The Daily Tar Heel

Serving the students and the University community since 1893

Saturday November 26th


Smoking is a choice you make, being LGBT is not

TO THE EDITOR: I did not know whether to laugh or cringe at Justin Crowder’s assertion that the University’s Tobacco-Free Campus Policy is discriminatory toward LGBT students. (‘Campus Smoking Policy Discriminatory to Gays,’ Aug. 26) Crowder seems to fail to identify that tobacco is a drug. A legal drug, yes, but still a drug — and one that is the single most preventable cause of death, disease and disability in the United States. Tobacco kills more Americans than does AIDS, alcohol, drug abuse, car crashes, murders, and suicides, combined!

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Sen. Kennedy believed in a world that could be better

TO THE EDITOR: The Frank Porter Graham Child Development Institute and the cause of young children and children with disabilities lost a dear friend in the passing of U.S. Senator Ted Kennedy (D-Mass.). The blizzard of legislation that he supported for children with mental retardation, the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, State Children’s Health Insurance Program and others provided the basis for much of our work. 

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DTH headline for Smith article was inappropriate

TO THE EDITOR:The Daily Tar Heel’s headline “Courtland Smith leaves legacy of leadership” (Aug. 26) is inappropriate as this underage alcohol abuser driving 95 miles per hour drunk on a major highway that could have resulted in innocent people maimed or killed. This insane behavior from a so-called “student leader” needs to sound an alarm that alcohol abuse kills and those that condone this behavior such as so-called prestigious fraternities should be eliminated, hopefully before there is another death. Brenda DavisUNC ‘75 

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DTH shouldn’t have put 911 tape on its Web site

TO THE EDITOR:I am appalled that The Daily Tar Heel made Courtland Smith’s 911 tape available. Making something like that public does way more damage than it does good. Yes, people want to know what happened, but actually releasing the tape on the Daily Tar Heel Web site seems purely selfish and for shock value. 

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Reform important for young citizens

As the health care debate rages on, young Americans should pay attention. Rapidly rising costs and the nearing retirement of the baby boomers raise the stakes of health care reform for the under-30 crowd.There is much reason to root for expansion of coverage to America’s roughly 46 million uninsured (13.2 million of whom are young and healthy), but it must come with a focus on cost and efficiency.Unfortunately, the effective kamikaze tactics of some Republicans combined with President Obama’s strategic missteps have put these goals in danger. So beware of the myths.

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Register to vote: Even though national campaigns are over, students should still vote in municipal elections

In November’s municipal elections, Chapel Hill will be voting for a new mayor and for four seats on the Town Council. These local officials will work closely with the University, so Chapel Hill’s student population should take an active role in deciding who gets elected.Chapel Hill is our home for four years (sometimes more), and by voting, we send a message to local leaders that we are committed to making sure their policies and actions serve the best interests of UNC students.

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Unnecessary secrecy: Randolph County must release in-car video camera footage or risk losing the public’s trust

Police should release video camera footage from the police vehicle that was nearby when Courtland Smith’s death occurred. Smith’s recent death was certainly a tragedy for his family and friends. But it also raises questions as to the conduct of the police officers involved in his shooting. While Smith’s 911 call was released, it does not tell the whole story. Footage from the in-car video camera should also be released to the public.

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Pause helpful for calmer analysis

When an apple has bruises and worms, you no longer need to inspect it. You know it is rotten. Yet on our campus marketplace of ideas, many are insisting we do exactly that: turn a rotten apple over and over again, hoping some part still catches the light.During the summer news doldrums, Chris Clemens, the faculty adviser for the Youth for Western Civilization, stepped down, temporarily muzzling the organization at the University.

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Joining forces: Chapel Hill Police Department wise to extend University police’s jurisdiction

The Chapel Hill Police Department and University police are teaming up. And the campus and the town are safer for it.Both groups are now working closer together to help protect students and citizens alike.On July 1, University police began exercising newfound authority in the area just north of campus.The impact will probably be most felt in Granville Towers, which the University recently acquired. This is a highly concentrated student population living off campus — and prior to this agreement, University police didn’t have jurisdiction there.

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Let the voters decide: Council should appoint ?fth-place ?nisher in Nov. election to ?ll Bill Strom’s seat

Bill Strom, a veteran member of the Chapel Hill Town Council, announced his resignation July 30, just after the deadline for local election filings. This puts the town of Chapel Hill in an uncomfortable position, as the council must now appoint a member to his seat instead of having it filled in the election. Whatever Strom’s motives for giving up his seat after the filing deadline, his decision makes the Town Council less democratic. There’s already one council member who is there by appointment.

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Parr Center offers outlet for dialogue on campus

TO THE EDITOR: The “Special Anti-Racist Issue” that blanketed many copies of Tuesday’s Daily Tar Heel again raises a host of overlapping ethical and social justice issues that were brought to head at last semester’s incident involving former U.S. Rep. Tom Tancredo, R-Colo, beginning with free speech on campus and leading to the emotionally charged issues of racism and immigration reform.

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Campus smoking policy discriminatory to gays

TO THE EDITOR: According to the peer-reviewed health journal, Tobacco Control, gays are more likely to smoke. This report concludes that “sexual minority status is associated with higher risk of smoking.”This proves just one thing: It is not a choice to smoke. Obviously, then, the right to smoke is protected by the non-discrimination policy that clearly states that the University may not discriminate based on “sexual orientation, gender identity or gender expression.”

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Printing fake front page of DTH was waste of time

TO THE EDITOR:To the group who went to the expense of printing a fake first page for Tuesday’s DTH; You almost got the font right. Too bad you got the issue number wrong. (Insert math joke here.)If, as I presume you are, the same group that disrupted the attempted speech of former U.S. Rep. Tom Tancredo, R-Colo., I am sure all the students appreciate you wasting their money and my taxes. Tancredo was paid to do nothing, thanks to you. Way to create dialogue and support free speech.Arlene Medder Administrative Support Associate

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A taxing problem

On Aug. 7, the N.C. General Assembly mandated a $200 tuition hike for the 2010-11 school year for all UNC-system students. But no student will see the benefit of the hike on campus because the money is going right back to the state. The principle of raising money from students, many of whom already struggle to fund their education, is deplorable.  The funds generated from this tax could easily surpass $3 million from undergraduate students at UNC-Chapel Hill. 

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A new year, high standards

It should come as no surprise that Carolina students hold themselves to a high standard.And it’s imperative that student leaders and University administrators are held to the same high standard.  On the brink of a new school year, students have high hopes for our grades, social lives and student government. And making this a successful year requires hard work. But in order to see that success, it’s also up to student leaders and administrators to promote students’ interests and be held accountable for their actions.

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This year, don't be afraid to mix it up

There’s a new display in the front window of Student Stores. UNC sweatshirts hang on mannequins and attractive models sport Tar Heel emblazoned tote bags. But this one has an extra element unseen before on campus: the pictures of the factory workers who spun, dyed, sewed, silk screened, ironed and packaged the Carolina blue clothes which hang on gold hangers just inside the doors.Welcome to Schoolhouse -— a combination of style and Sri Lanka — founded by Rachel Weeks, age 24.

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Andrew Dunn

Help us serve you the best we can

Today’s paper describes the uncertainty that’s pervasive on campus and in our community.For freshmen, there’s the thrill and anxiety of moving to campus for the first time. For UNC employees, there’s the fear of losing their jobs as administrators slash budgets.Even within The Daily Tar Heel, there’s change. We debuted a revamped Web site and work flow in our newsroom. Check out page 8 to see the new features. And we’ve got a new crop of editors to boot.But don’t be uncertain about the quality of your DTH. We are back and better than ever.

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Voicing the views of our campus

The opinion page of the Daily Tar Heel plays a distinct role in the life of the University.It’s not our job to be objective (we’ll leave that up to the newsroom). It’s our job to opine on issues and events affecting the campus community.The editorial board researches and writes several unsigned editorials each day that represent its collective opinion.We’ve added a few more slots to the board this year to bring in even more perspectives to the page.

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Work needed to fulfill mission

Like any good Catholic, I'll begin this column with a confession: I once thought about going to Duke. It's not that I never wanted to go to UNC - quite the contrary. For reasons that I still can't figure out, I grew up a Tar Heel fan in Yankee country. I prayed for the boys in baby blue before the '93 national championship game against Michigan, and when Chris Webber called that timeout, I was sure I had a friend in the Man upstairs.

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With a degree come duties

I am honored today to be admitted to the fellowship of this ancient and distinguished University, and I am pleased to receive in the short space of one or two minutes the honor for which you spend over four years of your lives. But whether the degree be honorary or earned, it is a proud symbol of this University and this state.

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