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The Daily Wildcat

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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

    Mailbag

    Fans should show mature game manners

    The Arizona football team’s season opener against Brigham Young University was a great game, played against a worthy opponent. To borrow from our hallowed history, our team “”fought like wildcats,”” and we eked out a proud win.

    Some of the credit goes to the raucous fans, who displayed admirable school spirit in cheering on the team. The Zona Zoo has never been bigger, and it has never been louder than it was at the BYU game.

    Unfortunately, some of the noise was ugly, and it was unbecoming of this university. The expected ribbing of the opposing team devolved into name-calling that included insulting the predominant faith of BYU.

    To tell opposing fans who we think will win the game is one thing. To insult their religious beliefs is really quite another, and it is not what the UA is all about. Not only was it unacceptable to treat visitors to our community this way; it was insulting to any member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

    We are surely joined by UA students, faculty and staff members who feel a sense of betrayal by members of our own fan base at these actions. One need not be Mormon to be terribly offended by these incidents.

    This university is a global village of students from all walks of life and from all faiths. To insult visitors for any reason, faith or otherwise, is to insult members of our own community as well.

    Some universities have well-earned reputations for acting shamefully toward opposing teams and their boosters. This is not what the UA has ever been about, nor is it what it should become.

    When opposing teams and their fans come to the UA, we want to win those games. But there is no place on this campus for the ugly behavior that some chose to carry out at the BYU game. Put bluntly, such behavior will not be condoned, nor tolerated.

    So, as we prepare for Saturday’s game against Stephen F. Austin University, let’s all cheer the Wildcats on to victory. More importantly, let’s support our team’s effort on the field by being decent hosts off the field.

    UA President Robert Shelton,
    Associated Students of the University of Arizona President Erin Hertzog

    What is the definition of ‘freedom’?

    Can we, as a nation, stop throwing about this poorly defined “”freedom”” rhetoric? If we must use it, could someone at least define what we mean by it, and to whom it applies? In (her letter to the editor in) yesterday’s Wildcat, Stephanie Law implied that the folks who died in the 9/11 attacks “”gave all”” for “”freedom.”” Huh? I thought they were at work. Let us suppose that their deaths did somehow spawn “”freedom””; what freedoms have we gained as a result of that day? The freedom to be denied a constitutionally mandated fair trial if someone labels me an “”enemy combatant””? The freedom to have my phone tapped? To have my home tapped and searched without a warrant? To have my library selections scrutinized? To have my tax dollars (further) subsidize airlines by providing their security? Should I be happy that I now have the freedom to be branded a traitor for believing the Iraq war was started for monetary gain? Are these the “”freedoms”” the 9/11 victims “”gave all”” to gain?

    Christopher Haney
    environmental science graduate student

    Red tag laws unfair

    I think that red tags unfairly target college students, and to have a law that specifically puts down one group is a law that seriously lacks constitutionality. Now, what is this law anyway? If you have five or more people and receive any type of complaint? Wait, now if you get a red tag you must go through a diversionary program at the UA? Heck, sounds like the law was specifically tailored to put the college student down. Why does this not exist elsewhere, in other cities or states? Take it up with the city council? They wouldn’t listen to us because they are making money. Take it up with our congressman or congresswoman? Some of us are still out-of-state students. We are not their key constituency to getting reelected.

    Albert Mayans
    political science senior

    Wildcat should cover real issues

    Rarely does the Daily Wildcat address the various positions that political clubs on our campus hold. Even rarer is the chance to read about alternative or “”radical”” stances toward issues. However, on Monday in the article, “”Skeptics unite to scrutinize officials’ explanations of 9/11,”” mentioning the club Voices of Opposition drew a breath of fresh air from the pro-status quo approach the Wildcat mainly takes, even in their moderate columnist opinion section. I hope they will continue and increase their articles that illustrate the wide array of political ideas that are present on campus. This will, as seen now, draw conflict or debate about important problems that really matter in our world.

    Sept. 11 and the war(s) aside, our nation is still cluttered with social inequalities that desperately need to be fixed, or at least addressed. Surely such articles as these are always “”newsworthy,”” to quote

    Clayton Boen’s (yesterday) letter to the editor, at a time such as this.

    Or maybe instead, the paper should have featured an extended “”Police Beat,”” “”Fast Facts”” or even another few articles about the football team’s loss this weekend on the front page – adding to those six pages of sports. Surely those all would be much more appropriate pieces on such a tragic reunion. Not to mention how they would undoubtedly enhance America’s democracy and freedom through such unrelenting watchdog journalism. Please Daily Wildcat – give more sway to articles that really can make a difference.

    Brian Hennigan
    economics sophomore

    Electrical and computer engineering graduate adviser goes the extra mile

    I set off from India almost five years back with three suitcases and a backpack and landed right in the middle of the desert here in Tucson. I had come to attend school at the university in the electrical and computer engineering department. Life has been through a lot of trials and tribulations ever since, as is common to most international students. As we strive to find our niche in this new world, we sometimes brush shoulders with strangers who we know only by their office. I want to talk here about one such person who has changed my perspective on life in so many ways. I speak of Tami J. Whelan, our department graduate adviser and mentor. Very recently I found myself head-on against a battle with bureaucracy. For three consecutive days, I had been visiting a “”federal office”” in a far-flung corner of Tucson in the hope of getting my “”card”” issued. As if getting there was not harrowing enough, they refused to issue me the card in absolute denial of the existing rules. Their complete refusal to listen to any of my questions – to the extent of being rude – and sheer apathy to valid points that I had as a customer took its toll. On the third day, completely drubbed, I relented.

    On the fourth day, as I walked into Tami’s office, dejected and depressed, I explained the whole situation to her. And the rest was history. Tami spoke with a couple of offices, with authority and yet in perfectly polite humor. She suggested we both meet this particular officer in question the next morning. She gave me a few tips on how I should prepare myself for the meeting the next day. She also diligently drafted a letter to this office, explaining my situation, and had Jerzy Rozenblit, the department head, endorse it with his signature.

    So, the next morning, Tami and I were in the same office waiting for my name to be called. Now, it turns out that I was to be seen by the same officer I almost had a fight with the previous day. I believed in my heart that this is a lost cause. I just felt bad that Tami may be humiliated because of me. Anyway, we both walked to the window. The officer was furious to see me again. However, Tami, with her terrific people skills, her intelligence and her choice of words, not only appeased the officer but the tables actually turned. The next morning, the same officer called me to come see her and collect the document I was fighting to get all this while.

    Just like every other graduate student, I have an academic adviser. But this lesson that I learned in Tami’s close association is a vital lesson in the school of life. Everything from getting the right papers and arranging them meticulously right up to the tone of one’s voice in the conversation matters. Tami remarked before we entered the office, “”everything in life is not always about presentation, but this one will be.”” I have known this fact before, but what it really means I understood that day. I thank Tami for being a friend and a true mentor and for going out of her way to make students like me feel at home in a foreign world so far away from home.

    Bithika Khargharia
    electrical and computer engineering graduate student

    Double standard?

    Jon Riches is right in invoking the First Amendment in defending ABC’s right to show the ill-defined “”Path to 9/11″” (in yesterday’s Wildcard); however, I wonder where he, ever the partisan, stood regarding CBS being pressured by so-called conservatives to pull its miniseries, “”The Reagans”” in 2003?

    Christopher Haney
    environmental sciences graduate student

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