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Arizona Daily Wildcat
September 9, 2005
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Students should take advantage of UApresents

The author of the editorial in the Tuesday's Wildcat ("UApresents should focus on the black") offered much-appreciated words of support and advice for UApresents. But he missed an important point.

Far too few UA students take advantage of the exceptional opportunities offered by UApresents. For the cost of a student ticket - only slightly more than the price of a movie ticket - a student can experience live performances by world-class artists, from symphony and ballet to world music and Broadway shows.

It's easy, it's inexpensive, and it's a great opportunity to experience different genres of performing arts and to discover something wonderful one never before has experienced. It's saddening to see empty seats in Centennial Hall and to know what students are missing. I would add, too, that the fare offered this year in the UApresents series is as excellent as ever; there's just less of it.

John Hildebrand
UApresents advisory board

Time for citizens to combat sex tourism

Congratulations to the Wildcat for featuring an article on the child exploitation that is present in the border region and rampant throughout Latin America ("Tucson: A potential tourist stop for sexual predators?"). Like Kara Karlson states, sex tourism is gaining in popularity and Tucson is becoming the initial stop before pedophiles continue on their journey of sexually exploiting underprivileged children in Mexico and Central America.

Fortunately Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents have been successful in arresting more than 200 of these criminals in Arizona alone. However, it's a sad reminder that Arizona is temporarily housing these pedophiles. The issue of child sex tourism should be a top priority for U.S. citizens because it is happening too close to home (and within the U.S.) affecting victims too young to defend themselves. City and state officials should take notice and create a statewide campaign to put a stop to child sex tourists traveling through Arizona.

Carla Bishop
Latin American studies senior

Hurricane victims need cash, not classes

While I appreciate the plight of the victims of Hurricane Katrina and applaud the university for wanting to help, I think that accepting these students and getting them into classes this late in the semester is an injustice to the rest of the students.

I am not sure I understand that while there is a 200-person waiting list for my economics class, and every class I have has people sitting on the floor, how we can jump these students to the top of the list? There are many other ways that we can help, such as the carwashes and fundraisers that are already going on. Why don't we be loyal to our students and just do what everyone is asking us to - send cash?

Emily Knapp
pre-business sophomore

UA should take stand on animal cruelty

Julie Cohen should be applauded for bringing the issue of the abusive treatment of egg-laying hens to light at the UA ("Possible egg switch could raise cost").

Most laying hens are packed side by side inside tiny wire cages, too small for them even to flap their wings. They're unable to perform many of their most important natural behaviors such as dust bathing, nesting, perching or even walking freely. In short, these birds lead lives of daily frustration and suffering.

This mistreatment is simply too abusive for any socially responsible university to support. The UA can take a stand against animal cruelty by simply refusing to use eggs from caged hens.

Josh Balk
outreach coordinator
Factory Farming Campaign

Discrimination accusations incorrect, unfounded

In her column "Misconceptions plague Muslim students," Yusra Ali Tekbali states that "ignorance and fear towards religious and cultural minorities is commonplace." These are serious accusations that, if well-founded, warrant investigation.

However, the only examples she includes are teachers who cannot pronounce her name and several "tedious" questions during a voluntary survey.

The inability of teachers to correctly pronounce names is hardly indicative of fear or prejudice; this seems to be a common problem. And if you choose to take a survey run by a specific religion, it seems unreasonable to complain about the questions that are asked.

Later in the same article, Ms. Tekbali describes profiling as "unconstitutional." Profiling is a thorny issue worthy of serious discussion, and to relegate it spuriously to the realm of unconstitutionality is ridiculous. Profiling, though often unfair, is not unconstitutional, a fact recognized by all but the most extreme of its opponents.

However, most significantly, Ms. Tekbali irresponsibly states that there are now "random searches based solely on race being conducted in New York subway stations." However, even a cursory investigation into the subway searches reveal that the subjects are chosen only from those who are carrying bags, are completely random and are not even compulsory. In fact, the biggest complaint from many about the subway searches is that they are ineffective because of a lack racial profiling. Her statements on the subway searches are dead wrong.

Throughout her column, Ms. Tekbali describes herself as a victim of "misinterpretation, racist behavior and unfair governmental actions." However, she is unable to give any concrete examples. It seems likely that Ms. Tekbali has never experienced any significant religious or racial discrimination, and it is unfortunate that her poorly researched column should lay serious and unfounded accusations on a community that has welcomed her with open arms.

Steven Crawford
music performance senior

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