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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


    Pulse of the Pac: March 20

    Daily Bruin

    “Smoking ban in university apartments unreasonable”

    A ban in November on smoking in or near University of California medical centers began a string of planned changes in smoking policy for the UC system. This series of bans is now hitting home. Starting this fall, university-owned apartments will be smoke-free.

    If smokers are already unable to smoke on their balconies, where there is ventilation, or near their doors, disallowing the activity within the apartment is borderline discrimination.

    Dianne Klein, spokesperson for the University of California, said estimations show less than 10 percent of UC students and staff are smokers.

    Just because smokers are a minority does not make it any more permissible to issue behavioral regulations on them. When it comes to rights within the home, the UC should allow students more autonomy.

    This policy speaks to a future of cleanliness and hygiene for the UC, but it neglects to note that, for some, smoking is an important part of daily life.

    To avoid irritating non-smoking neighbors, a cluster of apartments can be designated as smoking apartments, so smokers can exist in their own sphere.

    It is unfair for us to expect those who are dependent on smoking as a form of stress relief to walk far out of their way in order to do so. Apartments should be a haven for those who have chosen to make their homes there, and for smokers, a comfortable abode includes the ability to smoke when and where desired. The UC should not infringe upon the rights of this population.

    An idealistic goal is in mind with this anti-smoking policy. However, the UC needs to reduce antagonism toward the smoking population and understand that accommodating the minority to some degree is not a death sentence.

    — Gina Kass, March 19 issue

    Daily Emerald
    University of Oregon

    “Oregon should work to discourage illegal immigration”

    A little over a year ago, in Norway, a 25-year-old Russian-born woman under the name of Maria Amelie was deported from the country.

    She and her parents had fled their Russian home and sought asylum in Norway. The family’s application for asylum was rejected, and they went into hiding for many years.

    At a speech she was giving in Lillehammer one day, she was arrested and authorities treated her as any other illegal immigrant and deported her.

    This was a good decision. If they had made an exception to the rule because she was so
    well-known, they reasoned, such a decision would have opened the floodgates for immigrants to come to the country and live in Norway illegally.

    Comparatively, I think both the U.S. and Oregon are seen in a similar light by those looking for a better life than the country where they are from.

    And it is uncanny how illegal immigrants who do come here and complain about the working conditions they subject themselves to are also irate they are denied the same rights and privileges of U.S. and Oregon citizens — including in-state tuition.

    It makes no sense. Deporting them — along with creating more disincentives for them not to come here — would be the best thing Oregon and the U.S. could do.

    Two examples come to mind: requiring proof of citizenship to get a driver’s license and voting down in-state tuition for illegal immigrants.

    And the state should continue down this road of discouragement until the illegal immigration “loopholes” are plugged. Illegal immigrants may move on to other states, but that is a good thing.
    Oregon should not be part of a community encouraging illegal immigration and the consequences that follow from it.

    — Jonathan Bowers, March 14 issue

    CU Independent
    University of Colorado

    “Keeping America in the place of honor”

    Maybe it’s because I’m from Texas. Maybe it’s because I grew up blocks away from a military base. Maybe it’s because my grandma knits American flag sweaters in her free time.

    Whatever the reason, the flags outside First Citizens Bank on 28th Street and Arapahoe Avenue deeply insults me as an American. The bank has three flag poles, displaying a CU flag, the American flag and the Colorado flag. That’s pretty standard. But the bank has all these flags flying at the same level, with the American flag in the middle.

    According to national Flag Code, “no other flag or pennant should be placed above or … on the same level … of the flag of the United States of America.” Similarly, Colorado’s Flag Code states “the Colorado State flag must remain below the United States flag.”

    Technically, any state can fly its flag at the same height as the U.S. flag as long as it’s flown to the right of the American flag from an observer’s perspective.

    But at First Citizens Bank, the CU flag is flown in the place of honor. No offense, Ralphie, but I don’t think you’re on the same level as the country.

    When I asked the bank about the flags, the employees told me that they are managed by a flag company. One of the employees had even complained about it in the past, and she was excited that I’d brought it up. Still, they said there was nothing the bank could do about it.

    Maybe I’m taking Flag Code too seriously, especially considering the code cannot be enforced. And the Amendments to the Constitution’s ruling on Flag Code have labeled infractions as free speech. So, if the flag company has more pride in CU than in America, they have a right to put Ralphie at the front of the herd.

    The Flag Code violation is little, but it’s symbolic. It’s about patriotism and respect for our nation.

    — Ainslee MacNaughton, March 16 issue

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