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THE BROWN DAILY HERALD T HURSDAY M ARCH 1, 1 , 2007 200 7

Volume CXLII, No. 25

Since 1866, Daily Since 1891

Changes to Faunce could come as soon as summer T Task force will

review College

BY STEPHANIE BERNHARD FEATURES EDITOR

Renovations that will transform Faunce House into the Stephen Robert Campus Center may begin as early as this summer, by which time student services offices currently in Faunce may have moved into the J. Walter Wilson building. “It’s going to be pretty fast,” said Elizabeth Huidekoper, executive vice president for finance and administration, of the timeframe for using the $15 million in donations formally accepted by the Corporation last weekend for the purpose of renovating Faunce. Outgoing Chancellor Stephen Robert ’62 P’91 provided the lead gift for the center. Students have long expressed a desire for a campus center in polls and at forums, but the administration has not taken action before now. The Table of Needs of the Campaign for Academic Enrichment identified a campus center as a second-tier priority, meaning it would not be implemented unless a donor specifically wanted to support it. “But now, it’s a real project that’s going to happen,” said Richard Spies, executive vice president for planning and senior adviser to the president. “Everything is important, but this is a high, high priority,” Huidekoper said. The University has not yet hired an architect, made specific plans or set a firm timetable for the project. But administrators have been considering using the space in Faunce differently for several years. University officials have some ideas about what features the building — originally built in 1904 — may soon host. “We’re really excited about it,” said Russell Carey ’91 MA’06, interim vice president for campus life and student services. “We want to create a center with enough and the right type of space for students.” Carey said the center would continued on page 4

BY EVAN BOGGS STAFF WRITER

Chris Bennett / Herald The Stephen Robert Campus Center will be the third incarnation of the 1904 building, which was first Rockefeller Hall and then Faunce House.

Search for new CIO down to shortlist BY ISABEL GOTTLIEB CONTRIBUTING WRITER

The committee looking for a new chief information officer for the University has narrowed its search to a shortlist of candidates and expects to make a final decision by the end of the semester. The committee is now looking at a list of three or four candidates, said Daniel Leventhal ’07, a computer science major and member of the search committee. Brown’s CIO is responsible for managing the University’s academic and administrative technology services and working with the University Librarian on systems such as the Josiah catalog. The search committee is looking for a candidate who will

help modernize the University’s aging technology, said Elizabeth Huidekoper, executive vice president for finance and administration. Huidekoper said the ideal candidate for the position would be a “good manager, good planner, has good tech credentials and understands technology in the higher education community.” Though some services, such as MyCourses and wireless expansion, are already undergoing expansion and improvement, “a lot” of work is still needed on administrative systems, Huidekoper said. She noted that the most costly upgrades are for administrative systems, such as those for finance and human resources. The new vice president will “work within Brown to develop

a strategic plan for IT and ensure that plan will be effectively managed so it is accomplished,” said Huidekoper, who co-chairs the search committee with Associate Professor of Computer Science David Laidlaw. Leventhal said the need for improvement to campus IT is significant. “Brown has been technically stagnant for a long time and needs to pull out,” Leventhal said. “Improvements are needed to the network, the human resources system, the system for professors’ grants and a payroll system update — systems inherent to any business.” “The amount of paper that gets passed around here is astounding,” he said. “Other schools are all digital.” continued on page 4

A new committee to review four major aspects of the Brown undergraduate curriculum will be officially announced today in campus-wide e-mails to students and faculty. The Task Force on Undergraduate Education, which is charged with reviewing general education, teaching and assessment, concentrations and advising programs will make recommendations that will be presented to University officials in the spring of 2008. “This looked like a very good opportunity … to actually ask the questions that would help us be able to discern for ourselves whether education at Brown was as excellent as it should be,” said Dean of the College Katherine Bergeron, who will chair the task force. The committee’s report is a key component of the University’s reaccreditation process with the New England Association of Schools and Colleges, which takes place every 10 years. Bergeron said she believes the reaccreditation process will be “quite useful in a way for galvanizing the energy on campus” for the task force. “I think it’s a chance for Brown to continue to establish its leadership in an academic realm, and I hope for even more innovations,” said John Gillis ’07, president of the Undergraduate Council of Students. “The purpose is to take a broad and serious look at undergraduate education at Brown — what it is that we can do well, what can we do better,” Bergeron said Wednesday night at a UCS meeting, where she briefed council members on the task force. Bergeron said she believes that the task force also allows the University to address a key component of the Plan for Academic continued on page 4

Survey could change IR program requirements BY JOY CHUA CONTRIBUTING WRITER

The International Relations Department Undergraduate Group completed a survey Monday night that will be presented to Melani Cammett ’91, assistant professor of political science and the program’s director, next week and could lead to changes in the concentration. The IR DUG enlisted help with the survey from Cammett and IR concentration adviser and adjunct lecturer in International Relations Claudia Elliott, though the survey’s content came from DUG members. The survey asked its 115 respondents to evaluate concentration advising, the research

INSIDE:

postINSIDE

methods requirement, alternatives to requiring a foreign language and the effectiveness of the regional focus component. DUG member Andrew Schwartz ’07 said concentrators have some complaints about the program. “Though students liked the freedom and flexibility of the concentration, some of the requirements were unclear to them,” he said. “This is a collaborative relationship and we take the input of the DUG very, very seriously,” Cammett wrote in an e-mail to The Herald. “I haven’t seen the results yet but I have seen the questions. We all went over them together before the survey went out.” Schwartz said he expects the

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3 METRO

biggest changes will be in advising. “The survey was designed to illustrate and explain … the need for more resources for advising,” he said. “We’re going to present the data to higher-ups to free up some funding for that.” Students intending to concentrate in international relations currently need to take 11 courses, including four core courses, three courses out of one of the program’s four tracks — global security, political economy and development, global environment and politics, culture and identity — one regional focus course, two 100-level electives and one research methods continued on page 4

WICKENDEN GETS SEXY Local sex shop Miko opens today at its new location on Wickenden Street, a move designed to draw more customers to the store

5 CAMPUS NEWS

195 Angell Street, Providence, Rhode Island

Chris Bennett / Herald Dean of the College Katherine Bergeron described the planned Task Force on Undergraduate Education at a UCS meeting Wednesday night.

A MASKED MARAUDER This week’s crime log includes paintballers at boathouse, loud music and a student wearing a mask harassing students at the Gate

11 OPINIONS

MARRIAGE ISN’T EVERYTHING Jesse Adams ’07 argues that civil unions are an acceptable move toward gay rights that progressives should embrace, even if it isn’t marriage

News tips: herald@browndailyherald.com


TODAY THE BROWN DAILY HERALD

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WE A

T H E R

TODAY

THURSDAY, MARCH ARCH 1, 2007

Chocolate Covered Cotton | Mark Brinker TOMORROW

heavy rain 44 / 32

mostly sunny 41 / 30

MEN SHARPE REFECTORY

U

VERNEY-WOOLLEY DINING HALL

LUNCH — Waffle Fries, Chicken Vegetable Soup, Louisiana Style Calzone, Hot Ham on Bulky Roll, Kielbasa, Hard Boiled Eggs, French Toast, Lyonnaise Potatoes, Green Peas, Vegetarian Corn Chowder, Swiss Fudge Cookies DINNER — Pasta Bar, Chicken Parmesan, Spice Rubbed Pork Chops, Cajun Corn and Tomatoes, Garlic Bread, Spinach and Rice Bake, Ice Cream Sundae Bar

SU

LUNCH — Chicken Soup With Tortellini, Falafel with Pita, Cavatini, Creole Mixed Vegetables, Vegetarian Cream of Mushroom Soup, Swiss Fudge Cookies

WBF | Matt Vascellaro

DINNER —Vegetarian Cream of Mushroom Soup, Barbeque Chicken, Risotto Primavera, Stir Fry Vegetable Medley, Garlic Bread, Chicken Soup with Tortellini, Vegan Vegetable and Tempeh Saute, Jelly Roll

D O K U

Fill in the grid so that every row, every column and every 3x3 box contains the digits 1 through 9.

How to Get Down | Nate Saunders

Deo | Daniel Perez

Puzzles by Pappocom

CR

O S S W O R D

Edited by Rich Norris and Joyce Nichols Lewis ACROSS 1 Worry about the small stuff? 6 Flapjack maker since 1958 10 Bring down 14 “Appointment in Samarra” author 15 TelePrompTer, e.g. 16 Bad stuff 17 Practical joke #1 20 Manual unit 21 “Desperate Housewives” network 22 Brings to a halt 23 __ da capo (three-part song) 25 Strip 26 Practical joke #2 31 Bellatrix’s constellation 32 “Rosemary’s Baby” author Levin 33 Get in a pet 36 Yule quaff 37 Boomers’ kids 41 Competition pass 42 Skewer 44 Emu’s extinct relative 45 Scenically patterned fabric 47 Practical joke #3 51 Tender’s charge 52 River to the Rhein 53 She played Lois in “Superman” 56 Off one’s feed 57 Swan lover of myth 61 Practical joke #4 64 Bit of slyness 65 Composer of the opera “Le Roi d’Ys” 66 Tend to the flames 67 Light touches 68 Brio 69 Reprimanded gently DOWN 1 Fills in bare spots, in a way 2 Insignificant bit 3 Smooth the way for 4 Wind River Reservation tribe

5 Audible dance 6 Cold treatment 7 Org. that investigated Alger Hiss 8 Throughout, poetically 9 Gas station competition, perhaps 10 Captivates, as with stories 11 Brutus’ bird 12 Do-it-yourselfer’s reading matter, briefly 13 BPO __ 18 Pest 19 Can’t do without 24 Circle 25 Itsy-bitsy hole 26 Electrified particles 27 Run-or-walk compromise 28 Marx trademark 29 “The Incredibles” studio 30 Big name in puzzles 34 Country singer Lovett 35 Sharp-edged 38 Get ready for a fight

39 December doorstep number 40 The poky 43 Jalopies, in old slang 46 Margay relatives 48 Hardly a gentleman 49 “Take me away!” bath brand 50 Better follower 53 No. to haggle over 54 Seascape shade

55 Age, in a way 56 On Sunset Blvd., say 58 Creature from the forest moon of Endor 59 Fake out in the rink 60 “Angel in __ Dress”: romance novel 62 Professor add-on 63 WWII beach vessel

Deep Fried Kittens | Cara FitzGibbon

ANSWER TO PREVIOUS PUZZLE:

Cloudy Side Up | Mike Lauritano

xwordeditor@aol.com

3/1/07

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once in July by The Brown Daily Herald, Inc. POSTMASTER please send corrections to

Mary-Catherine Lader, Vice President Ally Ouh, Treasurer Mandeep Gill, Secretary By Stella Daily and Bruce Venzke (c)2007 Tribune Media Services, Inc.

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METRO THURSDAY, MARCH ARCH 1, 2007

Sex shop arrives on Wickenden BY SIMMI AUJLA METRO EDITOR

Miko Exoticwear is moving up College Hill. The sex shop opens this morning in a smaller but better-organized and more pedestrian-friendly location at 268 Wickenden St., said manager Rhiannon Kopynec ’06.5. Though the self-described “retailer, wholesaler and manufacturer of lingerie, sex toys and gifts, books and videos, fetishgear and accessories” already enjoys Brown students’ patronage, the store’s new location is more accessible for students. The store is leaving its current location on North Main Street and replaces Providence Futon on Wickenden Street. Brown and RISD students currently make up roughly 30 percent of the shop’s customers, Kopynec estimated, adding that the number increases around Halloween. Miko employees also lead “sex toy day” sessions for the Female Sexuality Workshop, which takes a “class field trip” to the store, said FemSex co-coordinator Sarah Sussman ’07, who is Kopynec’s roommate. Each semester, in the two weeks following the sessions led by Miko employees, “the whole place is Brown students,” Kopynec said. The new Wickenden store’s layout and location appealed to Kopynec and owner Jeff Gellman, who began considering the move in the fall. When the site opened up, “We thought, ‘Hey, that’s perfect!’ ” Kopynec said. The original North Main Street store, near Whole Foods Market, wasn’t in a pedestrian-friendly shopping area, Kopynec said.

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Legislation seeks to increase votes counted in Rhode Island BY ZACH MCCUNE S TAFF WRITER

Courtesy of mikoexoticwear.com

Miko Exoticwear is moving to Wickenden Street.

There, only a few people stumbled upon Miko, she said. “Here, hundreds of people walk by everyday,” she said of Wickenden Street, adding that Fox Point is “a much nicer shopping neighborhood.” The move makes fiscal sense, Kopynec said. Until roughly a year ago, Miko operated its wholesale business out of the North Main site. When Gellman moved that business to Pawtucket, Miko no longer needed as much space. Laurie Schofield, owner of B on Wickenden, a beauty and bath products shop adjacent to Miko, said she hopes the stores will “be a nice complement to one another.” “The younger women (who shop at Miko) might come in here for stuff they don’t have there,“ she said. Miko customers might be interested in Schofield’s shop because it sells “things to get them prepared for a lot of fun,” like lotions and lip glosses, Schofield

said. Miko will also add to the “diversity on the street,” Schofield said. But not all locals are welcoming this diversity. “Sex shops do not fit in between a church and an elementary school,” said Fox Point resident Marjorie Powning, who lives one block from Wickenden Street. The Sheldon Street Church looks onto Wickenden Street, and the Vartan Gregorian Elementary School is 0.2 miles away from the store at 455 Wickenden. “Fox Point is a dense residential neighborhood with few commercial streets,” she said. “Currently, Wickenden Street is family-friendly.” Brown students are looking forward to Miko’s move to a location closer to campus. “Everyone’s heard of (Miko) but they don’t really know where continued on page 9

Rhode Island legislators are considering a bill that would make it easier for some voters who fail to bring identification to the poll to have their votes counted. Rep. Edith Ajello, D-Dist. 3, and Sen. Paul Moura, D-Dist. 18, introduced the legislation in response to voters caught unaware by a requirement that they verify their identity before voting in last November’s election. Last November, changes to Rhode Island voting procedures required many voters to show proof of identity at polling stations. The change required voters who registered by mail to verify their identity, either on mail-in registration form or at the polls. Without proper proof of identity — delivered mail, drivers’ licenses or other formal documentation — many voters were turned away from polling stations and told they could not vote, Ajello said. Under the legislation, voters who do not verify their identity on the mail-in forms would receive notification 40 to 60 days before an election that such proof is required to vote. If voters fail to produce such proof on Election Day, they would be allowed 48 hours to submit identification. Confusion at Rhode Island polls last November brought three election disputes to litigation, said Steven Brown, executive director of the Rhode Island affiliate of the ACLU. Close races in Cranston, East Providence and Portsmouth may have been

affected by voters lacking the correct identification to vote, he said. The resulting close elections ended with judicial action. Of the six candidates affected by this action, five support the legislation, Brown said. “We think it’s a very important piece of legislation,” Brown said. “This legislation would go a long way to making sure that people who show up at the polling stations get their vote counted.” “We see this bill as a step towards winning the trust of Rhode Islanders who might not otherwise vote,” said Meghan Purvis of Ocean State Action, a civil justice organization. But the bill doesn’t lack opposition. Robert Kando, executive director of Rhode Island’s Board of Elections, said the bill unfairly puts pressure on government agencies to count incorrectly submitted votes. The proposed legislation asks the Board to overstep their current role in tallying votes, he said. “They want us to entertain ballots that are incorrectly marked and decide voter intent,” Kando said. “(The Board of Elections) strives to be impartial,” he added, “If we have to decide voter intent, it invites criticism.” Currently, voters who fail to verify their identification on the mail-in registration are notified in March or early April that they must bring identification to vote, which Kando said is appropriate. “When someone gives you notice that you need to show ID when you next vote, is that not timely?” Kando said.

Program improves after-school activities for local youth BY REBECCA JACOBSON STAFF WRITER

Many middle school students may turn to MySpace and video games after school lets out, but Providence public school youth can enjoy a host of after-school programs, including breakdancing, yoga, tennis, circus arts, sailing and theater. The Providence After School Alliance, a network of after-school programs and services, allows

middle school students to participate in those activities free of charge. Recognizing the value of these programs, America’s Promise — an alliance of youth groups — named Providence one of the 100 best communities for young people in January. PASA was specifically cited by America’s Promise as the reason Providence made it onto its list of the 100 best communities for young people. The survey ranks communities based on their sup-

port, funding and innovative policies and programs for children and youth. Just two-and-a-half years after its inception, PASA has served about 1,000 of the city’s 6,000 middle school students in a variety of after-school programs, and officials hope to enroll 1,600 to 2,000 students next year, said PASA director Hillary Salmons. PASA, the product of a planning process led by Mayor David Cicilline ’83, launched on July 1, 2004.

It coordinates the efforts of more than 150 public and nonprofit afterschool providers, including some run by Brown students. Rather than overwhelming parents with competing programs, Salmon said, PASA pools resources and creates a streamlined registration procedure. “This city is thinking in an innovative way about what our kids need, and what’s healthy for the development of middle school youth,” Salmons said. “We realized

we needed to create a developmentally appropriate strategy — something other than babysitting. We needed to create a lot of varied experiences.” PASA has promoted variety in its programming through the creation of five AfterZones, campus-like hubs with facilities such as classrooms and gyms. Keisha Frost, coordinator of the East Side AfterZone, said the model helps continued on page 6


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Faunce to become Robert Center continued from page 1 include food and coffee options, flexible meeting spaces and comfortable furniture. Other possible uses for the space include a performance area and a games room. “It needs to be more social, more communal,” Carey said. He said the space would have to be open 24 hours to be truly convenient for students. Together with the relocation of offices to J. Walter Wilson from Faunce and Rhode Island Hall, Carey said the creation of Robert Center would “change how we look at that whole area of campus.” Current first- and second-year students may experience the benefits of the new center. Caitlin McKenna ’09 said she would be glad to see changes in Faunce. “They could make clean, open rooms that people could rent out when they needed them,” McKen-

na said. To create optimum social space, she said the center would need “big comfy chairs and lots of light.” “It would have to be open all night long, with food all day and all night. And there could be a place you could watch movies on a big screen,” McKenna said. Though she buys breakfast at the Blue Room in Faunce most mornings, McKenna said she finds Faunce’s lower floors dark and the upper floor “not used as well as they could be.” Nick Poon ’09, who said he spends time at the Student Activities Office and at meetings in Faunce, said the upper floors feel unwelcoming to students, especially at night. “The halls look old and it’s not really comfortable to be in there,” Poon said. “Maybe something could be done to make the building feel more cozy.”

Search for CIS VP down to shortlist continued from page 1 The position of vice president for Computing and Information Services and CIO was vacated last September when Ellen WaiteFranzen left Brown to take a similar position at Dartmouth. TerriLynn Thayer ’81 has filled the post at Brown on an interim basis since then. “Dartmouth is in a different place with how they think about technology and how it should be used on campus. At Brown, IT takes more of a backseat, while at Dartmouth, the college continues to assume a leadership role at the forefront of the industry,” Waite-Franzen told the Dartmouth student newspaper in a July 27 article.

But Huidekoper said Brown has been putting more resources into technology in recent years. For example, she said, $10 million was put towards network improvements while Waite-Franzen was CIO. “The department is strong — it’s really in a much better position now than it was five years ago,” Huidekoper said. Leventhal and Huidekoper both said the committee is looking for a candidate who will remain at Brown for the foreseeable future. Waite-Franzen left after just under five years on the job. “We don’t want to do this again in three years,” Leventhal said. “It takes so long to get up to speed that you need to be here for at least four years.”

Chris Bennett / Herald File Photo

The Watson Center for International Studies, which houses the international relations program.

IR concentration requirements under review continued from page 1 course. They also have to fulfill a language requirement that requires competency in a foreign language. Concentrators expressed mixed opinions about the IR program’s requirements. Harrison Moskowitz ’07 said the research methods and foreign language requirements should remain. “They are integral to the education of a well-rounded scholar,” he said. “If students become fluent in a foreign language and familiar with a specific region of the world while at Brown, they will be better prepared to pursue their goals in an international career.” Neerav Parekh ’09 agreed.

“One language isn’t good enough in a globalizing and rapidly shrinking world, especially for someone whose concentration has to do with bridging gaps. The regional focus, likewise, gives concentrators an idea of what’s happening on the micro level as compared to an overview of world politics,” he said. Amy Tan ’09 said the requirements are evenly distributed but she wishes the language requirement were more flexible. “From what I was told last year at the IR open house, I cannot use Dutch to fulfill the language requirement, even though I have a bilingual International Baccalaureate diploma in Dutch and English,” she said. Some students are more con-

cerned about limited enrollment in IR seminars. Pauline Ahn ’08 said she is disappointed that, while there are a few hundred IR concentrators, most senior seminars are capped at 20. “I would suggest creating more seminars and open them up to sophomores and juniors,” she said. Ahn also said some courses in the concentration are redundant — in particular the research methods courses. “Most students have taken statistics in high school and it might be repetitive for them,” she said. “Plus, if you aren’t planning on writing a thesis or doing research, it’s no use.” Schwartz said though the survey’s outcome is not yet clear, it’s possible the concentration requirements could change.

Task force will examine College for reaccreditation process continued from page 1

happy birthday the peace corps

Enrichment — improving undergraduate education. A broad review of Brown’s undergraduate experience has “been a long time coming,” she told The Herald. The task force will comprise three students selected by UCS and 10 faculty members, including two who are also in the administration. Bergeron’s office has already contacted members of faculty on a shortlist for membership on the task force, she said, and responses thus far have been positive. “Most people have expressed enthusiastic interest in participating in what they consider to be a very important set of issues,” she said. Bergeron said she does not expect the force to begin meeting until later this semester. “We’ll use the spring as an opportunity to lay the groundwork for the work to come — to actuaally do some summer readings, to strategize about other methods of gathering data,” Bergeron said. A student member of the committee might be paid by the Office of the Dean of the College to continue the group’s work over the summer. The task force will begin working in earnest in the fall, when the group is expected to meet every two weeks. Its report — including recommendations for change within the Col-

lege — will be released in early 2008. UCS solicited student applications for the task force in a campus-wide e-mail. Bergeron warned that the commitment involved would be similar to that of a full academic course. “It has to be taken seriously,” she said. “It’s a committee that won’t work if all the members aren’t there all the time.” Though she will chair the task force and is now its public face, Bergeron said Provost David Kertzer ’69 P’95 P’98 is the driving force behind the project. “The provost actually indicated as soon as he set foot in office that one of his priorities of his tenure would be new focus on the undergraduate College,” Bergeron said. She also said that the task force was both motivated and endorsed by discussions within the Corporation last spring. Former Provost Robert Zimmer, who left Brown last summer, had also discussed a review of undergraduate programs as a priority for the University, Bergeron said. Bergeron said the task force will play a critical role in the University’s unique approach to this round of reaccreditation, as the required self-study will focus primarily on the undergraduate program, instead of an institution-wide review. Bergeron told UCS Wednesday night that the reaccreditation process had already begun

in earnest with a large-scale data collection effort, and the task force’s report will anchor the self-study Brown will submit for reaccreditation. A committee from the accrediting association, including a president of another Ivy League institution, will then read the study and visit Brown’s campus to conduct interviews during the spring of 2009. The committee itself will only include students, faculty and administrators, but it will also attempt to speak with other groups across campus. Groups mentioned include the committee on science education, the committee on internationalization and College Curriculum Council subcommittees on concentration and course evaluation. “The point would be not to overlap the work, but actually to make a larger impact by drawing together the good work that’s being done in a lot of different areas,” Bergeron told The Herald. Bergeron said CCC members suggested to her at a meeting Tuesday that the task force should routinely invite a random selection of students to discuss the committee’s ongoing work. Bergeron called the recommendation “an excellent suggestion.” Though some UCS members expressed concern over the task force’s focus on general education — which council members linked to general education requirements — most expressed their support for the effort.


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UCS passes Grad School resolution The University Council of Students Wednesday evening approved the student group Roosevelt Institution for Category III status and passed a resolution condemning recent funding changes in the Graduate School. The resolution, which was discussed at the UCS meeting last week and approved Wednesday, responds to a new Grad School funding policy that could force doctoral candidates to finish their dissertations in fewer years than the national average. In other business, UCS is continuing to search for a storage company to provide summer storage for students. Similar to previous years, students will receive vouchers for free summer storage through an online lottery system. In addition to approving the Roosevelt Institution, which publishes the Brown Policy Review, for Category III status, UCS denied the satirical campus newspaper the Brown Noser Category III status, said Student Activities Committee Chair Hugh Livengood ’07, who cited the group’s lack of an “immediate dire need of funding.” The Noser will appeal the decision at the committee’s next meeting on March 5. The Brown Campus Coalition Against Trafficking, Columbianos Unidos Brown and the Speculative Media Entertainment Group were all approved for Category I status. The Brown chapter of Colleges Against Cancer, the African Students Association and Women in the World were approved for Category II status. — Evan Boggs

U.’s cleaning products get green seal of approval BY MARIELLE SEGARRA CONTRIBUTING WRITER

Students walking to their rooms past the familiar odor of bleach and bathroom cleaner lingering in the hallways might wonder what the University uses to clean its public spaces. Though some of the products have a strong odor and can be hazardous if used improperly, Donna Butler, director of custodial services, said, “Everything we currently use is non-toxic.”

FEATURE In Spring 2003, two students investigated the toxicity of the products that the University uses in a report for a class project. Julia Wolfson ‘06 and Joe Gebbia RISD’05 found that the SC Johnson products that Brown was using contained more hazardous ingredients and were more dangerous than any of the products offered by the report’s three alternative companies. One SC Johnson product, Triad Disinfectant Cleaner, is still used by custodial staff and contains alkyl dimethyl benzyl ammonium chloride, which the report said can cause “burns to eyes and skin.” The University has extended its contract twice since then while searching for better alternatives, Butler said. “We’re waiting for the generational turn on green cleaning,”

Tai Ho Shin / Herald Some students have expressed concern about the smell of cleaning supplies used in campus residence halls.

she said. This often means waiting for a stamp of approval from the nonprofit Green Seal organization, which requires a product to be both environmentally safe for humans and environmentally friendly to nature, said John Guglielmetti, manager of custodial services. Many products that originally had caustic and volatile formulas, such as SC Johnson’s Crew, a multi-purpose restroom cleaner,

have been improved and are being reinstated with Green Seal approval, Butler said. “Sometimes it takes a while to get formulas correct,” she said. Butler said the University is currently using two SC Johnson products that have earned the Green Seal — the versatile cleaner Alpha-HP, which is doing well in its tests in the Sidney Frank Hall continued on page 6

Masked student harassed Gate-goers BY DEBBIE LEHMANN SENIOR STAFF WRITER

The following summary includes all major incidents reported to the Department of Public Safety between Feb. 16 and Feb. 22. It does not include general service and alarm calls. The Providence Police Department also responds to incidents occurring off campus. DPS does not divulge information on open cases that are currently under investigation by the department, the PPD or the Office of Student Life. DPS maintains a daily log of all shift activity and general service calls which can be viewed during business hours at its headquarters, located at 75 Charlesfield St. Saturday, Feb. 17: 2:37 a.m. Complainant reported receiving unwanted contacts from a known individual in Graduate Center. The Community Director on call was notified and sup-

port services were offered. The Office of Student Life is handling the matter. 2:32 p.m. Complainant reported that she parked her car at Thayer and Benevolent streets at about 5:45 a.m. and returned at about 2:30 p.m. to find one rear tire smashed. There are no suspects or witnesses at this time.

CRIME LOG Monday, Feb. 19: 12:10 a.m. A DPS officer responded to a noise complaint in Andrews Hall. Upon arrival, the officer requested that the occupant of the room turn down the music. The students were dispersed, and the officer cleared the scene without issue. Tuesday, Feb. 20: 12:06 p.m. Complainant report-

ed that she parked her vehicle in Lot 76 at about 7:30 a.m. the previous day. When she returned to the vehicle at 3:30 p.m., she noticed damage on her left front fender. There are no suspects or witnesses at this time. 5:14 p.m. DPS and PPD officers responded to the report of two subjects shooting paintball guns at the boathouse. The subjects were identified and transported to the PPD central station. Wednesday, Feb. 21: 10:47 p.m. A DPS officer responded to a report of a suspicious person wearing a mask at the Gate. The subject was reportedly harassing students in the area. The subject attempted to flee the area and was then apprehended by the DPS officer. Upon further investigation, it was discovered that the subject was a Brown student. The Office of Student Life is handling the matter.


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U.’s cleaning products get green seal of approval continued from page 5 for Life Sciences, she said, and the floor-stripper Freedom. The University expects to stick with these two products and renew its contract with SC Johnson in July. But one product, Zep Stove and Oven Cleaner, is used only during student breaks because of its intense fumes, said Maria Ramos, a custodian for Perkins Hall. She said out of all the products, the oven cleaner is the only one she really can’t stand. The product can produce burns to the skin, eyes and lungs, according to its material safety data sheet. It can damage the blood, liver and kidneys, and with repeated exposure, and cause reproductive and nervous system disorders. “It’s really strong — you gag,” Ramos said. “That’s why I don’t use it when the kids are here.” Butler said the University is aware of the oven cleaner issue, and it is on their “list of things to change.”

But Ramos said most of the products aren’t a problem if used correctly For example, Ecolab correctly. Sheer Magic cleaner and disinfectant is “excellent” and doesn’t bother her at all, she said. Butler said the University has mostly stopped using bleach, using it only to remove mildew. But some students said they smell bleach a lot more often. “Once I went into the bathroom to take a shower, and the janitor said, ‘Oh honey, don’t go in that one — I just bleached it,’” said Eva Shultis ’10. “I was like, if you can’t use it right after it’s been cleaned, that’s not really a good sign.” “It’s a pretty distinctive smell,” said Kelly Murgia ‘10, adding that the fumes leave her light-headed. The hazards of contact with the chemical are not the only issue, another student said. “The smell just lingers in the hallways all day. It reeks,” said Sue Ding ’10. “I just think there are a lot of good alternatives nowadays.”

THURSDAY, MARCH ARCH 1, 2007

Program improves after-school activities for local youth continued from page 3 to facilitate community. The East Side AfterZone — which includes the Hope, Mount Hope and Fox Point areas — has 12 community partners, including as the Providence Black Repertory Company, the Apeiron Institute for Environmental Living and the United States Tennis Association. “It’s been really exciting to work with the community,” Frost said. “I can tell the East Side really cares about their youth. It’s like a family within the city of Providence.” Participants in AfterZone programs have been pleased with the experience, according to data from the polling group Market Street Research. Within the last year, 71 percent of students rated their programs as excellent, 82 percent said they felt safe and 87 percent felt welcomed and treated with respect by adults. Still, Salmons said the greatest challenge facing PASA is retention. Most participants attend two days a week, but Salmons would like to see students participating four days a week. More frequent attendance has been shown to have a greater effect on school performance and attendance, she said. “There’s a real culture of nonparticipation in this community,” Salmons said. “The middle school youth have not trusted the adult community to consistently be there for them after school.” One way in which Salmons said she hopes to increase participation is by working more closely with faculty in schools, who can encourage their students to sign up for the after-school programs.

Another challenge for PASA is maintaining adequate levels of funding. When PASA began, the Wallace Foundation, a group focused on education leadership, awarded it a $5 million grant. PASA also received $1 million from the Bank of America. But with about half of these funds spent, Salmon said PASA now hopes to attract regular public funding from the city and state. Christian Caldarone GS, a master’s student in the Urban Education Policy program, worked last summer to find sustainable funding for PASA by examining longterm strategies for maintaining funding. He said PASA has explored the possibility of charging parents for the after-school programs, which are currently free. PASA has also looked into the possibility of obtaining subsidies from the Rhode Island Department of Human Services. Caldarone’s summer research project led to his current year-long internship at PASA, much of which has centered on developing a comprehensive training program for activity providers. He spent two months observing AfterZone programs, including ones that enlisted college students as volunteers. “The college volunteers were doing a great job, but I saw some room for better training with how to deal with adolescents,” Caldarone said. “I also saw a need to give them training about PASA’s philosophy.” Caldarone helped coordinate two volunteer orientations for the current winter session, using his fieldwork and discussions with students from Providence College,

Bryant University and Johnson & Wales University. He said PASA plans to keep and improve the model, possibly using it for all the organization’s volunteers. There are also a number of Brown undergraduates involved in programs that have come under the PASA umbrella. One such program is FitNut, which teaches fitness and nutrition to girls at Roger Williams Middle School. FitNut existed before PASA but is now included on the Lower South Side AfterZone slate of activities. FitNut program coordinators Allison Barkley ’07 and Victoria Chao ’08 said that, aside from a few initial logistical complications, PASA has been accommodating and trusting of their group. Barkley and Chao have kept control of the FitNut curriculum but have not had to worry about coordinating attendance or bussing. “It’s become a lot more standardized, and there’s more oversight, which is good for us,” Barkley said. Caldarone also praised PASA for working to maximize resources by building a citywide system to coordinate preexisting programs. He described the organization’s work as “a very ambitious undertaking” but said he hopes PASA can keep up with the continued demand for more after-school programming. “PASA is in a place right now where they’re expanding, and I just hope they’re able to maintain the quality of what they do now,” Caldarone said. “Once they keep improving the structure and adding more great programs, I think demand is just going to keep shooting up.”


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U.S. won’t extradite CIA agents to Italy BERLIN (Washington Post) — The State Department’s top lawyer said Wednesday that the United States would refuse to extradite CIA officers who face kidnapping charges in Italy, warning that European criminal prosecutions of U.S. agents was harming trans-Atlantic counterterrorism efforts. An Italian court issued indictments against 25 CIA operatives and a U.S. Air Force officer on Feb. 16, charging them with kidnapping a radical Muslim cleric in Milan four years ago. Although the Italian government has not made a final decision on whether to ask the United States to extradite the defendants, State Department legal adviser John Bellinger said the request would be rejected regardless. “If we got an extradition request from Italy, we would not extradite U.S. officials to Italy,” Bellinger told reporters in Brussels, where he was meeting with European Union officials. Bellinger’s statement was the first time that a U.S. government official has directly addressed the Italian criminal investigation, which is expected to produce the first overseas trial of CIA officers involved in a covert counterterrorism operation. The trial is scheduled to open June 8 in Milan. Italian prosecutors say they will try the American defendants in absentia, if necessary. Five Italian spies, including the former head of military intelligence, have also been charged.

False Iraq report adds to tense reality BAGHDAD, Iraq (Los Angeles Times) — The story was horrific, even when compared with the daily dose of brutality that Iraqis endure: 18 boys killed by a massive bomb while kicking a ball around a soccer field, their young lives ending in a senseless attack in one of Iraq’s most volatile cities. State-run Iraqiya TV first reported the incident Tuesday shortly after 8 p.m., scrolling the words across the bottom of the screen. Other television stations quickly followed with their own reports. Before the night was out, Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki had condemned the act, as had the United Nations Children’s Fund, UNICEF. On Wednesday, though, the U.S. military said the report was false and suggested someone had lied to stir up trouble in the western city of Ramadi, a center of Sunni insurgent activity where the crime was said to have occurred. In reality, it said U.S. troops set off a controlled detonation of a weapons cache that went awry and injured 31 people, none seriously. “There was no (bomb) blast and there were no 18 children killed,” Navy Rear Adm. Mark Fox, a U.S. military spokesman, told a news briefing.

Recording industry cracks down on student downloaders (Los Angeles Times) — If they don’t stop downloading music illegally, some university students might end up having to fight in court. The Recording Industry Association of America said it is sending out 400 warning letters to students at 13 universities, part of a stepped-up legal fight against music downloading amid new information that shows a dramatic increase in the number of songs exchanged illegally via the Internet. RIAA officials said they expect to file about 5,000 lawsuits nationwide against students this year. “We’d rather not be doing these lawsuits … but the fact remains that the college environment is one that has rampant piracy,” said RIAA chairman Mitch Bainwol. Brown was not one of the schools named.

S. Africa offers plan for thinning elephant herds JOHANNESBURG, South Africa (Los Angeles Times) — Small farmers and villagers here see them as cunning, destructive and dangerous beasts whose very name conjures up death. In the West, elephants are perhaps the most beloved of the big game species and tourists fly thousands of miles just to see one. So South Africa’s proposal, unveiled Wednesday, to thin elephant herds by methods that include shooting them was bound to spark controversy. Regulations announced by South African Environmental Affairs Minister Marthinus van Schalkwyk would affect thousands of elephants, and include contraception measures, use of aerial sharpshooters and relocation, to bring the herd back to manageable levels. Contraception methods include drugs delivered by dart to female elephants, and vasectomies for males. “Some (methods), such as culling or contraception, I would personally have preferred not to consider, but I am persuaded that this option has a potential role to play under different circumstances,” van Schalkwyk said. He said that, if approved, the regulations would not lead to wholesale elephant slaughter.

Supreme Court takes up Bush’s ‘faith-based initiative’ BY DAVID G. SAVAGE LOS ANGELES T IMES

WASHINGTON — In a closely watched church-state separation case, a Bush administration lawyer urged the Supreme Court Wednesday to shield the president’s “faithbased initiative” from legal challenges in court. U.S. Solicitor General Paul Clement said taxpayers who believe the White House is unconstitutionally promoting religion should not be accorded legal “standing” to sue in court. It would be too “intrusive on the executive branch” to permit lawsuits contesting how the president and his advisers conduct their affairs, he said. The case involves a Wisconsin group called Freedom From Religion that sued in 2004 to challenge the “faith-based initiative” on First Amendment grounds. The group said the White House officials were using public money to help church-based groups win grants and contracts. It is the first major religion case to come before the Supreme Court since President Bush’s two appointees took their seats. In their questions Wednesday, both Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. and Justice Samuel A. Alito Jr. sounded as though they sided with the administration. Overall, the nine justices seemed split during the hour-long argument. If they adopt the administration’s view, the ruling could make it harder for critics to sue officials who use public money in ways that support religion. If the justices rule in favor of Freedom From Religion, the group would still have to prove its case in court. Roberts made clear he thought the group’s claims should be thrown out of court. If taxpayers

can sue the government whenever an official invokes God or religion, why couldn’t anyone “sue our marshal for standing up and saying ‘God save the United States and this is honorable court’?” asked Roberts, citing the invocation heard each day when the justices enter the court. Justice Antonin Scalia appeared to agree. Otherwise, he said, taxpayers could sue the president for having spent tax money to promote religion simply because he flew across the country to give a speech to a religious group. “The whole trip is about religion,” Scalia said, but “it really doesn’t make any sense” to permit lawsuits challenging this spending. Taking up the opposite view, Justice Stephen G. Breyer said courts and lawsuits are needed to enforce the separation of church and state. “People become terribly upset when they see some other religion getting the money from the state” to subsidize their faith, he said. “We have a pretty clear, simple rule,” he said, that allows lawsuits “when the government spends money in violation of the establishment clause.” The First Amendment says “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion.” The issue of who has standing is technical, but crucial. It can determine when and whether the government’s conduct can be challenged in court. Normally, persons must say they have suffered a personal injury of some sort before they can sue in court. For example, taxpayers cannot sue to stop the war in Iraq simply because they disagree with it. But nearly 40 years ago, the court under then-Chief Justice Earl Warren made an exception for chal-

lenges to government spending that promotes religion. In Wednesday’s argument, Clement urged the court to narrow that exception considerably. In one exchange, he said taxpayers should not be allowed to sue even if officials use tax money to build a church. The Bush administration said Freedom From Religion’s suit should be thrown out on the grounds that the challengers did not have standing to sue in court. However, the U.S. appeals court in Chicago allowed the suit to go forward. In a 2-1 ruling, Judge Richard Posner said plaintiffs sought to show the White House-sponsored meetings were “propaganda vehicles for religion.” But before it could be heard, the Supreme Court agreed to hear the administration’s appeal filed on behalf of Jay Hein, who directs the White House Office of Faith-based and Community Initiatives. Clement said the government should be shielded from suits over how officials use general tax money. He agreed taxpayers could sue if Congress passed a law that distributed money directly to churches or religious groups. But it is different matter if the White House uses general funds to encourage religious groups to do charitable work, he argued. A coalition of liberal groups filed a friend-of-the-court brief that urged the court to reject the administration’s argument. “Tax dollars may not be used to subsidize religious activity,” said Steven Shapiro, the American Civil Liberties Union’s legal director. “Barring taxpayers from enforcing this fundamental principle in court would effectively license the government to violate the Constitution.”

Markets ‘working well,’ says Fed chief BY NELL HENDERSON AND DAVID CHO WASHINGTON POST

WASHINGTON — Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke told Congress Wednesday that the markets were “working well” and the outlook for the U.S. economy was upbeat a day after Wall Street suffered its steepest decline in nearly four years. Bernanke added that his view of the economy was unchanged. “We are looking for moderate growth in the economy going forward,” he said at a previously scheduled hearing on the budget. His comments helped the Dow Jones industrial average recover 52 of the 416 points it lost the previous day. Two days earlier, Alan Greenspan, the man Bernanke replaced a year ago, expressed a strikingly different view about the economy. The former Fed chairman said signs were emerging that a recession was possible later this year. The dueling viewpoints of both men, arguably the two most influential voices on the markets, reflected the broader uncertainty over where the U.S. economy is heading next and left some investors debating which oracle of Wall Street has the greater insight. Greenspan’s remarks were not welcomed by some inside the Fed who viewed them as possibly con-

tributing to the market turmoil on Tuesday. “It’s not right to expect the former Fed chairman to take an oath of silence after he leaves office, but I bet his successors wish he’d stick to writing his memoirs,” said Thomas Schlesinger, executive director of the nonprofit Financial Markets Center, which monitors the Fed. Three economic reports released Wednesday added to concerns on Wall Street. The U.S. economy expanded at a sluggish annual rate of 2.2 percent in the last three months of 2006, the Commerce Department said, far below its original estimate of 3.5 percent. The department also said newhome sales fell by 16.6 percent in January from the previous month, the steepest drop in 13 years. A regional economic report showed a weaker-than-expected reading on business purchases in the Midwest. The data are viewed as a bellwether of manufacturing activity nationwide. Bernanke, who spent his career in academia before joining the government, has attributed the slowdown primarily to the housing slump and welcomed slower growth as a way to dampen price pressures. The Fed believes inflation is too high, and worries it may quicken if the economy grows faster.

Greenspan’s perspective draws on his years as a business consultant before joining the Fed in 1987. On Monday, he said at a business conference in Hong Kong that he sees signs that the current expansion, which began in 2001, is aging. “When you get this far away from a recession, invariably forces build up for the next recession, and indeed we are beginning to see that sign,” Greenspan said. “For example, in the U.S., profit margins … have begun to stabilize, which is an early sign we are in the later stages of a cycle. “Yes, it is possible we can get a recession in the latter months of 2007,” Greenspan said. He added that most analysts are not forecasting a recession. Greenspan’s comments elicited no significant reaction in financial markets when they were reported Monday morning. But his words loomed larger in many traders’ minds during Tuesday’s stock selloff and after the latest weak economic data was released yesterday. Robert Barbera, chief economist of ITG, a financial advisory firm, said it’s hard to ignore what Greenspan says. “Bernanke speaks as a top-elite economist,” he said. “But … Greenspan is a creature of the markets, and as a fellow creature of the markets, I tend to agree with him.”


THURSDAY, MARCH ARCH 1, 2007

Fencing struggles at Ivy championships continued from page 12 Yarnell ’10 were the only Bears to win two bouts at the meet. Eight fencers did each win a single bout against Penn, a result Mahoney attributed in part to Penn’s lack of depth relative to some of the other Ivy League teams. Mahoney was pleased with the results. “The results weren’t very pretty, but (Harvard and Penn) were strong opponents,” he said. “Against the other schools we had a lot of people who were coming in without a single victory on the day. … This was a good opportunity for people to pick up wins.” The Bears will travel to Princeton to fence at the Intercollegiate Fencing Association championship Saturday against a field that includes all of Brown’s fellow Ivy League teams. This will be Brown’s last meet before the NCAA Northeast Regionals, which will be held on March 11. “This will be a great opportunity for practice for the regionals,” Tass said. While Brown was not ready to

be a force in the Ivy League this year, both Hausmann and Mahoney believe the future holds great promise. Hausmann believes the women will build on a season in which they won the Northeast Fencing Conference championship for the second year in a row. “Every year I’ve seen the team get stronger and better, and I think that will continue,” she said. “I was very impressed with this year’s freshmen, and I’m sure next year’s freshmen will be just as amazing. We should be able to do better in the Ivy League in the coming years and maintain the level of success we’ve had in the Northeast Fencing Conference.” Mahoney is similarly hopeful for the men. “There are some good fencers on this team that definitely have the potential to get better results,” he said. “In years past we’ve gotten good fencers and they keep getting better. We have fresh faces that keep pushing us to get better. We’re in the position where we can move up a few spots in the Ivy standings in another year or two.”

Miko comes to Wickenden continued from page 3 it is,” said Christina Perkins ’08.5. Perkins, who said she shops at Miko once or twice a semester, doesn’t think she’ll visit the new location more often simply because it’s closer to her, she said. “But I’m glad it’s closer as a resource to give to other people,” she said. “I think (Wickenden) feels more like a part of campus than other things off the Hill. ... People know things that are there.” Sussman said the new location is convenient for students and East Side residents because it’s “open late, and it would be really easy to go in” after doing other things on Wickenden, such as getting coffee or a haircut. But the new location may “be a little bit more secluded from all the other areas of Providence,” Sussman said. “It’s going to be in a much more upper-class neighborhood.” “Wickenden is actually a more convenient place for me to go,” said Post- Sex Columnist Martin Qui-

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nones ’08, who planned to attend a “massive moving sale” at the old location last night. But Quinones said he was sorry Miko left the old location — a converted firehouse — after the store had just begun expanding into the building’s second floor. “It was just such a beautiful building,” he said.

happy birthday articles of confederation

Rochelson ‘09: Meet the 2007 N. Y. Mets continued from page 12 and effectiveness will be limited; don’t count on Pedro to save the 2007 Mets rotation. The Lineup is Intact The 2007 Mets offense is almost identical to their 2006 offense. The only disparity is in left field, where 40-year-old Moises Alou has replaced the speedy 29-year-old Endy Chavez. Alou is coming off a productive year, shortened by injury, in which he hit .301 with 22 home runs in only 98 games. If he performs at that level for a whole season, Alou could be a 30-plus homer force in the Mets lineup — a significant power upgrade over the scrappy Chavez. The rest of the lineup looks the same on paper, but will be much better than it was in 2006. Young stars such as David Wright, Jose Reyes, and even Beltran should continue to improve in 2007. Wright is only 24 years old, and the All-Star third-baseman has not even reached his full potential. His stolen bases, RBI, batting average and slugging percentage are all on the increase — Wright should hit 30 home runs and steal 25-plus bases next season. A few feet to his left, shortstop Reyes had a breakout season in 2006. The popular All-Star took huge strides in improving his patience at the plate, taking twice as many walks as he did in 2005. This led to career highs in home runs (19), batting average (.300) and stolen bases (64). As Reyes’

patience improves even more, he should best his already incredible 2006 numbers. And don’t forget about Beltran in center field. Although he’s 30 years old, some say he has yet to reach his peak. Amazingly, 2006 was the slugger’s first 40-homerun season. It won’t be his last. Also, Beltran has said this off-season that he plans to be more aggressive on the base paths and re-approach 40 stolen bases. In 2004, Beltran stole 42 bases and was only caught thrice. When the man runs, he does not get caught. This combination of power and speed would be very welcome in the Mets well-balanced lineup. With a nucleus of improving stars, the Mets’ powerhouse offense may keep their paltry starting rotation afloat — at least un-

til General Manager Omar Minaya can swing a mid-season deal for pitching help. If a serviceable starting pitcher is brought in, or Mike Pelfrey is called up and saves the day, then the Mets might make the playoffs. In their current state, however, the Mets will steadily lose ground to the greatly improved Philadelphia Phillies and place second in the National League East. As the saying goes, the best baseball teams have three things in common: pitching, pitching and pitching.

Ellis Rochelson ’09 can’t study without listening to Bernie Williams’ debut jazz guitar album, “The Journey Within.”


E DITORIAL & L ETTERS THE BROWN DAILY HERALD

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THURSDAY, MARCH ARCH 1, 2007

STAF F EDITORIAL

This time, for real A campus center has been on Ruth’s to-do list from the beginning of the capital campaign — somewhere around the bottom of the $1.4 billion wish list. When Simmons presented the campaign’s Table of Needs, which ranks the Campaign for Academic Enrichment’s fundraising goals, students questioned why a campus center of real importance to undergraduates fell so low on the list. With a $50 million price tag and a near-obscure spot on the campaign rubric, it seemed few donors would be likely to foot the prospective campus center’s bill. This weekend the University didn’t quite get the desired $50 million, but the $15 million from outgoing Chancellor Stephen Robert ’62 P’91 and three other donors is more than a start. Yet just because these funds don’t quite reach the mammoth proportions that renamed the Med School or constructed a space-age sciences building doesn’t mean administrators should cut corners in the interest of haste. University officials’ well-intentioned efforts to make changes that will benefit current undergraduates too often lead to halfway solutions. Satellite fitness centers, a more comfortable Absolute Quiet Room and even a 24-hour study center have made pockets of campus life more enjoyable, but when millions of dollars are being pumped into the building sitting atop the Main Green, administrators must talk to students and make sure that they’re making the endeavor worthwhile. Though we hope the students who have Russell Carey’s ear suggest lots of big comfy chairs and a smoothie bar, snacks and study nooks aren’t the only reasons students care about a campus center. This project should foster a sense of community distinctly lacking at Brown. Brown students don’t come together for sports games or arts performances. We have no common academic experience, and with the exception of a few hundred first-years, we don’t live in large quads. The University’s promise that you can follow your own path for four years is exactly why many of us chose to come to College Hill. But as we chart our course through college, too often we find our niche and lose touch with the broader Brown community — those unitmates and classmates you only run into with tray in hand at the Ratty or in the midday rush at the P.O. As Frances Halsband, the architect behind the Walk and Brown’s physical expansion master plan, told The Herald last semester, “something’s missing” on this campus — a sense of community and the casual places to congregate that help cultivate it. We’ll happily trade in the Lower Blue Room for something better. In its current state, Faunce House only draws students when they decide to check their mail, avoid the dining halls to use their flex points or, for a small subset of devotees, play Dance Dance Revolution. The building once housed the Brown Bookstore and now plays host to a motley crew of student groups and campus offices including BSR, the Indy and the Office of the Chaplains and Religious Life, so its walls have undergone several foiled attempts at change. Students may not remember that almost three years ago, Faunce became Brown’s first 24-hour study space, used only by brave souls who didn’t mind the poor ventilation and eerie emptiness come midnight. Now that we have a functional, attractive 24-hour study space in the SciLi, it’s time to reinvigorate Faunce for good. But as administrators rush to turn Faunce into the Stephen Robert Campus Center “pretty fast,” we hope they don’t lose sight of those things that will make the project a success in the eyes of those who will use it — students. Faunce House has been redone and reinvigorated over and over. This time, administrators must make their costly efforts last.

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LETTERS Quigley ’10 is divorced from reality To the Editor: It seems that Sean Quigley ’10 has been taking cues from Nonie Darwish. Just as Darwish lambasted 1.3 billion Muslims coming from hundreds of races and civilizations as belonging to a “culture of hatred,” Quigley scolded us Northeasterners for our smugness and “Ivy League pretentiousness” (“Brown U. forecast: low 20s with plenty of smug,” Feb. 27). Now I’ve been attacked on both fronts — as a Muslim and as a New Yorker. The fatwa is that I am smug, pretentious, violent and misogynistic. Next, there will be reports that I can cause cancer. But let’s not jump to give Quigley credit for being the first to make vast generalizations about entire groups of people. Racism has been upgraded for the 21st century. We have social ‘scientists’ with Ph.D.’s like Samuel Huntington and quasi-intellectuals like Darwish to tell us African Americans just can’t help being criminals, Mexicans just want to take us over and Muslims just hate our freedoms. What they all share in common is a dislike for reality. Take Quigley’s belief in Darwish’s claim that she received “an extensive education in the despicability of

the Americans and the Jews” over a period of 30 years in Egypt. In an emotionally charged assertion, Darwish boldly declared to her audience that jihad against the infidels is a principle taught at Al-Azhar University, a 1,000-year-old institution of higher learning. I’m sure this scares a lot of people, but I find it mildly amusing. I’ve been to Egypt five times to study Arabic and Islamic law and I studied in Al-Azhar for a semester before coming to Brown. I never came across the material she spoke about. Maybe it’s in the “I made that up” section of the library. Just a few months from graduating, I cringe at knowing that some students place personal experiences before empirical facts. If you want to know something about the Middle East, study the region, then make some conclusions. If Ivy League pretentiousness means treating the sources in a humble and unbiased way, then I’m proud to be a Brown student.

Refai Arefin ‘07 Feb. 28

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O PINIONS THURSDAY, MARCH ARCH 1, 2007

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Sinking between disciplines DON TRELLA

OPINIONS COLUMNIST

The Herald recently published an article about the problems shared by the various interdisciplinary programs at Brown (“Interdisciplinary programs can struggle in departmental system,” Feb. 8). The basic conclusion of this long and thorough piece was the University’s respect for the autonomy of its various departments has the undesirable consequence of hanging interdisciplinary programs out to dry. In other words, whenever hard choices have to be made by any given department — such as deciding for what sub-field to hire a new professor or where a budget reduction must fall — interdisciplinary programs always get the short end of the stick because departments look to preserving their own strength and prestige before worrying about the health of a program not entirely within their purview. The departments really can’t be faulted for using this decision calculus. Like investors in a stock market, departments pay the most attention to the stock in which they are most heavily invested because it affects their potential gains or losses most. Contrary to what our economics department might want you to believe simply “letting the free market run its course” is not always the best course of action. The structure of the funding system is such that the value of interdisciplinary programs can never be determined by the amount of mon-

ey allocated to them by individual departments. This is why the University administration must sometimes intervene in the academic market — much like a government — and correct for “negative externalities” like the harm done to interdisciplinary programs. It’s been about a year since a group of graduating biomedical ethics concentrators made noise about the slow death of their program on the Herald’s Opinions page. Biomedical ethics is an area of study that is only going to become more relevant in

great moral debates of the 21st st century. Removing Brown from this debate is just one compelling example of the real harms that will be done to the University if the administration does not propose a comprehensive solution to the dilemma faced by interdisciplinary programs. If we do allow biomedical ethics to be completely phased out at the end of 2008, that decision may well prove to be a moment of self-definition. As a matter of principle, Brown has always been the “Ivy with a conscience.” In general, Brown students

Things that have a great impact on human destiny generally happen at the intersection of different fields. the next few decades. The work on interpretation of genome data from the Human Genome Project is still in its initial stages, and society has not even begun to reap the enormous benefits of this global endeavor. Rapid advances in biotechnology will soon give unprecedented power to human beings over things once thought to rest solely in the hands of God. The question of to what extent we ought to use the power of authorship over our progeny and, ultimately, the future of humanity will be one of the

are the kind of people who lie awake in bed at night and think about the world, its problems and how to solve them. As an institution whose conscience is the hallmark of its character, it befits us to show a commitment to valuing moral discourse — particularly the genre of moral discourse that is likely to be most prevalent in the near future. To take another example, a degree in Middle East studies is highly marketable, and people who concentrate in Middle East studies today will play a central role in de-

termining what the international landscape of tomorrow will look like. They will have the ears of our leaders, and the policies and strategies they suggest will bear heavily on whether we are indeed doomed to the “clash of civilizations” predicted by Samuel Huntington or whether we will be able to put common humanity above our differences. To be clear, Middle East studies isn’t slated to be phased out like biomedical ethics, but with recent reductions in its class offerings and faculty — and as a consequence, its number of concentrators — one has to wonder how long it might be before it suffers the fate of its interdisciplinary counterpart. If Brown wants to continue to attract people who have an impact on the world — and who are concerned with how the world “ought” to be — it must act at this critical juncture to save biomedical ethics, revive Middle East studies and support all interdisciplinary programs. Things that have a great impact on human destiny generally happen at the intersection of different fields, and not surprisingly, employers are more than eager to hire graduates whose course of study has been focused specifically on these intersections. Aggressive support of Brown’s interdisciplinary programs is justified by both pragmatism and principle. Today, the University is unfortunately letting those programs slide into disrepair.

Don Trella ’08 is concentrating in the interinterdisciplinary Middle Eastern Biomedical Ethics program.

Civil unions advance the progressive agenda BY JESSE ADAMS OPINIONS COLUMNIST

Progressives’ reactions to New Jersey’s new civil union law have been rather somber. Yes, gay couples are now explicitly entitled to “every statutory right and benefit conferred to heterosexual couples through civil marriage,” and yes, New Jersey is the first state outside of New England (arguably after California) to offer such significant recognition — but liberals’ prevailing mood seems to be of resignation, even disappointment. “Marriage equality” has not been achieved, say many — “marriage apartheid” endures. A puzzling attitude, really, since civil unions immeasurably advance the quality of life for New Jersey’s gay couples, at last allowing them, for example, unfettered visitation rights and the same financial incentives offered to heterosexual couples. The law, in short, affords gay couples everything but two words — “marriage” and “spouse” — and a bundle of supposed implications. For most in favor of “marriage equality,” those implications include a national stamp of approval for LGBTQ partnerships — both a symbol of official acceptance and a longawaited rebuff to homophobes who like to pretend that gays don’t exist. For many who support “defending marriage,” however, the implication is heroic resistance to an aggressively depraved gay value system threatening to corrupt their children. For each side, it seems, the symbol — the word “marriage” — is more important than the statutory benefits that legal partnership provides. For those deeply invested in this issue on either side, the opposition is the enemy, and compromise is unthinkable. But compromise is exactly what the majority of Americans want. Polls find a nation hungry for less bickering and grandstanding in government — the Democratic victory in November came primarily from centrist

candidates who pledged bipartisanship. The swing voters that often determine elections don’t see either party as the enemy — or at least they don’t see one as more inimical than the other. Somewhat sympathetic to the arguments of both sides but mostly distracted and not really paying attention, swing voters want each side of each issue to find a reasonable middle ground where everyone gets part of what they want, and nothing changes too quickly. Civil unions are a good example. Though national polls show that a small but substantial majority oppose “gay marriage,” the divide is far narrower — and legislative success more likely — when the public consid-

Feverishly competing for a fickle audience with ever-shrinking attention spans, media outlets consistently emphasize the most outrageous, controversial and simplistic aspects of their stories. The resulting narrative is a cartoonish parody of the world, riddled with disproportionality: A world in which poor women are frequently welfare queens, for instance, and gays tend to be bizarre denizens of militantly orgiastic pride parades. Regardless of the LGBTQ community’s actual nature, many voters are reacting to such over-the-top caricatures, which violate their most fundamental assumptions about what constitutes appropriate behavior. Although these voters may empathize with gay

A world in which poor women are frequently welfare queens, and gays tend to be bizarre denizens of militantly orgiastic pride parades. ers civil unions. Apparently, many of those who are touchy about maintaining traditional “marriage” also back legal recognition and equal benefits for gay couples. Due partially to sympathetic portrayals in the media, Americans have become increasingly tolerant and accepting of LGBTQ lifestyles. Their attitudes, however, are tempered by a decidedly less embracing perspective. Whether a “gay agenda” really exists is immaterial. What matters is that millions of voters believe it does. Not only is this belief promulgated by various right-wing commentators, but it also emerges naturally from our 24/7 mass media that peddles sensationalism rather than nuanced perspectives on reality.

individuals, they still feel a compelling need to vote in defense of their cultural values — even if their candidate’s economic positions contradict their own interests. This is, according to author Thomas Frank, “what’s the matter with Kansas” — and much of America. Such emotional topics encourage politicians to craft increasingly shallow campaigns based on hot-button issues rather than substantive platforms. To make matters worse, bitter experience has demonstrated that, among non-habitual voters, gay marriage is much more galvanizing to the right than to the left. Had it been less of an issue in 2004, fewer Republicans who vote intermittently might have showed up to the polls and more

swing voters in Ohio and Florida might have voted their economic interests with Sen. John Kerry, D-Mass. We’ll never know, of course, but in an era of super-competitive elections, progressive activists must approach such divisive issues strategically. LGBTQ advocates face a similar dilemma as many other progressive groups, such as Students for Sensible Drug Policy, of which I’m a member. How do you advance a progressive cause that much of the public finds threatening without provoking the kind of active and organized opposition that hurts both the cause and the broader progressive agenda? In recognition of the fact that much of society fears the corruptive influence of a hedonistic drug culture, SSDP focuses on smaller, less threatening aspects of drug policy reform than the total decriminalization that many activists favor. The group’s remarkable success includes passage of medicinal marijuana and felon enfranchisement legislation in Rhode Island. SSDP has managed to make a real progressive difference by pursuing harm reduction rather than dramatic and alienating systemic change, at least in the short term — exactly what LGBTQ advocates can do by supporting civil unions over the more polarizing “marriage equality” platform. With this approach, gay couples nationwide will sooner receive the rights and benefits they deserve — but with less chance of spurring a backlash that can set back other progressive causes. As national surveys find that Americans are increasingly tolerant of alternative sexualities, it is not difficult to foresee easy passage of actual “gay marriage” in a few decades. For now, though, the issue should not be allowed to alienate prospective voters who might otherwise support progressive policies.

Jesse Adams ’07 wants to save liberalism from itself. He does not officially represent SSDP, which was not consulted for this column.


S PORTS T HURSDAY THURSDAY, MARCH ARCH 1, 2007

PAGE 12

THE BROWN DAILY HERALD

Sports in brief: Gymnastics, squash come up short

D E O S S I E D O M I N AT E S

Gymnastics comes in last at Penn

Ashley Hess / Herald File Photo

Zak DeOssie ’07 competed in the linebackers portion of the NFL combine on Feb. 21. DeOssie is the first player in Brown history to be invited to the combine.

Meet the 2007 N. Y. Mets The Mets should’ve won the World Series last year. They were poised to defeat the vastly inferior St. Louis Cardinals in the National League Championship Series when Carlos Beltran forgot how to swing a baseball bat. The appetite of Mets fans everywhere has officially been whetted. Will the 2007 Mets Ellis Rochelson Ellis’ MLB Exclusive meet the lofty expectations? Starting pitching, anyone? The Mets’ ace is 41-year-old Tom Glavine. Despite the popular impression that Glavine is injury-prone and fragile, the veteran has started at least 32 games every season since 1995. Despite his age, it’s reasonable to assume he will start every fi fth game for the Mets. In recent years, he’s kept his walks low while increasing his strikeouts, proving that he has not lost his pinpoint control. To compensate for his slowing fastball, Glavine has wisely begun to rely more heavily on his changeup. In 2006, he led the Majors in percentage of changeups thrown — 37.5 percent of his pitches. It will be a relief to see Glavine on the mound for the Mets, because the rest of their rotation is pretty ugly. Their second starter is Orlando “El Duque” Hernandez. He claims he’s 38 years old, some

SPORTS SCHEDULE THURSDAY, MAR. 1 M. & W. SWIMMING: at NCAA Zones (Piscataway, N.J.)

say he’s 41, but the Cuban import could be 73 for all we know. Right now he’s out of commission for arthritis in his neck. This is not the high-kicking Yankees ace of 1998. The Mets would be lucky to get 20 starts out of him. In the three-spot is 26-year-old John Maine. Maine had a surprisingly successful first season, at one point pitching 26 consecutive scoreless innings and out-dueling Cy Young Award winner Chris Carpenter in the NLCS. But don’t get too excited — Maine’s 15 starts last season was his career high, as were his 90 innings. He might carry his postseason success into 2007, but the Mets are depending on the youngster a little too much. The Mets fourth starter is Oliver Perez of the career 30-43 record and 4.67 ERA. Perez was magical in 2004 for the Pirates, striking out 239 batters in 196 innings with a 2.98 ERA. You can add Perez to the list of comebacks the Mets are praying for. But that list is not complete. Anytime Chan Ho Park is in your rotation, you know you’ve got problems. Park is most famous for being paid $65 million by the Texas Rangers and providing them with only 68 starts over four seasons — and mostly terrible starts at that. Prediction: With superprospect Mike Pelfrey nipping at his heels, Park will be designated for assignment by April. We can only hope the Mets make this decision as soon as possible. Oh and by the way, Pedro Martinez probably won’t return to the Mets until August. And even when he does come back, his workload continued on page 9

The gymnastics team finished fourth of four teams at the Ivy Classic at the University of Pennsylvania on Sunday. Brown had a total of 186.975 points, behind first-place finisher University of Pennsylvania with 191.550 points, Cornell with 190.600 points and Yale, with 190.550 points. Despite the result, Brown earned its highest point total of the season. Bruno also had several fantastic individual performances on the day. Alicia Sacramone ’10 continued her strong performance with a 9.875 score on the beam, a new school record. Sacramone also dominated in the all-around — her 39.250 mark was a meet-best and also a school record. Sacramone became the first gymnast in the history of the Ivy League to place first on every event en route to winning the all-around. Her high marks on the beam tied the meet record and her score in the all-around set a new meet record. Sacramone was not the only Bear to perform well on the vault. Alanna Kwoka ’10 and Jennifer Sobuta ’09 did well with scores of 9.550 and 9.500 respectively, helping Bruno finish with a 46.650 score. The Bears posted a 47.200 score on the bars with Sacramone grabbing first place with a 9.775 mark. Hannah Goldstein ’08 tallied a per-

sonal best score of 9.625. Brown next travels to New Haven to take on Yale on Saturday, March 3 at 1 p.m. — Justin Goldman M. squash finishes 13th at Team Nationals The men’s squash team finished their season by taking 13th at the Team Nationals held at Yale this weekend. Competing in the Hoehn Division, Brown suffered an agonizing 5-4 loss to Bowdoin College. The Bears’ No. 1 and 2 players, Daniel Petrie ’07 and Edward Cerullo ’08, won their matches in three straight sets, but the Polar Bears swept the next four spots. Brown managed to win at the seventh spot with the effort of Jacob Winkler ’09, but Bowdoin snagged the eighth-position victory to secure the team win. The Bears then faced the University of Rochester and delivered a powerful performance, defeating their opponents by 8-1. Although Petrie lost in the No. 1 position, Bruno’s other players won their respective matches. At the end of the weekend, Brown took on the United States Naval Academy and suffered a devastating 8-1 loss. No. 5 Patrick Haynes ’07 was the only Bear to win his match. — Madeleine Marecki

Fencing struggles at second half of Ivy Championships BY ANDREW BRACA CONTRIBUTING WRITER

The women’s and men’s fencing teams were swept Sunday at the second half of the Ivy League Championship, held at Harvard. The women suffered three defeats — including a heartbreaking 14-13 loss to Cornell — while the men dropped both of their matches. These results come on the heels of the women’s 1-2 performance and the men’s 0-3 showing at the first half of the Ivy League Championship at the University of Pennsylvania on Feb. 11. The women tied for last place in the Ivy League with Yale, whom they beat at the meet two weeks ago, while the men stand alone in last place. Last year was Bruno’s first in the Ivy League, and each team defeated one Ivy League opponent last year. But Head Coach Atilio Tass dismissed the notion that this season had been disappointing. “The team is still very young, and we are new in the Ivy League,” Tass said. “We had a very good season all year long with both the men and the women, so there is no disappointment in that sense. You have to remember that we’ve had very positive records all over the season.” Bruno fell to tough competition. The men faced powerhouses in No. 4 Harvard and No. 7 Penn, while the woman took on the No. 3 Crimson and the No. 8 Quakers. “We had good competition against every Ivy League opponent,” Tass said. “I was going after Cornell, and we just fell short by one bout. It is very disappointing to be so close and then not be

Jacob Melrose / Herald File Photo

David Giles Berliner ’09 competed for the men’s fencing team in the Ivy Championships over the weekend.

able to get it.” Epeeist and tri-captain Christine Livoti ’08 and saberist Randy Alevi ’10 contributed 2-1 marks against Cornell in addition to the foil squad’s six wins, but it wasn’t enough for the Bears. “It was hard that it came down to be so close,” said tri-captain Jennifer Hausmann ’07. “We knew we could beat Cornell, but we got nervous about going into it and not performing well. I think

that distracted us and prevented us from performing not as well as we could have.” Kirsten Lynch ’10 topped the team with a 5-4 record on the day, followed by Alevi and saberist Deborah Gorth ’09.5, who each posted 4-5 marks. Individual results weren’t as strong for the men. Saberist Dan Mahoney ’07 and epeeist Adam continued on page 9

Thursday, March 1, 2007  

The March 1, 2007 issue of the Brown Daily Herald

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