To the Editor: The UPPD is continuing an in-depth investigation into this incident. In the interim, the police and security patrols have been increased in the area. Maureen Rush Chief of Police Stratis Skoufalos Director of Security Services A good major To the Editor: As a senior Communications major myself, I can't disagree more with Emily Lieff and her proclamation that "Senior Comm majors... have no skills at all" ("Four years spent learning nothing," DP, 4/15/99). I don't know what she has been doing these last four years. However, I do know that while she has been filling in the crossword puzzle, I have been building up a skill set of knowledge through my communications courses. This knowledge will allow me to analyze and to deconstruct all types of communication that I encounter. If the communications courses were as uninteresting to students as she claims, how does Lieff explain the fact that the Communications major is so popular that students actually have to be denied admission? Clearly the major is meeting students' needs. I feel sorry for Lieff and the time she has wasted as a Comm major "learning nothing." If she still doesn't know how to turn on a camera, I advise her to read the instruction manual. You don't need an Ivy League education to show you how. Joshua Rosenberg College '99 Truly touching To the Editor: It is the element of truth which underlies so much of comedy and lends a touch of tragedy to humor. Appelbaum has apparently missed this crucial point in his assessment of Life is Beautiful ("Life, a rarely beautiful trip," DP, 4/15/99). This is most assuredly not just another flick about the "endless retelling" of the triumph of the human spirit in the face of adversity or an escape into fantasy and illusion in the shadows of death. The power, beauty and force of this film lies in the subtle yet devastating suggestion that, even half a century later, the flames of the Holocaust and the innocent deaths of millions of human beings escape understanding. Like the bright sun at the end, one cannot peer directly into the tragedy that underlies, inches thick, Benigni's veil of humor. It is in the way the Jew amusingly walks to his death, the "game" a father conceives to explain the horrors of the death camp to his son and the literal horseplay at the beginning that the grossly tragic nature of the reality is apparent. Perhaps most telling, the image of the mound of dead bodies is cast in a hazy, dream-like setting, indicative of the impossibility of the reality that was. The film touched me more than any other Holocaust movie because in place of the death and suffering, one is left, or rather forced, to stretch one's capacity to understand that which is not obvious and cannot be taken at face value. Love, death, goodness and evil are all present in this film and yet, through the subtle powers of the unique human capacity to laugh and cry, one is forced to look beyond the surface, peer beyond the numbers, into the very flames of the Holocaust, to find them. Perhaps the author should have been more sensitive to the "crying and raving" of his friends after having seen the film. For it is often under the casual laughter of comedy that one finds the tears of genuine tragedy. Shapir Rosenberg College '99 Children, children To the Editor: While I agree that this is true, I don't think that the University is necessarily wrong in its decision. The majority of the undergraduate population is under the legal drinking age and I see no compelling reason for the University to spend a lot of money to ensure proper enforcement, as well as unnecessary liability exposure. Perhaps many of your readers do not recall the unfortunate incident at Princeton a few years ago. Essentially, an underage student became extremely intoxicated at a dining club event, went down to the local New Jersey Transit train stop, climbed over a fence and onto the top of the train, where he was electrocuted and permanently paralyzed. As a result of his civil lawsuit, the dining club, Princeton University and New Jersey Transit had to pay a legal settlement amounting to millions of dollars since they were in some part "responsible" for the results of his actions. Students protesting Penn's stricter alcohol policies state that this policy is unfair and treats them like children rather than adults. I would argue that it does exactly the opposite. In the "adult" world, actions have consequences, and personal responsibility is a reality, not just a catchy phrase. While the hospitalization of several undergraduates over Spring Fling is unfortunate, it is merely a result of lack of good judgment on their part. The University has boasted repeatedly about the increased selectivity of their admission process but it still doesn't change the bottom line. Stupid people do stupid things. John Pui Instructor School of Medicine Eco-extremism To the Editor: Michelle Weinberg's scatterbrained defense of Earth Day ("Show respect for the environment," DP, 4/19/99) focuses on the point that the environment has an "intrinsic value" and implies that any action that changes the environment is immoral.EThis clearly implicates all forms of industry that "get rich" off the destruction of land. But Weinberg neglects the inconvenient fact that the selfsame corporations immeasurably improve the lives of the people on the land, whether it be in Nigeria or New Jersey, by offering employment and spending money. As anyone who lives in a city knows, it may be more worthwhile to tolerate some soot for the benefits of plentiful employment and consumer goods. But, blinded by their zeal for the "intrinsic value" of the environment, environmentalists are forced to attack anything in the way of their radical program. Weinberg asserts "without clean water, protection from the ozone layer or medicines provided by exotic plants, human life as we know it would not exist."EIn fact, not until the rise of research and industry, so harmful to the "intrinsic value" of the environment, was man's tangible lot actually bettered: diseases were cured, food became increasingly abundant and life expectancies increased dramatically.EI am sure a caveman would risk his precious wetlands for the blessing of penicillin. Aaron Yunis College '02Comments powered by Disqus
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