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4 thursday, may 3, 2012

The california Aggie

Put that phone away when driving “When on the phone, you are not paying enough attention.”

Unsafe driving habit

By ERIC C. LIPSKY Aggie Science Writer

A new survey study from UC San Diego shows that distracted driving is highly prevalent among college students. Researchers found that along with frequent cell phone usage while driving, college students overestimate their driving abilities in comparison to their peers. About 5,000 participants


from nine colleges in the San Diego area completed the study. The study found that 78 percent reported using a cell phone while driving. Linda Hill, a clinical professor in the department of family and preventive medicine at UC San Diego, said that both the overinflated college students’ confidence in their driving abilities and the high frequency of cell phone usage were


both quite high. “Students think that they are better multitaskers than other people,” Hill said. She said that 46 percent of students think of themselves as capable or very capable at using their phone while driving, but these students considered their peers equally skilled only 8.5 percent of the time. Hill said that 76 percent of students reported not knowing that using a cell phone while driving has an equivalent delay in reaction time to driving with a Blood Alcohol Level of .08 — the legal limit. “We have to look at it like other health problems; like drinking and secondhand smoke,” Hill said. “Your behavior affects other people.” Hill said that we need to get away from the social norm of responding as quickly as possible to others when they call or text. “People need to fight the temptation of appearing to not be socially respon-

“The budget comes from state general funds set aside for building maintenance and repair,” said Senior Public Information Representative Andy Fell in an e-mail regarding the budget for such damages. Currently there is not a definitive figure of how much has been spent this year compared to the past, but this information is reportedly being gathered. “Facilities Management is in the process of collecting data so that it can be included in the maintenance budget for next year,” Fell said. Even though the budget for building repair is not directly correlated to the library, Kautzman feels that the two are inherently linked. “I would like to think that if we didn’t have to spend as much for maintaining the buildings, that could be money toward the collections,” she said. “It takes away from the greater budget, and the greater budget could trickle down to us.” Kautzman is also worried about the potential long-term damages from library mistreatment. “I think it’s the broken-window effect. If someone starts writing on the wall of the bathroom, then somebody else does, and it causes degradation of the whole atmosphere. It’s not productive, intellectual, and that’s what we pride ourselves on being — a place for intellect.” On Feb. 27, dried fecal matter was discovered on a pillar on the fourth floor. Taylor Burt, a senior genetics major, agrees with Kautzman. “It definitely takes away from the atmosphere. It’s not unexpected; it just makes the whole campus look kind of trashy,” she said about the second floor of Shields, which is home to some of the more notorious instances of graffiti. “We’re supposed to be adults, and it doesn’t seem like something adults should do.” In the end, it is up to the compassion of every Davis student to protect the beauty and integrity of our campus, Kautzman said.

Cont. from front page can demonstrate a deep intolerance of race and sexual orientation. Recently, artwork relating to the Occupy movement has been seen most frequently. The highly detailed nature of the pieces often make them the most difficult, and subsequently expensive, to remove. A life-sized blue stenciling of UC Davis police officer Lt. John Pike on the outside of the library had to be power-washed away and has since caused permanent damage to the stucco. Paintings found in the restrooms require heavy solvents to remove, which forces the facilities to be shut down for hours at a time. Popular messages include “Destroy what enslaves you — capitalism!” and “Anti-capitalista!” as well as “RSC kills babies.” Amy Kautzman, the Associate University Librarian for the Humanities and Social Sciences and Head of Access Services at Shields, is concerned with the new trend. “It doesn’t have the positive effect that people want,” she said. “We understand that the students want to put up their messages. But when they put them up in such a way that it damages the building, you end up harming not the powers that be, but taking money away from the students who are already protesting that they are having money being taken away from their education.” Kautzman’s frustration does not lie with the Occupy movement’s sentiments, but rather the immediate damage to the building. “It’s not against the politics — that’s not the issue. There’s many options of doing things, and we’re open for all sorts of discussions. But we have to have discussion on political art that doesn’t harm the building,” she said. The second contention lies with monetary ramifications. The money required to fix the damages does not come from library funds directly. ADAM KHAN can be reached at

native Cont. from page 5 currently self-promoting. After the EP arrives, the band wants to see if smaller labels will pick up their project. “When people listen to our music, I want them to think about what’s important to them and to pursue what is important to them,” Williams said. When Williams isn’t working on music with The Native Sibling, she works at a local farm because she likes the idea of

sustainable agriculture. She is also involved in playing music at church and loves all different genres of music from Rascal Flatts to classical music to Blind Pilot. “You get to a place like college and decide if [church] is what you want to believe,” Williams said. “And to me it’s important.” This self-reflective aspect of Kaylee shines throughout the band’s song “Follow Trees,” with lyrics such as “How long to wait for a light to take as our guide / The setting sun collapsed it sure-

sive,” Hill said. “They have to train themselves not to drive distracted, even if it means keeping phones out of reach while driving.” Hill said that one troubling factor is that handsfree devices do not appear to be much better than using cell phones. Although drivers may be less likely to move their heads with hands-free devices, they still do not pay enough attention on the road, however, more research needs to be done on this. Jill Rybar-Waryk, research program manager at the UC San Diego School of Medicine, said they were not surprised with the results. “Maybe the willingness of students to text while on the freeway was surprising, but I think it just validated what we personally see on the roads,” Rybar-Waryk said. Rybar-Waryk said that more needs to be done to change the belief that it is OK to drive distracted. She

qft Cont. from front page previous years panel speakers were graduate students, but this year undergraduate students will also be speaking. “We’re devoted to having a space outside of the classroom that’s still in an academic setting where we can talk about these issues that are affecting us everyday,” Berwick said. The focus of the panels are the issues of security and safety in queer studies. According to third-year Spanish literature graduate student and co-chair of QFT Emily Kuffner, the first panel will include a presentation on the LifeTime series “Army Wives” and the homosexual legislation in Uganda, and will focus more on personal security. The second panel is oriented toward issues around national, social and cultural security. Alongside panels, discussions and a performance at the end of the conference, there will also be two keynote speakers: Liz Montegary, a postdoctoral Cultural Studies

Spring Cont. from page 5 likes of which include The Shins, Florence + The Machine, Steve Aoki, Explosions in the Sky and others. “A brilliant staff, motivated individuals, creative ideas, hard work, and a little bit of luck,” Chin said, explain-

said that society needs to take precautions and get others to do the same. “I don’t think a lot of people realize that it’s why officers stop people while driving distracted; they’re exhibiting the same symptoms of a DUI,” RybarWaryk said. Sergeant Danny Sheffield, a UC Davis police officer, said the police department receives daily complaints from both pedestrians and bicyclists reporting distracted bikers on campus. “They [electronic devices] have become a very big distraction,” Sheffield said. “It’s very dangerous, and it seems to be extremely prevalent in the younger generation.” Sheffield said that on one occasion a student almost ran their bike into his police car because they were sending a text message while biking. Along with this, Sheffield said that though it is cur-

raise patriotic children with bodies fit to support the war machine?” The Militarization and Gender Research Cluster and QFT have been working on the conference for approximately three to four months. In order to attend the conference, all students need to do is show up to whichever part of the conference they wish to see. This event is free for all. Organizers of the interdisciplinary conference hope students gain a new way of thinking about issues of safety, security and militarization. “We’re hoping that it will generate more conversations and taking into account more of a diversity of viewpoints when people are talking about issues of safety and security; that people just don’t look at it from the mainstream point of view because there’s other angles to take into account,” Kuffner said. For more information on the Queer (In)Security Conference and a complete schedule of events, visit

ing how the Entertainment Council has managed to create UC Davis’ entertainment scene. On another note, who is the Entertainment Council excited to see? “I am really excited to see Marlene Marlene because I’ve heard really good things, but I’ve never actually seen them perform,” Burnstein said.

Chin, on the other hand, was unable to single out a specific performer. “It’s hard for me to choose,” he said.

ly will rise / With a ticket to dispense for all of our lives.” “We [the band] have a joking dream about where we want the band to be in the s,” Williams said. “We want a VW bus, we want to travel, play shows and camp. Right now we want to try and spread our songs along the West Coast.” The Native Sibling’s Facebook page can be found at TheNativeSibling. KARINA CONTRERAS can be reached at

Currently, the researchers at UC Davis are working to repurpose current drugs to find a cure for FA, and Cortopassi said that they have been successful thus far. Bryant has given $250,000 overall to the research for FA at UC Davis. He said that when he first met Cortopassi, he was given a newfound hope in a cure. “It was the first time I really heard anyone talk about that this is a curable disease and we actually can get this,” Bryant said. FARA and the fight for a cure for FA has become a large part of Bryant’s life, and Bryant said he hopes that Ride Ataxia continues to grow and raise money for the cause. “I know that I can change the world,” Bryant said. “And I am hopefully showing other people that they can too by spreading this program around and having them be involved.”


Cont. from page 5 As an acclaimed songwriter, what’s the most interesting songwriting workshop you’ve ever led? It’s hard to pick a single example as I’ve been lucky enough to do work with some really diverse groups. One of the most interesting was a center for aphasia patients in New Jersey. Aphasia is a language disorder that is often the result of a stroke or brain injury that renders people unable to speak (and sometimes unable to write as well). With the help of a friend of mine, Bruce Kalter, who regularly volunteers at the center, I led a three-hour workshop in which they wrote not one, but two songs, one of which (“Tip of My Tongue”) was all about what it’s like to have aphasia. It was a very challenging, slow process, but incredibly rewarding.

Cont. from page 8 his deteriorating condition. “The Ride Ataxia is so very important to me because it is part of the solution to solving Friedreich’s Ataxia,” Bryant said. “The focus of our organization is research. Research is going on all over the world including UC Davis. It’s something we can solve and something we can find a cure for and our scientists are confident of that. This is something we know we are going to get.” Gino Cortopassi, professor of molecular biosciences, is one of these scientists who has been researching FA at UC Davis since 1997. He said that the research done here has made a large contribution to a cure, which can be seen in the future. “I think that there are multiple experimental therapies for FA that are very promising and I think that in the next 10 years we DEVON BOHART can be reached at features@ will have an effective therapy for FA,” Cortopassi said.

WEF is free for all. The show at Luigi’s will be $10 for adults and free for kids. MICHELLE RUAN can be reached at

ERIC C. LIPSKY can be reached at science@

UC Davis graduate who is now a professor in women’s, gender and sexuality studies at Yale University, and Elizabeth Povinelli, professor of anthropology and gender studies at Columbia University. According to Ben-Daniel, Povinelli will be speaking about different forms of suicide, including social suicide. Montegary says that her talk will focus on Michelle Obama’s “Let’s Move” campaign that encourages children to be healthier through exercise and improved eating habits since it deals with the problem of childhood obesity as a national security issue. “Recently, the First Lady has reached out to lesbian and gay families and is trying to include them in ‘Let’s Move’ initiatives. In my talk, I ask how the incorporation of lesbian and gay families actually works as a way of regulating familial relations, bodies and desires,” Montegary said. “Why might queer activists who have lots of experience critiquing bodily regulations want to challenge fatphobic, anti-obesity rhetoric rather than trying to


I’m really grateful for the chance to play at WEF once again and for the great musicians that are coming to join me. There is a ton of stuff on YouTube, and if people want to hear some samples of the music, or read more details about what I do, I’d encourage them to visit my main site, Thanks for helping to spread the word. Go Aggies!

rently not illegal to bike while on a cell phone, it is a “nuisance to the public.” He said that students should be educated that legislation might be coming that will make it illegal to bike while on a cell phone. “The peer support and peer pressure component are the best things that can be done right now,” Sheffield said. “Peers need to encourage friends and others to stop.” “In 2009, 5,474 people were killed in crashes involving driver distraction and an estimated 448,000 were injured,” according to, the official U.S. government website for distracted driving. More specifically, texting “creates a crash risk 23 times worse than driving while not distracted.” “Don’t drive distracted. When on the phone, you are not paying enough attention,” Hill said.

LILIANA NAVA OCHOA can be reached at

For more information, check out the Facebook events as well as the Entertainment Council’s website at JAMES O’HARA can be reached at arts@

loan Cont. from front page including one that was voted on by the full House last Friday,” Zembik said. “The fixes we see being proposed, the ones being voted on, are one-year fixes.” The bill voted on by the House was a Republican bill that called for a one-year fix. “The money that is used for preventative care, instead of being used toward health care, would then be used for education,” Christner said. “[Congressman Peters] doesn’t believe you should pit education against public health.” Christner said since the bill passed the House, it is now being looked over by the Senate. She said President Obama would veto the Republican bill if it passed. Zembik said Courtney’s bill is the only bill that is bipartisan with a plan for a long-term permanent fix to the rate. He said Courtney is also a cosponsor of another bill that is a one-year fix offered by Democrats. “The pressure is big,” Zembik said. “Congressman Courtney is committed to seeing this rate not double. He’s been on the floor talking about this, and enlisting colleagues to support this bill and talk about it nationally.” In addition, Zembik said 130,000 letters from college students were delivered to House and Senate leaders encouraging action. “We’ve got data from nonpartisan outside groups that show that [an increase can] over the course of a 10-year repayment plan, cost students up to $5,000 more, and over a 20-year repayment plan, cost $11,000 more,” he said. “We’re talking about a situation where people are graduating with $80,000 in debt already; with another $11,000, it’s huge.” The UC Davis Financial Aid Office also expressed its concern over rising student loan interest rates. “Hopefully, they extend the time for the interest rate to be lowered,” said Joyce Cleaver, data analyst for the UC Davis Financial Aid Office. “That would be fabulous.” CLAIRE TAN can be reached at

May 3, 2012  

Cal Aggie Newspaper

May 3, 2012  

Cal Aggie Newspaper