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Arizona Daily Wildcat
Tuesday, September 20, 2005
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Wildcat blatantly favors greeks on campus

On Sept. 13, the Arizona Daily Wildcat published an extensive article and a related editorial in response to citations issued on Aug. 26 to underage drinkers at the Kappa Sigma fraternity house.

How does the Wildcat support its claim that the officers were more interested in taking advantage of and citing students rather than enforcing the law? In both pieces, a central claim is that officers erred in not informing UAPD of the actions they intended to take. Granted, this does violate a certain unwritten professional courtesy among law enforcement agencies of all levels, but it also should have been noted that as state-certified officers acting within their jurisdiction, they were under no legal obligation to do so.

To be sure, the responding officers could have acted in a far less confrontational and aggressive manner. The concerns brought to light by the Wildcat's coverage of this incident, however, transcend any one MIP or red tag. This incident was not an isolated event involving six students, but rather an indicator of a larger institutional problem. Ignoring the fact that fraternities consistently and systematically develop policies designed to skirt both the law and university regulations regarding alcohol is simply biased, irresponsible journalism and panders to this university's lowest common denominator.

This is tacit approval of a greek system that does lip service to responsibility and maturity while exhibiting a pattern of reckless disregard for the ideals they espouse. This type of reporting has historically been the norm for the Wildcat. I would be hard-pressed to think of more than a handful of articles critical of the greek system that have appeared in the Wildcat during my three years here at the UA. Such overarching bias does a disservice to the university community that the Wildcat informs and, to a certain degree, represents. If the staff of the Wildcat is to be truly deserving of their title as the nation's best college newspaper, it is time for them to stop their blind support of the greek system here at the UA and start being responsible journalists.

Brandon Dow and Brokk Toggerson
political science senior and physics senior

Empty rhetoric or historical reality?

Sean Small claims that I did not answer a question in last week's debate about the applicability of postwar Japan and Germany to Iraq, but instead responded with an "empty rhetoric-filled tirade" about U.S. imperialism ("U.S. success in Iraq requires perseverance").

Actually, I did answer the question, by pointing out that the war is still going on in Iraq. Events there in the last week alone make it clear that we're not talking about harassment by holdouts from the previous regime. I left as understood the conclusion that a comparison with previous postwar reconstruction is irrelevant.

And to restate a point made often in the debate, the question only makes sense if you assume certain propositions; specifically, that the U.S. attack and occupation of Iraq is just. I do not accept that, as the reality is that the war is an illegal act of aggression aimed at creating a client state. To make an analogy, if there is a rape in progress, the last thing anyone should do is talk about the need to persevere and successfully conclude the rape.

Claims of "empty rhetoric "are usually just a way of avoiding the substance of an argument. My comments about U.S. imperialism were far from empty. We presented numerous and easily verifiable historical examples. The problem is not one of "empty rhetoric" from us, but of U.S. apologists relying upon reassuring platitudes while studiously ignoring the world of fact.

As one example, the U.S. government, including people responsible for the current aggression, had no problem with the "dark horrors of Saddam Hussein's regime" when he was obeying our orders. It was only after he stopped collaborating with the U.S. that gassing Kurds and torturing Iraqis became evil.

Greg Knehans
political science graduate student

Wildcat pornographic, does disservice to the UA

I find it darkly amusing that a student newspaper would consider the exploitation of pornography (and women and fellow students) as a marketing strategy for its readership ("Pac-10 playmate"). Does such gutter trash - in my opinion - reporting reflect more upon its readership or the staff at the Wildcat? Is there nothing of more importance to put on the front page? Perchance the Wildcat is simply practicing what one might call "quote-whoring" for its promotional value? Or maybe this is the Wildcat's forlorn attempt to show just how liberal and freethinking it can be?

The real story should have been concerning how pornography often leads to violent crime, dissolution of families and inability to function normally in society (and school). The Wildcat should have been encouraging students to stay away from as much if they want a better chance to succeed in school and life. My vituperation, not intrinsically meant to be bellicose in nature, is not a product of one day's journalism from the Wildcat.

The past few weeks since my recent arrival to Tucson have proved the Wildcat to be satiated with odious comics, advertisements and articles that one would expect to find strewn about the streets of a red-light district. I think of the UA as a place that would proscribe such rock-bottom journalism. The UA is something much more to me. The UA should be an example of professionalism and ethics in all facets and aspects of higher education. Student journalists have potential to improve our university, campus life and future alumni through intelligent reporting; be it of critical or complimentary nature. Recently, however, the Wildcat seems to have offered an excessive amount of intellect-dulling disingenuousness.

Jeremy Palmer
second language acquisition and teaching graduate student

New U.S. nuclear policy necessary

I'm surprised that Scott Patterson ("How new U.S. nuclear policy will ignite WWIII") is willing to take Iran's word that the pursuit of nuclear power by a known state sponsor of terrorism is for peaceful purposes only - as if Iran is hurting for energy at the moment.

I suppose all the weapons and money Tehran sends to Hezbollah in Lebanon are sent to support that group in the pursuit of their peaceful political goals vis-a-vis Israel? And I guess the Iranians are only kidding when they say they want to scour Israel (an "abomination," they call it) off the face of the Earth. Since the U.K., France and Germany see the threat Iran could pose with nuclear power and seem willing to send Iran to the U.N. Security Council, this is far from being simply an issue of concern for the U.S. only.

The important thing come 2008 is that Americans vote in a leader who isn't afraid to use any and all the means at his or her disposal to defend the United States. I don't dispute the fact that nuclear weapons are "horrific creations." But I'd much rather have leaders willing to use them against our enemies before our enemies - or potential enemies - can get them and use them against us.

For the Pentagon to come up with a plan such as it has regarding the use of nukes isn't reckless. It isn't a harbinger of World War III. In this day and age, it is necessary. Unless all of America's current enemies are, like Iran's comments about Israel, only kidding when they say they want to kill us in spectacular ways.

Jeremy Slavin
UA alumnus

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