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Arizona Daily Wildcat
Monday, February 21, 2005
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Police should have arrested Smock

Besides that I was incredibly offended by Jed Smock's "sermon" on Feb. 14, there is nothing more aggravating than reading how the police decided not to press charges on someone who clearly spat racist, hateful slander toward anyone willing to listen to him. It disturbed me even more to see this asshole the very next day in the same location continuing to do the same thing. But what surprises me even more is that students sit around and listen to the crap spewing from his mouth. I understand some are just so baffled by the statements he makes that they stand and listen to see what Smock will say next. But if no one sits around and gives him an audience, maybe he will go away. Be the bigger person and leave. Now, if you'll excuse me I have to go back to my bagel-making factory because, apparently, this is all I am good for since I am a Jew.

Eric Gitenstein
pre-physiology senior

Woman wrong for taking evangelist's briefcase

Monday there was quite a gathering around the Alumni Plaza. This is not something you expect when you hear the loud proclamations of a man preaching. The gathering was there because a student decided to take her own actions. She wanted a discourse with the preacher to talk about his views, since she did not support President Bush. So what did she do to get her dialogue? She did not talk rationally. She did not walk 10 feet away and preach her own philosophies. Instead she stole the man's briefcase.

This action is a prime example of hypocrisy in campus politics. She didn't like what the man was saying so she stole from him. She wanted a serious dialog but went through childish methods to attempt to get it. Her actions were detrimental to her goals. So I can only expect that she didn't really want a dialogue; she just wanted attention.

The man preaching had a right to free speech. The girl violated that right by stealing from him. She wanted to speak, but her only method of doing so was to take away that right from those who disagreed with her.

This action is frighteningly similar with how others who disagree with conservative views voice their opinions. Most of us remember Mr. Moore coming and the vocal protests from portions of the crowd. This did not infringe on his freedom of speech because they were only words. Yet when Ann Coulter came to campus she was not met with organized vocal protest, but with pies.

The people who disagree with the conservatives are only showing that they are not deserving of a dialogue because they resort to theft and pie throwing. When they really want a dialogue, they should mature and earn the respect of their opponents.

Jayson Auterino
political science and creative writing junior

Wildcat wrong for publishing 'butt shorts' letter

I am deeply offended with Nik Turner and the Arizona Daily Wildcat. First, Nik Turner's letter about women being too heavy at the UA is not only inappropriate, but hurtful. I would like to think that we live in a world where people are judged not on the size of their bodies but on the content of their character. That being said, the ladies at the UA are lovely in both body and mind. Mr. Turner is clearly a man who didn't do well with women in college and is still experiencing this phenomenon in his post-college career. A little advice for Mr. Turner: Show women the same admiration you show yourself. Second, the Wildcat should be ashamed for publishing such a sorry piece of writing. The Wildcat cannot seem to write anything interesting or provocative to make people think so they regress into printing offensive material to mask a lack of intellectual curiosity. Nik Turner operates at a lower standard and we as students, and alumni in my case, can't do anything about it. We can, however, demand more from our journalists who rely on school funds to operate. The Wildcat used my tuition dollars when I went to school at the UA, and I hope they will use that money more wisely in the future. Ove Mard

Gay marriage not part of Bible or Constitution

I'm sick of hearing liberals pointing fingers at Bush for mixing church and state in regard to his feelings about gay marriage. Marriage is just as much a legal issue as it is a religious one. Regardless of your religion, your marriage still needs to be recognized in city hall.

John Hancock and our founding fathers did not sign the Constitution so that men could marry other men. They would be ashamed of the state of the nation and what people are willing to tolerate these days. People think it's OK for a man to dress and act like a woman, but it's not OK for a kid to say a prayer in public school? It's ridiculous.

Gays make up 2 percent of our nation's population. We should change hundreds of years of laws and traditions because it doesn't suit 2 percent of our population? What if every small sect of people got together and found out laws that didn't suit them? What if all the drug dealers and kid touchers banded together to abolish drug- and sex-related laws? It's the same principle.

Now to bring the Bible into it: It was Adam and Eve, not Adam and Steve.

Rob Monteleone
media arts junior

Women shouldn't have to worry about looks

So, Nik Turner has a problem with the girls on this campus. It is so easy to be a critic, isn't it? It is the views of people like this that lead young women to develop an eating disorder. The women of this country have spent countless hours trying to obtain an unattainable level of beauty, and if it were not for men like Mr. Turner, this would not be the norm. So I say thank you, Nik Turner. Thank you for cracking the whip. Somebody has to do it. We know damn well the girls at the UA can't do it themselves. Love, live double standards!

Niall O'Connor

"Butt shorts" letter sexist

As someone who has seen and experienced the damage poor body image can do to a young woman's psyche, I will spare but three words for Mr. Nik "God Bless Butt-Shorts" Turner: What an asshole!

Jen Whitcomb
theatre arts sophomore

Body image problems damaging to women

I'm writing in response to Nik Turner's letter that blatantly claimed that "girls on this campus are letting themselves go" and that they should "work out more." If this letter was intended to encourage the ladies of the UA to frequent the gym more regularly, it failed miserably. What it did do was contribute to the barrage of negative comments regarding female body image that pervade our society, many of which result in serious psychological and physical disorders such as anorexia nervosa and bulimia.

Additionally, anyone who is ashamed to call themselves a Wildcat because the female student population fails to look fabulous in "butt shorts" is clearly at the wrong university for the wrong reasons. "What, like education is a priority?" I'm going out on a limb here, but I'm pretty sure that the women of the UA are here to cultivate their minds. I know that I am. I came to this university to develop intellectually, not physically. If my ultimate goal in life was to look great in "butt shorts," I would have spent my college tuition funds on a gym membership and a personal trainer.

Tiffany Brown
sophmore majoring in English and creative writing

New Bush still screwing America

As a disenchanted Kerry supporter, I was actually pleased to see the new Bush that emerged after the election. Instead of focusing on invading other countries, he now seemed dedicated to fixing Social Security (so much so that he has even spoke of raising taxes). I was also pleased to see a gay prostitute in the white house.

However, despite his best efforts, George W. Bush's ugly horns have once again began to shine. This last week, Bush signed a bill into law making class-action lawsuits illegal. For those of you who are unfamiliar with what a class-action lawsuit is, it's a lawsuit filed by a large group of people against a company. Examples of this include the Wal-Mart sexual discrimination lawsuit, Erin Brokovich's legendary environmental lawsuit and the impending Vioxx lawsuit.

As a result, Bush has once again favored big business over people. While I myself am entirely against frivolous lawsuits, most class-action suits do not fall under the "frivolous" category. In fact, Bush himself said that the reason why he was signing this into law is that judges are too friendly to people in the suits. That hardly seems frivolous.

Bush has left big business unaccountable for whatever it is they do. If this law were in effect five years ago, Wal-Mart would have gotten away with sexual discrimination, Vioxx could have gotten away with causing heart attacks, and people all over California would still be getting cancer.

How can Bush claim to care more about the people of this country than business if he keeps making laws like these? To all the young Republicans out there, I sincerely hope you never get hurt or wronged by a big business. While it is still possible to sue them, he has made it harder for uneducated people to join in on the suits.

Congratulations, Mr. President, you have once again screwed the people of this country.

Josh Garber
economics junior

Social Security plan doesn't withstand criticism

Any plan must be thoroughly picked apart and put back together in order to see if it is indeed the best plan out there. That is why healthy criticism is important. When the supposed plan fails to stand up to such criticism, then it's obviously not the best out there. President Bush's plan to "save" Social Security does not stand tall. In his plan, the fix actually ends up being worse than the supposed "crisis" out there. The president's plan decreases the amount of benefits a worker receives even more so than the supposed crisis. According to the Congressional Budget Office, a worker gets more without any change at all! This contrasts with the days preceding the SOTU, when the president and his staffers were everywhere in the media discussing this "crisis" and how we're essentially doomed. Sound familiar? Iraq? WMD? Well that's a whole other can of tuna right there.

Additionally, Mr. Seat might want to have his hearing checked. On the recent news report, I said we should consider raising the age and it's something to look into. One can look into something then throw it out. I'm sure we've all done it with an essay, or a letter to the editor.

Furthermore, to say that not dealing with this "crisis" only harms us and makes us pay for it and how Democrats continually spend their money on useless pork, is downright ludicrous and hypocritical. Yes, there's Democratic pork, but "shock and awe," there's Republican pork as well. In fact, it seems as if this president has never found a spending bill he hasn't liked, as seen when he has never vetoed anything. Under this president, our budget surplus has transformed into a tremendous budget deficit; that only leaves us to pay for it. In fact I saw a bumper sticker I liked recently: "Annoy a conservative: think, care, and balance the budget."

Alicia Cybulski
political science senior

Others more hated than white Christian males

In the Feb. 16th Letters section, Mr. Justin Kunzelmann claims that "by far the most hated person on the face of the earth is the white, Christian American male". The evidence stands against you on this one, Justin. Women in Mexico (including Americans) are being hunted by serial killers for the crime of being young and pretty (ask Amnesty International; there are hundreds dead or missing on the border, while American and Mexican police ignore the issue). "Enemy combatants," some of them Americans, are being imprisoned and tortured (sometimes without charges) in open violation of the Geneva convention, stripped of their rights to trials and charges because they are not protected by either American or international law. Latinos below the poverty line are breaking their backs working everywhere from the ranches of Nebraska to the coca fields of Columbia, often under threat and coercion, without adequate compensation and with no regard for their health, well-being or family. Israelis - Jewish, Christian and Muslim - are being murdered by terrorists. In sick twists of extremism, Christians, Muslims and Jews are sometimes terrorized not only by others, but by their own people. Lebanese Christians are being tortured, raped, mutilated and murdered by occupying Syrian forces. Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin was assassinated by extremist Jews while on the verge of reaching a peace agreement with the Palestinians, and current Prime Mister Ariel Sharon is receiving similar threats. Israeli Jews are suffering permanent brain injury and sometimes death from large rocks thrown at their heads by Palestinians, a practice often dismissed by American media as the innocent throwing of pebbles by children. Arabs (Christian and Muslim) are being murdered or held without charges by their governments for dissent. You are not the most hated person on the face of the earth, Mr. Kunzelmann, and I would imagine that many of the world's most hated people - your Christian brethren in Lebanon, to name one example - would not hesitate for a second to switch places with you. Please rethink your philosophy that there is no worse lot in life than being a white, Christian, American male.

Aaron Dimsdale
undeclared freshman

History will call Iraq a failure

Republicans are now pointing to the recent Iraqi elections as justification for the Iraq war and the consequent death and disablement of so many American soldiers and innocent Iraqi civilians. I too believe that freedom and self-determination of a people are the only possible justifications for so much suffering, but I fear this election may be only the exception to a repressive rule, and that freedom is not the fate the Bush Administration has in mind for Iraqis.

At least, finally, the buck has stopped. Unlike all the previous justifications, discarded so conveniently when they proved illusory, democracy and freedom are too central to our values to be conveniently supplanted by a new rationale.

At the end of the day, when the Iraqi election is seen to have led to a new ally for Iran, an oppressive Islamic state, or a terrible civil war in Iraq, the hubris and folly of Bush's policy of armed intervention in Iraq will finally be recognized by all as the historic mistake it is.

It is naive to believe that peace, freedom, and democracy come without a price. And that price is too often violence and death. However, this hard fact can never justify the exploitation, repression, torture, and killing of the very people whom we are trying to free. And that, tragically, is exactly the product this Administration and its apologists are trying to sell us.

Michael Bryan
UA Alumnus

Cleanliness important with tattoos

A word of warning to anyone interested in getting a tattoo or piercing: The only suggestions you should follow are those of your piercer or tattoo artist!

The article, "Body Art Tips: safety first, second, always" contains at least one bit of misinformation about body modifications that can cause harm to your piercing. No piercer that I would ever trust would advise someone to wash a piercing with alcohol. Alcohol is known to be very irritating to a piercing (and of course, tattoo, as well), often causing more harm than good. For the same reason drinking alcohol burns as it goes down, alcohol damages the cells in an open wound. It sure does prevent infection, but it might also prevent the healing of your piercing. There are plenty of great products out there that are anti-bacterial and/or anti-microbial that any good piercer will recommend to you. As an aside, in response to the comment that a piercing can be taken out "practically any time," most any piercer will advise someone with an infection to keep a piercing in until it is healed, because if taken out the skin can heal around the infection and cause an abscess.

Also, if your piercer or tattoo artist is using good cleanliness techniques, there should be no reason why they would give you Hepatitis or anything else - the point of the cleanliness is to prevent the spread of disease, and in an unclean studio, I would think there would be more likelihood of catching something from the last person pierced or tattooed than the piercer.

Rachel Zinn
sociology senior

Don't be quick to judge all Mall evangelists

I am writing in response to the article on the evangelist in Tuesday's paper. I do not know the evangelist personally and I am not one to judge, therefore I will not say anything about him. However, I want to write to those who were offended by some of his comments. I want you to know that Jesus Christ came to this Earth to show you love and mercy. He did not come here to condemn you but rather to save you and to give you life and live more abundantly. This may all sound crazy and for me at first it was, but it is true that God loves. Even if you are not interested at the time in Christianity, I do not want you to think that condemning people and criticizing people is what Christians are about. Not all Mall preachers represent the whole Christian community. Jesus said in Luke 6:37 : "Do not judge, and you will not be judged. Do not condemn, and you will not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven." We are called to love others as we love ourselves, not to judge and condemn them. God loves everyone, and this can be seen in John 3:16-17: "For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him." The bottom line is that Jesus loves you, and I pray that one day all people will be able to experience that for themselves. Have a great rest of the semester!

Joshua Yasuda
mathematics education senior

UA webpage needs update

There are two issues vital to redesigning our UA homepage. First, student, staff and prospective student navigation needs to be in one place. The current Web site splits navigation into two bars. This doesn't work. Research needs to be conducted to find out where visitors are going and where they are not. The results should be isolated to a single area (preferably at the top) for navigating the site.

The second issue involves awareness. Beneath navigation should be information on what is happening at our university. There is an array of projects and events that desperately need attention. It's time to dump the age-old assortment of UA campus images, making room for a space dedicated to what's really happening on campus. Busy staff and students aren't going to read every word on a Web site, and so the dizzying assortment of links does nothing to aid navigation. Let's bring life to the homepage, with student and faculty events and undertakings that are really making a difference!

Let's show off our students' accomplishments. Let's show the world what our engineers are doing! Let's display the works of our future artists! Let's praise the work our professors are doing outside the classroom! We want to know about performances, what our engineers will come up with next, when and where cultural events are happening around campus. Our homepage is the means to accomplish this. With this, we can expect heightened student awareness, a surge of extra-curricular involvement and a revived global interest in what is happening right here at the UA!

Travis Mathews
pre-computer science junior

Thanks to countries who signed Kyoto

Today, February 16th, is my birthday. And I have received a tremendous birthday gift from so many nations of the planet I live on: The 136 nations that have by now signed and ratified the Kyoto Protocol on greenhouse gas and global warming, as of just this very day, have started to implement this very important treaty.

What a wonderful gift for ALL of us down here: the atmosphere of this planet is thinner, in comparison, than the thinnest skin of an apple or onion; and we breathe in this atmosphere into our lungs so many times in the course of even a minute. There will be less methane, hexaflouride, and sulphur in the air because of the 136 caring nations that have agreed to this treaty.

Unfortunately, the country that produces the most greenhouse gas in the world has not decided to participate in giving me this wonderful birthday gift, this gift that I am so overjoyed about and so easily share with others. The country that I speak of produces 21% of the industrial carbon dioxide in the world, for instance, but it is too concerned about its economy to join with the others in keeping our planet's atmosphere clean. The country I speak of is selfish. The country I speak of is short-sighted. And the country I speak of is my country.

So thank you, Switzerland and St. Lucia, for thinking of us all. Thank you, India, and Ireland; I am grateful to have been to see you in the past, and I am flattered that you have remembered me on this day, this birthday of mine. Thank you, Norway and New Zealand, for giving us this gift of clean air which will keep your ski slopes covered in snow; and thank you, Cambodia and Canada, for agreeing to this treaty which will keep our Florida Keys above water. And thank you to all the 136 signatory nations I have not yet visited; you feel like new friends. But, to the United States, a nation I liked so much when I was younger........I gotta tell you something: We're not as close as we used to be. Dana Eyde
Employee, Disability Resource Center

Precaution needed with paintball guns

As a paintball player, it saddens me to know that a few foolish people don't care about the image this type of action can be associated with paintball. The majority of us (paintball players) realize and follow not only the rules of paintball but the law. Knowing a paintball marker can be dangerous without the proper protection(such as that worn before, and during a game at proper facilities), we use them only where where allowed, always being careful and practicing the same safety procedures used on a firearm when off the field. We hope those who are doing this are caught and prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. Hopefully you and others realize that these actions are not advocated by the rest of us... I did not not appreciate, however, the photoshopped picture you used in the article. It was unnecessary and in bad taste. I'm pretty sure the masses could get the idea of what these people did from the article. At least you didnt have some noob cameraman holding a marker without proper goggles on as a model.

Aaron Tillotson
paintball player

Evangelist story showed poor journalism

After reading last Monday's article on the evanglist, I was shocked and appalled at the poor journalism exhibited in it. The article mentions that he (Smock) accused women of being whoremongers, and that all religions are wrong except his fundementalist view if Christianity. While this is true, and he did say these things, there is another side of the story that was neglected. Now, I am in no way supporting Mr. Smock's theories, as anyone who knows me can attest, but it is his right as an American to stand out there and say his own beliefs, flawed though they may be, to the public. What the article failed to mention was the actions of the students. I listened to him speak for about an hour on Monday, and in my hour there I saw students perform acts that were outright insulting to him, both as a person and as an American. He was told to shut up, that his mother was a whoremonger, and that he was a rapist. This is simply stooping to his level. However, there were a few individuals who took it further than that. I saw one woman approach him, take his briefcase and chair, and walk away with that; to me, that is theft. I saw another individual take his book from the ground and begin to rip pages out, and another light his book on fire with her cigarette; that is called destruction of private property. While I don't support his ramblings, I do support the basic principle of human rights, and his were violated by our student body yesterday and nothing was done about it. Whether we support him or not, I think it is essential to prove who the better person is, and we collectively as students failed to do so. I think he has great courage to stand up in the face of such opposition and say what he does; the students who take and destroy his property are nothing more than petty criminals. Whether you believe his doctrine or not, shouldn't we be at least courteous and give him the respect he deserves? Instead of mocking him, make him support his arguements as we are taught to do in our classrooms.

Perhaps we should not simply gather in crowds to mock one, but we as one should instigate conversation, as I saw a few students do, and my hat is off to them for it. We should take their example and prove who the better person is, and not stoop to the level of a paltry delinquit, as some of our wonderful student body so perfectly modeled.

Matt Winter
Classics and Anthropology

White males dominate society

Where exactly is all this hate for the "white, Christian American male" that Justin Kunzelmann claims to find? Is it at home where white Christian males have held the presidency without interruption since the nation's founding? Or in the business world where white males own an obscenely disproportionate amount of the economy's wealth and productive resources? Perhaps in American culture where Christmas is the only religious holiday observed by the federal government and trial witnesses are bound to tell the truth by swearing on the Christian Bible?

Or maybe Mr. Kunzelmann means overseas where white Americans travel freely on their U.S. passports and are welcomed--based on personal experience--in countries on every continent in the world? Is it in foreign schools where English is rapidly becoming the world's second language? Maybe it is the consumption of American pop culture, much of which, incidentally, is produced and exported by--surprise, surprise--white American males!

I for one join with Mr. Kunzelmann in demanding that the rest of the world recognize the horrible victimization that we suffer as white American males. And once I'm done with that, I'm going to try to figure out how I can ever take myself seriously again after making such an asinine statement.

Mark Melamed
UA Alumnus

Religious right misunderstood

I take issue with Reuben Goodman's letter of February 16. First, we (the religious right) do not go around hating gays, restricting rights, and blaming the poor. Rather, we feel that there is a clear Biblical mandate (cf. 2Peter 3 and Revelation 2) to love the sinner, while detesting their sin (we apply this to ourselves, as well). We feel that there is a strong Biblical argument to be made against homosexuality (cf. Leviticus 18 & 20, 1Corinthians 6, and Romans 1, among others), and as such seek to minimize its impact on society.

Some may see this as restricting rights, which it may actually be doing, but we feel that the restriction of rights is not necessarily bad. For instance, people do not have the right to murder, rape, or steal because of restrictions that have been put on those actions for the common good. Further, I do not see how any member of the religious right has blamed the poor for their lot in life; that just hasn't happened in recent times to my recollection. Second, there is a clear Biblical mandate to respect all life, from the moment of conception on (cf. Jeremiah 1, Psalm 139, Job 31, etc). As for contraception, we see abstinence as the best form of contraception, but generally (and there is some division here among the religious right) feel that it is ok for contraception to be used among married couples who do not want children.

Finally, and I speak only for myself here, I do not think that Jesus would vote in any election for any person; He did not operate in the official political process of his day. But if He was to vote, I think he would vote for neither Bush nor Kerry, but rather for Himself, as He is the Way, the Truth, and the Life; life on earth will never be what we (humanity) want it to be until we acknowledge that fact.

Silas Montgomery
Judaic Studies Senior

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