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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

    Mailbag

    Mexicans have more respect for flag than Americans

    Michael Huston should have done his homework before writing “”Protests are fine, but leave the Mexican flags at home”” Wednesday. I agree that large-scale demonstrations must be kept at a minimum, but the things he said about the Mexican flag and the illegal immigrants are somewhat misleading.

    The Mexican flag is an important cultural symbol and we do think of it as a sacred icon, which is evident by the fact that we pay tribute to it every Monday. Unlike the American flag, the Mexican flag cannot be reproduced in products or altered because it is a felony, so we only see it as the patriotic symbol it is: our flag. We also have a flag day, celebrated on Feb. 24, which is similar to the celebration Americans have on June 14.

    In my honest opinion, I don’t think Americans have the same respect for their flag as Mexicans do for theirs. Americans use their flag anywhere from napkins, shirts and tablecloths to underwear. Sometimes it is altered, thus transforming it into an image that loses its sacred icon status. In addition, I have seen the American flag criticized, made fun of and badly portrayed in television shows. These are things that you will never see people in Mexico do with our flag.

    As for Vicente Fox’s government being corrupted, you have to understand that he has been the only Mexican president able to maintain the stability of the peso. During the last presidential period, the dollar was around 11 pesos and now, thanks to the Fox government, it is around 10.50 pesos. Although this may not sound very significant to some, this actually means a step forward for the economy of Mexico. So when you say Fox’s corrupted government is the cause of illegal immigration, I think that you do not even understand how our government works or what is the cause of illegal immigration.

    The cause of illegal immigration is not the president nor the government nor the drug dealers, not even the corruption. The cause is that Mexico is a Third-World country and our economy is very poor compared to that of the U.S. For example, try raising a family with a minimum wage of 50 cents a day.

    When immigrants come to the U.S., they are looking for opportunities. They are in debt to the U.S. for letting them succeed and they do pay tribute to this land. But something worth mentioning is that the U.S. should also be grateful to the immigrants who perform hard work in this country and do it for less than minimum wage.

    Even though immigrants do desire American citizenship to make their work legal, they will never lose their Mexican culture and heritage.

    And as for you, “”Americans”” do the same thing. Ask anyone about their heritage and no one is 100 percent from the U.S. You always have to put your older heritages first.

    Alejandro Perez Avila
    fine arts graduate student

    Original regents scholarship policy misguided

    While the Arizona Daily Wildcat is certainly correct in arguing that out-of-state scholarship recipients should be required to complete some form of community service (“”Scholarship policy should benefit students and state””), it neglected to mention that the Arizona Board of Regents policy was somewhat misguided in the first place. Among other things, the policy required out-of-state students to perform community service for an agency that was not affiliated with the UA or any religious organization.

    While the board’s policy was probably well-intentioned (a community service program that only benefited the UA campus would be contrary to the meaning of community service), the result was an unnecessarily burdensome system that was characterized by much confusion and sometimes overzealous enforcement. Indeed, many out-of-state students will probably attest to the fact that community service hours were frequently barred simply because the work was tangentially related to the UA. In essence, it seemed as though the board of regents did not trust us to perform community service that would have benefits beyond the UA campus.

    Out-of-state students comprise 32 percent of the undergraduate student body and almost 20 percent of the Honors College. I would venture to say that many of us already complete and surpass the 20-hour requirement of the old board of regents’ policy, and I would guess that many of us support a mandatory community service requirement. But if the board is to bring back community service requirements, I would hope that they count work as work without questioning our motives.

    Damion LeeNatali
    senior majoring in political science and history
    former Wildcat opinions editor

    Write letters encouraging Sudanese intervention

    Half a century ago, a portion of my family lived in Riga, Latvia. Their lives were simple and modest, but they enjoyed a loving home and a thriving community full of other Jewish families. Then, in 1941, the Nazis came. All of the men were sent to concentration camps, while the women and children were herded into the Rumbula woods outside the ghetto. There, they were forced to lie in a giant mass grave to be shot through the back of the head. The shooting went on for 12 hours until nothing was left of the Riga ghetto.

    All of my life, I have wondered how something like this could be allowed to happen while the world looked on with silence. Today, I think I understand. This is exactly what is happening in Sudan.

    Perhaps we have become jaded in the face of ongoing suffering in Africa. Perhaps there is an element of racism. Whatever the case, our silence today is no different from the silence that sent my family members to their graves.

    We can make a difference by writing letters to our representatives, urging them to take a stand. Several organizations, including UNICEF, are collecting donations. Go to www.unicefusa.org for more information. Other aid organizations include Doctors Without Borders and WorldVision.

    To date, an estimated 75,000 lives have been lost in Sudan to direct violence, in addition to up to 300,000 more lives to diseases and hunger related to the violence. Remember the inconsolable loss we suffered on Sept. 11, multiply that suffering by 125 and add the fact that the survivors are left homeless and destitute, many of them facing the trauma of rape. We know what it means to watch helplessly as our countrymen and women are slaughtered. Our consciences cannot allow it to happen to the Sudanese.

    Valerie Saturen
    Near Eastern studies graduate student

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