "eth-
nic separatism" that he claims necessitates
such a bill. Announcing his intentions at a
speech in Indianapolis seemed like an at-
tempt to knock off the weak candidacy of
Sen. Richard Lugar (R-Ind.) in his own state.
Dole is feeling the crunch from what was
previously his own backyard. For the first
time in his career he is being criticized for
being too liberal, too willing to compromise
and too soft.
However, in throwing this token biscuit
of conservatism to the barking dogs set upon
him by the far right, he has set dangerous
mechanisms in motion. His canine-like op-
ponents will likely only nip at his heels in his
run for the Republican nomination. Support-
ing this bill not only sets up a dangerous
pattern of appeasing extremists, but places

serious social and even constitutional ques-
tions on the line.
This summer a judge in Texas issued a
court order telling a young Hispanic mother
that she could only speak English to her
infant child - a very serious attack on free-
dom of speech and rights to privacy. How-
ever, such actions may be very plausible
under the flag of a uni-lingual nation. Very
likely one of the first targets under such a
system would be bilingual schools, which
allow students to continue learning while
being assimilated into a primarily English-
speaking educational system and culture.
Without federal funding, many of these pro-
grams will close. Republicans certainly have
no intentions of replacing them with Head
Start programs or other means ofteaching the
"only acceptable form of linguistic expres-
sion." There has even been speculation that
the bill might include provisions to force all
federal and even public businesses to con-
duct all transactions in English.
While English has become the national
language of convenience, it must not be fed-
erally mandated. The motives of the bill's
most stringent supporters seem to lie in reac-
tionary fear and a desire for the cultural
conformity of the past, where social differ-
ences were physically beaten into submis-
sion. The bill is in direct contrast with the
purposes of this nation, a country of immi-
grants. For 219 years this country has sur-
vived without a national language. Now is
not the time to cling to one in fear of what we
refuse to understand.

VMwPoNT
From ashes, hopes for peace in Bosnia

By Jason Lichtstein
For three years now, the Daily
editorial page has advocated a
more active U.S. diplomatic and
military response to the Serb ter-
ritorial grab in Bosnia-Herze-
govina. And today, it is likely that
scores of NATO aircraft are fly-
ing combat sorties over Sarajevo,
Pale and other Bosnian cities in
support ofthe U.N. mission in the
Balkans, targeting Bosnian Serb
ammunitions depots and com-
mand-and-control sites.
This move - NATO's first
coordinated military action in its
history - is long overdue. For
far too long, the Bosnian Serbs
have engaged in a war effort to
slice off a hefty chunk of Bosnia-
Herzegovina (internationally rec-
ognized in 1992) - purged of
Muslims and Croat Roman Catho-
lics. (Bosnian Croats too have
engaged in ethnic expulsions and
alleged human rights violations,
but lately have been on the West's
good side.)
Finally, after an indiscrimi-
nate artillery shell - fired by
Serb forces ringing Sarajevo -
killed 38 civilians, the West
implemented a modesttbut intel-
ligent plan to punish Bosnian Serb
aggression and jump-start peace
negotiations. For more than a year,
Serb snipers have been picking
off civilians in line for food and
water, and gunners have been
shelling Sarajevo residents, hit-
ting apartment buildings, street
corners and marketplaces. But
strategically, the time was right
for U.S. intervention, and world

We all have an interest in tran-
scending the primal distinctions
of ethnicity and encouraging
peaceful coexistence in Bosnia.

encouragement from the United
States to bring a fair solution
about, especially in this part of
the world. Balkan history is es-
sentially an issue about humanity
and the darker realities of human
nature, and we all have an interest
in transcending the primal dis-
tinctions of ethnicity and encour-
aging peaceful coexistence in
Bosnia.
We should also be reminded,
that before Serb nationalistic poli-
ticians fueled the flames of"dif-
ference" in Bosnia and offered up
a nascent "Greater Serbia" as the
answer to cultural uneasiness,
Bosnia-Herzegovina was peace-
able, multiethnic and multi-cul
tural. Reality wasn't political, it
was in the everyday. Like our
own Ann Arbor, outdoor coffee
shops and conversations over
warm drinks flourished not too
long ago in Sarajevo, a beautiful
international city surrounded by
snow-capped mountains and
home to the 1984 Olympic Win-
ter games. Yet the specter of an
ethnic Serb minority in a nation
largely ruled by Muslims caused
more than consternation to
Bosnian Serbs - it led to a brutal
war, unspeakable atrocities and a
world community stumbling to
respond. It led to forced expul-
sions, mass rapes, and the delib-
erate and arbitrary murder of ci-
vilians. This is the sad reality and
the hard facts ofthe four-year-old
Balkan affair, and of centuries of
ethnic discord. No nation is inno-
cent, and all have been guilty of
savage ethnic cleansing.
flut in the e nd the Amercan

resolving this European dispute,
containing the conflict and bring-
ing war criminals to justice. It is
likewise crucial that all of us en-
gage in this debate and become a
real part of this discourse.
To date, the Clinton adminis-
tration, NATO and U.N. com-
manders have been right to de-
mand the end of the Serb en-
circlement of Sarajevo. Still, a
more fundamental question re-

ritorial Bosnia, Croatia and Yu-
goslavia cannot be left ambigu-
ous if there is any hope of quell-
ing the war and leaving the ethnic
passions behind. This includes
all contested land, including East-
ern Slavonia in Croatia.
Like the Russian Federation,
a loosely aligned Bosnian federa-
tion - but with democratic, free,
internationally monitored elec-
tions and a formal, agreed-upon

How TO CONTACT THEM
State Sen. Alma Wheeler Smith

I

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