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The Daily Wildcat

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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

    Issue of the semester

    Shelton’s arrival


    Lori Foley/columnist

    This semester was full of major events from the global to the local, but the most important thing that occurred here on campus was probably the selection of current University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill provost Robert Shelton as the next president of the UA.
    President Peter Likins has shown us all what a huge difference a president can make; from meeting the fundraising goal for Campaign Arizona to commissioning the construction of the Manuel T. Pacheco Integrated Learning Center, his legacy here at the UA is incredible. All signs suggest we can expect the same high-caliber leadership from Shelton. Our new president brings with him lofty goals of raising admissions standards and maintaining a wide variety of educational programs at the UA. Here’s hoping he succeeds.

    No violations for greeks


    Ryan Johnson/columnist

    Only a few short years ago, the UA greek community was roiled with all sorts of ills. Delta Chi was booted first by the UA and then by its national organization for hazing problems. Pi Kappa Alpha was kicked off campus and then its members proceeded to repeatedly vandalize their own fraternity house. Sigma Chi went from the biggest house on campus to a parking lot, supposedly because a member was thrown in a meat locker.
    The UA community was beaten down, and whispers about a major crackdown permeated greek row. But in just a few short years, the UA greek community has regained form. Delta Chi is back, Pi Kappa Phi went from a small house to one of the biggest on campus, and several other houses grew. Best of all, no house had a major violation. Compared to the recent past, it was a big year for greeks.

    Bush’s falling ratings


    Michael Huston/columnist

    Throughout the semester, President Bush’s approval ratings have continued to decline. Faced with the lowest poll numbers since taking office, the president has replaced several key members of his cabinet and undertaken a new publicity tour to promote immigration reform.
    Americans have become increasingly dissatisfied with the costly war in Iraq and a Republican administration that, despite support from both houses of Congress, has failed to accomplish many of the agenda items it campaigned on, like medical liability reform and decreased spending.
    The president must continue to have dialogue with the American people and face his critics in order to see a rebound in his approval ratings. Convincing Americans that the president is actually doing something in the White House is the only way to ensure that Bush doesn’t leave office with the worst approval rating in modern history.

    Decision on Bernsen


    Janne Perona/columnist

    Throughout the semester, students were kept in the dark over the fate of our elected student body president, Cade Bernsen. Though the sexual assault and indecent exposure allegations he faced were dismissed in April, the Dean of Students Office deemed sexual harassment complaints from four women credible just in time for the last day of the semester. An issue this important – especially with university money at stake, as Bernsen was on paid administrative leave for the duration of the investigation – should have been dealt with swiftly, but unfortunately the Associated Students of the University of Arizona Senate and the Dean of Students Office failed to come through for the students.

    UA affordability


    Mike Morefield/columnist

    This semester has seen the cost of attending the UA under heavy scrutiny. From a hard-fought rise in tuition to union fees and proposals, the cost of student education is on a steady rise. There are also the new technology fee and the rise in parking prices that will eat away at students’ wallets next year. But there’s good news: Even though Arizona State University students pay less than us, we outrank ASU in almost every category, and we still pay low tuition compared to the rest of the nation. You get what you pay for in education, and our graduates are receiving the best degree in the state.

    Rising gas prices


    Jon Riches/columnist

    Normally I might grow frustrated watching the price click above $60 while filling up my car. But I’m not worried. Thankfully, the sages in Congress have been doing all they can to lower gas prices. First there was the proposed $100 gas-tax rebate. Two free tanks of gas are such a nice gesture; certainly that Band-Aid can mend what’s broken. Now there’s talk of slapping a profits tax on big oil as punishment for alleged price gouging. Hmmm. I’m pretty sure that when you tax something you get less of it, not more, but surely this brilliant plan will magically increase supply. Fortunately, though, our friends in Venezuela and Iran are making sure the price of crude oil stays low by threatening to disrupt the world oil market. Higher demand, tighter supply, record dependence on countries where terrorism is preached and planned. Who’s worried?

    Immigration debates


    Shurid Sen/columnist

    The immigration debate currently at the forefront of our national political consciousness has inflamed the passions of many people. On one side are those who would like to see illegal immigrants sent back to their home countries and 12 million people turned into felons. On the other side are those who want to see laws changed in order to accommodate those here illegally. This country has long prided itself on its formation of a thriving society based on the contributions of immigrants, to whom nearly all of us can trace our roots. It is beyond hypocritical, then, that we would denounce those in search of better lives.

    Changes in the capital


    Matt Stone/columnist

    Two overriding movements shaped the semester: a nationwide debate on immigration and the oncoming mid-term elections. Standing alone, either could have a profound impact on American politics for the next 40 years, but taken together, they represent something all the more potent.
    As the Republicans fall apart and the Democrats stammer through incoherent vision statements, immigration policy debate has spilled out of the august halls of Capitol Hill onto the turbulent streets of Los Angeles, Miami, Denver and Chicago. Even the oversized egos of the hill couldn’t get their heads around this one.
    Whereas only four months ago November’s mid-term elections promised to be a referendum on Republican corruption and incompetence, the political sands are now shifting unpredictably, rendering every legislator vulnerable – Republican or Democrat.
    Come November, expect anything.

    Mohammad cartoons


    Yusra Tekbali/columnist

    Denmark’s Jyllands-Posten’s publication of 12 demeaning cartoons depicting the Prophet Mohammad stands out as the most controversial issue of the semester. That a paper could be so blatantly racist and knowingly offensive, with the justification of attempting to gauge how far freedom of speech can be pushed, is truly extraordinary. Jyllands-Posten’s stance in support of the cartoons’ publication only became more hypocritical when it was discovered that three years earlier, it refused to publish pictures from a similar experiment in which Jesus Christ would be mocked instead. Equating Islam’s most revered figure with terrorism only served to frustrate mainstream Muslims and retard their struggle to reverse the burden dropped on their shoulders by Islamic terrorists.

    Trent’s blog


    Vanessa Valenzuela/columnist

    I – and I’m sure a number of my fellow students – would like to title Trent the one-name man of the semester. Trent is behind the celebrity gossip Web site “”Pink is the New Blog”” and is the man we thank for having one more site to check while taking a “”break”” from homework, sitting bored in the newsroom or bumming around on the weekend. Day after day, Trent posts pictures and commentary of our favorite celebrities in an attempt to meet our disgustingly insatiable appetite for gossip and new fashion trends. This semester, Trent’s site has taken off and has earned mention in magazines, a spot on our favorites list and a place in our hearts.
    Along the same lines, I’d like to thank those who have discontinued the odd pairing of Ugg boots and skirts… if it’s cold enough to wear Uggs, it’s cold enough to wear pants.

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