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Arizona Daily Wildcat
Friday, April 16, 2004
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Wildcat shows need for affirmative action

While I'm sure scores of young bleeding-heart liberals were enduring the heat and fallacies in order to argue with the College Republicans about their anti-affirmative action bake-sale, it was left to the editors of the Daily Wildcat to make the best counter-argument of all: running a story about the bake sale side by side on the front page with a column about gender discrimination on our very own campus ("Tenure at UA harder for women to achieve"). Maybe since the College Republicans were gracious enough to give us all free cookies in the name of perpetuating things like a lack of female professors at our university, we could pay them back by running a book fair on the Mall the next time we see them out there, selling things like the Harvard Graduate School of Education's study (of course, College Republicans, you all will receive a discount!). After everyone sees that front page, it's going to be pretty apparent that the College Republicans could stand to read a little more about inequality and discrimination in our society before they hit their E-Z Bake Ovens to make a political statement. Ryan Lang
senior majoring in English and sociology

College Republicans 'just making it worse'

College Republicans say that they are offended by affirmative action; well, I am offended by white supremacy. "White supremacy" is an ugly term. It is synonymous with all sorts of nasty things - genocide, burning crosses, apartheid. It's also synonymous with white privilege. Like it or not, we live in a society where white men are afforded a whole spectrum of privileges not offered to everyone else. These privileges range from not being followed around in convenience stores because you are thought of as a shoplifting threat, to the quality of your K-12 education. The United States is more segregated today than ever before. Detroit is now the most segregated city in the history of the United States. To think that this does not affect everyone's chances in life is ludicrous. While the majority of white people go to cushy suburban schools, where there are things like computers and less than 40 people in a class room, try going to a high school in one of the highly segregated urban areas and see what the conditions are there. To claim that everyone has equal access to the benefits of this society is not only wrong; it's a malicious lie.

To the argument that affirmative action promotes racism, I say: nonsense. While it may certainly involve a certain amount of prejudice, it does not involve racism. Racism is a concept that involves the combination of prejudice plus power. In this country, people of color and women do not have access to power the way white men do (regardless of their economic standing), and thus are incapable of racism, because they do not have a way to make phenomena act in a desired manner the way white men do. Until the playing field is truly leveled and all people - white, people of color, women, homosexuals - have true self-determination, we cannot afford to ignore the grave inequalities that surround us. By claiming that we live in a truly nonracist, nonsexist society, College Republicans are just making it worse.

Patrick Bigger
geography junior

College Republicans should get own ideas

According to the Wildcat, the "College Republicans tried to cook up some controversy yesterday, holding a bake sale to protest affirmative action." It's too bad that controversy was already cooked. Last September CNN covered the affirmative action bake sale held by Southern Methodist University, ironically also setting their prices at $1 for white males, 75 cents for white females, 50 cents for Hispanics, and 25 cents for African-Americans. Additional schools, including the University of Washington and Northwestern University, have also held affirmative action bake sales. The bake sale successfully demonstrated the notion that affirmative action is discrimination, but a point that was already made months ago by various universities. Perhaps next political demonstration executed by the UA College Republicans will be an event not yet covered in national news.

Julie Augenstein
speech and hearing sciences sophomore

Incomplete message sent from Republicans

The College Republicans' affirmative action bake sale should be applauded for its fair prices, but the political message is incomplete. They forgot a few crucial bits of information: From the beginning, the white males generally have horded all the recipes as intellectual property; owned all the ingredients, the cookie sheets, the ovens, cooling racks and the cookie jars; controlled the flow of cookies to eager hands while eating the majority of each batch themselves and systematically and institutionally made it difficult for other groups to bake their own cookies. In essence, white males in general have created the crisis of democracy that affirmative action seeks to address - the wide divide between those who own the means of making cookies and those who don't (if you follow this silly metaphor). Bravo to the College Republicans for getting the prices right; the application, on the other hand, needs work.

Brian Jackson
rhetoric and composition graduate student

Females should not try to emulate Nietzsche, the Nazi sympathizer

I found Susan Bonicillo's column, "Gadfly in Training: Mending the Rift," to be quite ironic. She concludes her commentary on the perpetual animosity between greeks and nongreeks by proposing a club that requires one to "quote Nietzsche." Friedrich Nietzsche, the German philosopher, is hardly someone for a female minority to wish to emulate. Nietzsche was a Nazi sympathizer, and a renowned misogynist. After all, it was Nietzsche who said: "When a woman becomes a scholar there is usually something wrong with her sexual organs." So, Susan, remind me, why are you such a Nietzsche fan?

Jack Robbins
UA alumnus

Media coverage fails to tell full story on Sharon and Gaza Strip

The recent media coverage of Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon's proposal to pull out of Gaza has failed to point out a number of key facts. While Sharon is proposing pulling out of settlements in Gaza, he has said that Israel will maintain a "security corridor between Gaza and Egypt." Additionally, he has said that he will not allow the people of Gaza to rebuild their airport or open a commercial port. The effect of these steps will be to make Gaza into more of a prison than it is now. Until now there has been limited traffic and trade between Gaza and Israel, but the withdrawal plan will solidify the borders, making Gaza a ghetto in which Israel can intern all who she considers undesirable.

In return for giving up illegal settlements, which is a fundamental step in any peace plan, Sharon has won the support of the Bush administration for keeping other settlements. This is the first time that a U.S. president has expressed support for Israeli colonial policy and flies in the face of both international justice and international consensus. While giving up Gaza settlements is a good thing, it should not be viewed outside of the context of Israel's overall plan of colonizing Palestinian land: a plan that is morally and legally corrupt.

Joel Saylor
geosciences graduate student

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