BAMN is not a ‘para-terrorist’
organization

To the Daily:

I was deeply confused by Dan Grano’s letter
(Information on website an error; College Republicans do not
support the MCRI
, 2/18/04) calling the pro-affirmative-action
group BAMN a “para-terrorist” organization. Assuming
Grano could not possibly be likening nonviolent protest to
terrorism, I searched for a potential definition. Discarding the
ideas that the speaker had to be protected from a group protecting
against terrorism, that BAMN was operating a crack
suicide-parachute squad or that being in favor of affirmative
action is somehow “parallel to, but going beyond,
terrorism,” I can only hope that he intended the prefix to
somehow soften and legitimize his comparison of a group he
disagrees with to violent killers. In which case, his remark is
merely para-offensive, para-extremist and para-stupid.

Dennis Clark

Rackham

 

Nader a better choice than Democrats

To the Daily:

I’m having a hard time swallowing this “Anybody But
Bush” pill — the rationale that the Bush administration
is an extremist rogue faction of ideologically driven Christian
fundamentalists and that any Democrat would be better.  

This administration is not so rogue judging by U.S. history,
which shows a consistent record of covert or open aggression to
undermine movements in the public interest that challenge global
corporate profiteering.

And judging by the Democrats’ last three years as the
opposition, they’re no better. For such an extremist
agenda, where have they been? Where were the filibusters, the
procedural obstructionist tactics? The Democrats, including
presidential candidates John Kerry and John Edwards, abdicated
the power of Congress to declare war while ushering in the new era
of Bush’s national security strategy based on unprovoked
aggression. Yet now they want my vote, and Kerry tells me that I
misunderstand his “yes” vote in October 2002, that it
was really a vote to continue diplomacy.  

And when only one senator, Russ Feingold of Wisconsin, opposed
the Patriot Act, the Democrats again demonstrated their complicity
in extremism by without so much as a debate abolishing our right to
be free from unreasonable searches and seizures.Very hard to
swallow.

This November, nobody is being forced to vote for the
“lesser of two evils.” Say no to evil! Vote
your conscience and vote for Ralph Nader who says, “There are
a hundred million non-voters that no one has figured out how to
bring back into the electoral system, which I want to try to
do.”

Mitch Abrams

Reader

 

Politicians need to make difficult choices for
country

To the Daily:

On Feb. 25, Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan made
comments before Congress that Social Security benefits would have
to be trimmed to keep Social Security and the federal budget
fiscally solvent. These comments were unpopular with both
Democratic presidential candidates and also with President Bush, as
you could probably expect in an election year. This move by
the candidates is no doubt to protect their stand with older
voters, who are more likely to hit the polls, despite the bleak
future of the federal budget and Social Security. However,
this demonstrates one of the biggest problems with our government
and our political system. No one who has his name on a ballot is
willing to step up and take an unpopular stand for the good of the
country. The biggest problem with politicians is they start out
wanting to genuinely do good, serve the country and make America
better. However, in their quest for power, they compromise
their values, and the good they sought gets lost in the shuffle as
politicians struggle to gain and remain in power. I personally have
started to become apathetic about the entire political system when
we as a country have serious problems, and we do not have any
serious people who are willing to solve them. In my opinion, what
this country needs is sincere, honest and authentic leadership,
which is in rare supply. I know I paint a much more dire
picture than is actually out there — our government does us a
great deal of good, providing peace and security (among other
things). But I see that we are sliding down a slippery slope,
and American is getting used to accepting less, so I ask you Daily
readers, what will you do about it? Whatever your political
views are, get involved, write your congressman and most
importantly, let the powers that be know that you want and expect
more from your government. Tell them to do what’s right for
America and not just their own re-election campaigns. America
is at the crossroads, and we have choices to make, ones that will
determine if our country keeps its place as a world power and if
Americans will keep our wealthy lifestyle (compared to the rest of
the world). America needs leadership.

Robert Bartz

Rackham

 

City’s police need to protect pedestrians

To the Daily:

This letter is a response to the article entitled Jaywalking
causes greater concern since student deaths
(02/17/04). The Ann
Arbor police are not doing their jobs as far as protecting
pedestrians is concerned. I have first-hand experience. I was
struck by a car while walking to work in Ann Arbor in January of
2003. This occurred in front of the Michigan Union, as I was
crossing South University Avenue in the crosswalk. I was
hospitalized with a broken hip, head wound and internal bleeding. I
was in the hospital for a month and in a wheelchair for three
months after that. The point I’d like to make is that even if
you are legally crossing the street in Ann Arbor, you are not
necessarily safe, so the issue of pedestrian safety is much broader
than Lt. Michael Logghe attempted to convey with his statements in
the article.

Not only did the police never contact me for their report, but
they failed to return my phone calls after repeated attempts. The
person who hit me was issued a ticket at the scene for failure to
yield. The result? The police officer, Officer Martin, never showed
up to court that day, and the charge was dismissed. So part of the
problem, as I see it, is in the failure of the Ann Arbor Police
Department to enforce the law.

That is the kind of “civil service” you can expect
from The AAPD when you are a law-abiding, tax-paying citizen of Ann
Arbor. Thanks for nothing, Ann Arbor.

Kenneth A. Longo

Research fellow, Department of Physiology

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