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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


Mailbag: Sept. 17

Hope in the sky counters ‘doom’ on the ground

The stance the “”Doom in the sky”” commentary (Sept. 15) takes on border regulation seems to promote border safety by looking away from the daily shipments of methamphetamines, cocaine, heroin and other dangerous drugs. After all, now that border violence rates have decreased “”30 percent since 1990,”” we can now stop worrying about anything coming across our borders that may harm our citizens anytime soon and downsize all border enforcement agencies, right?

Wrong. According to OSAC, in 2008 Nogales suffered 176 murders. That is 176 murders for approximately 21,000 people. Compare that number to that of Phoenix, a city known as a kidnapping capital: 241 murders per 1.4 million residents. Does anybody else find it alarming that these figures are after a 30 percent decline that the commentary states?

So let’s tie this into the argument that we are militarizing our borders by increasing the size of our surveillance drones on the border to six. These predators are unarmed except for very expensive cameras that can detect heat signatures of drug runners from miles away, not unlike every major metropolitan city’s police department’s helicopters. Comparing surveillance drones to armed ones used in Afghanistan is like comparing an Apache Longbow that can carry up to 16 hellfire missiles to a police helicopter armed with a spotlight; it just doesn’t add up. Historically, civilians and law enforcement have continually adopted tools from the military; this is not militarization, this is evolution.

As for the predators being an ill-suited tool for the war in Afghanistan and Pakistan, the commentary couldn’t be more wrong. The loss of innocent lives is a terrible reality of war, but keep in mind that for decades the amount of collateral damage incurred in battle has been declining, thanks to smart technology such as predator drones and hellfire missiles. Thanks to this technology, we see no more atrocities like we saw in World War II such as the fire-bombings of Dresden and Tokyo. If we did not have this technology, civilian casualties could be ten times the 600 lost in recent times.

Thomas Jefferson once said, “”The price of freedom is eternal vigilance.”” Whether we are talking about our borders or our enemies over seas, vigilance needs to be applied. Just because things are getting better, it does not mean we should let up. Drones are a useful tool in both the war on terror abroad and the war on drugs in our homes.

– Jay Fielder, operations management junior

Some work out for reasons other than weight loss

I am writing this to inform the Daily Wildcat of how dissatisfied I have been with the column entitled “”Letters from Mal.”” The foundation of this column seems to be centered on over-analyzing situations and unnecessarily criticizing persons with whom the writer isn’t even acquainted. Particularly, I am staggered by the blatant ignorance demonstrated by Thursday’s article about the skinny girl at the Rec. The barefaced over-analysis of the situation is appalling to me. 

Losing weight is not the only reason to go to the gym; some people merely want to get in shape. Please keep in mind that there is a huge difference between being thin and being in shape. For example, I am a size two and I couldn’t run an eighth of a mile without keeling over from cramps. I am out of shape. There is absolutely nothing wrong with being a size two and working out to maintain muscle tone and endurance. Mallory even admits that the girl is on the machine much longer than she is herself. Is it so hard to believe that there are other approaches to exercise besides those that burn the most calories?  

My point is this: All gym-goers do not have a universal goal of losing weight, and it is ignorant to think so. More importantly, the column in general focuses too much on the affairs of others.  It is so much easier to focus on the good experiences in your life than to brood over the negligibly irksome actions and lifestyles of those around you.

– Jessica Cleveland, veterinary science senior


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