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Arizona Daily Wildcat
Wednesday, October 12, 2005
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Popped collars merely a trend, not relief for the oppressed

In response to Vijay Patel's letter, "Popped collar more than individualism," I must say that this is the most ridiculous thing that I have ever read. The mere fact that you try to legitimize such a stupid fashion trend as popping your collar through science and psychology is outright offensive.

You stated that this trend has "medicinal, psychological and marital characteristics" and that it puts its participants in a "scientific, intimate and anti-depressive state." What sort of evidence do you have to back this up? Are you going to tell me that a depressed individual contemplating suicide has reconsidered only after discovering this trend? No.

The fact of the matter is that this is a trend, which means that eventually people will stop doing it and move on to something equally as ridiculous.

Nick Droban
sociology junior

'Religious equality' isn't really equal at the UA

Last week, Oct. 4 and Wednesday, Jewish students of the UA celebrated Rosh Hashana, the Jewish new tear, and tomorrow celebrate Yom Kippur, the Jewish day of atonement. A big aspect of these days are to spend thinking about what one did during the year, good or bad, and thank G-d for making it to another year; also, this requires a good amount of time in synagogue as one has to pray to ask for forgiveness and show G-d that he or she has sinned.

I am personally appalled at the amount of work that I received in some of my classes for these Jewish holidays and the amount of makeup work always seems to exceed any amount of work I usually have in the classes. Quizzes and tests given on these days, big assignments due, valuable class notes that are hard to comprehend after the class - these are just a few examples of what happens on these holidays. Sure, all of the teachers allow for the students to make up what happens in class or the homework, quizzes and tests given, but it's the principle that is important here.

Call it bias, but I just find this sort of ridiculous seeing the fact that our school year is already based around the Christian calendar (where Christmas is given off and Easter is on a Sunday to name a few, so students can't miss work). Sure the majority of this campus isn't Jewish, but mostly of the Christian religion, but this is a public university and they are supposed to appeal and accommodate all religious beliefs and ethics.

Hopefully in the future, the UA will begin to realize the importance of these days to more than 3,000 of its students and allow the students to celebrate without having to feel stressed from their studies and spend time in synagogue.

David Abraham
undeclared sophomore

Legislation won't take unsafe motorists out of harm's way

Jeffrey Gillingham calls for the state of Arizona to require helmets while riding a motorcycle ("After UA student death, change needed in motorcycle laws"). Gillingham says, "What's with them, our Arizona politicians? Do they want us to all die? Haven't they read the statistics?"

I almost lost my lunch reading this. At what point does one take responsibility for their life? Did Gillingham's friend not understand the risks of wearing protection while riding a motorcycle? Why did Gillingham not intervene if he knew his friend was riding unprotected? Hasn't he read the statistics?

Too many Americans are too quick to pass blame and responsibility onto someone else. Legislation won't take you out of harm's way; taking actions to keep yourself safe will.

It's a shame Gillingham lost a friend. However, his friend knew the risks she was taking by getting on a bike without a helmet. It is ridiculous to point fingers at the state. She knew what she was doing and was responsible for her own death.

Brian Danker
UA alumnus

New laws shouldn't replace personal responsibility

After being a student at the university for more than four years, someone finally wrote a letter that inspired me to write the Wildcat. Jeffrey Gillingham's letter ("After UA student death, change needed in motorcycle laws") is yet another example of people's tendency to not accept responsibility for a tragedy.

By asking the (rhetorical) questions about Arizona policy makers, "Do they want us to die?" and, "Haven't they read the statistics?" Gillingham wastes the reader's time. Obviously, some elected official has read the statistics and, of course, every politician doesn't want their constituents to die, most especially in a violent manner. Instead of merely thinking your government has left you to fend for yourself in a cruel world, I suggest you think and act for yourself.

Michelle Combs' death, though preventable, simply does not merit a campaign to further eliminate the few rights we have left; and, believe it or not, one of those rights is to acknowledge and assess risk.

Over the summer, a close relative of mine was killed in a car accident, and just two weeks ago, I was in a bicycle accident on campus that put me in the hospital as well. Despite these events, I wouldn't even consider lobbying for stricter helmet or seatbelt (or any other) laws; instead maybe we should lobby for common sense.

Although I didn't know Ms. Combs, I believe at least one person told her to wear a helmet on a motorcycle over the course of her life. Instead, she made a conscious decision to go into the night (if only for a joy ride) without one. Do not punish the rest of the population for her error; let individuals acknowledge the amount of risk they're willing to take. Instead of asking Arizona to "keep us safe," start doing it yourself.

John Kerbaugh
architecture senior

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