Students correct to be offended by Daily senior edition

To the Daily:

Many minority groups are demanding that the University take action against the newspaper regarding the insensitive comments in Fridays edition. I could not agree more. Every year, I read this spoof edition and every year it upsets me more. The Daily needs to stop hiding behind the First Amendment and start taking pride in what it produces.

What if the football team decided to get drunk and give no effort during the bowl game just because it was their last game? Whether the Daily is independent from the University or not, it still represents the University and its students. It is embarrassing to think that my school newspaper pretends to care about the issues only to publish what it really thinks about its readers one day a year just because it can.

Michael Yates

Engineering senior

Rugby team apologizes for negative portrayal in the Daily

To the Daily:

As leaders of the 2003 Michigan Men’s Rugby Football Club, we feel the need to respond, on behalf of our club, to the article published featuring our club in the Daily’s Club Sports Weekly, Plug and play: Ruggers find their passion on day one (01/27/03). We feel that the article incorrectly highlighted aspects of our club, contrary to the true spirit of Michigan rugby. We assure the readers that the University of Michigan Rugby Football Club is an athletic organization, striving to improve the physical talents of its members and that the focus of the article did not accurately describe the true nature of the club. In no way does the Rugby Club promote or condone any activity which detracts from the abilities of participating athletes.

We are a serious, determined and dedicated club sport, striving to reverse negative stigmas historically attached to rugby teams at North American universities. Athletes competing as part of the Michigan rugby team are expected to be focused and determined athletes who attend practice without fail and work to improve fitness on their own. This central focus of our club, however, was not communicated in the article. While we are thankful to the Daily for the support it has shown us in the past, we believe the most recent article was not an accurate portrayal of our club and its intentions.

We would like to apologize to the Recreational Sports Department, the Michigan athletic department, and to members of rugby clubs across the nation for any misrepresentations that may have occurred as a result of this article. Furthermore, we extend an invitation to any and all with an interest to attend a game and/or practice, where Michigan rugby will no doubt be more clearly represented.

Kurt Sarsfield,

LSA sophomore

President UMRFC

Craig Williams,

LSA junior

Captain UMRFC

People need to learn to laugh, spoof edition of the Daily funny, not offensive

To the Daily:

I am writing to applaud the Daily for its “senior spoof” edition on Jan. 31, 2003. I remember picking up last year’s edition and wondering what was going on. After reading more of the paper while sitting in my Engineering 100 class I started cracking up. It was a great break from the grind of school work and the stories of violence around the world.

So that brings us to last Friday, and the newest edition. The moment I picked it up I knew what it was and anxiously awaited reading it. Again, I wasn’t disappointed. But I think the most humorous part of the paper was the letters written afterwards. Why are people on this campus so sensitive to every little thing?

If you can’t take a joke, don’t pick up the paper that day. Some of you say it’s offensive. I am a gay male on this campus and took no offense to the LGBT joke. I am not going to think that “All Muslims Suck” or that even the Daily truly believes that. Why should I? What does it accomplish? So now I am mad and start to complain about it. Take pity on me please. It’s just a joke. When my friends make a gay joke and it’s funny, I laugh with them. If they recklessly use the word “fag” or refer to something as “gay” I call them out. If everyone just stepped back, relaxed and thought about how silly arguing over a joke is, then maybe we all could just get along.

Aaron Tyler

Engineering sophomore

Enders depiction of Colombia inaccurate; country is not a “drug-trafficking regime”

To the Daily:

David Enders in his article, This is a public service announcement (01/30/03), made some assertions regarding the Colombian President and the Colombian regime that we believe are not only wrong, but also irresponsible. Therefore, in addition to making some corrections to Enders’ comments, we seek a rectification from him.

Americans, Colombians and citizens from many other countries each have a share of the blame in this war against drugs. But, let it be clear, the government of Colombia is not a “drug-trafficking regime” as Enders suggests. In the war against drugs, there has not been another country that has lost so many people and resources and that has suffered as much as Colombia has. Not only does Colombia wage direct battles in combating drug trafficking, but the government also finds itself fighting terrorist groups to which the drug business has supplied financial and military strength.

The new president of Colombia, Alvaro Uribe, was not elected with the help of “money and influence from drug trafficking, human rights abuses and crimes” as Enders says. Furthermore, Uribe has made containing the country’s guerrillas his top priority, and he actually survived an assassination attempt perpetuated by one of these terrorist groups last year.

We believe that Enders’ article, with such an evident lack of research, distorts the reality concerning the war that Colombia, the United States and the International Community are fighting against drugs. Should someone at the Michigan Daily decide to write articles about Colombia in the future, we would like to offer our help and advice. As Colombians, we have experienced the critical situation that our country is currently going through and would, hence, be able to provide much more accurate and objective information with our colleagues here at the University.

We look forward to receiving a response from Enders.

Jos

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