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Letters to the Editor


Tuesday September 11, 2001

ASUA response to escort service controversy

There are issues that have been heavily debated by ASUA in the last few weeks, primarily regarding safety on campus and the current state of the escort service. It is true that last week the ASUA senate approved a budget decreasing the money allocated to the operations of the escort service by approximately $12,000. However, Mr. Kirchner's comments lead us to believe that the reasons for this change remain ambiguous to a large portion of the student population.

What may not be evident is that the decrease in the Escort Service's budget allocation and the increase in monies allocated to club funding are in no way meant to hamper the Escort Service operations or to indicate a decreased emphasis on the importance of campus safety. The ASUA budget was restructured this year due to a number of factors, the first of which being that last year a great deal of the funds allotted to the Escort Service went unspent. As the fiscal year 2000-01 closed, funds were encumbered in the Escort Service account while club funding was descending into the red.

The ASUA 2001-02 budget was designed to prevent this problem from recurring. Funds were allocated to the Escort Service in excess of what was spent last year, but the amount of money in the Escort Service account was decreased in an effort to prevent funds from being unused at the year's close. The major concern with this action appears to be a fear that the funding decrease will restrict efforts to extend escort service hours and boundaries.

While many senators are working towards providing services that will transport students beyond the escort service hours and boundaries, standards are currently imposed by University Risk Management limiting ASUA Safe Ride's abilities on and off campus. Should the university change its current policies, the senate has the ability to transfer funds into the Escort Service. Based upon historical data, the Escort Service funding is believed to be more than enough to operate efficiently by the service's new director and the majority of your student representatives. If you have questions or concerns, please contact one of the following individuals or come by the ASUA office above the new bookstore.

Collective letter

ASUA senate and executive board

Pedestrian harassed by police

Two Wednesdays ago, I was walking in the Fourth Street gutter, which runs alongside the physics building. My intent was to avoid the other pedestrians, bicyclists and skateboarders on the sidewalk, but I was soon told by a peace officer to, "Get on the sidewalk!" When I did not immediately move to the sidewalk, I was stopped and ordered to walk on the sidewalk. I obeyed (not wanting to pay a ticket or to be placed under arrest).

After deliberate thought, I could not determine if I was stopped for walking in the gutter or for failing to quickly obey an officer. Being ignorant of the law, I decided to do a little research. Title 28-796 of the Arizona Revised Statutes states, "If sidewalks are provided, a pedestrian shall not walk along and on an adjacent roadway." And Title 28-622 indicates that a person who fails to comply with a police officer is guilty of a class 2 misdemeanor.

In addition to my legal responsibilities, I discovered a popular approach to criminal justice called the "broken windows theory." Its application includes aggressive misdemeanor arrests, intensive stops and frisks.

If our local police departments have implemented a similar approach, I sincerely hope that they advertise their philosophy (patrol cars now have "partners with our community" inscribed on them) and enforce the law with utmost vigilance.

As a student, I am very thankful for this learning experience. I now know what to consider each time I choose not to walk on a sidewalk.

Ryan Fetter

mathematics education senior

Haley family should not sue Phi Delt

While James Haley's death was a tragedy in itself, his parents have made it more so by filing suit against the Phi Delt fraternity. According to Thursday's Wildcat, the Haley's are suing the fraternity because he was pressured by fraternity members to drink during rush activities.

This is an action completely uncalled for. No matter how much he was pressured, (and I'm sure he was pressured) Haley could've walked away at anytime. He could have made a more responsible choice and not driven. He could have at least worn a helmet when he drove. Though the house should not have pressured him, the ultimate decision lay with Haley.

And though his decision turned fatal, it was a decision that was his alone. To sue the fraternity is an action that is uncalled for and flat-out wrong. Haley made the final decisions, not Phi Delta. To punish them would be severely unjust. And while I pledge no allegiance to any fraternity, to see justice subverted is a tragedy in itself. If the Haleys file and win, it will be the second tragedy and injustice induced by this incident.

Nathan T. Doyel

political science junior


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