Daily Herald the Brown
vol. cxliv, no. 48 | Thursday, April 9, 2009 | Serving the community daily since 1891
In turbulent economy, tuition worries many
bran c hin g o u t
for college is a large part of a family’s expenses, and as their incomes come under pressure, it becomes a As the global economy continues to greater concern, he said. struggle, questions about the posDespite this, administrators sible impact on higher education are have been “pleasantly surprised” becoming more pressing — particu- that there have been fewer cases larly following last year’s dramatic of students contacting the Office of unveiling at many top universities of Financial Aid about increased finanexpanded financial aid programs. cial need than some had expected, Among the students surveyed Spies added. in a recent Herald Regardless of HERALD POLL economic circumpoll, 30.9 percent of undergraduates are stances, Brown will very confident in their ability to fi- remain committed to supporting nance their education, 29.3 percent students, he said. are somewhat confident, 27.5 perIn October, Brown announced cent are somewhat worried and 10.5 a temporary policy allowing many percent are very worried about their students with outstanding tuition ability to finance their education. balances to pre-register for spring Approximately 41 percent of classes. Approximately 360 students students qualified for financial aid benefited from the temporary meathis year, according to the Brown sure, Elizabeth Gentry, assistant Web site. vice president for financial and Dick Spies, executive vice presi- administrative services, told The dent for planning and senior adviser Herald in a Jan. 26 article. to the president, said he was not continued on page 2 surprised by these figures. Paying By Joanna Wohlmuth Metro Editor
Katerine Regalado / Herald
Knight Memorial Library on Elmwood Avenue is one of nine neighborhood branches that a new community group may take over. See article, page 5
UCS votes to up funding for groups By Ben Schreckinger Senior Staff Writer
The Undergraduate Council of Students unanimously passed a resolution Wednesday to offer limited funding to Category I student groups and to create a new unfunded category for
club sports. Category I organizations, which have the lowest level of official UCS recognition, previously received no funding. But they may now apply for $100 every two years. If every current Category I group received funding, it would cost the Undergraduate Finan-
cial Board about $5,000 a year. UCS Academic and Administrative Affairs Chair Tyler Rosenbaum ’11 said an initial proposal to provide groups with half that amount presented an “awful lot of work to go through continued on page 4
New student business eyes discounts By Luisa Robledo Staf f Writer
Sanna Vohra ’12 wants to give Brown students even more freedom of choice — by offering some alternatives to cafeteria dining. With
FEATURE Shristi Pandey / Herald
Baja’s will be coming to Thayer Street in about six weeks.
Tex-Mex restaurant to open on Thayer Street said. “Ever ything’s cooked in front of you,” Hugh said, because the Baja’s, a Tex-Mex restaurant, kitchen faces the customers, prowill soon be opening its doors viding them with the opportunity on Thayer Street. Ray Hugh, the to watch the chefs at work. owner of Shanghai and Xtreme There will also be “a lot of things Pizza and Wings, is now expand- imported directly from Mexico,” ing with a venue at 273 he added. Thayer St., where Spike’s Hugh’s last venture, METRO Junkyard Dogs used to Shark Sushi Bar and Grill, be housed. encountered trouble with city orThe establishment will be un- dinances over parking spaces. But veiled in about six weeks, providing Hugh said that since Baja’s is in the a wide selection of foods, Hugh old Spike’s Junkyard Dogs location, said. With the option of eating there the parking is already provided. or taking out, patrons will be able to “I think this street can use a enjoy Philly cheesesteaks, burgers, good Mexican fast-food place,” he salads, fries and burritos, Hugh said.
By Monique Vernon Contributing Writer
News.....1-4 Metro.....5-6 Spor ts...7-9 Editorial..10 Opinion...11 Today........12
the help of three friends, Vohra has launched 2020, a business that seeks to make it moe affordable for students to eat in restaurants on Thayer Street. “We want to make it easier for students to eat out,” Vohra said. “They should be able to do so at a good price.” The company grew out of a business plan that Vohra wrote with Luke Sher win ’12 for Professor Emeritus of Engineering Barrett Hazeltine’s class, ENGN 0900: “Managerial Decision Making.” Their friends Muhammad Saigol ’12 and Parth Jindal ’12 joined the company later. Brown students pay $20 for a membership card that gives them a 20 percent discount at restaurants along Thayer. The cards will be valid until May 2010, said Vohra, a former Herald contributing writer. So far, Kabob and Curry, Spice, Andreas, Phonatic and Byblos and its hookah bar have agreed to work with 2020. Paragon and Spats may
Kim Perley / Herald
Sanna Vohra ’12 has launched a company to make Thayer eating more affordable.
join later once the business is more established, Sherwin said. The discount, which works all day from Monday through Thursday and until 3 p.m. on Fridays, lowers the price of restaurant food to “roughly the price of a meal credit,” Vohra added. Currently, each meal credit is worth $5.75. Because the discount doesn’t work during weekends, and students still need to eat, 2020’s founders do not think their discount will replace meal plans, Vohra said.
Even so, the group thinks it’s possible that people will “start to get cheaper meal plans,” Saigol said. Ann Hoffman, director of administration for Brown Dining Services, wrote in an e-mail to The Herald that, at this stage, it is impossible to tell the effect that 2020 will have on the number of students who choose the University’s dining program. Dining Services “will continued on page 2
is serious. We fold cardigans, strum the banjo and hit it wild. And there’s an article about animal sex.
An agreement to examine public library stewardship offers hope to the troubled system
Jeanne Jeong ’12 argues for special elections to be instituted in the Ocean State.
195 Angell Street, Providence, Rhode Island
THE BROWN DAILY HERALD
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“I can get more customers at no cost.” — Bas Wirassamee, manager of Spice, on a new student discount card
Some worried about paying tuition continued from page 1
Normally, students who owe more than $1,000 are blocked from preregistering for classes the following semester, and those who owe more than $5,000 are barred from living in residence halls or attending classes. Ten students, who were in danger of exceeding the temporary upper limit of $7,500 in unpaid dues, were able to remain enrolled after working closely with financial aid officers to work out payment plans, said James Tilton, director of financial aid, in the Jan. 26 article. Spies said he expects those measures to remain in place. Administrators are hopeful that the University will not have to scale back the financial aid program, Spies said. “There is a feeling that it was a really important thing we were able to do a year ago,” he said. “Those are
hard-fought gains that you don’t want to give up.” If administrators decide that changes are necessary, they would not go into effect until the 2010-11 academic year, Spies said. Though students interviewed by The Herald had mixed opinions about the number of Brown undergraduates concerned about financing their education, most noted that it is not often discussed among peers. “People are talking about the economy in general but you don’t really hear about how it’s affecting people on a personal level,” said Rebekah Bergman ’11. Sean O’Loane ’11 said the number of concerned students seemed high, though not surprising. “Brown is really expensive and the economy is very bad right now,” he said. Maria Capecelatro ’10 said she was not surprised by the number of
students concerned about financing their education. “I think there is the common assumption that people here are from families that don’t need help,” Capecelatro said, “but now it’s very apparent that the economy is affecting everyone.” “I would think more (students) would be concerned, but I guess I don’t have a good idea of what peoples’ backgrounds are,” said Christie Louie ’12. The poll, conducted from March 16 through 18, had a 3.6 percent margin of error with 95 percent confidence. A total of 676 Brown undergraduates completed the poll, which The Herald administered as a written questionnaire to students in the University Mail Room at J. Walter Wilson, outside the Blue Room in Faunce House and in the Sciences Library.
New professional education approved By Kristina Fazzalaro Contributing Writer
The newly renamed Office of Continuing Education may soon offer online courses and courses targeted at professionals as part of a broader effort to expand the University’s role in postgraduate studies, said Dean of Continuing Education Karen Sibley MAT’81 P’07 P’12. The University recently received
approval for certificate programs to benefit professional learners, Sibley said, adding that these postgraduate classes would offer an interesting mix of classes for professionals in specific fields. “The idea is to create a platform that allows Brown to engage in continuing education,” she said. The new certificate programs will be the University’s first courses intended to help professionals stay
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abreast of developments in their fields, Sibley said. “Things move and change so quickly today that people have to be constantly learning,” she added. Sibley said the department has been working with the Alpert Medical School and the Department of Public Health on possible courses, among other potential offerings, though nothing is finalized. The proposal for the programs had to be approved by the Academic Priorities Committee, the faculty and the Corporation in order to be implemented, Sibley said. continued on page 4
Editorial Phone: 401.351.3372 | Business Phone: 401.351.3260 Stephen DeLucia, President Michael Bechek, Vice President
Jonathan Spector, Treasurer Alexander Hughes, Secretary
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Cards offer discounted Thayer Street dining continued from page 1 certainly monitor meal plan trends when students select meal plans for next year during the summer and early fall,” she wrote. Hoffman wrote that, though it doesn’t seem likely that 2020 can meet the “broad and varied dining needs” of the student body, the business’s discount “can nicely complement” the different meal plans offered. “We encourage these kinds of student initiatives!” she wrote. The cards went on sale Monday on the Main Green, and as of Wednesday, the business had sold about 70. The group has also been selling the cards on commission through three other friends, Sherwin said. “We gave three people we trust cards,” he said. “They will receive $4 of the profit for each card they sell. They have been doing moderately well.” Nehal Dorshi ’12 bought a membership card on Monday. He eats out at least a few times a week, he said, “so this seems like a good deal.” “It works perfectly for me,” Dorshi said. “I save money.” Neil Parikh ’11, Vohra and Sher win’s teaching assistant in ENGN 0900, said he thought 2020 was an “excellent idea from the start.” Not only will he buy the card, he said, but he has been spreading the word about his students’ business. The team said the deal will also
benefit the restaurants involved, who will have the chance to advertise in 2020’s weekly newsletter. Bas Wirassamee, manager of Spice, said the deal with 2020 will benefit everybody involved. “I can get more customers at no cost,” Wirassamee said. “Students can get more food,” she said, adding that students make up most of the restaurant’s customers. In the past three days, 2020 has sold over 70 cards for a total of $1,400, which the business will use to pay for start-up costs such as printing the cards and advertising. More than that, though, the group wants to have money in reserve, Vohra said. “We want to make a self-sufficient business and have enough money to have a cushion to fall back on,” she said. If the business is successful, the team will look for possible ways to expand beyond eating venues, Vohra said. The team will try to partner with the Avon Cinema, and it is considering working with transportation companies for cheaper tickets to New York or Boston. Developing the business into a franchise is also an option, she said. “We’re looking into other schools, like Georgetown, that have a similar set-up to Brown’s,” she said. “We really want this project to last more than Hazeltine’s class,” Vohra said. “We want it to be for the long run.”
U. program makes students out of staff By Sarah Julian Contributing Writer
Thursday, April 9, 2009
The graduating class that gathered in Pembroke Hall last December was smaller than one might have expected. And unlike Commencement, there were neither caps nor gowns — nor overzealous parents frantically snapping photos. This group of graduates was composed of 24 members of the University’s faculty and staff. Dressed in their normal work clothes, they gathered in Pembroke to receive their completion certificates from the Brown University Ambassadors Program. Currently in its second year, the program was created to give faculty and staff an opportunity to learn more about the University outside of their own departments and divisions. Employees apply to be part of the program, and if accepted, attend a daylong session every month, starting in January and ending the following December. Each session aimed to give the ambassadors a personalized look into the daily workings of some aspect of Brown. To see the school from the “student perspective,” the ambassadors traveled to the Sharpe Refec-
tory, where they were treated to a behind-the-scenes tour that included the butcher shop and the bakery. There, Jennifer Slattery-Bownds, a 2008 ambassador and the Taubman Center for Public Policy’s manager for career and employment development, learned “that chicken fingers are the ultimate dinner.” To experience another part of student life, last year’s ambassadors completed roommate questionnaire forms and were paired with one an-
FEATURE other based on their answers, said Judith Nabb, manager of learning and professional development at Brown and the program’s coordinator. The program’s goals are to provide recognition to staff members, promote employee retention and help participants understand their value as University employees, Nabb said. Last year’s participants also traveled to the Olney-Margolies Athletic Center, visited Brown Student Radio, picnicked with current Brown students and received a private concert from the a cappella group Shades of Brown, said Jamie Kendrioski, a 2008 ambassador and the assistant director of the Office of International Student
and Scholar Services. To learn about the graduate school, ambassadors filled out fake applications and received acceptance and rejection letters, Nabb said. They also attended classes for grad students at the Trinity Repertory Theatre, according to Nabb. “It’s really great learning about all these things because there’s so much that, as a staff member, you’re not exposed to,” said Alison DeLisi, an administrative assistant in the Office of the Dean of the College. “It’s helped me to learn things that aren’t in my area,” said DeLisi, who experienced her “student day” on Tuesday with the other 2009 ambassadors. The program was “such a blast,” said Kendrioski, who described seeing air pumped into cow lungs at the BioMedical Center and visiting archives in Brown’s libraries. “We were inundated with information just constantly, but it was always great,” he said. The program helped him build a network of friends and contacts that he can use in his professional and personal life. It was “the best thing that happened” to him at Brown, Kendrioski said. continued on page 4
Thursday, April 9, 2009
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“We want to create the fastest pool in the Ivy League.” — Ronald Vanden Dorpel, senior vice president news in brief
Changes on the way for code of conduct
Austin Freeman / Herald
A temporary pool, seen here, was constructed after the Smith Swim Center was closed.
Gift pushes pool plan forward By Talia Kagan Contributing Writer
Construction on a new aquatics center could begin soon, thanks in part to a $1 million challenge gift received in early February. The gift from an anonymous donor could push pledged donations for the planned aquatics center past the 90 percent fundraising threshold required for construction to begin on the project, said Senior Vice President for University Advancement Ronald Vanden Dorpel MA’71. So far, the Campaign for Academic Enrichment has raised 85 percent of the $25 million needed for the facility, Vanden Dorpel said. The challenge gift donor is offering a dollar-for-dollar match on gifts to the aquatics center campaign, which could result in a total donation of $2 million, which would put the fund at 93.2 percent of the total needed. Last October, the Corporation established a requirement that 50 percent of gifts must be received by the University and 90 percent of the necessary funds must be committed in pledges before ground can be broken for a gift-funded building, Vanden Dorpel wrote in an e-mail to The Herald.
These construction requirements are “more stringent” than in the past, said Executive Vice President for Finance and Administration Beppie Huidekoper, citing the current economic situation as a contributing factor. The Corporation also requires that all pledged donations be received by the University before a project is completed, though Huidekoper said she does not think fulfilling this obligation will be a problem in the case of the center. The 90 percent fundraising mark could be reached as early as this summer. Vanden Dorpel said the campaign is making “a maximum effort” to raise the $1 million by June 30, though this recent challenge grant will continue to accept matching donations until the Campaign for Academic Enrichment ends in 2010. Meanwhile, he anticipates that the recent $14.75 million bequest from the estate of Raymond Moran ’41 “will come in before June 30,” fulfilling the 50 percent requirement. He added, “Once they get that, groundbreaking can begin.” While there may soon be sufficient funds, the building has not been designed yet, so actual construction
won’t start this summer, Huidekoper said. An architect will be chosen at the Corporation meeting in May, she said. “It’s still early on regarding plans” for the center, said Associate Athletic Director for Facilities Thomas Bold. This was the challenge gift donor’s second major gift to the aquatics center project, according to Vanden Dorpel. Both the donor and his wife are alums. “They’ve been very interested in this project and they want to see it completed as soon as possible,” Vanden Dorpel said. The campaign is targeting alums of the swimming and water polo teams to match the challenge gift and donate the remaining funds, he said. Fundraising is “looking very encouraging,” Huidekoper said, “Everybody’s trying to raise the money as soon as we possibly can.” According to the Boldly Brown Web site, the Olympic-size pool will have 800 spectator seats, a diving area with 1-meter and 3-meter diving boards and new technology meant to reduce water turbulence. “We want to create the fastest pool in the Ivy League,” Vanden Dorpel said.
A committee of students and administrators is reviewing the code of student conduct. The committee began its work in March and is currently finalizing its recommendations. University rules require that the code of student conduct be reviewed at least once every three years, according to the Office of Student Life. The group — which is run through Student Life — includes undergraduate, graduate and medical students, as well as members of the University Disciplinary Council and senior staff, said Yolanda Castillo-Appollonio, associate dean of student life. The committee hopes to finish its revisions to the code in the next few weeks and present the changes to the Corporation at the Corporation’s May meeting, Castillo-Appollonio said. Though she declined to comment on the specific changes the committee plans to present to the Corporation, CastilloAppollonio said she believes the changes will be “significant.” Other members of the committee were also reluctant to comment on the changes. Vice President for Campus Life and Student Services Margaret Klawunn wrote in an e-mail to The Herald that she did not yet feel comfortable releasing information on the committee’s decisions. Administrators tried to put people with knowledge of the University’s existing disciplinary system on the committee to make the recommended changes as helpful as possible to students, Castillo-Appollonio said. Allen Ward, senior associate dean for student life, took over responsibility for the non-academic disciplinary system as a result of a vacancy in the Office of Student Life that will not be filled. The Dean of the College will continue to have responsibility for issues of academic violations, Castillo-Appollonio said. — Andrew Sia
TEN Thanks for reading!
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UCS to create club sports category continued from page 1 for a negligible amount of money” at the council’s April 1 meeting. Rosenbaum, also a member of UFB and a Herald opinions columnist, estimated that even if all student groups took advantage of that proposal, it would represent a “drop in the bucket” of UFB’s annual budget, which is more than $1 million. In contrast, the newly categorized club sports “will not be eligible for funding in any way, shape or form,” said UCS Student Activities Chair Ryan Lester ’11, the resolution’s sponsor, at the meeting. Uncategorized club sports “want to be able to compete under the school name,” Lester said, explaining the decision to categorize the groups without funding them. Currently, club sports are administered and funded by the Department of Athletics and Physical Education. But the department has yet to recognize recently formed club sports, such as polo and
gymnastics. “They’re just dodgy,” Lester said at the meeting in response to a question about the athletic department’s lack of a system for categorizing and funding new club sports. “They’re an incredibly rich department.” The final resolution also dropped language from the proposed resolution that required campus religious groups, which often have off-campus leaders, to meet with the Office of the Chaplain before receiving categorization. Lester said the requirement was intended to prevent religious groups from misrepresenting their purpose to gain categorization and would only codifying existing practice. Some UCS members had raised concerns about the requirement. Diane Mokoro ’11 said she was wary of measures that could unduly limit the free exercise of religion. In an interview with The Herald, Lester said excluding the requirement from the final resolution ensured that UCS was “treating all groups equally.”
Thursday, April 9, 2009
“Not to get overly cheesy, but it feels like our little fraternity.” — Jamie Kendrioski, on the Brown University Ambassadors Program
Postgrad programs to expand continued from page 2 In addition to new postgraduate programs, the department is also beginning to explore the possibility of online courses, said Deputy Provost Vincent Tompkins ’84. Administrators are hoping to learn from the successes and failures of other universities in their implementation of their online programs, he added. Though online courses are only in the initial planning phases, administrators plan to incorporate them only “where it advances the pedagogy” of the classes, said Tompkins. “We are not going to simplify and package classes online, but we can still use the technology in interesting
ways,” Sibley said. “It’s exciting.” The office’s new name — it was formerly the Office of Summer and Continuing Studies — will better reflect the increasing breadth of the department’s jobs, Tompkins said. The name changed in January, according to Sibley. The department also now reports to the provost instead of to the dean of the College, Sibley said. The switch further reflects the office’s new focus on graduate and postgraduateuate studies, Tompkins said. It was a “natural evolution” for the department to report to the provost’s office, which is responsible for academic programs throughout the University, whereas the Office of
the Dean of the College is primarily concerned with undergraduate affairs, he added. Though the new course offerings will bring in revenue, they were not a strategic response to the University’s financial woes, Sibley said. Each new program is at a different stage of implementation. The certificate programs take time to develop because the department wants to make sure that the right mix of classes is offered, Tompkins said, adding that an online program may be approved in the next year. “I’m excited about the potential there for Brown,” Tompkins said. “This is an area of strength we can build on.”
Faculty, staff find new community continued from page 2 “My experience at Brown as an employee is much more satisfying,” Kendrioski said. “I feel more ownership, like I have a role here. This is my university.” Nabb said she is responsible for gauging the progress of the program. Though there has not yet been a formal report because its second year has only just begun, she said she can see there is “quite a bit of engagement.”
According to Nabb, former ambassadors have become more involved in the community as a result of the program. One ambassador applied to be on the Brown University Community Council, and another decided to volunteer, teaching English as a second language. “I think everyone, for the most part, has become more engaged,” Nabb said. “This can be as simple as going to a sporting event to support students when they wouldn’t have thought to before.”
Slattery-Bownds said the program made her feel much more knowledgeable about the University and its students, faculty and staff. “The whole program was like getting a fast-forward through 20 years of information in one year,” she said. If Slattery-Bownds has a question, she said, her first call might be to another ambassador. “I feel like I have my network,” Kendrioski agreed. “Not to get overly cheesy, but it feels like our little fraternity.”
Metro The Brown Daily Herald
“The drama will continue.” — Tonia Mason, marketing director for the Providence Public Library
QA lobbies Troubled branches for hate may get reprieve crime bill By George Miller Metro Editor
By Sara Sunshine Senior Staff Writer
Gender Action, a subgroup of Brown’s Queer Alliance, attended a hearing at the State House Tuesday to lobby for a bill to expand the state’s definition of hate crimes. Calling for the state to classify crimes based on “gender identity or expression” as hate crimes, the bill, sponsored by Rep. Edith Ajello, D-Dist. 3, and four other representatives, was introduced in the Rhode Island House of Representatives in early February. The committee decided Tuesday to hold the measure for further study. Though current hate crime legislation includes protection against crimes based on sexual orientation and gender, there is no protection for transgender or gender-variant people. These groups are presently covered under the state’s discrimination statutes. The bill would also mandate that Rhode Island maintain statistical records on gender identity- and expression-related hate crimes and train state police officers to recognize discrimination. Katie Lamb ’10, head chair of Gender Action and QA secretary, said the subgroup first got involved in lobbying for the bill when a Rhode Island-wide listserv for LGBTQ issues sent out a notice about the bill. For a group dedicated to education and advocacy of LGBTQ issues, “it was perfect, so we got involved,” Lamb said, adding that the nation’s smallest state is ahead of its time. “Rhode Island sort of sets itself apart from many other states because it includes gender identity in its discrimination legislation. So adding it to the hate crime legislation makes sense” since transgendered people are often victims of violence, she said. Gender Action has “advertised (the bill) to the student body at large” by using table slips, Lamb said. “There hasn’t been a humongous amount of support on campus, but I think that’s pretty typical for off-campus issues.” The bill is very important for Rhode Island, Lamb said, and passing it will be helpful in preventing violence against transgender or queer individuals both on- and offcampus. Only nine other states have trans-inclusive non-discrimination acts, according to the Web site of Pride At Work, an LGBT labor group in the AFL-CIO.
Providence Public Librar y, the non-profit corporation that runs the city’s public libraries, moved closer to being able to continue ser vice at all nine neighborhood branches last week when its board of trustees voted to explore transferring control of the branches to a community group. The status of any transfer to the group, known as Providence Community Librar y, is “ver y much in flux,” said Tonia Mason, the public librar y’s director of marketing. “The drama will continue,” she said. Conversations between the two organizations, which have already star ted, will focus on making a seamless transition, she said. “It would benefit ever ybody
Thursday, April 9, 2009 | Page 5
to have those discussions earlier rather than later,” Mason said. In December, the librar y developed what they said was a financially sustainable plan that would have closed five neighborhood branches. In response, community members created the Providence Community Librar y and asked to take control of the nine neighborhood branches, leaving only the central branch in the hands of the PPL. The librar y is plugging an anticipated $1.4 million deficit for fiscal year 2009. William Simmons ’60, professor of anthropology at Brown and chair of the librar y’s board of trustees, said in a PPL press release that the library has been covering deficits with money from its endowment, but that the economic crisis has continued on page 6
Herald File Photo
The future of Providence’s public branch libraries is stil “in flux.”
R.I. House looks to afterschool and summer ed By Anne Speyer Staff Writer
State representatives have introduced a bill in the General Assembly intended to increase the availability of after school and summer-learning programs for children in Rhode Island. The bill, which was introduced in February by House Majority Leader Gordon Fox, D-Dist. 4, would require the state’s Department of Elementary and Secondary Educa-
tion to begin researching and planning new afterschool and summereducation initiatives. The House Committee on Health, Education and Welfare met last Thursday to discuss the bill, recommending that it be held for further study. According to the bill, 74 percent of children between the ages of six and 17 in Rhode Island do not have a parent who is not in the workforce. Nationwide, the average is only 68 percent. The bill states that the hours be-
tween 3 p.m. and 6 p.m. — after the school day ends and before parents get home — are “peak hours” for juvenile crime and “experimentation with drugs, alcohol, cigarettes and sex.” The bill also refers to the importance of after school and summerlearning programs in the educational and emotional development of students. It directs the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education to research activities that are interesting and fun, but that also
help students develop skills and “a sense of competence.” Professor of Education Cynthia Garcia Coll said afterschool programs are important because they can give students “a place to excel.” “Involvement in sports, for example, is tremendous for kids in terms of working hard at a goal, achieving in a group (and) discipline — things that are really imporcontinued on page 6
THE BROWN DAILY HERALD
“We need to keep adolescents busy and excited about something.” — Professor of Education Cynthia Garcia Coll, on a bill to fund after school programs
Library transfer possible this year continued from page 5 “ravaged” that fund. The trustees recognized that they could not continue to maintain all the branches with the endowment and funding from the city and wanted to offer the community group the opportunity to run the branches as long as it was a “viable entity,” Mason said. City officials, who have the fi-
nal say in the matter, have made it clear they will not accept closing branches, she said. “The money is going to determine who’s operating what,” Mason said. Linda Kushner, a founding member of Providence Community Librar y, said in the press release that she was “ver y pleased” with the vote, adding that the two groups would examine “how
Thursday, April 9, 2009
we can provide the best librar y ser vices to the people of Providence.” A possible transfer could occur by the start of the next fiscal year this summer, Mason said. Meanwhile, library operations will continue while the two groups sort out details. “We’re not just sitting here waiting to close doors,” Mason said.
Legislators explore extracurricular options continued from page 5 tant in life and, of course, in schools,” she said. The bill states that the new programs should focus on children who attend high-poverty, low-performing schools. “The two times when kids who are living in poverty lose momentum on what schools are giving them is during summers and after school,” Garcia Coll said. “Middleclass parents have the means and the knowledge to know that these are important times to enrich their (children’s) experiences.” Finally, research would also focus on developing age- and gradeappropriate programming for students between kindergarten and 12th grade. “The needs are very different,”
Garcia Coll said. “The elementary schools give you a certain set of skills that are really critical in terms of reading, math skills and feeling good about yourself. In middle school, we need to keep students engaged in school so that they don’t drop out, and we need to keep adolescents busy and excited about something.” “All three ages are important,” she added. Adequately providing for the different needs of the age groups “takes a lot of money.” “It’s crucial that we do it well,” she said. The bill stipulates that the new programs be publicly funded and operate through a diverse network of already-existing initiatives, including community learning centers, child opportunity zones, community-based organizations and public schools.
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SportsThursday The Brown Daily Herald
Thursday, April 9, 2009 | Page 7
Spring athletes bring W. lax score big in two wins home recognition By Dan Alexander Sports Staff Writer
Spor ts Staf f Repor ts
Bruno cleaned up on the awards scene this week. Two baseball players were honored after the Bears swept four games from Penn and Columbia over the weekend. Robert Papenhause ’09 was named the Ivy League Player of the Week and Matthew Kimball ’11 snagged Pitcher of the Week honors. Papenhause was red hot at the plate. He improved on a 5-for10 showing in three non-league games earlier in the week by rapping out seven hits, four of which left the yard, in 11 at-bats against Penn and Columbia. He scored five runs and drove in 11 to power the Bears past their Ivy League foes. After Kimball picked up a win with a solid inning of relief against URI last Wednesday, he pitched 4.1 innings and earned a pair of saves in three games over the weekend. Joanna Wohlmuth ’11, a Herald metro editor, was named the CWPA Nor thern Division Player of the Week after she led the women’s water polo team to a 4-0 record over the weekend. Wohlmuth filled the stat sheet with seven goals, three steals and 14 ejections drawn, but she made her biggest impact in two of the games. Wohlmuth scored the gamewinning goal in an 8-7 overtime victor y over No. 12 Har twick College on Friday to snap the
Hawks’ 92-game Northern Division winning streak, which dated back to 2000. After leading her team with three goals in that game, she scored a season-high four goals the following day in a 13-3 drubbing of Utica College. Two men’s lacrosse players were named to the Ivy League Honor Roll after the Bears won twice, securing an 11-7 victor y over Br yant last Tuesday and a dramatic 13-9 triumph over Yale on Saturday. Attacker Thomas Muldoon ’10 notched four goals in each game to run his consecutive point-scoring streak to 29 games, the sixth-best mark in the nation. Midfielder Rob Schlesinger ’12 starred on offense and defense against the Bulldogs, tallying a goal and an assist and corralling four ground balls. Midfielder Alexa Caldwell ’11 was named to the Honor Roll on the women’s side after an impressive performance in a 15-10 victor y over Columbia on Saturday. Caldwell, who entered the game with five points on the season, poured on the of fense with three goals and an assist. She added four ground balls, three draw controls and three caused turnovers. Kelsey Wilson ’09 led the softball team to a 4-2 record against URI, Penn and Columbia last week with an 8-for-16 showing at the plate. She was locked in on Sunday against the Lions, going 5 for 7 with two runs, two doubles, a home run and five RBIs.
The women’s lacrosse team had an explosive week, scoring 30 goals in three halves against Columbia on Saturday and Bryant on Tuesday. The Bears rallied to erase an 8-4 halftime deficit to the Lions after surrendering eight goals on nine shots. Despite difficulties in goal, the Bears’ offensive firepower was enough to beat Columbia, 15-10, and overwhelm Bryant, 21-6. Leading scorers Katelyn Caro ’12 and Kaela McGilloway ’12 led the Bears’ attack, with McGilloway compiling ten points and Caro eight points, over the two games. The Bears (6-4, 2-1 Ivy) went into Saturday’s game coming off a 16-1 loss to No. 13 Dartmouth the week before. “The Dartmouth loss was definitely embarrassing,” McGilloway said. “We had a hard week of practice, but I definitely think it made us stronger and want to win more. It was like a turning point in our season for sure.” Brown 15, Columbia 10 Columbia (5-5, 0-4) entered the game on a rough note, too. After winning their first five games of the season, the Lions had dropped four consecutive games, including three Ivy League games. They couldn’t pick up their first Ivy League win this season against Brown, thanks to the Bears’ attack led by Caro and McGilloway. But goalie Isabel Harvey ’12 didn’t support her team’s attackers as much. She stopped only one of the 11 shots she faced.
Rounding out the week in sports Spor ts Staf f Repor ts
Equestrian The equestrian team competed at the Zone 1 Championships on Saturday, finishing third as a team and narrowly missing qualifying for Nationals. Two riders qualified individually for Nationals — Kona Shen ’10 won the Walk Trot and Liz Giliberti ’10 took second place in the Open Fences. Brown also saw strong performances from Rachel Griffith ’10, who finished second in the Intermediate Fences, Dakota Gruener ’11, who came in third in the Intermediate Flat, and Cara Rosenbaum ’12, who earned a win in the Walk Trot Canter. This Saturday, the team will travel to Westford, Mass. to compete in the Ivy League Championships. Women’s golf Over the weekend, the women’s golf team hosted the inaugural Brown University Women’s Golf Invitational, finishing fourth out of five competing teams. After the first round, Brown was in second place with a total score of 327, led by a score of 77 from Carly Arison ’12, but Dartmouth and Bos-
ton College rallied on the second day of competition to edge out the Bears. Arison was the team’s top finisher with a two-round score of 157, placing fifth individually, and Julia Robinson ’11 followed with a 165, including an 80 in the second round. Rounding out the lineup for Brown were Heather Arison ’12, who shot 167, Sarah Guarascio ’11 at 172, Megan Tuohy ’12 at 174 and Deborah Lipson ’12 at 193. Men’s track and field The men’s track and field team made a strong showing at the UConn Invitational over the weekend, with four athletes picking up individual titles and several others earning high finishes. Matt Jasmin ’09 ran a time of 14.94 seconds to take home the victor y in the 110-meter hurdles, the only individual title on the track for the team. Other strong performances on the track came from John McManus ’10, who finished sixth in the 400m in 51.49, and Sean O’Brien ’09, who ran a time of 1:56.12 to earn fourth place in the 800m. Brown also competed well in the 1500m, as Alex Stern ’10 finished third in 4:05.29 and Anthony Schurz ’12 was right behind
in fourth place with a 4:05.44. The Bears were equally impressive in the field, where Andrew Chapin ’10 won the triple jump with a 14.54-meter jump. Bryan Powlen ’10 won in the discus throw with a throw of 53.41 meters, a two-meter personal record, and Craig Kingsley ’11 threw 63.10 meters to take home the javelin throw title, a twoand-a-half meter personal record. Both Kinsley and Powlen qualified for Regionals with their first place throws. Powlen also got third place in the shot put with a throw of 15.78 meters, and Jordan Maddocks ’11 and Greg Hunter ’09 finished second and third, respectively, in the high jump with jumps of 1.94 meters and 1.89 meters. Women’s track and field On the women’s side, Rosie Fleming ’12 had two of the strongest races on the track, finishing second in the 800m in 2:15.65 and third in the 1500m in 4:44.84. Susan Scavone ’12 also ran well, finishing second in the 100m hurdles in 15.17, while Nicole Burns ’09 ran a 25.23 for a second-place finish in the 200m. Lucy Higgins ’11 ran continued on page 8
Justin Coleman / Herald
Katelyn Caro ’12 led the women’s lacrosse team in scoring, along with Kaela McGilloway ’12, on the way to wins against Columbia and Bryant.
Just 13 seconds into the game, Alexa Caldwell ’11 put the Bears on the scoreboard first. But Columbia didn’t let Brown run away with it, scoring the equalizer just over two minutes later. After Caldwell scored her second goal at 8:16 to put the Bears up 2-1, the Lions struck again just 20 seconds later, starting a three-goal run over the next 1:40, to take a 4-2 lead. Caro scored her first goal of the
night at 12:13, but Columbia answered with two more goals, extending its lead to 6-3 almost 20 minutes into the game. McGilloway scored her first of the game with less than five minutes left in the half, but two more Columbia goals before halftime made it an 8-4 game at the break. continued on page 8
THE BROWN DAILY HERALD
S ports T hursday
W. lax beats up on Bryant squad continued from page 7
“It was all just about the team coming together and staying focused and knowing that we were definitely capable of beating Columbia,” Caro said. Columbia won the draw to start the half, but the Bears forced a turnover and scored their first goal just 1:26 after the draw. The Bears added eight more unanswered goals to make it a 13-8 game, including two by Jesse Nunn ’09 and two by Caro, who has tallied a team-high 23 goals this season. The Lions scored their first goal of the half with less than eight minutes remaining. Caro answered with her fourth goal of the night, and Lauren Vitkus ’09 added her second goal to put the game out of the Lions’ reach. “We went on an 11-2 run in the second half and I think it proved to us that we can score as many as we can if we just play with each other and with confidence,” McGilloway said. Columbia scored a goal with three seconds left for a final score of 1510. “It felt really great to come back,” Caro said. “You know, Ivy games are so competitive, so to be able to come back and reestablish ourselves in the Ivy League after the Dartmouth game felt really great.”
Brown 21, Bryant 6 Bryant (3-8) entered the game coming off a 14-9 loss to Quinnipiac on Friday. The Bulldogs have had a season of great highs and horrible slumps. In mid-March, they outscored two opponents by a combined total of 35-14, but they have been on the losing end of blowouts more often. They were unlucky again Tuesday night. Callie Lawrence ’09 netted her first goal of the season just 23 ticks into the game to put Brown ahead, 1-0. Lawrence was the first of six Bears to score their first goal of the season against Bryant. Though it had taken Lawrence almost 10 games to score her first goal, it took her less than five minutes more to get her second, which put Brown up by a 4-0 margin. In an incredibly balanced attack, eight different players had multi-point games and 12 players scored. Nunn led the team in goals for the game with five, while no other player scored more than two. “The Bryant game was huge for us because it showed how much depth we have,” Caro said. “Everyone was really a threat.” Bryant’s attack was far less balanced, as Delia Glover scored half of her team’s six goals. Glover’s first came 12:34 into the
game to cut Brown’s lead to 5-1. But the outcome was never in doubt, as the Bears rattled off five more goals before the nineteenth minute. During that stretch, Nunn scored three goals in under three minutes. With Brown ahead 10-1 and less than ten minutes left in the half, the teams traded two goals apiece over the next four minutes to make the score 12-3. Brown scored three consecutive goals before the break and added another four in the first 10:44 of the second half to extend its lead to 19-3. “Our coach gave us a scouting report and we definitely took advantage of their weaknesses,” McGilloway said. “They weren’t really good at sliding and helping, and I think our passing was definitely the key contributor in our success.” With the game well out of question, Bryant finished strong, outscoring Brown 3-2 in the last 16 minutes to make the final score 21-6. The Bears will take the field again in Ithaca, N.Y. to face Cornell (6-4, 1-3) on Saturday. The last time the Bears faced Cornell was on April 11, 2008, when the Big Red won, 17-9. “It’s going to be a tough game,” Caro said. “But, you know, we’re definitely up to the challenge and I know that if we just execute and play our best that we can definitely beat them.”
Thursday, April 9, 2009
W. tennis splits matches, with 2 Ivy foes coming up continued from page 7 a time of 59.00 to finish third in the 400m. In the field, Danielle Grunloh ’10 took home the team’s only individual title of the day, winning the discus throw with a toss of 47.24 meters. Grunloh also threw 13.53 meters to earn second place in the shot put, while Br ynn Smith ’11 was right behind in third place with a throw of 12.96 meters. Herald Assistant Sports Editor Katie Wood ’10 was fourth in the javelin throw, with a throw of 36.18 meters. In the triple jump, Shannon Stone ’10 was second with a jump of 11.38 meters and Rachel Biblo ’11 followed in third place, jumping 11.23 meters. Biblo earned a second-place finish in the long jump with a jump of 5.45 meters, while Cassie Wong ’10 was third in the pole vault, clearing 3.20 meters. Anja Hergrueter ’10 cleared 1.60 meters to pick up a third-place finish in the high jump. This weekend, both sides will compete at the Brown Invitational, held on Saturday at Brown Stadium.
Women’s tennis The women’s tennis team, now ranked No. 60, split road matches with Ivy League foes Penn and Princeton over the weekend to run its record to 16-3 overall and 2-1 in conference play. Playing at Penn on Friday, the Bears knocked off the Quakers, 5-2, to earn their 12th straight victor y. Bruno took an early 1-0 lead, as Bianca Aboubakare ’11 and Cassandra Herzberg ’12, the 69th ranked doubles tandem in the nation, and Carissa Aboubakare ’12 and Sara Mansur ’09 won the top two doubles matches. In singles play, No. 1 Bianca Aboubakare, No. 2 Herzberg, No. 4 Carissa Aboubakare and No. 5 Julie Flanzer ’12 each won in straight sets. Facing the Tigers the following day in Princeton, N.J., the Bears started off on the right foot, as both Bianca Aboubakare and Herzberg and third doubles tandem Emily Ellis ’10 and Kathrin Sorokko ’10 won to give the Bears the doubles point. But Princeton rallied to blank Brown in singles play for the 6-1 drubbing. The Bears will host Columbia on Friday at 2 p.m. and Cornell on Saturday at noon.
World & Nation The Brown Daily Herald
Thursday, April 9, 2009 | Page 9
U.S. to join talks on Iran’s nuclear program By Karen DeYoung Washington Post
WASHINGTON — The United States said Wednesday that it would directly participate “from now on” in international talks with Iran over its nuclear activities, the latest move in the Obama administration’s promised diplomatic outreach to the Tehran government. “There’s nothing more important than trying to convince Iran to cease its efforts to obtain a nuclear weapon,” Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton said. The United States, she said in brief comments at the State Department, would be a full participant with Britain, France, Germany, Russia and China in any future Iran negotiations. The announcement, made in London after a meeting among the negotiating partners, broke with the Bush administration’s policy of supporting talks between Iran and the others but not participating in them. Although President
George W. Bush made an exception to the policy in July, allowing a senior U.S. diplomat to attend a meeting at which Iran was present, his administration later said that Iran was not serious and that the effort would not be repeated. A senior administration official, who agreed to discuss the issue on the condition of anonymity after the London statement and Clinton’s comments, said there was no internal debate over whether to fully join the negotiations if and when another round is scheduled. “It was kind of silly that we had to walk out of the room” when the Iranians were present, the official said. Iran offered no immediate public response to the announcement. Its official statements since President Obama offered in his inaugural speech to “extend a hand if you are willing to unclench your fist” have vacillated between hard-line and moderate. In comments Wednesday before the London statement, Iranian President Mahmoud Ah-
medinejad said his country would welcome direct engagement with the United States, providing Obama was “honest.” But Ahmedinejad also said he planned to announce “good nuclear news” to the nation Thursday, the Reuters news agency reported from Tehran, and some experts said he would claim progress in uranium enrichment. Iran has said that it seeks enrichment only to the level needed for energy production rather than what the West says is the much higher weapons-grade level. The July round of talks was the last in the years-long effort by the negotiators to persuade Iran to give up what the West says — and Iran denies — is a nuclear weapons development program. Last fall, the Bush administration failed to persuade the U.N. Security Council to support a fourth round of international sanctions against Iran. Russia, in particular, resisted. Obama has said he seeks diplomatic rapprochement with Iran on
a range of issues. U.S. special envoy Richard Holbrooke met briefly with Iran’s deputy foreign minister at an international conference on Afghanistan last month, and the administration earlier sent a lowerlevel official to a separate meeting on Afghanistan in Moscow. Obama issued a video message on March 19 to the government and people of the “Islamic Republic of Iran” to mark Nowruz, the Persian new year. He acknowledged strained relations but spoke of “the common humanity that joins us together.” Seeking cooperation from Moscow, Obama has told Russian President Dmitry Medvedev that if Iran can be dissuaded from pursuing nuclear weapons, it would lessen the need for a Europe-based U.S. missile defense system that Russia opposes. Although of ficials have said there are no immediate plans to seek additional U.N. sanctions against Iran, they have left the
door open to unilateral economic sanctions, including expanding U.S. restrictions on Iran’s international banking activities. After their meeting in London, senior diplomats, including William Burns, the U.S. undersecretary of state for political affairs, said they have told Javier Solana, the European Union foreign policy chief who has also been involved in the talks, “to extend an invitation to the Iranian Government to meet representatives of the E3+3, so that together we may find a diplomatic solution to this critical issue.” The “E3+3” is the original negotiating group of Britain, France and Germany, plus the United States, Russia and China. “The other members of the group warmly welcome the new direction of US policy towards Iran and their decision to participate fully in the E3+3 process and join in any future meetings with representatives of the Islamic Republic of Iran,” the statement said.
Indonesians vote in third election since dictatorship By Paul Watson Los Angeles T imes
JAKAR TA, Indonesia — With a dizzying choice among 38 political parties, millions of Indonesians were expected at the polls Thursday in an election capping more than a decade of democracy in a vast countr y with the world’s largest Muslim majority. As polls opened, voters fumbled with ballots nine pages long in cramped polling booths, tr ying to find their preferred candidates for the 560-member National House of Representatives and provincial assemblies. The election, the third since former dictator Suharto’s 32-year rule ended when he was toppled by violent street protests as the economy collapsed in 1998, marks “the end of transition,” said analyst and author Julia Sur yakusuma. “The panorama is changing. Voting behavior is changing,” she said. “The primordial type of politics is no longer there.” A group of leading Muslim moderates recently warned that
foreign-funded Islamic extremists are infiltrating key institutions here. But Islamic parties are not expected to do well in the election because so many are competing with each other that they will split the vote, Sur yakusuma said. Across a vast archipelago of some 17,500 islands, from the troubled territor y of Aceh in the west to the jungles of Papua where guerrillas prowl in the east, more than 150 million Indonesians are eligible to vote. Public opinion polls suggest many are confused by the myriad choices, which could lead to a low voter turnout. Polls also indicate President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono’s Democratic Party is likely to win the most seats in the countr y’s legislature, the House of Representatives, but will fall short of the outright majority. A second election for president is set for July. Yudhoyono’s chief rival, former president Megawati Sukarnoputri, took an early lead in public opinion polls, but it quickly eroded as the election campaign picked up pace. Yudhoyono is fa-
vored to win re-election to a second five-year term. Wimar Witoelar, a popular TV host and commentator, said he doesn’t expect Thursday’s vote to change the political landscape significantly “because there is no real ideological issue and the parties have no explicit platforms. It is all about power sharing.” Although the global economic recession has cut demand for some expor ts from Indonesia, Southeast Asia’s largest economy, the countr y has fared relatively well. Its economy is expected to grow by as much as 4.6 percent in the first quarter, Finance Minister Sri Mulyani Indrawati predicted this week. There are 11,000 candidates running for seats in the House of Representatives, and some 1.5 million are contesting provincial and local council elections. Their massive spending on T-shirts, posters, rallies and other activities to woo voters has been a significant boost to consumption, Indrawati said. Cuts in fuel prices and increases in government workers’ salaries
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have also helped spur growth, he added. Voters’ main concerns are “about public accountability, political reform and economic improvement,” Witoelar said. “But they are not defined and the responses are not rigorous. The government is doing a fair job and the countr y has not yet been as hard hit as the advanced economies.” Retired civil ser vant Nurjamil, 74, said he plans to vote for Yudhoyono in July, but didn’t cast his ballot Thursday for any candidates in the president’s party. “I choose a party for its track record,” he said, “one whose candidates stay out of trouble and are not only active during election season.” Yudhoyono, a former army general, gets widespread credit for taking steps against government corruption, while steering the economy through troubled waters. But experts say corruption remains a significant problem and reforms must continue if Indonesia is to develop into a more fair and stable society.
The countr y was rated Asia’s most corrupt economy this week in a sur vey of international executives, conducted each year by the Hong Kong-based firm Political and Economic Risk Consultancy. The president’s son Edhie Baskoro Yudhoyono, who is running for a seat in the House of Representatives, is being investigated for possible vote buying, election officials said Sunday as campaigning came to a close. The president’s spokesman denied the allegation that one of his party workers was seen handing out rupiah bank notes worth about 87 cents each to potential voters, insisting the claim was part of an extortion plot. “The one big issue is still corruption,” Suryakusuma said. “People won’t vote for anybody if they find any hint of corruption. The people are savvy now.” Dinda Jouhana in the Times’ Jakarta bureau contributed to this report.
Editorial & Letters The Brown Daily Herald
Page 10 | Thursday, April 9, 2009
e d i to r i a l
Sayles Hall is a sea of frantic faces. Beneath the din of defeated sighs and anxious banter, there sounds a cacophony of overlaid ring tones that even Girl Talk would find annoying. Every once in a while, a call is answered. The response is uniform, rushed — the speaker annoyed. “It just got taken,” he says. “What now?” To those students who attended this year’s housing lottery, this should be a familiar scene. Each year, the frenzy of selection night begins at the very first pick and doesn’t subside until the last rooms are blacked from the board three hours later. The interim is a maelstrom of stressing, screaming, cheering and jeering — our characteristic insouciance replaced by anxious self-interest. Not only is this method of selection stressful, it’s also outdated. Brown could very easily move the lottery online and save us all the hassle. The groundwork has already been laid. Prototypes of online lottery systems abound. Take Yahoo! Fantasy Sports’ online draft system, for instance: all you have to do is compile a list of preferred picks before the draft starts, and the program takes care of the rest — you don’t even need to be at your computer. Granted, the housing lottery has its nuances. For the sake of party splits and last minute decisions, most would probably choose active participation over preset picks. It seems clear, however, that participating from home would significantly decrease the anxiety and pressure of deciding where to live. Some might argue that, given the state of the economy, now is not the time to address issues of luxury. But with summer internships drying up, the University has the opportunity to aid job-seeking undergraduates and revamp an antiquated system at the same time. With the success of Mocha, it’s clear what student programmers are capable of. By awarding a few UTRA-like grants to qualified applicants, the University could oversee the production of a top-of-the-line lottery program without the professional price tag. It should also be noted that there’s already a system in place that allows students to monitor the lottery’s progress in real time, online. If we were able to piggyback the new lottery on the existing program, we’d need only to create an interface for students to remotely enter data. A diminished endowment shouldn’t spell the end of progress. With our traditional, profligate strategy out of the question, we’re going to have to start thinking of new ways to solve problems. Switching the lottery to an online format would be a strong start.
C hris jesu lee
Editorials are written by The Herald’s editorial page board. Send comments to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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correction An article in Wednesday’s Herald (“Faculty vote to rename ‘Columbus Day’ in fall,” April 8) incorrectly stated that more than two-thirds of students in a Herald poll said they supported changing the holiday’s name to “Fall Weekend.” In fact, while two thirds of respondents in the poll said they did not support the current name of Columbus Day, 45 percent supported the name “Fall Weekend” from a list of options. An article in Wednesday’s Herald (“Concealed weapons may be made legal at U. Texas schools,” April 8) incorrectly attributed a quotation opposing allowing guns on campuses to Deepak Mahbubani, a junior at the University of Texas, Dallas. In fact, the quote belonged to another source quoted in the article, John Woods, a second-year graduate student at UT Austin. Mahbubani supported the proposal to allow concealed weapons. Additionally, a quotation attributed to an e-mail sent by Mahbubani was in fact from a telephone interview.
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Opinions The Brown Daily Herald
Thursday, April 9, 2009 | Page 11
Special elections to end special interests JEANNE JEONG Opinions Columnist Coming from a Republican congressional district in Virginia, I happily welcomed the change brought by going to school in a strongly Democratic state. And over the course of the year, I have grown accustomed to the generally accepted liberal atmosphere in the area. With this, I now carry a sort of newfound pride for our little Ocean State, a sense that has only been heightened by the increasing mentions of Sen. Jack Reed in national politics and news. Though Reed has said that he would rather support the new administration from his current position, I was excited over the prospect alone of his filling an appointed position. Yet with this excitement came a slight worry over what would happen back here in Rhode Island. Being admittedly a little out of touch with the intricacies of Rhode Island politics, it took about an entire semester at Brown and rumors of Reed being appointed to President Obama’s administration for me to fully realize that our governor is, in fact, a Republican. Initially, I regarded the fact as more strange than consequential in any significant way. The State House is filled with the
liberal Democrats I had come to associate with most things Brown and therefore, in my eyes, most things Rhode Island. However, the possibility of Reed leaving made me realize that this political oddity was far from inconsequential. If Reed had accepted an offer to join the Obama administration, Gov. Donald Carcieri ’65 would then have been able to appoint a senator to fill his seat, at least until the
ed to sell Obama’s newly vacated Senate seat. Clearly, the issue is no longer a numbers game between Republicans and Democrats to gain power in Congress, but rather one with potential for far-reaching effects. And far-reaching effects are certainly as important in Rhode Island, the state with the fifth-highest unemployment rate in the country, as in Washington. However, even in our current situation, Carcieri has called
When considering the facts, it follows that Rhode Island cannot allow the state’s voice in national government be dictated by a single person or party.
next general election. Not only would it just seem fundamentally, well, out of character, for Rhode Island to boast a Republican governor and senator, the issue of special elections extends further than simple party politics. Support for legislation calling for the special election of senators, stripping the governor of the power to appoint interim replacements, flared especially after former governor of Illinois Rod Blagojevich attempt-
these elections oftentimes unnecessary. Of all times, it seems most necessary now that representation in Congress reflects voters. Allowing the continuation of appointed replacements would be a step back from any progress that the 17th Amendment made. For one, appointed senators are often not reelected. For another, special elections would lessen the potential for special interests in government, on both the local and
national levels. Since 1949, there have been two appointments to vacant Senate seats in Rhode Island. Interestingly, both may have served more than just the general public’s interests. In 1949, appointed Senator Edward Leahy seemed to have served as a mere placeholder for the then-governor before the next election. Fifty years later, in 1999, Lincoln Chafee ’75 was appointed to his late father’s seat in the Senate. When considering these facts, it follows that Rhode Island cannot allow the state’s voice in national government to be dictated by a single person or party. While opponents of the measure, currently manifested in what Carcieri calls the “Blago Bill,” argue that such elections are an unnecessary cost, the benefits would outweigh these estimated monetary burdens. Though they may belong to the smallest geographic state in the country, Rhode Island residents deserve to elect their representation in Congress. Further, this is an equally critical issue on a national level. Beyond party politics, voters of all states — red, blue or purple — should be able to elect their senators. And Rhode Island, in its role as a progressive state, should lead in this initiative.
Jeanne Jeong ‘12 is a first-year from Ashburn, Virginia. She can be reached at Jeanne_Jeong@brown.edu
Brown’s conservative liberalism SUSANNAH KROEBER Opinions Columnist
The gay rights movement might be in for a celebration this week. The last five years have been a nightmare, with state after state passing constitutional amendments banning same-sex marriage. Most gains made by gay rights advocates have been restricted or reversed, as with Proposition 8 in California last fall and the debate over recognizing same-sex marriages performed out of state. But the gay rights movement still has some cause to be optimistic. Iowa became the latest state to legalize same-sex marriage following a State Supreme Court ruling last Friday. The coverage by many major media outlets has highlighted the importance of this ruling foremost as a victory for gay rights, but also as proof that same-sex marriage is not just a New England phenomenon and can succeed in America’s heartland. In the coming days, I suspect that Brown students will generally be in favor of the Iowa Supreme Court’s decision, if they are aware of it. Brunonians have a tendency to support most issues that are liberal or avant-garde. In public discourse, gay marriage has often been described as the metaphorical third rail of politics for Democrats: those in favor lose the moderate votes, and those opposed lose the liberal base.
As good, radical college students, many Brown students feel that adopting that liberal stance is the biggest priority when picking political sides. In so doing, students at Brown and other colleges around the country have taken a back seat in politics. By following the political rhetoric, some youth have failed to consider the issue beyond the pro-vs.-con level. How many Brown students have asked themselves: “Is the gay marriage debate the best way to advance gay rights?” I think that at Brown, it would be difficult
term — and each generation has the power to redefine it. We, then, have the power to change what it means to include gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender Americans. Gay marriage, by itself, neglects a number of important concerns for those who identify as LGBT. It only benefits a subset of the LGBT community — those who want to get married. Support for gay marriage has become emblematic of support for gay rights, despite the fact that there are a number of more pressing concerns.
How many Brown students have asked themselves: ‘Is the gay marriage debate the best way to advance gay rights?’
to find many students who do not agree with equal rights for gays. But we approach the issue in different ways. For many, especially those who pay attention to the liberal politics espoused by gay rights groups such as the Human Rights Campaign or, locally, Marriage Equality Rhode Island, gay marriage seems to be the definitive issue. For others, equal rights is a broader term involving opportunity and recourse under the law. “Equal rights” is a purposefully vague
Brown students should be focusing more on employment non-discrimination, or transferability of health care and insurance benefits to partners, or the disproportionate violence and prejudice that LGBT youth face in schools. Simply being pro-same-sex marriage is not enough. College students have framed the debate and been the true radicals on many issues, from lowering the voting age to ending the Vietnam War to promoting civil rights. As
Brown students, rather than being truly liberal thinkers who reframe the argument and fight for equal rights in every sense, we’ve taken the easy path. We’ve picked the “correct” side on the hot-button issue, loading our political docket with all the “correct” choices. But we haven’t introduced any new options, and most of us are apathetic about less publicized issues. Gay marriage is unlikely to become a national reality in the near future. But in the meantime, there are more meaningful ways to increase equality for gay citizens. The Employment Non-Discrimination Act, which would extend to gays some civil rights protections put in place by the Civil Rights Act of 1964, is a federal possibility that stumbled, in part, because constituents did not convey to their representatives that it was important to them. While not every gay person gets married, most are employed and many face discrimination. We have become conservatives, or at best moderates, on the stalwart, liberal issue of gay marriage. We follow the political red herring rather than focusing on concrete issues that we can have an impact on. If being a liberal now means picking the left side rather than trying to be radical in our approach and finding the new side, I’m not sure I still embrace that label.
Susannah Kroeber ’11 is a Slavic studies concentrator from Beijing, China. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Today The Brown Daily Herald
Gender Action lobbies at the State House
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Awards abound for Bears
Thursday, April 9, 2009
t h e n e w s i n i m ag e s
c a l e n da r Today, April 9
Friday, April 10
2:30 P.M. — Brown Student Garden Work Day, Hope St. at Young Orchard
6:00 P.M. — Relay For Life, OMAC
6:30 p.m. — Hawaii Club Lu’au, Leung Gallery
8:30 p.m. — Ben Willmott at the Hourglass Cafe, Lower Faunce
AFRICA FLECKED WITH BELA \\ sam carter
DRUNKOREXIA\\ sydney ember
menu Sharpe Refectory
Verney-Woolley Dining Hall
Lunch — Rosemary Portobello Sub Sandwich, Zucchini Yianchi, Gyro Sandwich, Cheddar Mashed Potatoes
Lunch — Gourmet Roast Turkey Sandwich, Stuffed Shells, Grilled Santa Fe Chicken
Dinner — Vegetarian Tamale Pie, Salt and Pepper Jerk Chicken, Creole Eggplant, Pesto Pasta
Dinner — Chicken Caesar Salad, Vegetarian Sub Sandwich, Antipasto Bar
05 feature essay
SOPHISTICATED LADIES\\ kibwe chase-marshall
THE BUSINESS OF COMEDY\\ doug eacho
THE ETIQUETTE OF FLUIDS \\ allie wollner ANIMAL SEX\\ sam yambrovich
08 from the hill
ORIOLES 10, YANKEES 5 \\ ted lamm & alex logan DRINK LOCALLY, ACT GLOATINGLY \\ owen miller
comics Enigma Twist | Dustin Foley
The One About Zombies | Kevin Grubb
Socrates | Abe Pressman