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The Daily Wildcat

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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

    Mailbag

    Underwear photo not appropriate for front page

    I fully agree that photography is a very important aspect of the media today and that it can tell a story in itself, but Wednesday’s photograph of “”An intimate performance”” crossed the line of what should be acceptable on the front page of a highly regarded collegiate newspaper.ÿIt is very important for students to know what is happening on their campus and to be exposed to broad issues, but without any article to accompany the photograph, it is an unnecessary and offensive inclusion.ÿIt shows poor taste and mediocre editing.

    There are much more important issues to cover on the front page of the newspaper than showing a man in his underwear.ÿIs not the point of the newspaper to deliver news?ÿIf I wanted just pictures with no articles, I would buy a magazine.ÿ

    Andy Zimmerman
    computer engineering freshman

    Graff not involved in graduate student remission advocacy

    I am writing in response to Stephanie Hall’s article, “”Impasse stalls GPSC pullout: GPSC, ASUA leaders divided after vote,”” as well as Erin Hertzog’s recent guest commentary on the issue. I’m particularly disturbed by the Associated Students of the University of Arizona’s anxiety about relinquishing its nominal claim to represent graduate student issues. The constant refrain that “”one voice”” is somehow “”better”” for advocacy of student issues seems to be stated uncritically and is not backed up with any concrete reasoning. Why is one voice better? Can one voice truly claim to represent a student body as large and diverse as the UA? Simply stated, the concerns of undergraduate students and the concerns of graduate students are different. Graduate students are not simply undergrads who take advanced courses. The graduate students I talk with are concerned about paying their mortgage, raising their children, paying for health care, preventing the dreaded “”brain drain,”” completing work they can be proud of, increasing funding opportunities, decreasing workload and providing the best education they can to the undergrads they teach, among other things. Why is ASUA claiming that it can adequately represent these issues and the myriad issues facing undergraduates? It seems to me that having a strong and united organization working on undergraduate concerns and another working on graduate concerns actually strengthens student advocacy. And on those issues where undergraduates and graduates share concern (child care, for instance), having two voices advocating from two different but equally valid positions seems to only strengthen the argument.

    I also take issue with Ben Graff and Erin Hertzog’s claims that ASUA secured tuition remission for graduate assistants and teacher’s assistants. This claim is absurd. In May 2000, the University of Arizona Teaching Assistant Taskforce – made up of administrators, faculty and graduate students – named workload reduction and tuition remission as the top two concerns for graduate teaching assistants. Preceding and following the taskforce’s report, graduate students from the English department began speaking on these issues regularly at Arizona Board of Regents meetings – as early as February 2000. The English Graduate Union wrote letters to other graduate students around campus and around the state and organized more than 200 graduate students from UA, Arizona State University and Northern Arizona University to attend a board of regents meeting in spring 2001. Representatives from Graduate and Professional Student Council and EGU took the issue to the Legislature in Phoenix and met with Provost George Davis locally. Meanwhile, ASUA was silent – with the sole exception of Ben Graff, who at a board of regents meeting in September 2000 spoke at the call to the audience about TAs’ workload and suggested hiring more TAs. Obviously, this suggestion sidesteps the issue of pay and tuition remission.

    As a cumulative result of the taskforce and graduate student advocacy, in spring 2001 graduate students received 25 percent tuition remission and a pledge from the administration to continue to incrementally increase this remission. This school year the remission reached 70 percent. If Ben Graff attended a meeting about tuition remission with Jason Auxier and President Peter Likins, graduate students certainly appreciate his support of the issue. But other than his request to hire more TAs at one board of regents meeting and one meeting with Likins, Graff and ASUA were not key members in the negotiations and to claim otherwise is dishonest at the very least.

    Despite ASUA’s abysmal record in advocating for graduate students, Hertzog and Graff bemoan GPSC’s “”unwillingness”” to work with them. It seems that their real concern is consolidating power and resources and not advocating for graduate students.

    Amy Hamilton
    graduate student in English

    Christians, scientists truly at war

    I think everybody should stop badmouthing Janne Perona’s insightful column on the attack of Christianity. I have never seen a group of people as persecuted as the Christians. These studies do not offer facts, you see. No scientific statement is fact; they are all theories with no proof to back them up. On the other hand, I see the proof of our Lord all around us (computers, automobiles, Dirtbags’ $0.75 draught night, etc.) God created scientists and all they seem to do is deny him. Only one book in our society means anything, and it rhymes with jible. It’s the word of nerds versus the word of our Lord. Hate speech comes in a textbook, my friends. Jesus gave you everything, and this is how you repay him. You all should be ashamed of yourselves.

    Niall O’Connor
    UA alumnus

    Organs should go first to other donors

    In regard to your Wednesday article, “”Organ donor drive undershooting goal:”” About 60 percent of the organs transplanted in America go to people who haven’t agreed to donate their own organs when they die. As long as we let people who refuse to register as organ donors jump to the front of the waiting list if they need transplants, we’ll always have an organ shortage.

    There is a simple solution to the organ shortage – give organs first to people who have agreed to donate their own organs when they die.

    Giving organs first to organ donors will convince more people to register as organ donors. It will also make the organ allocation system fairer. People who aren’t willing to share the gift of life shouldn’t be eligible for transplants as long as there is a shortage of organs.

    Anyone who wants to donate his or her organs to others who have agreed to donate theirs can join LifeSharers. LifeSharers is a nonprofit network of organ donors who agree to offer their organs first to other organ donors when they die. They do this through a form of directed donation that is legal in all 50 states and under federal law. Anyone can join for free at www.lifesharers.org or by calling 1-888-ORGAN88.

    David J. Undis
    executive director, LifeSharers
    Nashville, Tenn.

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