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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

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    ‘Free’ West hypocritical

    In response to the recent idiotic comparisons between so-called “”free world/free speech”” and Islam made by several letters to the editor including the opinions editor herself, I want to ask what “”free world”” you are talking about. Is it a world where in post-9/11 America the mere position of a CNN report critical of the U.S. government or visiting the BBC Web site can both be seen by many UA international students as possible grounds for a visit by the FBI? Or is it a world where a nation embracing herself as the pillar of the liberal and “”free”” West prevents her Muslim citizens from wearing their headscarf? Or is it a world where a journalist is being sent to prison for seven years for interviewing Osama bin Laden, a chance, if given, his Western counterparts would jump on head first? Or is it a world where colored people until recent history were treated worse than second-class citizens and women couldn’t vote? Are you referring to the only nation ever to use not one but two atomic bombs to knowingly and intentionally cause the most devastation? Let’s not forget the Inquisition, colonization, genocide, the Holocaust, Guantanamo Bay, the Mother Of All Lies (aka WMD) and Iraq illegal invasion – all brought to you by none other than “”the free world.”” Let’s also not forget the “”free world’s best friend,”” the only remaining colonizer, Israel!

    Although it’s true that the West have recently gained more freedoms than many other nations; nevertheless, when tested, those freedoms shrink like an Afro under a rainy day.

    On the other hand, only a fool would reject the many contributions Islam have given to the rest of the world, in particular to “”the free world”” characterized by the peace and comfort enjoyed by the millions of reverts, whom without, Islam wouldn’t have become the fastest growing religion in the entire world.

    May I suggest for those bunch of hypocrites a double major in history and/or a minor in common sense. Also, stop using the neocon-sponsored Fox News as your main source of knowledge.

    Tawfik Maudah
    non-degree-seeking graduate student

    Cook’s fliers prove compliance claims lies

    This letter is in response to Monday’s article “”ASUA court reinstates Tubbs,”” in which Sen. Patrick Cook declares that he “”made sure (his) entire staff took everything down”” after he was disqualified along with Sen. Rhonda Tubbs last week for campaign violations. He insists self-righteously that he had fewer votes because he complied with the elections commission, while Tubbs continued to campaign in a disregard for the decision.

    Ironically, right as I read this, I looked up at the bulletin in Harvill 315, and there it was: a Patrick Cook for Exec VP flier. Could I have possibly misread the quote in the article? I read it again. Nope. I decided to keep an eye out in my next class, and lo and behold: another Patrick Cook for Exec VP flier. My issue is not with Cook directly, but with the hypocrisy. It’s generally a good idea to make sure your butt is covered before you start criticizing people – especially fellow candidates. Generally.

    Cameron Moore
    senior majoring in Italian

    Fault in migrant deaths lies in policy

    I challenge Michael Huston’s assertion that humanitarian aid is a heinous crime of a punishable nature and furthermore that the two No More Deaths volunteers currently awaiting trial have been duly reprimanded for their “”crimes.”” Abiding by the advice of two physicians, a nurse and a lawyer, Shanti Sellz and Daniel Strauss had attempted to evacuate three ailing migrants for emergency medical assistance, a course of action that is not unconscientiously pursued by NMD workers, but rather functions as a final resort. In 115-degree heat, the migrants had drunk from a tainted cattle tank and were distressingly ill, hungry, thirsty, delirious and suffering from debilitating blisters. For their “”crime,”” Shanti and Daniel, if convicted, face up to 15 years in prison.

    Their arrest sets a dangerous and disheartening precedent for the future of humanitarian aid. Since 1998, more than 2,650 people have lost their lives attempting to cross the U.S-Mexico border. Last year in the Tucson sector alone we lost 282 lives. Those are the lives of 282 men, women and children. If you have a soul, that has to resonate. 282 people died in our own backyard and labeling them illegal immigrants does not negate the immensity of that loss. Those are tangible, human lives, irrespective of legal status.

    In the absence of the altruism direct humanitarian aid provides, those numbers would be higher. Increased militarization on the border, harsher immigration laws and the ongoing construction of a “”border wall”” which has done naught but herd migrants into treacherous sections of the desert, devastate vegetation and disrupt indigenous border communities will only serve to exacerbate the situation. Illegal immigration will not stop because the desperation that drives migrants to cross is ever present and powerful. The oppressive force of NAFTA has gutted the Mexican minimum wage and dissolved domestic infrastructure, and people will continue fleeing their local subsistence economies in search of work in larger urban centers.

    I don’t dispute that illegal immigration is a growing problem, but the blame does not lie on the shoulders of the migrants. The blame lies with the U.S. and Mexican governments, as does the solution. No More Deaths is not a passive organization willing to sit idly by while people are dying less than one hour away, but rather vigilant and compassionate instigators of civil initiative, and I for one commend them.

    Chelsea Kappeler
    anthropology senior

    Feminism fights more than abortion

    I am writing in response to Lori Foley’s Monday column, “”The feminine mistake.”” In her column, Foley expressed her alienation from feminism because of the movement’s close ties with abortion rights. Foley stated that “”equating abortion-access rights with women’s rights means that many women who, like me, believe abortion is a moral wrong are excluded from the movement as a whole.”” Abortion rights are undeniably a central pillar of the modern feminist movement. This is justified, considering that about 43 percent of American women will choose to have an abortion at some point in their lives. Abortion is an issue directly affecting a wide range of women, and thus many feminist groups focus their efforts on abortion rights.

    However, abortion rights are far from the only issue highlighted by feminist groups today. I encourage Foley and anyone else, female or male, who would like to work for equality to attend a meeting of the UA’s Network of Feminist Student Activists (NFSA). While most members of the group (myself included) identify as pro-choice, our work does not focus on abortion rights. Over the past year, the NFSA has organized Take Back the Night, Love Your Body Day and “”The Vagina Monologues,”” to name just a few events. We work hard to create a tolerant environment among our members, and welcome into our group any interested individual, regardless of political views, age or sex. I hope that in the future, Foley will consider participating directly in the feminist movement and attend our meetings: 6 p.m. on Wednesdays in the Women’s Resource Center of ASUA. The best thing for feminism – and for equality – would be the active participation of all passionate individuals, regardless of their views on one specific issue.

    Sigrid Gardner
    microbiology senior

    Tuition dollars aren’t making their way to classrooms

    Yesterday morning I lay awake in bed, deciding whether to go to class.ÿI wondered this not because of lack of sleep or a midweek hangover, but because some could make the argument that my time would be better spent reading a textbook for an hour rather than sitting in class trying to listen to a teacher with a barely comprehensible dialect of English.

    I decided to go anyway.ÿAfter all, we engineers have gotten much experience trying to decipher a teacher’s words through many semesters of practice.ÿThis is just one of the problems inlaid within the College of Engineering: a lack of teachers who can connect with their students that has resulted from decades of funding reductions.

    Soon the college will vote to pass mandatory differential tuition to help support the ailing school.ÿEvery advanced-standing student will be required to pay $600 extra per year to attend.ÿWhile I support this measure as a means of increasing our quality of education, I am forced to vote strongly against it.ÿI feel students in the college and the higher-ups in the university should know the facts first.

    While 60 percent of the college’s budget comes from research money, almost nothing of this makes its way into the classroom, leaving a dwindling piece of the pie coming from university funding.ÿThe college receives almost exactly the same dollar figure from the university as it did in 1989.ÿInflation and increased teacher salaries has cut the amount of actual dollars received almost in half during a period of growing enrollment.ÿEvery other college on campus has received increased funding since ’89 save for agriculture, which is highly subsidized.ÿThe UA has seen a $1,000 increase in tuition in the past three years, all of which is devoted to general education classes.ÿAs a technical school, the college sees zero of this thousand dollars from its 3,000-some students.

    For whatever reason, the college administration has determined it would be easier or better to get its funding from students rather than from where it should have been coming from in the first place, the university.

    Chris Beard
    mechanical engineering junior

    Involved students win elections

    In response to Ryan Johnson’s complaint that ASUA elections are merely a popularity contest, I’d like to say that it is a no-brainer that students who are actively involved in campus organizations are more likely to be elected to office. One of the most unique aspects of college life is that everyone can find his or her niche. There are countless organizations to join and opportunities for campus jobs, all of which help students become better connected. You don’t have to join Chain Gang or Greek Life to be involved. Furthermore, students actively involved in campus life become well-rounded individuals. I realize that often times the most qualified individuals do not always get elected, but it is naive to think that uninvolved students on campus will win student body elections.

    Tanya Slovin
    UA alumna

    Bleeding-heart ‘humanitarians’ abetting criminals

    Michael Huston’s column “”Actually, humanitarian aid is a crime”” was the best piece I have ever read in a campus newspaper (and I’ve read plenty of them). I appreciate the realistic consideration of the consequences of this “”aid”” offered by Huston. Too often in this country, “”humanitarian interests”” prevail over social interests and the civic good. Even our policymakers are guilty of giving in to the bleeding-heart stories of individuals who are “”just trying to survive”” and “”make a life for themselves,”” but what they are really doing is trying to survive the commission of a crime and making a life for themselves outside the law.

    It would be only slightly less ridiculous if these “”humanitarians”” went to a border checkpoint and offered bulletproof vests to any Mexicans who wanted to try to make a run past the guards.

    AJ Barnett
    law student

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