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news for you texas Teenage birth rate ranks 3rd A study shows Texas has the third highest rate of teenage births in the country. The annual Kids Count report, released Tuesday by the Annie E. Casey Foundation, says more than 54,000 babies were born to girls between the ages of 15 and 19 in 2007. Texas ranks near the bottom in the number of children living in poverty.

White accuses Perry Democratic gubernatorial candidate Bill White on Monday accused Gov. Rick Perry of becoming a millionaire through unethical real estate deals, seizing on a newspaper report that raised questions about Perry’s purchase and sale of a plot of land in an upscale resort community.

● wednesday,

july 28, 2010

● serving

texas a&m si since 1893

● first paper free – additional copies $1 ● © 2010 student media

campus

Coloring outside the

Interim provost explains layoffs

lines

ne Aggie is urging children to freely unleash limitless creativity by interacting with an outdoor studio. Laura Kaarlsen, class of 1990 and elementary art teacher, designed “En Plein Air,” the unique playhouse loosely based on of Picasso’s artwork. The colorful structure will be featured in the San Antonio Botanical Gardens’ playhouses and forts exhibit until October. The space puts smiles on the faces of parents, too, as youngsters can work on becoming the next Renoir or Matisse without making a troublesome mess indoors.

O

Sarah Ammerman

Playhouse encourages children to express creativity

Gayle Gabriel | The Battalion

see story on page 2

lowest gas price

$2.68 Chevron at 600 Graham Road and Victoria Ave. www.texasgasprices.com

nation &world

The Battalion Although a large number of nontenured faculty members will be let go in the 2012-2013 budget cut proposal, officials say some positions could remain. Officials have tentative plans to roll out retirement packages for tenured faculty. A committee was focused on explaining the process and finalizing the $21 million reallocation. They also were searching for flexibility in the budget to not eliminate as many nontenured faculty members by implementing retirement packages for tenured faculty. An open meeting Tuesday with Interim Provost Karan Watson allowed nontenure track faculty, including lecturers and adjunct professors, to voice concerns about upcoming layoffs. “We have tentative approval for a plan to roll out the retirement plan quickly. Before the reallocation is released, we will know,” she said. Of the $39 million expected to be cut, $33 million impacts the colleges. This money has to come from colleges because that is where the state money goes directly, Watson said. The group working on the budget cut plan included a faculty tenure representative, the Student Government Association, a graduate student council member, an undergraduate student council member, a member from each academic department and college deans. She wanted to make it clear that the numbers of nontenured

Robert Dudley

See Layoffs on page 2

BP’s first American executive Robert Dudley, the American picked to lead BP as it struggles to restore its finances and reputation, pledged Tuesday that his company will remain committed to the Gulf region even after the busted well is sealed. Dudley will become BP PLC’s first ever non-British chief executive.

Dutch teen to attempt solo trip Laura Dekker, a 14-year-old Dutch sailor, will be allowed to launch a risky attempt to become the youngest person to sail solo around the world, a court said Tuesday, clearing her for an adventure that could begin within two weeks. Dekker said she was thrilled to hear of the court’s decision to lift a guardianship order imposed on Dekker in 2009 after she said she wanted to set sail when she was 13. Staff and wire reports

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money

Aggies analyze economy Austin Meek Courtesy photo, graphics by Evan Andrews — THE BATTALION

academics

Law helps keep textbooks affordable Sarah Ammerman | The Battalion A law went into effect this month to help textbooks remain affordable for students. The national average cost for a student to purchase textbooks for courses was about $900 per semester, an increase of four times the rate of inflation. This law was the first direct federal action to address textbook prices, and the purpose was to help rein in costs at colleges across the country and benefit students as well as professors. The law contained provisions from the College Textbook Affordability Act and covers three main points. Publishers must provide the professors evaluating a textbook with the price of the textbook. Textbook supply materials that were sold in bundles must be unbundled and sold as individual pieces. This will help reduce costs by letting students pass on resources they do not deem necessary. Colleges must include the retail price of the textbooks in course schedules when students are registering for classes so they are aware of what they are getting into from the beginning. “After a survey of professors across the country, 77 percent of faculty said prices are not provided when they are selecting their

course material. Also, 94 percent of professors said they would prefer the cheaper option of choices given,” said Assistant Senate Majority Leader Richard Durbin. Due to these changes, students will be able to shop around in advance for the most affordable option. It typically takes about two weeks to receive a textbook order placed online; before, students did not have this time in the semester to wait on the arrival of a textbook. Steven White, associate professor of marketing at the University of Massachusetts-Dartmouth, said over recent years he has noticed students foregoing textbooks because they cannot afford to buy them, causing their grades to suffer. This trend has become pronounced since the economic downturn. “I appreciate the work that has gone into this law. Professors should have students’ best interest at the forefront of most of their decisions, and making this law will help me as a student manage my costs better,” said Tori Schwarzlose, junior recreation, parks and tourism sciences major. The next step for textbooks is the open source text, which puts textbooks online for students to view for free and charges $30 to $60 to print. This is a part of the

ASSOCIATED PRESS

Open College Textbook Act that will be discussed in Congress. This is a flexible option for professors as they can pull from different editions to compile one book customized for each class.

The Battalion Analysts are trying to determine whether the U.S. economy is on the rebound or whether we’re headed for another plunge. Mark Dotzour, chief economist and director of research at the Real Estate Center at Texas A&M University’s Mays Business School, said the economy functions like a pendulum and that we were at a neutral point on its swing. “Beginning in 2003, America started running on a laissez-faire economy, which means unbridled, unregulated capitalism,” Dotzour said. “We had strong economic recovery, taxes were lower, businessmen and women were hiring and the economy was thriving.” Dotzour said the U.S. was employing a model that was the antithesis of laissez-faire — progressivism. The hallmark of progressivism was heavier governmental regulation, redistribution of wealth and higher taxes. He paralleled today’s economic climate with that of post-World War I America. U.S President Calvin Coolidge ran a government based on laissezfaire ideology, often appointing commissioners to the Interstate Commerce Commission and Federal Trade Commission who were sympathetic with his hands-off economic approach. See Economy on page 2

7/27/10 6:19 PM


1

Sports Museum

2

GMAT Prep

The GMAT Prep course will be from 9 The Texas A&M Sports a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday Museum features in the Donald L. Houston rotating exhibits on the Building. Early registration is history of Aggie sports. encouraged. The museum is open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday at Kyle Field.

Y L L U F PED P I U EQ

3

Sanders Corps Center Exhibits

The displays at the Corps of Cadets Center offer an overview of Aggie traditions and the history of the Corps. The exhibit is open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday in the Sanders Corps of Cadets Center.

corrections

4

5

The Japanese Animation Appreciation Club will have an anime screening from 7 to 10 p.m. Friday in Room 414 of the Langford Architecture Center, Building C.

The Messina Hof Winery Harvest Festival begins at 8 a.m. every weekend now until the third weekend in August at the winery in Bryan. Activities include grape stomping, luncheons, tastings and dinners.

Harvest Festival

Thursday 30% chance of thunderstorms high: 93 low: 74 Friday mostly sunny high: 97 low: 74 Saturday mostly sunny high: 98 low: 75

Today 70% chance of heavy rain High: 88 | Low: 75

The Battalion welcomes readers’ comments about published information that may require correction. We will pursue your concern to determine whether a correction needs to be published. Please e-mail at editor@thebatt.com.

Japanese anime film screening

pagetwo Crafty creativity

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thebattalion 07.28.2010

news for you

texas Jury considers punishment in Texas beheading trial

Aggie designs playhouse for children in San Antonio Gayle Gabriel The Battalion Go ahead, color on the walls. San Antonio Botanical Gardens will feature a children’s playhouse designed by Laura Kaarlsen, class of 1990. The playhouse was designed to encourage children to express creativity by allowing them to draw and color on the walls of the playhouse. “I played around with several different concepts, but I settled on the artist’s playhouse for different reasons,” Kaarlsen said. “I teach elementary art, so it is close to my heart. Since art can be a messy process, it seemed like a good idea to have an outdoor studio where kids could be creative without anyone getting upset about messes. The playhouse was originally based on some of Picasso’s pieces, but it evolved beyond that.” The title of the playhouse is En Plein Air, which is a French term impressionists used for painting outdoors. Other artists and materials inspired the design. “One of the things I enjoyed most about this playhouse was using so many different materials,” Kaarlsen said. “The sidewalls have panels made from wire mesh for weaving and canvas for painting. The front and back walls are painted in large murals inspired by different artists.

Economy Continued from page 1

Coolidge led America into the 1920s, a period of rapid economic growth in the wake of World War I. During his tenure after Coolidge, President Franklin D. Roosevelt pushed the pendulum back toward rd progressivism, gh there and though were other contributing factors, ors, it took World orld War II to get the Ameriican econoomy back on track. Dotzourr said more than $2 trillion of cash was sitting on business’ balance sheets waiting to be deployed. “I see business owners like racecar drivers,” Dotzour said. “They have well-oiled machines with all the support and equipment needed to compete in the race, but they’re going around the track in circles waiting for the government to drop the yellow caution flag and let the race begin.”

COME

There is a window that has several objects held in place with wire — things like sea glass, shells, rocks, sticks and beads. Half of the roof is made from cedar fence boards, and the other half has the transparent material.” Tubes of glass were placed inside the channels of the transparent material allowing more colors to filter into the space. Kaarlsen said she wanted to create an outdoor studio where kids could experience light, color and the environment and let their imaginations run free. “There are a variety of wall constructions specifically for drawing, weaving and painting; a workbench for assembling or sculpting; outdoor spaces for star-gazing and cloudwatching; a window filled with found objects; transparent roofing for varieties of light and color. All of these things surround the child with endless possibilities for inspiration.” The design for the playhouse was one of eight chosen to be showcased in the garden. “Our firm, Shawn Kaarlsen and Associates, Inc., assisted my wife by providing the drawings for the design competition review and the manpower for the construction of the playhouse after she was selected

Stewart Townsend, a double major in accounting and finance who will graduate in August, said a main contributing factor for the recession was hesitation from firms. “Companies have tons of cash but are afraid to reinvest q y into the market their liquidity because there’s still so much uncertainty with intere interest rates, industry regulation, aand the scared consume consumer, and we can see in their leaner budgetary plans,” Tow Townsend said, D a l e Pipp Pippin, senior management info information systems major, said the government was spending too much on things like health care reform and letting the national debt pile up too high. “We just had an massive oil spill that has taken away large amounts of one of our most important resources,” Pippin said. “I think we need to be keeping a closer check on spending and think about how it’s affecting our future.”

BY A N D

TA KE

A

TO U R

TAKE ADVANTAGE

Courtesy photo

The playhouse, designed by Laura Kaarlsen, class of 1990, was created to allow children to draw and color on the walls. as one of the winning designers,” said Shawn Kaarlsen, environmental design engineer and Kaarlsen’s husband. The En Plein Air playhouse is the perfect welcome for our guests for the playhouses and forts exhibit,” said Bob Brackman, director of the San Antonio Botanical Garden. “The artistic design and whimsical flair makes this a fun and engaging experience for kids of all ages.”

Layoffs Continued from page 1

faculty who will not be reappointed was within the 10 percent to 11 percent range. “We have facility problems, undergraduate problems, graduate assistant problems and a number of issues we need addressed. I believe with a passion that the money will go back into undergraduate studies, but I cannot tell exactly at this point,” Watson said. “It is a known fact that the stress of uncertainty is greater than the stress of change.” Although there were no statements released about how the money will be reallocated and how much of that money will go back to colleges, there are discussions taking place. “This was our idea in order to come back from these cuts as quickly as possible,” Watson said. In September and October, the committee will meet to negotiate the best plan for the reallocation of the money within the University. Many concerns were raised about when nontenured faculty will receive notice regarding the status of their position. University President R. Bowen Loftin said faculty involved in a reduction are required to be given a one year no-

Botanical Gardens display information

other designs has been displayed at the San Antonio Botanical Gardens until Oct. 24.

tice before they can be dismissed. “If we want faculty to not be coming back Sept. 1 in 2011, we have to tell them in Aug. of 2010,” Loftin said. Wendy L. Keeney, senior lecturer in the Department of Chemistry asked, “How easy will it be to get our jobs back if we do receive a one-year notice letter that our job will not be renewed?” Watson said the letters allow nontenured faculty the maximum amount of time to figure out a plan of action but are not necessarily final. While it is necessary for some colleges to give a one-year notice, it is not in the guidelines for all. Deborah Bell-Pederson, professor of biology, is married to another faculty member of Texas A&M and said she was concerned from a couple’s standpoint because of the amount of uncertainty surrounding the situation. “It is difficult and takes a long time to find two stable positions at a university,” she said. By Aug. 27, University officials will decide the best way to get input from the campus community. The legislative session will be from January 2011 to May 2011. The University will know the amount of state funding for its budget by the second week of June. “I am pushing deans to let people know as soon as possible. We need to get out of the uncertainty region,” Watson said.

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nation&world Utah court reverses polygamist leader convictions

◗ The playhouse along with seven

OF O U R

EDINBURG, Texas — A 29-year-old man convicted of beheading his commonlaw wife’s three children did not show remorse after the gruesome killings and was not a model inmate during an earlier stint on death row, prosecution witnesses told jurors Tuesday. A day after the jury rejected an insanity defense and found John Allen Rubio guilty of four counts of capital murder, prosecutors argued that the only suitable punishment was death. Brownsville Police officer John Jones drove Rubio from the city jail to the county jail a couple days after Rubio had killed Angela Camacho’s children in a windowless downtown apartment. He testified that he was struck by Rubio’s demeanor, which he described as “jovial.” At the jail, Rubio continued trying to make contact with Camacho, smiling and waving at her, Jones said.

SALT LAKE CITY — The Utah Supreme Court on Tuesday reversed the convictions of polygamist leader Warren Jeffs and ordered a new trial, saying a jury received incorrect instructions before considering his role in the 2001 nuptials of a 14-year-old girl to her 19-year-old cousin. Jeffs, 54, was convicted in 2007 of two counts of firstdegree felony rape as an accomplice. He is serving Warren Jeffs two consecutive terms of five years to life in the Utah State Prison. A telephone call seeking comment from the Washington County attorney’s office and the Utah attorney was not immediately returned Tuesday. Jeffs’ lawyers scheduled a news conference later Tuesday. Jeffs is head of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. The group, based on the Utah-Arizona state line, practices polygamy in marriages arranged by church leaders.

Nuclear talks to restart in Iran TEHRAN, Iran — Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said that talks with the major powers over Iran’s disputed nuclear program will start in early September, regardless of the conditions he set last month. The U.S. and its allies accuse Iran of seeking to use its civilian nuclear program as a cover to develop atomic weapons. Iran has denied the charge, saying its program is intended for peaceful purposes such as energy-generation. Associated Press

thebattalion THE INDEPENDENT STUDENT VOICE OF TEXAS A&M SINCE 1893

Vicky Flores, Editor in Chief THE BATTALION (ISSN #1055-4726) is published daily, Monday through Friday during the fall and spring semesters and Monday through Thursday during the summer session (except University holidays and exam periods) at Texas A&M University. Periodicals Postage Paid at College Station, TX 77840. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to The Battalion, Texas A&M University, 1111 TAMU, College Station, TX 77843-1111. News: The Battalion news department is managed by students at Texas A&M University in Student Media, a unit of the Division of Student Affairs. News offices are in The Grove, Bldg. 8901. Newsroom phone: 979-845-3313; Fax: 979-845-2647; E-mail: metro@thebatt.com; website: http://www.thebatt.com. Advertising: Publication of advertising does not imply sponsorship or endorsement by The Battalion. For campus, local, and national display advertising, call 979-845-2696. For classified advertising, call 979-8450569. Advertising offices are in The Grove, Bldg. 8901, and office hours are 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. Fax: 979-845-2678. Subscriptions: A part of the Student Services Fee entitles each Texas A&M student to pick up a single copy of The Battalion. First copy free, additional copies $1. Mail subscriptions are $125 per school year. To charge by Visa, MasterCard, Discover, or American Express, call 979845-2613.

7/27/10 5:57 PM


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Large 4bd/2ba house, 2 living room areas, fenced, pets ok, 1217 North Ridgefield, $1400/mo, 693-1448.

BRYAN: 2/1 Midtown Towers Apts 1601 S College Ave!! WOOD FLOORS, NEW BLACK APPL, NEW CABINETS, w/d conn, POOL! W/S, INTERNET & CABLE PAID! $575/MO 979-775-2291 www.twincityproperties.com

COLLEGE STATION: 3/2, 1240 sqft, shuttle, all appl, W/D, lawn/pest/maint incl, 905 Balcones (off Welch), $850. KAZ Realty 979-324-9666. BRYAN: 3/1.5 HOUSES OFF WOODVILLE w/VAULTED CEILINGS, WALK-IN CLOSETS, FENCED YARDS, ALL APPL, W/D CONN!! $ 775/mo. 979-775-2291. www.twincityproperties.com

HELP WANTED

BRYAN: 1/1 & 2/1.5 NEWLY RENOVATED Midtown Manor Apts-200 Rebecca St!! ALL NEW APPL, CENTRAL A/H, NEW CABINETS, NEW COUNTERTOPS, Clothes Care Center and POOL ON-SITE! W/S, INTERNET, CABLE, GARBAGE PAID!! $395-525/MO 979-775-2291 www.twincityproperties.com



4/2.5/2 near Sam’s, remodeled, huge backyard $1,700 call Dan (281)844-8892.

2bd/1ba Walk to campus, $900/mo., W/D, ref., and lawn service included. Pets O.K. 4309 Old College. 979-739-4930. 2bd/1ba, 2bd/1.5ba, Fourplexes starting at $650/mo., 980sq.ft, W/D connections, on shuttle, water paid. $100 off 1st/mo. with ad. www.pontalbaapartments.com 979-693-6102.

PRIVATE PARTY WANT ADS

3bd/2ba C.S. Historic District. Walk to campus. $1200/mo. W/D, ref. and lawn service included. Pets O.K. 902 Welsh. 979-450-5666.

1bd/1ba., less than 1-mile from campus, 1-block from shuttle &park. NCS, close to shopping. www.hollemanbythepark.com

2/1 duplex, fenced, pets ok, on shuttle, 1406 Bermuda, $600/mo, 693-1448.

SPECIAL

see ads at thebatt.com

BRYAN: 1/1 w/STUDY BROADMOOR @ BRIARCREST APTS, central a/h, w/d conn, all appl! W/S, INTERNET & CABLE PAID!! $495-$550/mo. 979-775-2291. www.twincityproperties.com

Nice 2bd/1ba, 715 San Saba, fenced, lawncare, W/D connections, $650/mo. 979-822-9223. www.willrentbcs.com No deposit required! 2bd/2ba, $640/bdrm. Separate leases. Woodlands of College Station. Beautiful student friendly complex. Tons of amenities. Available 8/15. woodlandssublease@yahoo.com Room in nice mobile home, Central-air/ht, internet, cable, $375 everything included. 210-364-7006.

BRYAN: 2/1 FOURPLEXES w/AMAZING FLOOR PLANS, fenced yards avail, pets ok, w/d conn, spacious rooms, mins from Blinn & TAMU!! $ 395-$495/mo. 979-775-2291. www.twincityproperties.com

puzzle answers can be found online at www.thebatt.com

Cleaning commercial buildings at night, M-F. Call 979-823-5031 for appointment. Front desk for busy salon in C.S. part-time. Customer service experience and computer skills required. Call Melissa 979-777-7954. FT/PT openings, customer sales/svc, no experience necessary, conditions apply, all ages 17+, 979-260-4555. Help Wanted Part Time Building Attendant for the Brazos Center. $10.02 hourly. Work schedule will vary from 12-20 hours a week. Janitorial duties and customer service. Apply: Brazos County HR Dept. County Courthouse. Visit our website for more info. @ www.co.brazos.tx.us Little Caesar’s is now accepting applications for Pizza Makers. Apply in person at College Station location. Needed part-time help for document scanning and social networking expertise for business. 979-574-7474. Receptionist needed for local Ag-owned real-estate firm close to campus. One person needed Mon/Wed 12pm-5pm and Tues/Thur 10am-1pm, $8/hr. Email resume and fall schedule to front-desk-job@hotmail.com.

MUSIC Party Block Mobile DJ- Peter Block, professional 22yrs experience. Specializing in Weddings, TAMU functions, lights/smoke. Mobile to anywhere. Book early!! 979-693-6294. http://www.partyblockdj.com

PETS Designer breed tea cup puppies: Maltese, Maltipoos, Yorkies, Poodles &Shih Tzus. $325 &up. 979-324-2866, linda_d_54@yahoo.com Adopt Pets: Dogs, Cats, Puppies, Kittens, Many purebreds. Brazos Animal Shelter, 979-775-5755, www.brazosanimalshelter.org

REAL ESTATE

FOR SALE

2bd/2ba mobile home for sale, nice park in C.S., excellent investment, all appliances included, call 979-204-7702.

1969 Chevy Camaro Z28 LA car, blue, restored, V8, 33K miles, $16,000 281-601-4179 or mdos2010@ar.com Mobile home in excellent condition, 76x16, 2bd/2ba, $17,500. Located on country lot. 830-879-5073.

HELP WANTED Athletic men for calendars, books, etc. $100-$200/hr, up to $1000/day. No experience. 512-684-8296. photoguy@io.com

SALES CONSULTANTS COLLEGE STATION: MANY HOMES TO CHOOSE FROM 2br,3br, & 4br! Wolf Pen Area!! Central a/h, w/d conn, fenced yards. $675-$825/mo. Pets welcome! 979-775-2291. www.twincityproperties.com

Callaway Villas is now accepting applications for Community Assistants. Apply online at: http://www.studenthousing.com/co mpany/employment.asp or apply in person at: 305 Marion Pugh Dr. EOE.

Due to tremendous increase in our business, we are seeking 2 to 3 additional sales consultants. We offer a great working environment for motivated individuals including medical insurance, retirement plan, 5 day work week, a world class Honda Product, and hands on training from our experienced management staff. Please contact Chris Collins at 979-696-2424 or come by in person for an application. ALLEN’S GOT YOUR HONDA! 2450 Earl Rudder Fwy S., C. S.

ROOMMATES 1 roomate needed. Spacious 2 story townhouse off Dartmouth. Fully furnished. 4/2.5 $400/mo. +1/4 utilities. 713-823-9340. 1-Male Roommate needed 2/2 condo at Fox-Run. $400/mo. +1/2bills, on bus route. Call 936-581-4504. Grad or upper-class roommate wanted for 4bd/3ba house near Graham Road. Rent $375/mo. =utilities. Call 979-661-0848. One female roommate needed. 4bd/4ba townhome in Waterwood. $565/mo. Utilities included in rent. W/D, cable included. 214-263-2555, half off first months rent. Roommates needed. 4bd/4bth $325/mo., washer/dryer. University Place on Southwest Parkway. 281-844-2090.

TAKE A PIECE OF A&M HISTORY WITH YOU · Reserve your 2011 Aggieland The 109th edition of Texas A&M University’s official yearbook will chronicle traditions, academics, the other education, sports, the Corps, Greeks, campus organizations and seniors and graduate students. Distribution will be during Fall 2011. Cost is $64.90, including shipping and sales tax. Go to the optional services box in Howdy when you register for fall. For info, call 845-2613.

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7/27/10 1:16:18 PM


Politics as usual: The Star Wars Trilogies

On thebatt.com or the iTunes store

Also online, Harry Podcast and the Podcaster’s Stone. Ian McPhail and Richard Creecy recap the oil spill and Iran’s nuclear scientist. James Cavin checks in on atheist anti-baptisms in his segment, Cavin Fever. Ian interviews Lowell Kane, program coordinator of Texas A&M’s GLBT Resource Center.

voices thebattalion 07.28.2010

Teenage wasteland A

t least once a semester, somebody writes an article in favor of legalizing marijuana. Well, seeing as nobody’s stepped up to the plate in the past three days, here it goes.

EDITORIAL

theirr spinal columns withh your teeth. Well, ll, thanks to the illegality of marijuana, you’re ’re going nd yourself to find thwarted arted at evthe ery turn. First off, apparmating entlyy some city planners call of the heree in Silver Spring Midhavee been surAtlantic reptitiously itiously Spotted imbibing ibing Pot Head. controlled trolled You see, substances, tances, apparently because ause what used to be Northwest a fairly rly straightforward Branch Park is pathh into the park is now the place to go for being ng developed into some TV-addicted wannabe kindd of gigantic Wal-Mart or middle survivalists and high school stoners. Howschool ool or hospital for crippled orphans ever, instead of being filled with a healthy or some such godless monstrosity. This means you have to hop over several fences all-American desire to eat small furry woodland creatures, these degenerates are and climb through a bunch of construction materials before you can find the park filled with the desire to inhale burning vegetative matter and then sing Avril entrance and stake out a good hunting Lavigne songs while laughing hysterically ground for raw squirrels. (And when and saying the word “dude” approximateyou’re running around with a combat ly 753 times per sentence. knife and a snakeskin full of your own In my brief survival experience in urine, engaging in high-profile behavior is Northwest Branch Park, I encountered no not really the best of choices). less than seven obnoxious high schoolers, Anyway, the point is that once you’ve all in varying levels of altered consciousmanaged to outrun the police and lost ness. And you know what? The fact that yourself in the rugged wilderness that is Montgomery County’s Northwest Branch marijuana is illegal is what put them there. If cannabis were legal, all these jerks Park, you don’t want to have your could be getting stoned in less intense self-preservation skills inobnoxious places, such as at terrupted. Survival is difficult Legalizing their homes or in public work after all. Imagine for a marijuana places like restaurants or moment you’re knee-deep would cut down sidewalks and all the other in the life-threateningly on annoying places that legal smokers lukewarm creek water, high school can light up... bars and using your bare hands to students. airplanes. Oh wait. (Well catch “survival food” like crap, if current trends keep minnows or waterlogged halfup, we’re going to have high eaten Taco Bell burritos: all your school stoners and their irate nicotinemuscles tense as you prepare to lunge at a fueled teachers interrupting our next trip particularly wily half-pound cheesy bean to the woods). and rice, when suddenly the air is pierced Oh, and for the record, high school with the shrill, eardrum-rending sound stoners are not an excellent survival food. of“DUUUUUUUUUDE! Dude! HaToo much fiber. hahahahahehe kkkhhhhhh.” That’s right,

James Cavin — THE BATTALION

Marijuana should be legalized. Normally when this statement is made, some supporting arguments are trotted out, such as taxing legal marijuana sales would generate money for James Cavin the government, or senior English prisons wouldn’t be major so ludicrously overfilled, or the author likes smoking pot. Anyway, all of these reasons are pretty much total crap because I don’t care about them. What I do care about is stoned high school students ruining my vacation in the small seaside state of Maryland. Until recently, I thought the normal thing to do after getting stoned was watching reruns of Man vs. Wild and YouTube videos of some crazy Russian guy playing the Mortal Kombat theme on an accordion, dressed up as Scorpion (the Russian guy, not me...although..). I mean, that’s what I did for the six hours that I put off writing this article, and it was awesome stone-cold sober. I figure it could only be better on THP or whatever assortment of letters makes up the active ingredient in marijuana (THC? TLC? LCD? STD?). Anyway, this is sadly not the case. Allow me to illustrate this point. Let’s say, hypothetically, that you have spent six hours watching Man vs. Wild reruns. Like any red-blooded oxygen-breathing drug-free American, you are high on life and the sudden inexplicable urge to go out into the wilderness and eat large quantities of wildlife, preferably by severing

page4

France fights feminism

R

ecently, France’s lower house of parliament passed a ban on top of the burqa, requiring women caught wearing the Islamic face veil to pay a 150 Euro fine. Although French government claims this bill will extend rights to Muslim women, the legislature restricts basic religious freedoms under the guise of feminism. The bill is also aimed at the perceived patriarchal family unit, as husbands and fathers who force the women in their family to wear the burqa can be fined up to 30,000 Euros or sentenced to a year in prison. The law has overwhelming support in France, but only five of the 64 million French citizens are Muslim, and only 1,900 French women wear the veil. The French government’s position is egocentric and bigoted, as it assumes every woman wearing a veil has

been forced to cover up. Muslim women who choose independently to dress modestly should be allowed to reflect their religious beliefs. France needs to acknowledge that while the burqa is unpopular, religious tolerance is a staple of Western democracy. Restrictions Femion the burqa nism is are repressive about and take giving away women women’s the right rights. to choose and control their lives. Ironically, France’s position does little for women’s rights, the bill sets a bad precedent, and sends the message that women are not capable of making decisions regarding wearing the veil. More than one of the country’s elected officials needs to stand up for a woman’s rights to make an unpopular decision, and stop this bill.

EDITORIALBOARD

The Battalion’s editorial opinion is determined by its Board of Opinion, with the editor in chief having final responsibility. Editor in Chief Vicky Flores editor@thebatt.com

Managing Editor Megan Ryan battcopy@thebatt.com

Opinion Editor Ian McPhail opinion@thebatt.com

w/ Cody Johnson ALL TICKETS $15 IN ADVANCE AT CAVENDER’S, THE HALL AND ONLINE

Contest based on crowd participation, so BRING YOUR FRIENDS!!!

TAKE A PIECE OF A&M HISTORY WITH YOU · Reserve your 2011 Aggieland The 109th edition of Texas A&M University’s official yearbook will chronicle traditions, academics, the other education, sports, the Corps, Greeks, campus organizations and seniors and graduate students. Distribution will be during Fall 2011. Cost is $64.90, including shipping and sales tax. Go to the optional services box in Howdy when you register for fall. For info, call 845-2613.

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7/27/10 4:35 PM


July 28, 2010 The Battalion Print