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The Daily Wildcat

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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

    Mailbag

    School needs clear transportation policy

    What happened to personal responsibility? If we wish to solve problems of congestion safety on campus (“”Silent traffic swelling,”” Oct. 25), it’s important to remind individuals that they are personally responsible for their actions, their inactions and their general apathy. As a cyclist I spend a great portion of my time on campus riding, not walking, but as it turns out I too have two legs and sometimes use them to propel me, sans device. I also enjoy a good skate through campus too. I’m no stranger to non-automated transport on campus, and I’m not alone, clearly. However I am aware of every decision I make and action I take while moving on campus and I hold myself responsible every time I find myself in trouble. Unfortunately, it does sometimes seem that I am in the minority when it comes to using good sense. Taking it easy when crowds are thick, looking both ways before stepping into traffic, carrying a certain respect for those around me and sometimes yielding regardless of right-of-way, taking and making phone calls only when I’m in a generally mild traffic zone (a sidewalk or bench perhaps.)

    We grow up believing that roads are dangerous places to be and we should always mind our surroundings when entering, exiting, or existing within them. Bicyclist, skaters, pedestrians perhaps all have rights of way, however the only solution is to be mindful of all other individuals who may also exist, right-of-way or not and to make decisions based on your ability to create a safe situation and not to make choices based on the actions of others, assumptions and predictions will only get you into trouble. Of course now that we’ve taken personal responsibility, it’s time to find someone to take responsibility for all those who are not so apt to be responsible and so we look to the university. Which leads us to ask, “”What do they really have planned?””

    We’ve all seen the PTS bike police on campus who give nothing more to campus than creating general disdain for university policy through the presence of pesky nagging pseudo-uniformed know-nothings issuing $25 fines. Instead of paying salaries for individuals who contribute nothing, let’s look at creating a clear campus transportation policy that includes and addresses the needs of all individuals looking to move across the pavement and continue to teach students, faculty, and staff about good habits. Perhaps they’ll get an education out of this institution after all.

    -John Mizell
    engineering management senior

    Pulling cartoon

    Wildcat’s decision

    After seeing that “”No Relation”” had been pulled from the paper for a second time, I prepared myself again for the inevitable deluge of letters defending Topmiller under the aegis of the “”right to free speech.”” And oh, how they came. I suppose it is only appropriate that the most spirited defense of Topmiller’s ignorant slurs has as its lynch-pin complete ignorance of what exactly one’s right to free speech entails. The First Amendment guarantees only that the government not interfere with the right of any citizen or organization to express itself. It is completely irrelevant from the discussion of what exactly the Daily Wildcat, a private publication, chooses to print. Perhaps I am incorrectly evaluating the arguments of these self-appointed free speech crusaders, and they simply believe that the press have a moral, not legal, obligation to print whatever sleazy pablum is slid beneath their doors. But this too is, needless to say, a completely ludicrous concept – newspapers observing this code would be almost entirely composed of the ravings of idiots, neo-Nazis, and paranoid schizophrenics (printed, I might add, on the publication’s dime), which, to me at least, does not exactly sound like a properly functioning Fourth Estate. It’s possible that the editorial board of the Daily Wildcat removed “”No Relation”” from the comics page because doing so was simply one of its duties as an arm of the vast, liberal (Jewish?) media conspiracy, and its members cackled with glee as they ground some nebulous “”rights”” beneath the heels of their jackboots. But it seems more likely to me that they simply found the strip, as I did, offensive with no apparent humorous or satirical value, and exercised their rights as members of an independent media organization to print what they saw fit – a choice which, no matter how vocally those who disagree with it complain, does not infringe at all on the rights of Topmiller or his readership.

    -Ben Harper
    philosophy sophomore

    Cancellation of ‘No Relation’ sets ‘dangerous precedent’

    Allow me to add my voice to those who wish to reinstate “”No Relation”” to the Daily Wildcat Comics page. The cancellation of a comic like “”No Relation”” is a dangerous precedent for the Daily Wildcat editorial staff, as it implies that the Wildcat’s editors consider characteristics such as humor and quality when selecting comics to run. Despite the recent furor over perceived anti-Semitism, “”No Relation”” is in fact a harmless comic – Topmiller is careful to be funny only when his subject offers no other alternatives. Rather than attempting to create a joke or humorous situation, he is content to draw cartoons that have little or no relation to the captions he writes below them (thus, the comic’s title, I imagine), or parrot racist stereotypes without commenting on or subverting them. As long as this happens, readers of the Daily Wildcat must resign themselves to believe that “”No Relation”” is the best the paper can do when it comes to comics.

    However, when the editors cancel a comic in favor of a new one, it sends the message that they wish to improve the quality of the comics page. Considering the quality of the other Wildcat comics, this is a dangerous message for the Wildcat editors to send. It could get to the point where (people) begin demanding humor and coherence in their comics, and we’ll be left with nothing but “”El Jefe Jeff”” and sixteen column inches of blank space. Of course, this time the editors lucked out: If the first two strips are any indication, “”The UnderGrad”” looks to quickly sink into the tepid morass of the comics page, and all will be well again. But I would caution the Editorial Staff to be careful with messing around with the comics page, and adopt the philosophy of another cartoon character: Wile E. Coyote, who is able to walk on air as long as he doesn’t look down and realize that something’s wrong.

    -Doug Wykstra
    english and economics junior

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