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The Daily Wildcat

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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

    Mailbag

    Research critical to university’s vitality

    In response to Janne Perona’s column yesterday alleging that tenure is flawed because it allows for the continued employment of too many lazy, senile or mean professors, I’d like to point out that, first, focusing on research doesn’t mean an individual is lazy or not committed to education. Research is a critical component to graduate education and I’d like to remind her that there are more than 7,000 grad students who are being educated on this campus. Additionally, as financial pressures increase, the university and its faculty are forced to generate outside revenue through grants and contracts. Without research revenue, you become one of two things – a community college or a liberal arts college. You didn’t choose to attend one of those when you came to the UA.

    If you want to probe into an even deeper and more relevant problem with the tenure process, look at faculty demographics. While 48 percent of graduate assistants are women, only 30 percent of professors are female. Contrast this with 47 percent of female professional staff members – these include adjuncts, lecturers and instructors. You can see that this university is graduating women with higher degrees and even hiring them to teach – but not as professionals. The question is: Does this university really value teaching, and if so, then why do we hire women to teach, but not give them tenure? The tenure system is flawed in that it expects young women to go to college then graduate school and then jump through the tenure hoops all while they are in prime years for bearing children. Women who have their first child after 35 years of age have an increased risk of their baby having birth defects, and also increase their own risk of developing breast cancer. I’d like to note that recent UA presidential candidate Deborah Freund had her first child at 42 years of age; is this what it takes to achieve the kind of success she has had? Why don’t women get tenure? Perhaps because they have to choose between having a healthy family and having an academic career. While I’m sure there are a number of lazy and past-their-prime faculty members on this and any university campus, they are certainly not the majority. Tenure protects academic freedom, as Shurid Sen pointed out, but it still needs examination if it is to be an effective method for employing great faculty.

    Elaine Ulrich
    optical science graduate student

    Article missed point of ROTC sit-in

    An article by reporters of the Arizona Daily Wildcat yesterday displayed an aversion to facts and disregard for journalistic integrity involving the political sit-in at the ROTC institution on campus.

    It was spurious in handling quotes appropriate to their context. It stated that I was merely “”just worried about a few friends”” when the information I had bestowed as media consultant construed reasons why the students were engaging in civil disobedience.

    The rank unprofessionalism by reporters Stephanie Hall, Devin Walker and anyone else on the editing circle was disgraceful behavior to the respect and traditions of good journalists as Edward R. Murrow, I.F. Stone and Mark Twain.

    Yes, it’s about a story, but it’s also about morals, responsibility for the truth and endeavors to objectivity, none of which were uplifted in yesterday’s article.

    The right of citizens to commit the most petty of crimes to protest the high crimes of the state is exactly the purpose of civil disobedience and is precisely what the group of individuals were implementing Tuesday afternoon – a right which is advocated and avowed to all by Thomas Jefferson, who stated in his Declaration of Independence that governments derive their just powers “”from the consent of the governed”” and “”that whenever any Form of Government becomes

    destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or abolish it.””

    That I was indeed worried about a couple friends does not hinder the right or bold impudence whereby each engaged to meet ends in abolishing their government’s mercenary ambitions throughout the globe.

    Of all the information I had given why students were conducting the sit-in, an indirect and misquote was taken and used directly to appeal to emotions. It was the least of importance and had little to do with the story, the advantage of a spur of compassion for two friends who were inside the lion’s den – as it may be called – at the mercy of rabid military men. At least that can be seen on the first page in a photograph that does more revealing than the worst of articles may ever be capable of.

    Gabriel Matthew
    undeclared freshman

    Military protects protesters’ rights

    The irony of the sit-in by the students at the ROTC center is that the personnel working there have done more for the Constitution (including the First Amendment, naturally) and the civil rights they were exercising while they were demonstrating than the ACLU, all forms of media and the World Can’t Wait organization could ever hope to accomplish.

    Imagine what the police in a country without our Constitution, without our rights and without our all-volunteer military that is sworn to support and defend that Constitution and those rights would have done to them. Then reconsider where you protest. You really came across as insensitive, immature and disrespectful to those who wear the uniform, without mental reservation and knowing full well the risks for you.

    Andrew Blackwell
    psychology junior

    UAPD: Enforce campus bike laws

    Where is the University of Arizona Police Department in the morning when the law is being broken on a daily basis? Every day I use the underpass that goes beneath East Speedway Boulevard. There are plenty of signs stating that bikes should be walked from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. Yet every morning I see careless riders fly by pedestrians, almost causing a collision. Why is this law not being enforced? Sure, the $25 fine is not much, but if it was enforced we could start to see more bikes being walked through the underpass.

    David McGuiggan
    Office specialist, School of Music

    State of the Union a great speech

    If you have not read, watched or listened to the State of the Union address, then you need to! President Bush delivered a remarkable speech Tuesday night that makes you proud to be an American. He talked about numerous issues concerning the U.S., and how we are going to try to solve and improve them. Some might not agree with the main points of the speech, which is OK, because everyone is allowed to have their own opinion. In fact, President Bush made a wise comment in his speech involving this topic and said, “”In the coming year, I will continue to reach out and seek your good advice. Yet there is a difference between responsible criticism that aims for success, and defeatism that refuses to acknowledge anything but failure. Hindsight alone is not wisdom. And second guessing is not a strategy.”” So, for all of you who can only acknowledge failure, you should stop and listen to the president of the United States. Start making opinions that can be beneficial to help this country. In addition, as Americans, we should all look forward to this year and trust the future of the United States of America.

    Kara Subach
    political science freshman

    Wildcat comics not funny this semester

    Let’s face it: This semester’s comics are not so comical. It’s a common opinion around campus that laughs are found in the Fast Facts and sometimes the Police Beat, but hardly ever in the comics. Fellow upper classmates remember the good old days of “”Sarape’s Grill”” and “”Optimal Stubble””, a knockout one-two combination. The sub-par comics of late waste valuable space that could be used for funnier content like weather reports, personal ads or pictures of hippos. To the creators of this semester’s comics, I offer this advice: If you have nothing funny to say, don’t say anything at all.

    Sabastian Santos
    senior majoring in Spanish

    Letter demonstrates exact political sentiment that troubles this country

    An interesting letter by Sean O’Neill in Tuesday’s Mailbag summarizes everything that is wrong with this nation. Students on this campus and others around the nation have a responsibility to protect this nation and its fundamental rights and to fix the problems that trouble us today. The Constitution guarantees the right to speak in public places, even if the context speaks harshly against our nation. We are concerning ourselves about a few peons from a “”kiddie”” communist group, becoming narrow-minded and fighting for “”cosmetic”” changes. We bother to tell the university to make marijuana legal in certain dorms, or to make drinking on campus a right. However, we forget to bother to even help the select few try to alleviate hunger in societies here and abroad. We forget to tell the 49 million people who go without health care that we don’t care about them, that we care more about our appearance and our kegs. Somehow we still overlook the massive number of hate crimes that occur on a daily basis, straining race relations in this country. So before we bash someone’s right to speak, let’s focus on the real issues plaguing this country and societies abroad, as one day our children and our society will thank us.

    Preet Ghuman
    senior majoring in biochemistry and political science

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