Letter to the Editor:

March 30, 2007

As a reader of the Preface I was looking forward to the article on the “Vagina Monologues.”  To my disappointment the reporter’s article was pulled at the request of the people being written about and instead of sending in another reporter the cast was allowed to write the article.
    
I cannot see this happening anywhere professionally except at a school newspaper where the editors are answerable to the administration.
   
I found two places in the printed article that describe the event for the reader.

The first monologue “A World Without Violence” was described as walking down the stairs and through the audience.  The only other description of what went on in the performance is the final piece where the audience was requested to do something.

That’s it, nothing more is known about the actual performance.
 
I request The Preface to rewrite the article and explain to the students what went on in our auditorium during a performance of a monologue about a vagina. Good journalism demands better reporting than what was printed.

Ronald Czarnecki
Mass Comm. Student

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Electromagnetic Radiation

March 29, 2007

Lucy Rzeszutek
Environmental Justice League

Mobile phones and mobile towers have been a grave concern as numerous emerging studies continually and consistently show possible health effects.  Proximity, duration, and intensity of the Electromagnetic Radiation (EMR) output determines how sick or electrically sensitive one becomes.  As cell phone use continues to spread like wildfire and as cell towers pop up in our backyards unbeknownst to us, we don’t have time to wait and see whether or not or just how much of our brains are being fried and bodies harmed. 

Cancer clusters or hot spots are dotting the St. Joseph County area.  EMR abounds and as the radiation increases, brain tumors, cancers, and diseases also increase.  Symptoms such as tiredness, forgetfulness, numbness, sleep interferences, headaches, sharp pains, and more fall under the long list of electrical sensitivity.  As more and more people are bombarded with this unseen radiation, younger and younger people are afflicted.

According to Leif Salford, he and his colleagues have shown in repeated studies that “radio frequency electromagnetic fields open the blood-brain barrier of rats so that large proteins, which may carry poisons, can enter the brain” as stated in the book, The Invisible Disease:  The Dangers of Environmental Illnesses Caused by Electromagnetic Fields and Chemical Emissions by Gunni Nordstrom.  According to Dr. Henry Lai, “cell phone radiation causes damage to DNA in human blood cells,” as written in the book by Dr. George Carlo and Martin Schram called Cell Phones:  Invisible Hazards in the Wireless Age.  Many more credible scientists, doctors, and experts have shown that there are adverse health affects to electromagnetic radiation.  To name several, they are Olle Johansson, Don Maisch, Louis Slesin, Janet Newton, and Blake Levitt.

Being that there is a repeated risk exhibited, fervent action is needed now to ensure the safest and optimal surroundings for the people of St. Joseph County.  Cell towers should not be built near schools, homes, and places of employment.  We cannot afford to be guinea pigs, mice, or monkeys on which this ‘experiment’ is performed unmonitored and unchecked while we suffer the consequences, Therefore let us educate one another and do something about this immediate and serious threat to our well being. 

Contact the legislation and Board of Health to take action on the community’s behalf and find out why so many people are getting cancers, tumors, and other illnesses. 

Smoking Ban at IUSB

March 21, 2007

Dear Editor,

The proposed smoking ban at IUSB (or any campus) is ridiculous! 
Smoking is no longer a politically correct thing to do; therefore, the University
feels it must take the issue upon itself to somehow make better the world,
one stupid rule after another.  I speak without bias, as I am not a smoker,
nor is anyone in my home.  Beyond political correctness, where is the
justification for such a rule?  No one would dream of smoking indoors. 
And smoking outdoors?  Yes, I admit to holding my own breath when I exit a
building on campus, but is that really any more harmful than breathing
in exhaust fumes when walking through the parking lot?  But one would
still be allowed to smoke in his or her car.  Do you think they are going to
keep their windows rolled up when they do their smoking?

So often the University is concerned with protecting the individual
Freedoms of speech, which students are supposed to possess, but what about
Unpopular freedoms like smoking?  Smoking is not illegal.  When smoking was
banned in so many places in Chicago, everyone jokingly said, “What’s next?  Are
they going to ban fatty foods?” not realizing that such a ban was in the
works. No longer can a restaurant in Chicago sell foie gras, one of the most
famous delicacies of French cuisine, because certain people in power have
deemed fattening ducks and geese as inhumane treatment. Whether it is inhumane
or not is simply a personal opinion; it has not been made illegal. Being
force-fed seems kinder than being killed.  But perhaps, that’s next. 
So before you support a ban on something that doesn’t seem to affect you,

Think hard about the greater significance that comes from giving up your
individual freedoms to some University administrator with an unforeseen
agenda.

Talia Reed

Letter to the Editor

December 21, 2006

Dear Editor-

The election is finished. The handlers, talking heads, and image consultants have collected their check. Now is not the time to rest.

Now that the ballot boxes have been locked up for yet another season and it is time to make sure our votes counted for something more than a vindication of the political marketing principle.

Now is the time to take a close look at the people elected to public office, make copies of their platforms and promises, and start calling them to let them know that just because the election is over it does not mean they are off the hook.

Regardless of what the pundits say, no vote is ever wasted. The waste comes when the electors fail to hold their representatives responsible, it is critical that we not slip back into past voter apathy.

Democracy cannot be a part-time, seasonal affair. For democracy to work, the electors have to keep asking their representatives the questions they tried to answer during the campaign.

If the public at large simply pulls the covers up and sighs in relief that the elections are over, the elected will think they can do whatever they want.

Those who voted for candidates because their position of certain issues, make sure they stick to those promises. Voters should let the candidates that they elected know they will not support them next election if they do not keep their promises. Even voters who did not vote for the winner, should start calling the elected and let them know what they think. Most politicians are genuinely interested in the ideas and concerns of the electorate whether or not they voted for them or their opponents.

The election is over, but the governing has just begun. Responsibility in a democracy does not stop at the ballot box, it begins there. On to Election 2008!

Sincerely,
Chad Crabtree, BA 1998

It’s Tuesday Oct. 10 and I’m sitting in Greenlawn trying to study for my E304 class. I realize I am in need of caffeine, in fact I’m jonesin’ for it real bad, hands are shaking
as I type. OH, but look, the Coke machine is “Sold Out” and so are all the other ones
within a mile radius of Greenlawn. It was the same last Thursday, the Tuesday and the
previous Thursday before.

I don’t know whether students on Mondays and Wednesdays are benefiting from full
machines or are suffering the same as I am nor for that matter whether IU’s other campuses are suffering the same way, but I think it’s time some questions are raised about the situation. Why can’t Coca Cola keep these machines filled? Have they done such a good job addicting us to their product that supply cannot keep up with demand? Is the supply of their product being held up some how, like due to a trucker’s strike, a flood, hurricane, or blizzard? Or, is it because Coca Cola has a strangle-hold monopoly on the IU campuses and could care less about customer satisfaction? (The likely reason). This even though they are making a killing, overcharging us for a product we all know we can get somewhere else sometimes at half the cost. I know, I know we are paying for the convenience, delivery, electricity etc., Blah, Blah, Blah. What good is paying for all that when there is nothing in the machines to purchase?

I’m sure I am not the only student on campus frustrated by this situation and wondering
what’s being done about it. Maybe it’s time for IU to reconsider its contract with Coca
Cola and to open up the campuses to a true competitive market and allow all soda
manufacturers to vend their products on them. I truly don’t know the best answer, maybe
the Preface can find out.

By the way, don’t tell me to drink the coffee to get my caffeine fix at least with the
“hit and miss” filled machines I know I’m getting a product that tastes the same every
time I purchase it. The vending machine coffee taste like the cup it’s served in and I’d
rather drink the water from the campus drinking fountains before I’d drink coffee from
the vending machines, but that’s a topic for another time.

Rick Kiefer
BS Secondary Education 2002
and Grad Student

Letter to the Editor

October 16, 2006

I see that once again I have been personally attacked in the pages of The Preface in spite of a promise from its editor that assured me that The Preface was not interested in getting in a feud with anyone. So once again I am forced to write and correct the record.

The SGA Constitution states that the Chief Justice shall not serve as a paid employee of The Preface. It also states that the Chief Justice shall interpret and provide guidance as to the spirit of the Student Government Association Constitution.

There are many reasons for these clauses; among them is the fact that since the SGA and The Preface both pay a stipend, the SGA does not want students to be in a position to double dip. The SGA does not believe that it is wise that an oligarchy of student(s) have a position of control of the SGA and influence in the official student newspaper that may be tasked with reporting on the SGA. The SGA also values the independence of the official student newspaper from the SGA.

As Chief Justice of the SGA, I must uphold the spirit of the SGA Constitution and be beyond reproach. A staple columnist for The Preface is a paid position. The fact that I refused to take money from the Preface because I refused to fill out the privacy forms does not change the fact that the position itself is a paid one and is therefore prohibited.

Imagine this scenario if you will, if I was an independently wealthy student and I refused to take a stipend, I could be both the President of the SGA and the Editor of The Preface and stock both with as many of my people as I could. This is what is meant by violating the spirit of the constitution and is exactly an example of what the SGA wishes to avoid.

I would also like to point out that the letter featured in The Preface mischaracterized what former SGA President Michael Renfrow said. Renfrow was not only most dismayed to find out that a part of a casual conversation ended up in The Preface; what Renfrow really said is that nothing in the SGA Constitution would prohibit an SGA member from penning the occasional guest column or op-ed piece. This hardly describes my former position at The Preface.

I would also like to point out that as head of the SGA Judicial Council; it is my responsibility to interpret the SGA Constitution both to its letter and its spirit. The Judicial Council holds sole power of interpretation in these matters.

I am most curious to see what libel may await me in next week’s issue of The Preface.

Chuck Norton