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Arizona Daily Wildcat
Thursday, September 4, 2003

UA should be proud of Chávez building name

I applaud President Likins for naming the Economics building after UFW leader César Chávez. Chávez is more than a historical figure ų his impact on UA students is immeasurable. Look around. Minorities, women and first-generation students today are seeking to improve their lives and their communities through higher education. Along the way they were motivated by heroes ų namely Chávez, who had a way of inspiring us all with his humility, intellect, resolve and profound compassion. His tireless drive to improve human rights, civil rights and environmental protection transcended his work with impoverished and unprotected agricultural workers. As a society we have all gained from his ideals.

Critics of the name change prefer that campus buildings be named after deep-pocket contributors, ex-presidents or faculty. That narrow policy can lead to embarrassing consequences. In 1993, the UA and Regents named a building after Kemper Marley, a land and liquor magnate once linked to organized crime. Marley's estate gave $6 million to house the College of Agriculture. Surprisingly, no one protested that dedication.

According to news stories and editorials published in the Arizona Daily Star between 1992 and 1993, it was reported that Maricopa County prosecutors believed Marley ordered the car-bombing death of Arizona Republic investigative reporter Don Bolles in 1976. The Investigative Reporters and Editors Inc., a national team of investigative reporters, also linked Marley to organized crime figures in published articles.

The Regents' policy allows buildings named after those who "contribute in exceptional ways ∑ to the community in general." Chávez did.

Today we have a new president and a new Board and along with them we have a greater concern for increasing minority representation on campus. As Chávez would say: "Si, Se Puede! (Yes, it can be done)" That's what I learned from Chávez in the years that I covered him as a reporter and when I later mourned him at his funeral on April 29, 1993. I was in that march of 35,000 people and I witnessed firsthand what he wanted us to see. Like his mentors ų Mohandas Gandhi, the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and others ų we are all in the same fight, the fight for equality and fairness.

Those who would disagree or question Chávez's honor should learn more about him and join us as we proudly step up to the plate to honor one of our own.

Olga BriseĖo adjunct
journalism instructor


Tucson police should focus on real crime

This letter is in response to the Gestapo-type raids that have been enacted by the Tucson Police Department to combat the horrible scourge of underage drinking. I just really want to thank the Tucson Police Department for undertaking this dire mission because it really helps the community around the UA. I mean robbery, murder and assault are bad crimes, but underage drinking has to top the list as one of the most harmful crimes affecting our community. Forget the drug problem and illegal immigration, for that matter.

There are kids under 21 that are drinking alcohol in a college-type setting as we speak! The city of Tucson has never had to deal with this problem before, and TPD is really helping our community by responding to the scene of a harmless party with helicopters, paddy wagons and multiple branches of the law enforcement agencies of Tucson.

In case you haven't caught on right now, I'm being sarcastic. Why doesn't the Tucson Police Department solve some actual crimes that affect our community in a significant way instead of trying to make headlines and wasting countless taxpayer dollars? I guess I would want to respond to the scene of a party rather then deal with a domestic disturbance call between two knife-wielding transvestites. The only thing that TPD is preventing with these ridiculous raids is Suzy P. Coed from having a hangover in the morning. And as for the resident assistants, honor students and geriatrics trying to get some sleep at 8 p.m. on Thursday night, buy some ear plugs this year because I am going to be waving a beer in your face and playing music as loud as possible while my friend pukes on your doorstep. Prohibition is not going to work here at the UA, so please stop with the self-righteous columns in this newspaper about not drinking.

Kyle Booen
pre-pharmacy sophmore


Pride of Arizona needs to improve music, show

I witnessed the worst halftime show in the history of marching bands last Saturday night at the halftime of the UTEP game. I always thought that the marching band was a real "buzzkill," and that halftime show proved my point.

The band performed for at most six minutes and left 13 minutes for the fans to go to the food lines and bathrooms. What a tremendous show! Everyone in my section was dumfounded by the performance ų or lack thereof. (Original composition. No one cares.)

On numerous occasions including last Saturday night, the football team has been playing a good game and the band has come on at the half and just put the crowd to sleep.

What a waste. All that energy waiting to be released, and we are treated to the "nation's largest alternative marching band."

The powers that be need to take a serious look at the band and its performances.

A great halftime show would go a long way to making the people in attendance more enthusiastic, but as it now stands the band simply "marches to the beat of a different drummer," and who knows who that drummer might be?

It's time that the band became a real marching band and quit trying to be an "alternative" band. It's a shame that the good fans of Arizona football have to be exposed to such a lousy band, but until a change is made, "buzzkill" is the word for their performance. Jon Fast
fan of Wildcat football


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