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ARTS The Current Pivot Multi-Arts Festival brings old-fashioned fun to Uptown
D65 parents warned about suspicious person in SUV » PAGE 2
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Thursday, May 23, 2013
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Son of construction worker sues
Lawsuit says NU contractor responsible for fatal accident By PATRICK SVITEK
daily senior staffer @PatrickSvitek
The 21-year-old son of a construction worker killed last week by a falling beam is suing the general contractor for Northwestern’s new Music and Communication Building. Michael Kerr, 57, was hit in the head and chest by the 16-foot, 70-pound beam after a crane knocked it off the sixth floor shortly after 7 a.m. May 16, officials said. Kerr, who was on the ground floor, was taken to Evanston Hospital and pronounced dead at 8:55 a.m. Kerr, of the 2400 block of Hart Street in Dyer, Ind., died from multiple injuries, according to the Cook County medical examiner’s office. His death was ruled an accident. Michael Kerr, the construction worker’s son by the same name, filed a wrongful death lawsuit Monday in Cook County Circuit Court against Power Construction Company of Schaumburg. The four-count suit alleges Power Construction is responsible for Kerr’s death and did not do enough to prevent it, including
By CIARA MCCARTHY
the daily northwestern @mccarthy_ciara
properly securing construction materials and inspecting the work environment. NU is not named in the lawsuit, which asks for the jurisdictional
94% 10% Combined facility-based setting
Infographic by Walter Ko and Kelsey Ott/The Daily Northwestern
Bill would expand disabled workforce the daily northwestern @EdwardCox16
A bill that would provide more working opportunities for disabled people sailed through the Illinois General Assembly on Tuesday with the leadership of Sen. Daniel Biss (D-Evanston). The Senate unanimously voted to send The Employment First Act to the desk of Gov. Pat Quinn. The legislation would reform a statewide working environment for disabled people that has been defined by subminimum wages and segregation, supporters of the bill say. “People with disabilities deserve the opportunity to work,” said Rep. Robyn Gabyl (D-Evanston), who signed on to the bill as a co-sponsor. Disability rights groups have
“Failure to learn and sing any of these works will result in a grade of F for the Spring Term,” Nally responded, according to the email exchange McNair shared with The Daily. McNair’s complaint comes amid heightened tensions over race relations on campus, something he alluded to in his email to The Daily. The most recent incident McNair pointed to was NU maintenance worker Michael Collins’ saying he found a black teddy bear hanging from his desk. After sharing the email exchange with The Daily, McNair did not respond to requests for further comment. email@example.com
» See FAIR HOUSING, page 6
‘ABSOLUTELY DISTRAUGHT’ The 21-year-old son of the construction worker killed on campus last week is suing the general contractor for Northwestern’s new Music and Communication Building.
minimum of $50,000 in damages per count. In Cook County, a specific dollar amount is not determined until later in the legal process in such cases.
lobbied to make Illinois an “Employment First” state as part of a national movement to direct more state and federal dollars to integrated work settings instead of sheltered workshops, also known as facility-based work settings, which mainly employ disabled people. Equip For Equality, a Chicagobased disability rights group, has worked with the government to shape the legislation, said Barry Taylor, vice president for civil rights and systemic litigation. Many state-run institutions such as the Kiley Developmental Center in Waukegan, Ill., are in need of changes to provide more opportunities to disabled people, Taylor said. Taylor is a member of the Employment and Economic Opportunity for Persons with Disabilities task force, which recommended the reforms to » See EMPLOYMENT, page 6
Serving the University and Evanston since 1881
Louis Cairo, the younger Kerr’s attorney, said his client’s family is “absolutely distraught” over the loss » See LAWSUIT, page 6
Grad student protests poetry performance By CAT ZAKRZEWSKI
By EDWARD COX
Hundreds of low-income renters in Evanston will have expanded housing options starting in August, thanks to the passage of an ordinance by the Cook County Board of Commissioners earlier this month. The ordinance prohibits landlords from discriminating against holders of housing choice vouchers, which activists say has been common practice in suburban Cook County. Evanston’s Housing and Homelessness Commission discussed drafting and passing a similar ordinance at its meeting Friday. The passage of the county ordinance concludes a 15-year struggle on the part of activists in Cook County. Chicago has had a similar ordinance in effect since 1998, but most renters in suburban Cook County have been without the protection until now. Gail Schechter, executive director of the housing nonprofit Open Communities, said the type of discrimination the ordinance prohibits is “very common” in communities like Evanston, where she estimated about 500 people use vouchers to pay for housing. “It’s common practice that landlords in the suburbs have just said no to voucher holders,” she said. Housing choice vouchers subsidize housing costs for eligible candidates. Qualified renters pay 30 percent of their income to the landlord, and the Housing Authority fills in the rest. In the past, landlords discriminated against voucher holders and claimed it was because the Housing Authority was late on payments and inspections, Schechter said. Schechter said some of these complaints were smokescreens for discrimination based on race, ability status and single-parenthood. The push for this ordinance has been ongoing in Evanston for many years. Landlords managed to shoot down such an amendment before it reached City Council in 2002, Schechter said. Commissioner Larry Suffredin represents the 13th district, which includes Evanston, and co-sponsored the ordinance. He said he had been fighting a 12-year battle to get it passed. Suffredin called housing choice vouchers “the main federal housing program.” “If people could discriminate against it, the majority of Cook County couldn’t participate in the most successful housing program offered,” he said. The ordinance will not increase the availability of affordable housing in Evanston, but it will allow lower-income renters to move to areas that do not have affordable
Skylar Zhang/Daily Senior Staffer
Where do disabled people work?
County protects housing vouchers
daily senior staffer @Cat_Zakrzewski
A Bienen graduate student is claiming his professor plans to fail him for refusing to perform a song with lyrics written by Walt Whitman, a poet he described as a “self-documented racist.” Timothy McNair, a first-year graduate student on a full scholarship for voice and opera, said he first reached out to Bienen Prof. Donald Nally on May 11, when he wrote an email explaining why he does not want to participate in an end-of-the-year concert June 8. “After receiving the new music for Chorale and observing the ‘Song of Democracy,’ poetry by Walt Whitman---I refuse to perform this piece under any circumstances,” McNair wrote to Nally, according to an email exchange McNair shared with The Daily. “Walt Whitman was a selfdocumented racist who is known for having called freed Blacks ‘baboons’ and his writings which saw them as a threat to White Democracy.” In a statement, University spokesman Al Cubbage said NU does not comment on “academic issues regarding individual students” due to federal regulations. “However, the University’s expectation of all students is that they complete work assigned by their professors,” Cubbage said. Although Whitman supported the Union during the Civil War, he envisioned a white American union “without any vision for freed Blacks”
and called blacks “unfit for voting,” McNair said in an email to The Daily. In the same email to The Daily, McNair called Nally’s subsequent response a “racially insensitive and disregardful act.” Three days after his initial email, McNair said his professor responded, stating all students must learn and perform “the assigned repertoire,” which includes “Song of Democracy.”
Walt Whitman was a self-documented racist who is known for having called freed Blacks ‘baboons.’ Timothy McNair, first-year graduate student
INSIDE Around Town 2 | On Campus 3 | Opinion 4 | Classifieds & Puzzles 6 | Sports 8
2 NEWS | THE DAILY NORTHWESTERN
THURSDAY, MAY 23, 2013
Around Town Gov. Pat Quinn gives Hero Award to EPD officer who saved boy
Daily file photo by Patrick Svitek
TO THE RESCUE Evanston Police officer Sean O’Brien and his girlfriend Mallory Navarra pose for photos after a City Council ceremony that honored him in March.
Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn on Wednesday honored an Evanston police officer who dove into the Des Plaines River and rescued a 7-year-old boy while off duty. Officer Sean O’Brien was given the state health department’s Hero Award, which is handed out every year to courageous emergency responders and ordinary citizens across Illinois. O’Brien was driving home with his girlfriend March 5 when he spotted the young boy chasing a snowball into the river. O’Brien followed the 7-year-old and jumped into the icy water when he saw the boy’s Chicago Bears hat floating on the surface.
— Patrick Svitek
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D65 parents alerted about suspicious person in Skokie
A suspicious person approached four elementary and middle school students Tuesday afternoon, Evanston/Skokie District 65 Superintendent Hardy
Murphy said in a letter to parents. A blue SUV drove up to the students at about 4 p.m. near Crain Street and Kimball Avenue in Skokie, according to the letter. A person inside asked the students, “How was school today?” The four students, one in middle school and three in elementary school, did not respond, and one ran home to tell a parent about the man, Murphy said.
Police Blotter West Evanston garage broken into, gardening equipment stolen
Burglars take gardening equipment from landscaping business
Two men took several items May 16 from the garage of R & G Landscaping, Parrott said. Video cameras captured footage of two men breaking into the business at 1129 Fowler Ave., prying open the south entrance with an unknown tool, Parrott said. Parrott said the business owner may know the two men. The burglars took three chainsaws, three cordless drills, one leaf blower and other gardening equipment.
Murphy called the students’ response “perfect examples of what children should do in these types of situations.” The driver was described as a man with gray hair and the passenger as a man with dark hair wearing a white baseball cap. — Manuel Rapada
Setting the record straight In Wednesday’s print edition, The Daily ran a wire story under Across Campuses that was later identified as outdated. The article, titled “Binge drinking a happy hobby for University of Illinois students,” was published May 31, 2002 in the Chicago Tribune. The Daily regrets the error.
— Tanner Maxwell
Fax | 847.491.9905 THE DAILY NORTHWESTERN is published Monday through Friday during the academic year, except vacation periods and two weeks preceding them and once during August, by Students Publishing Co., Inc. of Northwestern University, 1999 Campus Drive, Evanston, IL 60208; 847-4917206. First copy of THE DAILY is free, additional copies are 50 cents. All material published herein, except advertising or where indicated otherwise, is Copyright 2013 THE DAILY NORTHWESTERN and protected under the “work made for hire” and “periodical publication” clauses of copyright law. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to THE DAILY NORTHWESTERN, 1999 Campus Drive, Evanston, IL 60208. Subscriptions are $175 for the academic year. THE DAILY NORTHWESTERN is not responsible for more than one incorrect ad insertion. All display ad corrections must be received by 3 p.m. one day prior to when the ad is run.
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An 83-year-old man’s garage in west Evanston was broken into Monday, Evanston Police Cmdr. Jay Parrott said. The resident woke up in the morning to find several tools missing from his garage in the 1000 block of Pitner Avenue, Parrott said. A set of power tools was left outside, likely for someone to take them later with a vehicle. The man retrieved the power tools found outside, but it is not clear what exactly was stolen from the garage, Parrott said.
Saturday May 18th 9:30 p.m. LIVE MUSIC The Mudflapps (Authentic American Roots Music)
O’Brien was one of two recipients of the Hero Award this year. Shaun Bennett, a volunteer firefighter from Stockton, Ill., used justcompleted training in CPR to help keep a coworker conscious before an ambulance arrived in February. “I salute all of Illinois’ first responders for the daily sacrifices they make in order to keep our families and neighbors safe,” Quinn said in a news release. “Sean O’Brien and Shaun Bennett remind us that even off duty, we can count on the courage and dedication of our EMS personnel to save our loved ones.” Evanston Mayor Elizabeth Tisdahl recognized O’Brien before a City Council meeting in March, calling him an “absolute shining example of the best in the Evanston Police Department.”
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THURSDAY, MAY 23, 2013
On Campus ISA storytelling highlights cultural experiences By REBECCA SAVRANSKY
the daily northwestern @beccasavransky
The International Student Association’s global engagement committee hosted a forum Wednesday giving students the opportunity to share stories about interacting with people of different cultures. About 25 students attended the event, titled “Global Thread,” at The Celtic Knot, where individuals presented their experiences and gave advice on how to navigate cultural gaps in the United States and abroad. ISA holds the discussion twice a year, each time with a different theme. Wednesday’s theme was “Lost in Translation.” “Our aim was to bring the experiences of international and domestic students together through this storytelling event,” said Lara Saldanha, a member of the global engagement committee and a Bienen sophomore.
Six students presented their stories, taking the theme both literally and figuratively with tales about the importance of eliminating stereotypes and dealing with language barriers in different countries. Weinberg junior Katherine Sobolewski talked about her experience on an Alternative Student Breaks trip to Arizona, where she volunteered for a group called “No More Deaths.” During the trip, Sobolewski said she learned it was important not to make assumptions about people. “Having this cultural shock made me realize that there’s so many different experiences, and you can’t really label individuals and impose any kind of identity on them,” Sobolewski said. Weinberg sophomore Mert Salur talked about traveling to various parts of the world and respecting people’s customs and cultural norms. “I’ve learned there are very different ways to approach and talk to people when you’re dealing with people from different places in
the world,” Salur said. Attendees said they enjoyed the combination of serious and funny stories. Weinberg freshman Sonia Mirchandani said she learned lessons and gained insight through listening to other people’s experiences. “I liked learning about other people’s stories,” Mirchandani said. “I really liked what one speaker said, that you can’t give someone an identity or label without knowing how they feel about it.” Kuan-Yu Shen, president of ISA, said the speakers were engaging and allowed audience members to gain broader perspectives of cultures beyond their own. “I thought it was really interesting how the speakers took ‘Lost in Translation’ in different ways, with varying degrees,” said Shen, a SESP junior. “These students shared so many cultural experiences that we should learn and appreciate.” firstname.lastname@example.org
Hillary Back/The Daily Northwestern
GLOBAL PERSPECTIVE Weinberg freshman Julia Azarcon talks Wednesday at the Celtic Knot about her struggles with speaking Chinese while studying abroad.
ASG approves more than $1 million for A-status funding By SOPHIA BOLLAG
daily senior staffer @sophiabollag
Associated Student Government Senate on Wednesday approved $1,033,776.93 in funding for A-status groups. A&O Productions was given almost $400,000, the most money an A-status group received from ASG this spring. Senators voted to approve $1,400 more for the group’s Blowout concert in the fall and $1,200 more for its Spring Benefit show than the Student Activities Finance Committee recommended. Senate added $50 to College Republicans’
funding for Freedom Week, which runs Nov. 5-9 and celebrates the fall of the Berlin Wall. The week will include speakers, the tearing down of a fake Berlin Wall, painting of The Rock and the distribution of miniature American flags, pocket Constitutions and temporary tattoos. Most of the week’s funding will come from outside sources. “We hope to make it a big deal,” said Rebecca Schieber, College Republicans president and a Weinberg sophomore. “We hope to do this every year.” Senators voted in favor of funding the week despite the objection of SAFC, which initially did not give money to Freedom Week because its guidelines forbid the funding of new events.
Senate voted down College Feminists’ requests for additional funding for their performance of “The Vagina Monologues,” their speaker budget and Take Back the Night. Senators initially passed the group’s request for $2,643 for its performance but cut the amount by $2,500 following opposition from SAFC. The group gained only a net $143 more than the SAFC recommendation for “The Vagina Monologues.” “If you keep on passing these increases, it’s going to be hurting the organizations that are doing well,” said Siddiq Ather, ASG financial vice president and a Weinberg junior. “Respect the recommendations that we give out because we understand that other organizations need increases (in funding) as well.”
The Northwestern Community Development Corps successfully secured $1,750 for candy for Project Pumpkin, a philanthropic Halloween event for children held in Norris University Center. As part of the presentation in favor of the amendment, NCDC members dressed in animal costumes passed out candy to attendees. Senate also passed an election reform bill. Ian Coley, the off-campus caucus whip who cowrote the bill, said he was pleased the bill passed, especially the provision shortening the length of the campaign season. “People on campus will really appreciate that,” the Weinberg senior said. email@example.com
this weekend in music
@ P I C K - S TA I G E R
MAY 24 - 26, 2013
Monteverdi’s L’incoronazione di Poppea (The Coronation of Poppea) Cahn, 7:30 p.m. Pre-performance lecture, 6:45-7:15 p.m. $15/6
Millennium Park Concert: Brass Spectacular Jay Pritzker Pavilion, 6:30 p.m. free
Michael M. Ehrman, director; Stephen Alltop, conductor
A celebration of the Bienen School brass program, featuring music for brass ensemble and trombone choir. The program will include Giovanni Gabrieli’s Canzon Primi Toni, Jeremy Dibb’s Excalibur, and the Finale from Camille Saint-Saëns’ Symphony No. 3, as well as works by Strauss, Brahms, and more.
Gail Williams and Peter Ellefson, conductors
Poppea, mistress of Rome’s Emperor Nerone, is determined to ascend the throne—whatever the cost. Even in a world where gods influence mortal affairs, virtue doesn’t always triumph. This story of love, deception, murder, and betrayal is as relevant today as in Monteverdi’s time. Performed in Italian with English supertitles.
Monteverdi’s L’incoronazione di Poppea (The Coronation of Poppea) Cahn, 7:30 p.m. Pre-performance lecture, 6:45-7:15 p.m. $15/6 See Friday, May 24.
Monteverdi’s L’incoronazione di Poppea
Millennium Park Concert: Brass Spectacular
BIENEN SCHOOL OF MUSIC
NORTHWESTERN UNIVERSIT Y
O R W W W . P I C K S TA I G E R . O R G
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Thursday, May 23, 2013
Weiner mayoral run begs leniency for past mistakes YONI MULLER
Tuesday night, comedians across the country rejoiced at the news that former U.S. Rep. Anthony Weiner (D-N.Y.) was back in the spotlight. As it turns out, he didnâ€™t just discover Vine (though itâ€™s probably just a matter of time) but has officially announced his intention to run for mayor of New York City. As most of us remember, Weiner was a congressman who resigned in disgrace after he tweeted photos of his, uhâ€Ś surname, to various women. Unfortunately, the Internet is a place where temporary judgment lapses become permanent shrines of your failure. Just ask the lunatic from University of Marylandâ€™s Delta Gamma chapter â€“ at your own risk, of course. As a result, Weinerâ€™s member has been seen by more people than Wilt Chamberlainâ€™s, and he
will forever have a very visible reminder of the scandal that derailed his career. However, with the launch of his mayoral campaign, something drastic could be taking place. Never in probably anyoneâ€™s life has anyone expected these words to be put together, but the fate of political campaigns in America rests on Anthony Weinerâ€™s now-clothed shoulders. The problem in politics has always been the importance of the image a candidate provides. Excellent ideas and experience arenâ€™t enough if you had an affair, were caught doing cocaine, teased a kid in high school or did anything that doesnâ€™t support the notion that you are a pristine, squeaky-clean candidate with no major blemishes. Of course there are exceptions to every rule; just a few weeks ago Mark Sanford won a special election in Congress after an affair led to his resignation as governor. But there can be no denying that the pressure to come as close to this perfect image as possible is all too present for politicians. This is why the vetting process for vice president is so grueling; why for every
Mark Sanford there is a Herman Cain, an Eric Massa, a David Petraeus and more. With todayâ€™s infatuation with social media, millions of Americans are, by traditional standards, destroying any chances they may have of a career in politics before even considering them. Unless someone decides at an early age they want to be a politician and plan accordingly, they are likely to have at least one unbelievably stupid Facebook status, one politically incorrect comment or joke, one picture of them drinking underage or some other potential scandal currently up and waiting for the world to see. Until voters are willing to adopt a measure of leniency for past personal action when considering political candidates, aspiring senators, governors and presidents will be left watching from the sidelines while a less qualified person runs. The unique situation that arises here is that Weiner was a very well-received and highly regarded politician. Yet he was the subject of arguably the most visible scandal in American political history. I could literally see Anthony
Weiner naked with as much ease as I could see myself naked. In many ways, Weiner embodies the candidate who would run on policy alone â€” no secrets to hide, no choir-boy image to uphold, just ideas. As the election unfolds, there are only three potential outcomes. The first is that Weiner wins the election. The second and third are both that he loses, but the second outcome involves him losing due to his experience, ideas and vision; the third involves him losing because of the scandal. This last one would simply reinforce the status quo in American politics. But an outcome that minimizes or eliminates the impact of Weinerâ€™s admittedly idiotic past decisions would suggest that perhaps Americans are ready to seek not only the most unblemished candidate, but the most innovative or qualified one to hold public office. Yoni Muller is a Weinberg sophomore. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. If you want to respond publicly to this column, send a Letter to the Editor to email@example.com.
Israel-Palestine discussions lack nuances, complexities GUEST COLUMNIST
As a pro-Israel Jew, I strongly believe in the state of Israel. Yet, as a liberal American, I find many of its actions and policies antithetical to my values. At J Street, this is a contradiction we live and breathe. Any attempt to clarify the complex history and clashing narratives of Israelis and Palestinians into concrete, easy-to-digest talking points will inevitably fail to truly educate anybody. But instead of promoting understanding, such tactics are used to assert victimhood and sidestep oneâ€™s own problematic past. We can see this dynamic in the Students for Justice in Palestine events during Social Justice Week, and the ensuing discussion in The Daily surrounding the use of the term â€œapartheidâ€? to describe Israeli policy. The columns by Jonathan Kamel, reacting to the SJP events, and Dalia Fuleihan and Matthew Kovac, defending them, oversimplified the issues and whitewashed legitimate criticism. The situation in Israel and Palestine is far more complex than a question of apartheid or not, but the discussion so far in this space hasnâ€™t been. Kamel was right to point out that unlike in
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