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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

    Columnist showdown

    Vanessa Valenzuelacolumnist
    Vanessa Valenzuela
    columnist

    Should the state fund bilingual or ESL programs for Spanish speakers in primary and secondary public schools?

    Mike Morefield: Absolutely. ESL programs are necessary to help our already weak public school system. The students in ESL programs are trying hard just to get to the level of their fellow classmates, because they are usually far behind because of their language obstacle. The nativist idea of “”English only”” is punishing people who had no choice to not have English in their homes. These students must become productive members of society, and as such, we are obligated to provide them with a program to help them reach that goal.

    Vanessa Valenzuela: Yes. It is important to distinguish between the issues surrounding illegal immigration and the issues surrounding legal immigrants. For Spanish-speaking children, getting an education is the best way to realize some of the social mobility upon which America prides itself. If we don’t provide bilingual education, they will get less and less from school, which will only serve to further isolate them from the rest of the community. I have a feeling that the same people who don’t want us to provide bilingual programs complain that Spanish speakers are cut off from the rest of society.

    Janne Perona: No. I have seen ESL programs in action, and they only cause kids to get farther and farther behind in their studies. Bilingual education is great in theory but disgraceful in practice. When people immigrate to a country, they are expected to learn the dominant language of that country. If you go to Germany, you would learn German; in the U.S., that means learning English. English immersion, when done well, works fantastically – our tax dollars would be better spent on that type of program than ESL or bilingual education.

    Do you think schools should be forced to allow military recruiters on campus?

    Mike Morefield: Yes. Schools cannot speak for their entire communities. Although some may not agree with its policies or ideas, there may be many that support the military, and universities would be doing them a great disservice by preventing military representatives on campus. A military career can be extremely beneficial to the growth of a person, with good benefits and a certain amount of stability and structure. Law students have the ability to enter into the JAG corps, be protected from the flooded attorney market and gain experience well above that of most of their peers. Hoorah.

    Vanessa Valenzuela: Yes. Universities trying to take federal money without allowing federal recruiters on campus are like Quebec trying to secede from Canada, but take its money along. You just can’t expect the benefits without the costs. Private universities can make their political statements, but if you take federal money, you can’t. Don’t bite the hand that feeds you.

    Janne Perona: No. The law schools that initiated the move to bar recruiters from campus belong to the Association of American Law Schools, an organization with strict rules for membership – one of which requires a nondiscriminatory policy regarding sexual orientation. The military, with its “”Don’t ask, don’t tell”” policy, discriminates against homosexuals. While it has that prerogative, the school should have the prerogative to remove discriminating employers. Just as the public would expect them to remove racially discriminatory employers, so they should be able to restrict access to sexually discriminatory employers.

    How long should Hassan Adams have been suspended from the men’s basketball team for following his DUI arrest?

    Mike Morefield: No time at all. The courts will punish him enough. He is subject to a hefty fine, court fees and possibly jail time. Drunk driving is a serious offense, for the simple reason that a person driving drunk is in control of a 2,000-pound weapon, but not in control of himself. But it is not the job of the NCAA to act as parents or the government. If Adams played drunk, the NCAA should have jurisdiction, but it shouldn’t off the court. Let the man play; it may be the only happy thing he’ll remember during lockup.

    Vanessa Valenzuela: His current punishment is about right. Adams has brought a stain to the reputation of the university, and clearly he has not shown he is of good character. For Lute Olson and Jim Livengood to keep their best player out of a tournament that may determine if they make the NCAA Tournament shows that character matters to them. Allowing him back for the NCAA Tournament doesn’t tarnish their commitment to good behavior. Adams will not go unpunished; he is bound to face significant consequences personally and professionally as an NBA hopeful.

    Janne Perona: He should be out for the rest of the season. Basketball players are not above the law, and should be punished accordingly. Adams should have had more respect for himself, his coach and his team than to be so reckless as to drink and drive. Tangentially, UA basketball players are role models to the community, especially young boys. Whether they like it or not, they have an image to uphold; the standards of Arizona Athletics depend on it. As Nat King Cole would say, straighten up and fly right. Or else be prepared to face the consequences.

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