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Letters to the Editor

Arizona Daily Wildcat
Monday Feb. 25, 2002

Divine expectations for the imperfect

Bishop Fulton Sheen, one of the greatest Catholic thinkers of the past century, was famous for making the distinction between what the Roman Catholic Church appears to be and what it truly is. Laura Winsky's commentary in the Feb. 18 issue of the Wildcat criticizes the Roman Catholic Diocese of Tucson for not having acted upon reports of child molestation. She makes the Church seem as though it were a perfect institution - one incapable of making mistakes. Perhaps she would benefit from some of Bishop Sheen's work. The Church in its everyday work will indeed make mistakes - that is expected, for we all know that as humans we will err (note that the Church does claim infallibility but only in matters of morality and faith).

The Diocese of Tucson admitted that it had done wrong, pledged to implement tougher measures to protect the dignity of every human person, and apologized to the victims, the families of the victims and the public abroad. Ms. Winsky never mentions this and failed to inform the public that the Church itself entered into the season of Lent recognizing that it had erred and wronged. The Church certainly regrets it, is paying for its mistakes and is looking to Jesus himself for its redemption.

Ms. Winsky defines Lent but her explanation is somewhat simplistic and perhaps misleading. Lent is not a season of service, but one of penitence. Lent, and the mark of the cross of Ash Wednesday, are both representative of a renewed commitment to Jesus Christ and an outward admission of our sinfulness. The Catholic Church, as Winsky herself proves, is indeed criticized and ridiculed often. This will probably never change. Its strong stances on abortion, sexuality and the sanctity of every human life make it a controversial institution. It will indeed make mistakes, but that is its very nature. The Church still stands today as it did on its day of founding, struggling to achieve an almost unreachable ideal - striving somewhere between the human and the divine. The mistakes and sinfulness of its people are expected. Catholics are indeed ashamed - and that's a good thing. The Church has learned from its mistakes and, regardless of whether or not those mistakes are scandalized and put on the front page of every newspaper, the Church's mission to spread the good news of a perfect man who we, the imperfect, strive to be like will continue unhindered.
Robert Garcia - undeclared sophomore

Comic criticism shows 'lack of reality'

This letter is a response to Kimmey Hardesty's harsh criticism of the Feb. 14 edition of the "Blueballs" comic. It is my opinion that Ms. Hardesty's letter shows a complete lack of reality. Hardesty mentions that the squirrel monkey (or the Saimiri sciureus) depicted is an "otherwise innocent non-human primate species." Now I believe she has fallen into anthropomorphizing - or attaching human characteristics to - this monkey.

Now, to be innocent, or guilty as is also implied, strongly suggests very human motives and actions. The squirrel monkey is, as Ms. Hardesty says, a non-human primate, thus it cannot be an innocent monkey. It can only be a monkey, as is depicted in the comic.

On this very same note, she also labels the monkey as engaged "insidiously in sexual behavior(s)." Seeking to define insidious I opened the dictionary that is conveniently placed by my computer. Insidious is defined as "operating stealthily with evil effect." Again, the same problem is encountered. Stealth and evil, both being applied to this monkey, are human qualities. Also, I have never known an animal to be stealthy or act evil in its attempt to mate. Animals just do it, fornicate, have sex, or, if you will, tap a little "A."

This also is depicted in the comic.

So then, I ask, what is wrong with the "Blueballs" comic? I merely depict a monkey as it is in nature, performing an act of nature. Who should rise in protest against that? Is nature immoral? Can nature be immoral?

Now all of the above brings me to Ms. Hardesty's skewed perspective on Valentine's Day. To say it is a day to express admiration, love and praise between lovers is a pretty euphemism that serves two institutions quite well, Hallmark and Man. Humans, as good capitalist tools, buy cards, candy and other such crap from Hallmark. Hallmark's cards, candy, etc. make it is easier to get into the pants of, unhook the bra of, grope, and tap a little "A" of every girlfriend, wife or fling.

Like the monkeys in the comic, on Valentine's Day, men, like animals, just simply want to fornicate. It just happens to be much easier on that one day. The "Blueballs" comic portrays this with great accuracy.
Devin Miller (who fornicated like a monkey on V-Day) - humanities freshman

Demand the demise of inflated bureaucracy

Like many others, I am outraged at the implications of impending budget cuts. Mismanagement of state revenues and poor policy-making at the state level directly compromising the quality of my education really pisses me off. As infuriating as this may be, what really pisses me off is the fact that attempts at restructuring our faculty and staff, as well as slimming down the budget, are both inept and ass-backwards. Instead of cutting the seemingly obvious positions held by part-time employees and instructors, cuts should be made to the ever increasing, swollen bureaucracy which plagues our university. Aside from scaling down the overpaid administrators, the elimination of nonessential personnel should be first on the ol' chopping block. Who are the nonessential personnel? If you are not involved in campus maintenance or teaching a class, you are nonessential. Obviously, we also need some administrators. But the administration must be entirely streamlined and as limited as possible.

Maybe you haven't noticed, but I have. In addition to the construction of the new student union, the ILC, and the consumption of various parking lots for unspecified purposes, we recently gained a Strategic Alternative Learning Techniques Center. The Learning Services Center is also on its way. It would seem to me that these two buildings, and the future employees that will occupy them, are draining away money that could be put to better use. Quite honestly, I believe that if you don't have a technique for learning by now, you are not a student, and have no place on a college campus (unless you are cleaning up the place, of course): I understand that certain disabilities require accommodations, but I argue that these accommodations should be extended only within reason. I have considered writing the Daily Wildcat concerning many issues, but there is no other issue more important than the quality of our education and the way our university is operated. I urge everyone to observe the over-inflated bureaucracy around us and demand its overdue demise.
Joseph J. De La Rosa - history junior

Focus on real campus crime

I feel sympathy for the victims of University of Arizona parking garage thieves. It must really suck to come back to your car after class and find it ransacked. Last Friday's Arizona Daily Wildcat coverage of the increase in parking garage crime these past two months left me wondering why UAPD officers aren't working harder to protect the property of UA students.Maybe your car isn't safe because UA cops are spending so much effort chasing down campus skateboarders. In the last two weeks, I've been scolded three times by university authorities for skating. Just yesterday, a UAPD motorcycle officer took the time to track me down (he was driving all over the place looking for me) and run my I.D. for warrants since I had committed the heinous act of skating outside the library. Not grinding benches or the Integrated Learning Center ledges, mind you. I hadn't destroyed any university property. I was just poppin' a few ollies and ridin' a piece of plywood set against a wall. What a sin against humanity. Apparently, university regulations allow skating from class to class, but forbid doing tricks because of potential liability. Let me assure you, all those little pebbles and stones strewn across the concrete on the east end of the Mall make me fall twice as often as attempting any trick on my board. I think it's ridiculous for UA to make a distinction between just rolling around and tricking. For most of the goofball poser longboarders on this campus, just rolling down the Mall is a trick in itself. What if the curbcut is crowded and I ollie up it instead? I'm still just skating to class. What's next? Walking will be allowed, but not skipping? I think UA should provide a waiver absolving the school of all responsibility in case of injury, and then leave skaters alone and focus on real problems like students' cars being broken into. UAPD should get its priorities straight. Skateboarding is not a crime.
Michael Lewis - linguistics senior

Grade inflation 'merges' academic standards

I whole-heartedly agree with Rachel Williamson's article on grade-inflation published in the Daily Wildcat on Tuesday. I have always been told that a 'D' grade means below average, a 'C' grade means average, a 'B' above average, and an 'A' excellent. Yet, I have found that this is obviously not the case. If this were true, then the average GPA on campus would be very close to 2.0, which is a 'C' average. Yet, this is not true, as Rachel Williamson pointed out. By having an average GPA closer to one end, the scale means less and less because there is less room to separate students on that side of the scale. This merges students that are not necessarily similar in their academic achievements. If this continues, what is next, will there be no difference between UA and ASU?
Matt Behrens - electrical engineering freshman


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