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Arizona Daily Wildcat
Monday, September 19, 2005
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Student-parents need all available help

In response to Mr. Bernsen’s comments in Sept. 17's paper (“Bernsen calls on alumni for child care”) about BabyCats being just an inspiration, I have to say nonsense! Last semester attending school full-time would have been unimaginable for me if it had not been for BabyCats. The babysitters were wonderful; I was able to bring my baby to campus while I attended classes, which as a new parent took away a lot of stress. I knew if something was wrong I was within walking distance of my then-3-month-old.

Jacob Levy stated in a letter on Wednesday, “I am a senior and have been walking around this university for the last three years. During this time, I have yet to see a student-parent walk his or her child around on campus in three years.” I pushed my child around on campus last semester Monday through Thursday. I’m surprised you didn’t run into me (especially because I am a finance senior as well). This just goes to show that we have no idea who our classmates really are.

About that $500 subsidy given to us for the year: Have you checked the price of child care lately? I have, and $500 might be enough to pay for day care of lowest quality for maybe one month. I am trying along with all the other student parents to provide the best life for my child. Why shouldn’t Associated Students of the University of Arizona provide resources for us? Why should we become another statistic and drop out of school because we cannot afford quality child care and because the UA provides minimal support to student-parents? I will continue to work with BabyCats and ASUA to get more resources for student parents. Maybe you would do the same if you had children.

Kelsey Cortez
finance senior

Don't patronize student-parents

This letter is in regard to recent comments by Associated Students of the University of Arizona President Cade Bernsen. BabyCats is more than an inspiration in addressing the needs of student parents and advocating for changes. The BabyCatSitters developed by BabyCats is the first line of defense for student-parents for on the spot child care second only to the Sick Child Emergency Backup Care Program offered by UA LifeWorks!

Consequently, we don’t snub our noses to any resources made available, especially Kidz Korner. We as parents know that you start with “baby steps” before you can learn to run. Instead of being insulted by this first step taken to improve conditions on campus for student-parents, we have used it as a foundation to build upon our advocacy efforts.

Mr. Bernsen, you can’t fight a battle you may not fully understand! You may empathize with our situation, but until you are on campus, looking for a safe place to play with your child, privacy to nurse your child, trying to find last minute care so you can take a final exam or searching for a place to change your infant’s diaper, you can truly have no idea all the unique challenges we encounter as student-parents.

The lack of child care and child-friendly resources is not limited to students, but to all parents trying to negotiate education or career at the UA, hence BabyCats is advocating not only for a more family friendly campus for students, but also for faculty, staff and alumni.

Finally, there are more student parents on campus than imagined. Because of the lack of a university-sponsored child care, co-op or drop-in center, we are forced to send our children to outside child care facilities and thus the absence of our children on campus. In addition, a child care subsidy of $500 per semester is not even close to adequate considering the cost of full-time child care is more than the cost of tuition.

Anastasia Arab
former BabyCats president

U.S. success in Iraq requires perseverance

I’d like to congratulate Mike Huston and Kara Karlson for a job well done at Wednesday’s “War on Terror” debate on the Alumni Plaza. There is one point from the debate that I’d like to bring up for further discussion.

In the months following the conclusion of World War II, Japan and Germany were in ruins. The two countries required massive reconstruction efforts, and our troops were continually harassed by holdouts from the previous regimes. It took more than five years to rebuild and stabilize these two countries, but our perseverance ensured the success of both Japan and Germany.

Someone in the audience asked the Refuse and Resist representatives how they thought this lesson of reconstruction after World War II applied to Iraq. Sadly, they went on an empty rhetoric-filled tirade about how the U.S. is hell-bent on world imperialism, and they didn’t actually answer his question. So, I’d like to chime in.

Our perseverance is similarly required in Iraq. We are currently training Iraqi troops and helping rebuild their infrastructure. Iraq recently held very successful elections and is currently drafting a new constitution. These are substantive, meaningful indicators of progress in Iraq, and similar to how we helped Germany and Japan years ago, we must now continue to help Iraq transition from the dark horrors of Saddam Hussein’s regime to a peaceful representative democracy.

Sean Small
political science and economics senior

Columnist misinterprets president's prerogatives

One doesn’t have to be a conservative to find problems with Allisyn Keyser´s column “When Mr. Bush went to Washington.” I’m not one.

First, she notes that President Bush “has attempted to take the federal government into his own hands, making many decisions independently of the legislative branch to which he is theoretically accountable.”

The president is ultimately accountable to the people, not to Congress, except in the

extreme situation of impeachment (hence the concept of national presidential elections). Independent decision-making is rightfully a hallmark of the executive branch.

Moreover, let us not forget that Abraham Lincoln, Franklin Delano Roosevelt and John F. Kennedy all acted forcefully and unilaterally when necessary. Ms. Keyser’s conception of an emasculated, servile presidency fundamentally misses the mark.

Ms. Keyser’s error in thinking goes deeper, however, than a mere superficial misunderstanding of the presidency. She also fails to recognize the importance of having a chief executive who can garner support for critical pieces of legislation. That is what President Bush meant when referring to “getting legislation passed.” Ms. Keyser might do well to brush up on President Johnson’s strong-arm tactics in “passing” legislation he favored. Such is the game.

Finally, though Ms. Keyser’s stance regarding the problems surrounding Guantanamo has merit, in her tirade she again doesn’t quite reach the guts of the issue.

President Bush and his military advisers relied upon expert legal opinions in deciding to detain prisoners. There is a legitimate debate as to the correctness of their interpretation. The proper avenue for redress for those opposed to such an interpretation is through the courts and Congress (steps that are already being taken). If Ms. Keyser truly wants to see the actualization of the legislative check on President Bush that she envisions, a good start would be to join such ongoing efforts.

Dillon Fishman
UA alumnus

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