Syed goes too far in his criticism of Bush, America

To the Daily:

For almost four semesters now, I have been constantly bombarded
with left-wing propaganda from local residents, students and even
teachers. As a strong advocate of freedom of speech, I have chosen
to not let the often-unproven attacks get to me. However, the
upcoming election has turned healthy protests into full-fledged
destruction and radicalism. It has now become a challenge for me to
walk to class without seeing sidewalks vandalized with anti-Bush
graffiti or windows displaying mug shots of Osama bin Laden with
Bush’s face superimposed over the terrorist’s head.
With the inappropriate attacks now being printed in the Daily, I
finally feel the need to speak up against this nonsense. Waj
Syed’s Viewpoint, The day Saddam’s statue fell,
(04/13/04) is just another example of Bush-bashing going too
far.

Syed believes that Bush’s handling of the events of Sept.
11 caused anti-Muslim sentiments, yet his rhetoric is full of
anti-American sentiments, calling our nation’s Southern
citizens “rednecks.” Why the double standard? I am sure
that Syed is well aware of the awful derogatory terms for
Pakistanis and people in the surrounding regions, but I simply
don’t find a need to resort to petty criticisms in order to
make an argument. Living in a country so wonderfully diverse, I am
very offended when I see people like Syed proudly welcomed into
this country with open arms who then have the audacity to address
our president by his first name out of disrespect, falsely accuse
him of having “cocaine-use problems” and ridicule a
large portion of the country’s citizens with belittling
criticisms.

I think Syed owes the readers, as well as the country, an
apology.

Brett Lyon

LSA sophomore

 

Argument in support of the RIAA flawed

To the Daily:

 

David Sutphen’s failure to directly address any portion of
the referenced editorial (Share the music, 03/30/04) belies his
claim of wanting to “correct the record” (RIAA
responds, defends its prosecution of individual file sharers,
04/12/04). The original editorial contained the following major
points:

1) There are other significant factors in the major
labels’ declining revenues beyond piracy.

2) The artists represented by companies that make up the
Recording Industry Association of America are by no means
unanimously in favor of the RIAA’s legal posturing.

3) In attacking its target market (music lovers) so
aggressively, it is alienating potential customers while failing to
stop the file- sharing.

Sutphen does not dispute any of this, instead reiterating the
tired industry claim that sales are down 20 percent over the past
few years and implying that file-sharing is to blame for this. It
seems amazing that the RIAA could still not get it. If you had put
the time, money and effort into developing attractive legal
alternatives to Napster and the other early sharing networks, you
could have cashed in on the boom instead of making headlines for
suing 71-year-old grandfathers or 12-year-old children. The quick
success of Apple’s iTunes could have happened years ago if
the industry had had any interest in creating an online offering
that was easy to use, reasonably priced and gave consumers complete
freedom of selection.

Sutphen also seemingly fails to recognize that nowhere in the
original editorial was there even a hint of defending the practice
of illegal file-sharing. The point was that the industry has gone
about this in a backwards fashion. His lame plea on behalf of
“the unsigned bands who have lost their shot at a record
contract” rings false as we read about big companies like EMI
Records dropping their niche artists in favor of cookie-cutter
mainstream acts.

Kevin Kane

Engineering graduate student

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