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COLUMN: Graham did Penn a favor by leaving

(02/01/96 10:00am)

1) If Penn played the Flying Dutchmen 10 times, how many games would the Quakers win? Answer: At least nine. 2) If Penn played the Flying Dutchmen 10 times with Graham in the lineup, how many games would the Quakers win? Answer: Nine at the most, given that freshman power forward Paul Romanczuk probably would not have exploded for 18 points had some of his minutes gone to Graham. The moral of this story? Graham, a good guy, who was liked and respected by his teammates, did woefully little to make his presence felt on the court. Now that he has quit the team, telling coach Fran Dunphy he had lost interest in playing basketball, the real overarching question is this: Will anyone really notice he's gone? Likely answer: No. Going into the year, the Quakers desperately needed an enforcer for their frontcourt. Tim Krug, the first big man to come to mind for most Penn fans, was not going to be the one to fill that role. Krug is a small forward playing center, at least on the offensive end. He is more comfortable spotting up near the top of the key in most of Penn's offensive sets, hoping to get an open three-point shot or shake his defender with his patented shot-fake and drive. What Penn needed was an Eric Moore-type, someone who could bump, scrap and scrape for rebounds and get tough inside points on a consistent basis. We had seen nothing from Graham over the course of his first two seasons to indicate he could make such a contribution. But we gave him the benefit of the doubt because he had played such limited minutes. But while guys like Donald Moxley and Garett Kreitz emerged from the shadows of the bench to become key performers, Graham languished in the same passivity, the same timidity even, that marked what little time he saw the past two seasons. His stats through 11 games -- including seven starts -- tell much of the story: Just 3.5 shot attempts and 1.6 trips to the free throw line per game; 3.6 points and 2.4 boards per contest; 0 blocks. If there were a stat for "ball touches," he would be pretty near the bottom in that category as well. He was simply unable to get himself into the flow of the offense consistently. The biggest problem, though, was not the paltry numbers. It was his all too evident lack of intensity. The laid-back expression he wore was symbolic of the way he played. You know that look of Ira Bowman's when he's playing defense -- the wide eyes and open mouth that are the hallmark of a guy just waiting to pounce? That's the opposite of Graham, who almost seemed to be smiling whenever he was playing. Some guys, like the 76ers' Derrick Coleman, are good enough to prosper on occasion even without giving 100 percent of themselves every time out. Graham was not blessed with those kinds of skills. Like Moore last season, he was not the most talented player on the floor by any stretch. But he did not possess Moore's fire, and therefore was not nearly as effective. After two games, Graham was benched in favor of Bill Guthrie. Guthrie was as ungraceful a player as there was before leaving the team after four games with academic problems. But he blocked shots, forced turnovers and gave his body. So does Romanczuk, who heard the cheers whenever he came off the bench for Graham. His numbers were hardly any better than Graham's before he blitzed the Flying Dutchmen for a career-high 18 last night. But he just seemed to want it more, constantly going for rebounds and diving for every loose ball in sight. He could blossom into the enforcer the Quakers currently lack. Every time Dunphy grimaced and sat Graham on the bench after a blown defensive assignment, poor shot selection or a failure to grab an easy rebound, the game became less and less fun for the South Florida native. Some guys might react by working harder to overcome their shortcomings. But Graham decided he would be better off not playing at all. That's his prerogative, and no one should condemn him for exercising it. Why spend three hours a day on something you don't enjoy? If he is not having fun, he likely won't be motivated to play any better, anyway. Why hang around and be a detriment to the team by giving less than 100 percent of yourself because you're unhappy? Maybe time off is just the thing he needs. It is not out of the question that he could come back next year a new and better player. So Graham did the right thing. He walked away. Unfortunately, it was the best basketball-related move he's made all year.

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR: The Value of Victim Support

(05/19/95 9:00am)

To the Editor: I was first introduced to Victim Support back in early April. It was just after my ex-boyfriend (we'll call him "George") had threatened to "hurt" me. Since last fall, I was in an abusive relationship. Much of the time, George verbally abused me. There were times when I when I believed my name was "bitch" or "whore." There were even times when I questioned whether I belonged at Penn because I was constantly hearing names like "stupid" or "dumb ass." For a while, I believed that I was mentally unstable and enrolled in therapy because George insisted I was a "crazy bitch." George had a tongue that cut deeper than any knife. I often felt threatened, and retaliated with throwing him out of my car or apartment. Sometimes, arguments escalated into fights; I am 5'5" and George is over 6 feet, 200 pounds. I never had a chance. The last fight ended when I woke up on the floor of his apartment. George often justified his abusive behavior by saying to me that I got what I deserved because I didn't know how to respect him. During this time, I had no one to talk to. I was embarrassed to talk to friends because as a nurse, I thought I should be able to assess and avoid an abuser. In addition, George and I had the same circle of peers, to which he told "she's fatal" or "I want to end this with her, but I'm afraid that crazy bitch can' t handle it." Even today, I get strange looks from those people. I was afraid to talk to my family because I came from a family where domestic violence was common, and no one likes to talk about it. I even went as far as to turn to George's mother for help, in hopes that I could get a clearer understanding of what made him tick. He too, came from an abusive family, and had a volatile relationship with his mother. Finally, as a black female, I was concerned about exposing my problems to anyone on campus for fear of perpetuating racial stereotyping and generalizations about black couples. And after having read Makes Me Wanna Holler by Nathan McCall, I certainly didn't want to be the cause of a black man's downfall. In desperation, I reached out and called Victim Support. I have attended several colleges and universities, but never have I seen a support system for victims like the one here at Penn. Chief Maureen Rush talked to me and made me feel supported. She gave me accurate information on domestic violence, and supported me in the decisions I made regarding my safety. The last fight George and I had was after I decided not to go near him again. Victim Support did not scold me for not following through on my initial decision; instead they continued to support me and advise me in making safe decisions. Jenelle Johnson quickly and courteously found help for me. Sgt. Tammy Watson sat up one night past midnight and talked to me, when she should have been in bed. Sgt. Watson made me realize that abuse is cyclical, and it can be stopped. I had begun to believe that I was crazy and out of control; she reminded me that George's behavior was not my fault. Sgt.Watson even went as far as making an appointment for me in Student Health to make sure my injuries weren't serious. In conclusion, I wanted to publicly thank Victim Support. I also wanted to alert women at Penn that we don't have to tolerate abuse from a partner. Abuse, in the form of name calling, belittling or physical harm, should not be a part of any relationship. Abuse must be combated by public awareness, women-focused therapy and support groups, and use of agencies like Victim Support. The ending of my relationship with George was extremely difficult, and I don't think I will ever be the same. Nevertheless, the existence of Victim Support is a constant reminder that I will be OK . Kathleen Jennings Nursing Doctoral Candidate Helpless in Wharton To the Editor: It is fortunate that when Wharton was named the top business school in the country the undergraduate advising system was not one of the factors considered. I have always heard about students getting lost in the shuffle in a large university such as ours, but the incompetence of the Wharton undergraduate advising system is disgraceful. After problems with the advising system and advisors themselves all year, my conception was totally confirmed in my recent dealings with Eleni Litt, senior associate director of Undergraduate Advising. I met with her to try to resolve a problem that had been caused by another one of the associate directors. She clearly outlined my options and told me to petition the Executive Committee so that they could correct a previous mistake by one of their own. I followed all of her advice and waited for a response. After two weeks, I went to see her again. I was informed that I had been withdrawn from a class that I did not want to be withdrawn from in order for her to cover all of her previous mistakes. When I confronted her with all of her errors and contradictions, she suddenly had no answers and began to treat me like a small child. She did not have any answers as to why she had told me to petition the Executive Committee which ended up exacerbating my previous problem. She then told me that she had never told me to petition the Executive Committee. This is extremely strange since I am in possession of a letter and answering machine message from her in which she specifically tells me to take this course of action. It is bad enough that the undergraduate advisors do not know much about undergraduate academic policies, but it is even worse when they will not admit their mistakes and correct them. This is not an isolated incident. Many undergraduates are thoroughly disgusted with their advising and this recent experience of mine with the senior associate director is clear evidence of the pitiful state of Wharton undergraduate advising. I realize that the University is trying to save money with administrative cutbacks, but having incompetent advisors is not worth it. Jonathan Miller Wharton '98 Social Responsibility or Marketing? To the Editor: On Monday April 10, I went to Irvine Auditorium to hear Ben Cohen and Jerry Greenfield of Ben and Jerry's Ice Cream speak on social responsibility. What I heard there sickened me so much that I almost couldn't eat the free ice cream they were distributing at the door. Jerry began the presentation by telling the story of their success, how they started with $12,000 in a run down old building, took on Pillsbury's Haagen-Daz and became a large and successful company. This was very impressive. They have a great product. They have marketed it very well and they should be very proud of their achievements. Then Ben started talking about social responsibility at Ben and Jerry's -- also very impressive. They give a lot of money to charity and they have very effectively integrated social responsibility into their business practices. They should have stopped there. They didn't. Instead ice cream multi-millionaire Ben Cohen went on to attack corporate America as being completely devoid of social responsibility and of using its immense power to oppress those in need. He stated overtly that Ben and Jerry's was one of the only companies in America with any sense of responsibility to the community. I thought these claims deserved a little scrutiny, so I decided to look and see what other companies were doing. Then I thought, let's make this easy for Ben and Jerry. Let's not look at someone like the Nature Company. Let's find a big corporation that's really profit driven. How about a bank? How about PNC? Certainly if anyone is devoid of social responsibility, it should be big, bad, money hungry PNC, right? WRONG! Last year PNC gave $2.6 million to charitable causes. The PNC Foundation made gifts to over 150 organizations and matched PNC employee's charitable gifts dollar for dollar up to $2,500. PNC's support of the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia's 39th Street Primary Care Center helps ensure that much-needed primary care is provided to thousands of Philadelphia children and PNC encourages its employees to volunteer their time to the community through its PATHFINDERS program. This is not meant to diminish all that Ben and Jerry's has done. But it does show that Ben and Jerry aren't really doing that much more than many other companies. They're just exploiting it more in their marketing. Next Ben attacked the U.S. government. He claimed that the government was planning to balance the budget on the backs of the poor by cutting necessary social programs when it should be cutting the military because national defense makes up by far the largest part of the budget. This claim didn't seem quite right to me. So, I got on the Internet and found Bill Clinton's actual 1994 budget. Here are the numbers: Expenditures for national defense in 1994 totaled $282 billion and are scheduled to decline to $255 billion by 1998. Social Security, Medicare and entitlement programs had a total 1994 budget of $629 billion and are scheduled to grow to $776 billion by 1998. Hey Ben, has it ever occurred to you to do some research before you go spouting off around the country? It probably also never occurred to you that cutting the military would mean economic devastation to the many towns where the military is the primary employer and that military cuts would curtail missions such as Somalia and Haiti, both of which were designed to help impoverished people around the world. And I guess you've forgotten that it was the military that was sent in to help the victims of Hurricane Andrew and the Los Angeles earthquake. You're right Ben, who needs the military? Nobel prize winning economist Milton Friedman wrote that an action is not an act of social responsibility if it benefits the corporation. Ben and Jerry have argued that you can be socially responsible and still benefit your corporation. I agree with them and applaud Ben and Jerry's and all the other companies who support their communities. However, I believe that Ben and Jerry have mixed their acts of social responsibility with lies and propaganda in order to build a marketing appeal to their audience. In fact, I have to seriously question their motives. Do they really believe any of what they're saying or is it all marketing? Has marketing become the primary motive, with social responsibility being a by-product because it is less expensive than advertising? You decide. I have to go. My Haagen-Daz is melting. Barry Weisblatt Wharton graduate student

GUEST COLUMN: Facing the Challenge: Public Service Announcements and the DP

(10/11/94 9:00am)

DP Policy Takes Cops Off the Streets. Sound crazy? Well, not really. Most papers and magazines place public service announcements like this for free. The DP however, is different. Despite trying to get the advertising fee waived, the Division of Public safety was charged $945 for its Safety Bulletin. By ignoring its responsibility to the community, the DP has in effect caused the Division of Public Safety to have less money to help put police on the streets. How could this be? My anger inspired me to find an explanation for why the DP wasn't working with the police department to promote crime prevention. Who could possibly be against an issue like campus safety? After talking to many DP staffers, I found out that the only real policy for public service advertisements was that American Heart Association ads (usually 2 X 2 inches) were sometimes placed when empty space needed to be filled. Although noble in spirit, the DP, as one of the most powerful voices on campus and the students main source for information, should and could do much more for a community it is dependent on for support. Public service advertising is a win-win situation for us all. The benefits to the community are huge, while the costs to the DP are minimal. Pro-bono advertising could increase the impact of existing programs. It could educate students about the dangers of city living. Limited available resources could be leveraged to address social problems. People would think more positively about Penn's daily newspaper, and if done effectively it could become one of the paper's most valued assets. Institutionalizing a formal public service advertisement policy will not cure all of Penn's ills, but it could make an important impact. If this type of advertising is so beneficial, then why hasn't it become an integral part of Philadelphia's third largest daily newspaper? First of all, the DP has been denying its social responsibility to campus, under the guise of being "independent" and "objective." If newspapers like the New York Times can print "All the News That's Fit to Print," (which includes some public service advertising), then the DP can overcome its myopic thinking and find some way to do so as well. Also, DP staffers who say that they don't want to show bias or favoritism towards certain groups or use the old "We're just a student newspaper excuse," are copping out. Have you ever been inside the DP's office? It's unbelievable. They have offices for all of the big-wigs, 8 full-time staff members, and annual revenues close to a million dollars. Thus, the DP is not your ordinary student run newspaper and it has a greater responsibility than to simply report and editorialize. Their lack of commitment is the only deterrent to public service advertising. What if public service advertising was institutionalized? How would the DP determine what and who got to be published? To argue that it would be too difficult to determine who would receive public service advertising is simply a denial of responsibility. The "Where do you draw the line?" excuse could be overcome if the executive board adopted a cause it feels strongly about. For the cost of extra paper and ink, this selected group could be given an ad a week, an ad a month, or even heavily subsidized advertising. Excuses for the DP's prior behavior does not forgive it from future responsibilities to its community. If anything, the recent tragic crimes that affected everyone at Penn have presented a window of opportunity for the DP to leave its ivory tower on Walnut Street and enter the trenches to fight crime and make Philadelphia a better place. By forming a partnership with the Division of Public safety, students could be better informed to protect themselves against crime. If I was the executive board, I would first make some sort of good faith effort to show the DP's commitment to the university community. This could mean refunding the Division of Public Safety's $945 spent on public service during last week, or printing a large advertisement for some cause or community group. Then, I would take time out of the daily rigors of trying to get a paper out to determine a proactive and formal policy to deal with public service advertising. This column is a challenge to all members of The Daily Pennsylvanian. I invite you to take a leadership role in addressing critical issues facing Penn through an institutionalized, proactive public service advertising program. These column's words, and the ideas they represent do not have to end after this issue is thrown away, recycled, or finally commented on through letters to the editor. They can be a beginning, a first step to positively changing our University. Jason Diaz is a senior Finance major from Teaneck, New Jersey.

U. spends $24,000 on race summit for student leaders

(06/30/94 9:00am)

Glen Rock High School '93 Glen Rock, N.J. Last January, 60 student leaders came together to discuss race relations on campus and to create a one year plan to ease racial tensions. But some have questioned the summit's success, since a one year plan was never formulated and several student leaders say the conference itself was riddled with division and difficulties. Before the summit, organizers and participants alike were enthusiastic about attempting to make a dent in the University's recent problems with race relations. "We have to take into consideration how important our position [as student leaders] is," co-organizer and College senior Jessica Mennella said. "We can come up with a plan so we are all comfortable here." But two months after the conference, students who were involved had mixed feelings about the summit. "We thought other people would spread the message, but that's been a lot smaller than we thought," co-organizer and Wharton senior Lawrence Berger said. Nine working groups were established to discuss and work on issues ranging from the Revlon Center and social get-togethers to diversified group projects and a required class on racism. A social party with the theme of "Culture Shock" was sponsored by forum participants in April. Over 200 people came to the party, held at Chestnut Cabaret on 39th and Chestnut streets. The party cost the University $2,500. Some participants said they were unable to speak their minds during the conference and had to worry about what other attendees would think. "One of the participants disrupted and undermined the conference," College junior and Undergraduate Assembly member Dan Schorr said. Schorr, a former Daily Pennsylvanian columnist, wrote a column earlier in the year about the summit and its problems. "A lot of people, including myself, felt that students had a right to know why the summit they had paid for was not as successful as it could have been," he said. But others felt the column breached the confidentiality of the summit and prevented any kind of real progress. Some student leaders said the conference was a success in that student leaders were able to get together and talk about race relations for the first time. But many agreed the summit was not worth the $24,000 price tag. "I question whether it was necessary to travel out to Sugarloaf to deal with these issues," said College junior Stephen Houghton, co-chairperson of the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual Alliance and former DP columnist. "I loved the food and my T-shirt, but I'd rather see something more come out of the money that was spent."


(03/17/94 10:00am)

Spring Break. Key West. Night # 1. "You shook me all night long. Yeah, you..." The lead singer's gnarled locks bounced around his sweaty face. The headbangers in the audience imitated his actions by jumping up and down and bobbing their heads to the beat. I could barely see over the obese biker in front of me. Blindly, my friends pulled me to the front of the room. The band was in the midst of selecting a "naughty" girl from the audience to privilege with a stage appearance. My friends and I jumped up and down, furiously waving our drunken hands in the singer's face. He looked over our heads to the bleached blonde behind us. "YOU!" he screamed and pulled her on stage. "Have you been naughty this break?" The blonde nodded her head demurely. "Well..." he started as he removed his belt from his pants. "I'm going to have to punish you for that." The blonde squealed delightfully as she knelt on all fours. And as we shirked shamefacedly out of Sloppy Joe's, Erica commented, "I changed my mind. I really haven't been that bad." Night # 2. Rumrunners was next on the list. We had higher hopes for this one, knowing that it had two types of live music: a reggae band inside and an alternative scene outside. Once inside, we hit the reggae music. But instead of Bob Marley, we got "I want to sex you up" with a pseudo-reggae beat so that white people could dance to it. We watched the slobbering masses attempt to gyrate to the medley of songs. They weren't dancing, really, just swaying with the opposite sex in between chugs. And in between the chugs, the guys grabbed at random body parts to steady themselves. To the outside. For some reason, the alternative crowd was lacking. Under a sign labeled "Locals Only" lounged the "alternative" singles scene. We vaguely wondered where all the guys were, but quickly discovered that they were all packed into another room, hooting and hollering. I strained my neck, wondering the cause of all the commotion. As the announcer shouted, "Let's hear it for Gretchen from Michigan State!" we realized it was a wet t-shirt contest. But we didn't notice any t-shirts. Or shorts, for that matter. Only naked "professionals" from upstairs. And watching them, we couldn't figure out why the guys were so fascinated by them. Because les professionelles only had eyes for one another. Not to mention hands. Night # 3. I tried harder the next time. Only, I found it somewhat difficult to fight the nausea that came over me after viewing "Lambda Chi Alpha" burned into some guy's arm. "Are you a pledge?" I asked. "No," he replied proudly. "The brothers do this to themselves." Silly me. Five beers and seven guidos later and we were ready to go. Night # 4. Hog's Breath. Drinking had sort of lost its appeal, so we stopped by the ice cream stand before we went in. We sat down at a table and enjoyed the seemingly calmer scene. A frat rat with a shaved head plopped down beside me. "How much could I pay you for a lick?" he inquired. "I don't share," I smiled back. "That's good," he retorted. "You got a good flavor, keep it to yourself." On the way to the outside, we were jostled by the crowd. I turned my head to shoot a dirty look at someone, and I noticed a Penn t-shirt. I felt pretty relieved.

COLUMN: America's Sweetheart

(02/21/94 10:00am)

From Gabriele Marcotti's "Land of the Stoopid," Winter '94 From Gabriele Marcotti's "Land of the Stoopid," Winter '94We're in the middle of another Winter Olympics -- another festive romp through trite rhetoric, friendly sponsors and obscure Viking athletes. Without a gold medal at stake, this could have been little more than another backyard dispute between white trash women and the hoodlums who associate with them. Given the final prize, however, we are subjected to Tonya Harding ad nauseum, as the media strives to turn the Lillehammer games into an attention-grabbing, ratings-boosting, sponsor-friendly jamboree, chock full of the kind of "up close and personal" stories the public loves. A close look at the Olympics in general, and Tonya Harding in particular, reveals some interesting aspects of contemporary society that carry more weight than the games themselves. Historically, the games served as a way for common people to live out their fifteen minutes of fame. Conceivably, Mr. Nobody from Nowhere could steal fame, glory and airtime from Shaq, Emmitt and Larry Johnson's Grandmama, as long as he could drive a bobsled or push a big stone across the ice (yes, curling is an Olympic event). Suddenly, some common idiot became a major star and lived out his lifelong dream, sharing the stage with supposedly "real" athletes like Michael Jordan and Deion Sanders. Little did it matter that the dream would last but a few days -- as long as the Olympic torch burned, Joe Shmoe walked among the gods of sport in the public eye. What made the games such a success was that most people identify with Joe Shmoe, not Michael Jordan. Most of us have memories of attaining personal pinnacles of athletic glory and basking in public admiration -- whether it be making that clutch free throw in high school or hitting that game-winning, two-out, bases-loaded double in Little League. This "moment in time," that even Whitney Houston sang about, is what links the common man and the Olympian -- it's kind of refreshing to know that after the games, the average athlete will return to his or her middle-class existence and continue life in relative obscurity, just as we did when our game-winning exploits were forgotten a week later. Now, however, things are quite different. Win an Olympic medal in a TV-friendly glamour sport, especially if it features scantily clad athletes, and you could be in line for mega big bucks faster than you can say "Mary Lou Retton." For an athlete who has what it takes -- a nice smile, a ratings-friendly event (sorry, cross country skiers need not apply) and a clever agent -- it's just a hop, skip and a jump from home-made outfits and a dingy gym in suburban Portland to Wheaties commercials and guest appearances on Saturday Night Live. It's not unreasonable to think that Tonya Harding was having these very same thoughts just a few short months ago. Through a little luck and a lot of hard work, she had propelled herself to the verge of a national championship and a chance for Olympic fame and glory. Alas, one Nancy Kerrigan stood in her way. About the only thing Kerrigan and Harding have in common is skating ability and red, white and blue warm-up suits. Kerrigan is tall, stately and classically beautiful. Harding is short, frumpy and reassuringly homely. Kerrigan emanates class and style from every pore. Harding is a compendium of bad taste and crassness. Most importantly, Kerrigan doesn't have the veritable freakshow of goons and Addams Family stand-ins who follow Harding around, hoping to get a piece of her pie. No sleazy on-again off-again husband selling pictures of her topless. No whiny, witchy mother serenading her on a tabloid magazine show, begging Tonya to take her back. No annoying obese cousin, showing home videos of Tonya playfully stripping. It became obvious to Harding that America (and more to the point, the sponsors) would always choose Kerrigan over her -- Nancy had it all, she had nothing. People are products of the environments that spawned them, and it's not that surprising that Harding did what she's accused of doing. Figure skating is a glamorous world of showmanship and athleticism. On the ice, Harding was on a par with the wealthiest and most powerful -- off the ice she went back to being a white trash nobody. When society dangles all sorts of material goodies in front of its most disadvantaged members and then offers them little chance of ever attaining them, it shouldn't come as a surprise that people will do anything to succeed. If the allegations surrounding her are true, Harding tried to grab her piece of the American dream any which way she could. She realized skating was the only way out and if it meant taking out an opponent, so be it -- if she'd gotten away with it, ten years from now, nobody would know or care who Nancy Kerrigan was. In that sense, Harding is the victim -- the victim of a society with the power to drive some of its weakest links to crime, simply by setting near impossible goals for them. Starting this Wednesday, Kerrigan and Harding, the ice princess and the ugly duckling, will square off in Lillehammer. While the world roots for Nancy, living her "moment in time" vicariously through every one of her jumps and axles, we may want to remember Tonya Harding. Loved by no one (except for those who still think she can make some money for them), she will be skating on an injured ankle, with a media circus scrutinizing her every move. And when she gets back from Norway, she gets to go off to trial, and possibly to jail. Sure, she made some money off those tabloid TV show appearances and possible movie deals. But that's very little compared to Nancy Kerrigan's 11 million dollars in endorsements, Nancy doll, autobiography and Saturday Night Live appearance. Our heroes are created for us by middle-aged men armed with marketing surveys. By cheating and getting away with it, she could have made decent money and enjoyed a few months reign as America's sweetheart. By cheating and getting nailed, she will forever live in infamy, but at least she raked in some bucks and had her fifteen minutes. I know who I'll be rooting for come Wednesday.

Lifestyle: All bets are on

(02/11/94 10:00am)

Tens of millions of American dreamers each and every year try and hit the jackpot. They put their money on the line in hope of risking a little to win a lot. But few ever fulfill their dream. Still, betting a couple of dollars is as American as apple pie. George Washington owned and bred race horses, and often he would spend his nights playing cards. And in 1832, money that Yale University and Harvard University received for school development was generated from lottery revenues. Gambling has survived since colonial days and has now found its way into almost every city in every state in the country -- and the University area is no exception. University students are certainly not above the gambling craze -- many going into the wee hours of the night to play another round of blackjack in an Atlantic City casino or one more hand of poker with friends. Others students prefer taking chances betting on sporting events. But whatever avenue of gambling students choose to take, they are placing large money wagers and doing it often. A Wharton freshman named Austin, who wanted his last name to be withheld, spent 40 hours over three consecutive nights in Atlantic City casinos last week, gambling until "five or six in the morning." The first night of Austin's gambling trip left him up $1,050. But the rolls went against him the next evening when Austin lost his previous winnings plus an additional $200. Luckily, he returned to the University on Sunday morning after winning back what he had lost the previous day. Austin called the roller coaster ride exciting. "It's a pretty good rush," he said. "But it can be an expensive rush sometimes." Austin is not the only University student who occasionally makes the hour-long journey to Atlantic City. Many students pack their cars with people to make the trip across the river. Other students said they find mass transit more convenient, although more expensive. They said they take a bus to Atlantic City and often do not return until dawn the next day. Experts from Gambling Anonymous say students are attracted to the bright lights and the excitement. Students find gambling to be a social experience and sometimes get addicted to the rush of successful risk taking. A College senior, who wanted to remain anonymous, spent eight evenings last semester in Atlantic City. He has yet to go this year because he said he can no longer afford an evening of gambling. On average, he said he would bring just $100 and identification, to play blackjack and craps until he lost it all. Students said they often limit the amount of money they bring with them so that if they lose they can only lose a set amount. This College senior said he would never bring credit cards or a MAC card to the casino. This way, he said, he could not get additional funds. "If I get more and have a bad night, I would lose it all" said the senior. College sophomore Sundeep Bhatia echoed the senior's sentiment. "I bring as much as I'm willing to lose," said Bhatia. "The odds are against you." But some students are not afraid to lose, refusing to limit the money they wager. Without the tightened purse strings, students can easily find themselves winning or losing more than they originally expected. A Wharton freshman, who also wished to remain anonymous, said he is one student who does not set limits on his gambling. He said he has lost as much as $200 in one evening. "If I set [a limit], I don't necessarily follow it," said the freshman. Wharton sophomore Amar Lalvani, who described himself as "not a big gambler," traveled to Atlantic City "to basically see what the place looked like." The evening before the excursion his roommate showed him the finer points of blackjack. Lalvani thought the pre-trip tutoring he received had paid off after he had won $100. But the beginner's luck eventually ran out and Lalvani was down $50 by the end of the evening. His only previous gambling experience was with his roommate. The two stayed up until the early morning hours pitching cards into a bucket. In the end, Lalvani found himself up almost $600. Rather than collect, Lalvani settled on his roommate buying him three CD's. Not all students are able to make the journey to the New Jersey shore and have to rely on poker games with friends to satisfy their betting urges. When Austin is not at the blackjack tables in Atlantic City he can be found playing poker with fellow students once a week. Austin will find himself winning or losing up $150 in an evening depending "on the number of high-rollers" and "who has the balls to bet." But students have found difficulties in wagering with friends. They express apprehension in collecting debts from buddies, which has led people to even give up their poker games. College sophomore David, who also asked to have his last name withheld, plays poker and a game called "guts" with a group of friends three or four times a week. David said this week he had won a total of $750 during first semester, but he added he has not played regularly this semester. "The same people kept losing money," said David. "And they didn't want to play anymore." Typically a hand in "guts" would go for $50 per player, according to the College sophomore. He said he and his friends once had a $260 pot in a poker game which was eventually split four ways. Engineering and Wharton senior Ken Kitkowski used to play poker and blackjack frequently with friends. "We could sit there and play all night," said Kitkowski. "The bad part is you are kind of taking money from your friends." Still other students prefer to bet on sports with friends and sometimes even with bookmakers. College freshman Howard Kozoloff typically bets every week with friends at the University and at the University of Wisconsin. "It is a little bit of a risk, somewhat of a thrill," said Kozoloff. "But it is a chance to win some money." He said he started gambling when he was 16 in a "very controlled manner" on college basketball games. Kozoloff has recently stopped betting because of "a lack of money." On the other hand, College freshman J.B. Cohen has been graced by "Lady Luck." He has won a "substantial amount" since high school. Cohen described himself as "a huge sports fan" who "follows [sports] very closely." He will rarely bet with friends because he has bookies both in Hartford and in Philadelphia. He began gambling with a high school basketball coach. Cohen now calls the coach who places Cohen's bets through his bookmaker and keeps track of winnings. Cohen does not see himself as a problem gambler. He added his bookie uses a saying to characterize the typical compulsive bettors. "The regular gambler is an average asshole," said Cohen. Cohen bets only when he finds a game he likes, betting a minimum of $25 per game. If he begins to lose money, Cohen will bet smaller amounts on fewer games until he is back in the black. One game that Cohen will always bet on is the University's men's basketball games. Cohen also said he has traveled to Atlantic City but said he "never got into it." He was disappointed because of the lack of sports betting in Atlantic City and he said he has "no idea how to play cards." But for every winner there is at least one loser. Some students have found sports betting not quite so lucrative. Many students have often bet large amounts of money and lost. And in gambling, losing large sums of cash can sometimes become dangerous. A College senior, who wished to remain anonymous, said he gambled because he "likes risk." He said he began going to the race track with friends a few summers ago and enjoyed the track for a while. Soon he said his gambling progressed to Atlantic City trips, but he also grew tired of the casinos. "Ten dollars never seemed enough anymore," said the senior. "It was just little chips with different colors." Before winter break, one of this senior's friends turned him on to bookmakers who handle sports betting. The senior "started betting on six games a night" at $100 to $300 per contest, even though he was "not that well off [financially]." At one point he had won $650 but his winnings quickly turned into heavy losses totaling $2,500. He said he arranged a meeting with his bookmakers to settle his debt. But the senior could not come up with the cash and he never met his appointment. According to the senior, the bookmakers became anxious to collect, calling his apartment "15 to 20 times a day." After consulting with his mother and friends he re-contacted the bookmakers and arranged a payment plan he could afford. The senior said he was lucky that he did call the bookmakers because they said they were getting ready to "send someone over and collect." But the University does not leave students to handle gambling problems alone. Although there are no specific support groups on campus that solely focus on gambling, many University support groups are able to assist those students in need. The Reach-A-Peer Helpline, or the RAP line, is a peer support service run by University student volunteers who provide support, information and referrals for other students. RAP line President Mary McGuire said if the RAP line got a call from a habitual gambler, they would refer the caller to either University Counseling Service, the Office of Judicial Inquiry, University Police or Gamblers Anonymous.

COLUMN: Complacency, Idealism and Willard Scott's Hair Piece

(02/09/94 10:00am)

From Rob Faunce's "With Bells On," ' From Rob Faunce's "With Bells On," 'Now for something different. I'm going to try my hand at storytelling while making social criticism. Envision Schererazade dating Voltaire in my mind. Cut to the end. It's nearly dawn, and I'm numb with exhilaration. I finally understood that "Fuck the system" mentality that eluded me in high school. My heart pulsed with young blood, rebellious blood. I had the highest form of pride and respect for our age group. We are the movers and the shakers, the ones who get things done. We are Generation X, hear us roar. We fight inhumanity and bad hair. Of course it was at about this moment of ideological bliss that reality (and Katie Couric) woke me from my rapture and I screamed over Willard Scott's hair piece, "My God! I'm not a slacker, I'm just a complacent whiner! Help me, lords of acid, help me..." When was the last time you went to a protest? For that matter, when was the last time you COMPLAINED about something more substantial than the food at Stouffer? I have a theory on this. We are Ivy Leaguers, and we thus look down on everyone who isn't -- this includes Brown, Cornell, and Columbia, who make us look like Oxford on the Schuylkill. As a result, we tend to be "dignified" about the ways we protest. Taking over a building would be vulgar; boycotting classes would be uncivilized. In short, we're snobs. In fairness, we're nice snobs. Our ignorance stems not from malice but from this benign posture of politesse that allows us to keep our hands clean. We've become our parents without blinking a lash, and we're too ignorant to notice! The joke is on us, peer groupies: our groovy train docked at Wesleyan. It's not too late for us, though. Disillusionment is an ugly concept (and word), but there is clichZd hope for the future in our buried past. When I was a wee lad, idealism ran free. Within the realm of my imagination, I solved innumerable social ills. You feed the hungry, I'll clothe the fashionably disastrous. It always ended happily, with communal cooperation to terminate world problems. Picture "Hands Across America" while singing "We Are the World." You know what I mean. There were many lessons in our collective childhood that we have forgotten with the passage of adolescence. "Beavis and Butthead" are a fine, if twisted, example of this. Ignoring their famed feeble-mindedness for just a moment, Beavis and Butthead are modern, self-sufficient children. They see things without complication; they live without the presence of parental or authoritative figures. They do whatever they damn well please. They do what they think is just. Granted, they are a poor example of what is just, but apply the lesson to ourselves, and we can affect change much faster than commissioning reports on strengthening the community. Please! Actions get results, not reactionary fluffernutter like that report. She has no talent, but Mariah Carey said it best when she uttered the line: "If you believe in yourself enough to know what you want, then you're gonna make it happen." We need to stop accepting everything; we need to terminate our resignation to our parent's fate. Find your sandbox ideals; find your preoccupation with fire, and burn to your heart's desire. Call me a flaming liberal, but let's torch the commission report and strengthen the community with some heart instead of our mouths. Our children will thank us. Rob Faunce is a freshman undeclared major from Manchester, New Hampshire. With Bells On appears alternate Wednesdays.

COLUMN: Gag Me With a Rule

(09/20/93 9:00am)

From Jennie Rosenbaum's "That Would Be Telling," Fall '93 For a couple of months I've been dreaming about sitting at my computer, typing furiously. I'm writing a column. Suddenly a black woman comes up behind me and says, "It's 'African-American,' not 'black.' " She ties my hands behind my back. I kick off my shoes and try to type with my feet, but a Chinese man comes up and says, "It's 'Asian,' not 'Oriental' " and ties my feet over my head. As I try to type with my nose, a man in a wheelchair says, "It's 'physically challenged,' not 'handicapped' " and pulls the keyboard out from under me. I give up on writing and decide to scream my column to whoever can hear me. But before I can get past the title, Marlee Matlin stands in front of me and signs, "That's not fair, now your column isn't available to the hearing impaired. And don't even think about calling us 'deaf.' " She tapes my mouth shut. And then my acting teacher says, "No emotion!" and whacks me over the head with a copy of the Constitution. I wake up in a sweat. Censoring a writer is like denying insulin to a diabetic. Nothing's worse than having someone say, "You can't print this. It's not right." Now, I'm usually a pretty sensitive person. If someone is offended by something I write or say, I apologize if I think an apology is in order. I don't want to make people feel bad for no reason. But when I am told I can't say something that is perfectly true, just because it might offend some people who are looking for an argument, I get angry. For a while I also used to fear for my life and say nothing. See, I would never say "All blacks are stupid" because it isn't true. But the best reason not to say it is because I might suddenly find myself the recipient of telephoned death threats. It's happened to columnists who've said things that weren't half as bad. But suppose I wanted to say something more truthful. When I wrote my column about what to do with the Theta Xi house next year, I mentioned that a Jew from Brooklyn would not feel very comfortable in the Chinese Students' Association. This is true. Kenny, my editor, then asked me, "How about adding, 'or in the BSL'?" I declined. "They don't need another columnist to hate," I said. It would have been a truth, sure, but I wimped out and chose not to include it because I feared the consequences. Well, screw the consequences. If I let society dictate what I write, I may as well not write at all. Society doesn't have the right to censor me. I let my editor suggest things, but in the end only I have the power to decide what is, and is not, appropriate for me to say. Censorship probably bothers me more than it bothers you. See, I plan to write for a living. The more things I'm prohibited from writing about, the fewer subjects I can write about. So I write less than I normally would, and I get paid less. And not as many people read what I write. That doesn't work for me. I think about literary works that have been banned from school libraries in the past – Huckleberry Finn, To Kill a Mockinbird, and The Diary of Anne Frank, to name a few – and I get chills. What did Anne write about that was so terrible? Kissing. I wonder what kind of reception the play I'm currently working on will receive. It's about Jewish bisexual demons. I'm not trying to see how many groups I can piss off. That's just the subject I want to write about. Lots of people won't like it. Tipper Gore would have conniptions. Some viewers may even be offended. But that's not going to stop me from writing it and having it produced. If I were to go to the National Endowment for the Arts (not to be confused with the NEH – Hackney can't hurt me now) and try to get government funding for this project, however, I would be turned down flat. Too controversial. I have a feeling that in 50 years or so, the only subject that will be "okay" to write about is flowers. Just don't mention lotuses or poppies. Writers have to write. Speakers have to speak. Everyone must make their statements, in an appropriate arena (no shouting out a window at 2AM, please), or we'll all burst. People will always say things that other people don't like, but the speakers have this right and the offended people must respect that. I hereby give license to those who want to say that the Holocaust never happened, or that Martin Luther King Jr. was a plagarist, or whatever. Do it. And if you don't like something you hear, turn away. Or state your point. If you read something you don't agree with, turn the page or write a letter to the editor. But don't try to cut off my means of communication. Do not tell me what I can and cannot say. Or one day all you'll find on page six is blank space. Jennie Rosenbaum is a senior Theater Arts and Comparative Literature major from Forest Hills, New York. That Would Be Telling will appear alternate Mondays.

EDITORIAL: "The Silent Fling?"

(10/14/92 9:00am)

Do Spring FlingDo Spring Flingplanners want studentDo Spring Flingplanners want studentinput? Or do they justDo Spring Flingplanners want studentinput? Or do they justwant to conceal it?Do Spring Flingplanners want studentinput? Or do they justwant to conceal it?_________________________ The ad featured a cartoon, with people in four different cartoon panels enthusiastically talking about a fictional Fling. "Last year's Spring Fling was the best weekend of the year!" effuses one cartoon character. "The music was awesome!" says another. "The events appealed to diverse groups!" exclaims a third, and "I thought the T-shirt design was great!" says the fourth. The cartoon was followed by this kicker: "If you feel any or all of these statements are inaccurate, please share your views with the 1993 Fling Directors?" It then listed the date, time and place of the Monday evening meeting in Vance Hall. Of course, it would be wonderful if students on campus echoed the sentiments of the cartoon characters after this year's Spring Fling. We're also glad students attended the meeting to help bring that about. But we can't help but wonder whether the advertisement for the forum actually drove some students away. On the surface, the ad appeared to encourage student attendance at the forum. Fling planners also publicized the event for the entire week leading up to the event. But the text of the ad probably should have read, "Come to the meeting and help Fling planners make these statements a reality." For example, it's not just that people may not like the T-shirt design. It's also that SPEC seems to abuse its power to quash the sale of alternative T-shirts. It's not just whether the events appealed to diverse groups. It's whether diverse groups were incorporated into the higher-level decision making, regardless of which students are in charge of Fling. But two other things are apparent about the ad. First, it said nothing about whether the Fling directors were actually interested in student input. And second, it also neglected to say whether Fling directors were willing to improve planning to accommodate critics' concerns. The way the ad read, the Fling directors may simply feel that it's their obligation to listen to students whine, and then go on planning Fling just the same as before. We hope Fling planners will carefully consider the points raised Monday evening, and are genuinely interested in hearing from students and publicizing efforts to improve Fling. · Unfortunately, the behavior of the organizers at Monday's meeting suggested that Fling planners were not at all interested in publicizing the Fling debate. Going "off-the-record" is utter nonsense at any event open to the public. You can't invite everyone in the world to your event and then exclude the DP. It just doesn't work that way. Besides, it makes us wonder what they have to hide. Are they trying to conceal something from their fellow students, the people who attend Fling? Going "off-the-record" is a standard journalistic convention, allowing people to discuss issues with a reporter more candidly than they might otherwise. When someone goes "off-the-record" for a short period of time, they no longer have to worry whether what they say will appear in the paper, attributed to them. We want to stress that we strictly adhere to the "off-the-record" convention when it applies, which is only in a private setting. But you can't stand in front of a room-full of random people and tell the one reporter in the back of the room, "Don't quote me on this." If an event is open to the general public, it is open to the press. It is fair game for us to quote speakers and report on the proceedings anyway we darn well please, and we are under no obligation to read our notes or our stories back to our sources before they are printed. We may do so if asked, though. Fling planners tried to bend the rules to avoid public criticism of Fling -- and this editorial is what they get for it. As students leaders who have dealt with the DP before, they should have known better -- or at least asked us. If something controversial had happened at that forum, you can bet we would have quoted them regardless of what they said about "off-the-record." And if something interesting had happened at their little event, the story might have appeared on the front page. But since nothing did -- and they tried to gag us -- we dumped 'em on page 11.

U. rape educators picked for speech

(10/02/91 9:00am)

Campus acquaintance rape educators will make a presentation this week on programs at the University at the First International Conference on Campus Sexual Assault. The University's proposal was chosen to be one of 48 presentations at the four-day conference in Orlando, Florida. Victim Support Director Ruth Wells said yesterday the University's presentation, "From Conflict to Collaboration: A Grassroots Approach to Addressing Campus Sexual Violence," will advise other people about how to work internally to set up programs which deal with campus sexual assault. "It will deal with how departments at the University have collaborated, after much discussion, to develop what we feel is a good method of dealing with acquaintance rape through education, resources and support service," Wells said. "We are really very pleased that our abstract was selected, for it will give us the opportunity to share solutions with people around the world on this ever-expanding problem," she added. Wells and Women's Center Director Elena DiLapi said it is an acknowledgement of the strides the University has made in victim's support to be chosen to make a presentation. Both women praised the University community and administrators for support and action which has put the University at the forefront of schools for this issue. "Our administration has provided good leadership so that we could move in that direction," Wells said. DiLapi, Wells, Student Health Educator Susan Villari, and 1991 College graduate Erica Strohl, a founder of Student's Together Against Acquaintance Rape, are among the University's representatives attending the program. The conference is being sponsored by the American Association of Counseling and Development, the American College Health Association, the National Coalition Against Sexual Assault, the Society for the Scientific Study of Sex and the National Interfraternity Council.

Med students volunteer in city

(09/11/91 9:00am)

Second-year Medical School student Brooke Herndon expects to someday prescribe medicine to her patients. But this summer, Herndon learned that people often need more basic help -- like aerobics. Herndon was one of 18 then-first-year Med students working this summer in various health clinics, soup kitchens and public schools in a program designed to get them to experience medicine outside of the classroom. Herndon interned at Mantua Hall, a federally sponsored housing project. She helped to organize a weekly "Health Night" and presented current health issues including AIDS, nutrition and cardiovascular maintenance to residents. She said her original goal was to set up a peer-based intervention program where children could learn about health care and then teach their friends what they had learned. But Herndon noted that her focus switched when she saw that what people needed was a chance to relax and to interact socially with other people. Yvonne O'Neill, the Tenant Council president, taught her that "the number one health threat is stress." As a result, Herndon worked in setting up activities like aerobics, in addition to the more health-oriented programs such as blood pressure screenings. "People have to want you to be there," she said. Students involved in the Community Health Group Summer Internship Program earned $2500 each for eight weeks. The program was financed with a three year $300,000 grant from public and private sources. They worked a full work week at their internships and met once a week as a whole group to discuss their work. Second-year Med student Micah Rosenfield participated in the internship program and is currently the Co-coordinator of the program. He said the program was a success in "providing service for the community while enabling them [the students] to get a fresh outlook on their community." "This is the last free time Med students have before they work at the hospitals, so it's important to show them where they can get involved," said Rosenfield. First-year Med students interested in participating in the project sent in applications and were matched up with institutions which paralleled their areas of interest. Med student Dave Kragenow worked to create a health clinic in a soup kitchen. He recruited other students and doctors to help administer blood pressure tests, AIDS screenings, and general health examinations for people who could not otherwise afford them. The concept for the internship program was the brainchild of third-year Med students Cindy Weinbaum and Steve Chapman. They worked to develop the program with Don Schwartz, a pediatrician at the Children's Hospital of Pennsylvania, Tony Rostain, a pediatric psychiatrist at the Philadelphia Child Guidance Center, and Jeanne Ann Grisso, an internist/epidemiologist at HUP. Second-year Med student Abby Letcher, the Co-coordinator of the program, emphasized that the students were to be active participants rather than casual observers. "We didn't want students just watching or doing scut work -- we wanted them to have their own projects," she said. Letcher said program directors hope to expand the program to include students from other medical schools. This year, the interns included two students from the Medical College of Pennsylvania. Next summer, two students from Temple University will join, and it is hoped that the program will be extended to several nearby medical schools. The other long-term goal is to make part of the program institutionalized by the Med School. "Third- and fourth-year students could work in the community instead of only in the hospital," Letcher said. Med student Micah Rosenfield is compiling a report based on the epidemiological data which the students collected over the course of the summer. The report, entitled "The West Philadelphia Report: Bridging the Gaps," will be released to the public at a November 1 symposium. The symposium will include a poster session and discussion groups with community leaders, public health officials, and corporate sponsors. "The report will deal with the gaps in health care which exist among the different agencies which are out there," Rosenfield said. "How do we make health care an issue for someone who doesn't know where their next meal is coming from? These are issues which people have to face everyday." The report will address such topics as "Managing Health Care in a Chaotic Lifestyle."

Psi U asks high court for appeal

(06/20/91 9:00am)

In last month's decision, the Pennsylvania Superior Court affirmed the University's right to punish the fraternity, and said the punishment that was given was fair. Last year, the Psi U fraternity was found by the University's Judicial Inquiry Officer to bear collective responsibility for the kidnapping of a member of another fraternity. The University imposed one of its strictest sanctions, kicking the fraternity out of its center campus chapter house (known as the "Castle") and revoking its recognition indefinitely. "They did file a petition for an allowance of appeal with the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania," said Frank Roth, the University's associate general counsel. "They had an appeal of right to the Superior Court -- this time they have to ask permission." If the appeal is granted, he explained, the University would have to look forward to a whole new round of court proceedings. "There would be a [new] briefing schedule and then you're talking months, a long time," he said. For the Court to accept the petition, Roth said the fraternity will have to raise a "particularly important issue, or a novel issue for litigation, [for which] no case law has been established." According to the fraternity's petition, the Supreme Court "has never addressed the issue regarding the standard for a fair disciplinary hearing at a university?[and] has never determined whether the concept of punishment pursuant to a theory of 'collective responsibility' is constitutional." The petition, submitted by Psi U attorney John Ledwith, also claims that "the Superior Court erred by drawing numerous conclusions of fact which were unsupported by the record and the trial court opinion." Roth said plans for the community service living-learning project planned for the "Castle" next year, will proceed, unless the fraternity asks the court to postpone the plan. Psi U made such a request during its appeal to the Superior court, but judges denied the motion. Vice Provost for University Life Kim Morrisson, who is named in the suit filed by Psi U against the University, said that renovations and programs planned for the fall are underway. "I think the existing order stands," she said yesterday. "I believe the lower court and the Superior Court have upheld the University's right to proceed."

Puerto Rican writer discusses translation

(04/05/91 10:00am)

Emphasizing the importance of the translation of literature in bridging the gap between different countries, Puerto Rican writer Rosario Ferre presented two literary works to a crowd of more than fifty students and faculty members Wednesday night. Ferre read her essay "Literature, Destiny, and Translation" and a short story entitled "The Youngest Doll" and explained that it is important that works written in foreign languages be translated. "Translation is very important to Puerto Ricans and other Latin Americans because we have to make our culture known to other countries," Ferre said. "It is a way to integrate the old world and the modern world." But Ferre said that translating is not an easy task and that it can often be frustrating and futile. She pointed to poems as the most difficult of literary genres to translate, because in poetry form and emotion are so closely intertwined. "Poetry cannot be translated, it can only be transcribed," Ferre read from her essay. "The loyal translator will write what is correct, but not necessarily what is right." Festival Latino Planning Committee member and College junior Scott Recaldi said that he agreed with much of what Ferre said. "I think that it's true that it's very hard to translate," Recaldi said. "You lose a lot about the way a person thinks and the culture when you try to translate from one language into another. It becomes very hard to express yourself." Many of the students at the speech said that they were surprised by the content of Ferre's speech. "I'm not sure that everyone expected it to focus so much on translation," College junior Alfred Bustamente said. "I thought that she would read more of her works. But I did like the blend of the reading of her essay and that of her short story." In general, most students and Festival Latino organizers said they were pleased with the program. "I enjoyed it very much," College junior Doreva Belfiore said. "I especially liked her canal image as a metaphor for translation." Festival Latino organizer Recaldi said that the speech was "a great success." "I hope that people come to the other events," he said. "There are lots of interesting things going on this week."

Student indecently assaulted on 40th St.

(02/11/91 10:00am)

A female University student was a victim of indecent assault Friday night on 40th Street near Chestnut Street, according to University Police. In an unrelated incident, a West Philadelphia resident was shot in the hip during a robbery on Saturday morning at 40th and Baltimore streets. According to University Police Sergeant Michael Fink, in the first incident, a man not affiliated with the University "went off" into an angry tirade on the 100 block of 40th Street around 7:42 p.m. Friday evening and pushed around several pedestrians. Fink added that the man then grabbed the student, who requested that her name be withheld, and pushed her to the ground. The assailant then punched the student several times and "fondled her." University Police Officers Keith Christian and David Ball, who were in plainclothes at the time, observed the incident from their unmarked car, Fink said yesterday. The assailant was arrested by the plainclothes officers and taken to the Philadelphia Police Sex Crimes Unit located at 17th and Patterson Streets where he was charged with one count of indecent assault and one count of simple assault. Fink added that other pedestrians, who had also been pushed around by the assailant, fled the scene before they could be questioned by the officers. Fink did not know at what amount bail had been set, but added that it is likely that the assailant had a bail hearing shortly after his arrest. Officers at the Philadelphia Police Sex Crimes Unit could not be reached for comment yesterday. In the other incident, a man was attacked at 2:32 a.m. Saturday morning by two men on 40th Street and Baltimore Avenue, and was shot in the hip by one of them. Fink said that police did not know whether the victim was shot before or after the robbery, and did not know what was taken from the victim. Philadelphia Police Officer Tracy Griffin said yesterday that her department had no information on the incident. Both assailants fled the scene and no arrests were made. One of the men wore a brown leather jacket and the other was described as wearing dark clothing, Fink said. Police do not know which of the men carried the gun. Fink added that the police did not have any information on the victim's condition.

Officer shoots would-be thief

(11/07/90 10:00am)

In the attempted robbery of University Police late Monday, a plainclothes officer shot one man in the hand as three other robbers held his partner at bay with what looked like a double-barreled shotgun. The attempted robbery, which occurred on the 4100 block of Locust Street at approximately 11:30 p.m., marked the first time in at least 10 years that a University Police officer has fired a gun at a suspect. The wounded man and a fifth suspect who was to drive the get-away vehicle are in jail. The three other suspects remain at large, and police said they are investigating. The two suspects have been charged with armed robbery. After the assailants fled, police realized the men did not have a shotgun but instead threatened the officers with a painted axe handle with two holes drilled in one end to simulate a gun. Police spokesperson Sylvia Canada said yesterday that the officer fired his revolver at one of the suspects after the man threatened to kill him. The shot struck the man on the wrist and he and the other assailants fled, Canada said. Canada said the officer made the right decision in firing since there was no way to realize the shotgun was fake and they thought their lives were in danger. Philadelphia Police found the wounded man, Omar Burnett, 19, of the 800 block of N. 15th Street, shortly after when they found him resting outside of a building at 41st and Walnut streets. Police did not know he was involved in the robbery. University Police arrested one suspect, Melvin Gore, 20, of the 2400 block of N. 26th Street, in a car at the scene. Canada said the assailants apparently did not realize they were attempting to rob police officers. Neither of the officers were hurt, she said. Police would not release the names of the officers. Canada said both were veteran officers who do not want their identities publicized. Canada said the two officers were on a plainclothes detail walking east on the 4100 block of Locust street at about 11:30 p.m. when they saw a car with North Carolina license plates pull up to the curb 20 yards ahead of them. Four men came out of the car and approached the officers while a fifth remained behind in the car. When the suspects had closed to within about 10 yards, Canada said, one pulled the apparent shotgun out from under his coat and said, "This is a robbery. Give us your fucking money or I'll shoot you." As the suspects continued to approach, one of the officers stepped forward a few feet, drawing the gunman's attention. While the suspects were watching the first officer, the other officer drew his revolver and kept it hidden at his side, Canada said. Police said Burnett and another suspect came up to the officer who had drawn his gun and started to push him face first against a wall. One of the men told him to give up his money or he would shoot, Canada said. Burnett, displaying a bulge in his pocket that appeared to be a gun, then told the officer that "I might just shoot you anyway," Canada said. When Burnett started to bring his hand up over the officer's head, Canada said, the officer fired at him once. Four of the suspects fled immediately on foot. Canada and Police Director John Logan praised the officers for their work. "I think their reaction to it was remarkable," Logan said. "I have nothing but praise for the way they handled this incident." Logan said that had the gun been real, the officers could have been seriously hurt. "A shotgun at close quarters -- it's devastating," he said. Logan said he spoke to many of the officers about the incident at afternoon roll call and planned to do the same last night. Canada said both officers will return to duty immediately. "They're both psychologically sound," she said. "There are no signs of apprehension on either of the officers' part." Canada said the two officers were assigned to a plainclothes detail as a supplement to the department's "T-beat," in which they walk the 3900 block of Walnut Street from Ludlow to Locust streets. On October 1, she said, police extended the beat to include Chestnut and Spruce streets and the 4000 block between Walnut and Spruce. Plainclothes officers were assigned to supplement uniformed officers on that beat. "They're inconspicuous," she said. "Last night is a typical example. They stopped two patrol officers, attempting to rob them not knowing they were police officers." Since expanding the beats, officers have arrested eight suspects, including two for robberies, in the new area. Canada did not know how many of these were arrested directly by plainclothes officers.

Philo art show opens today

(11/05/90 10:00am)

Responding to calls for more time and space devoted to student art, the Philomathean Society is sponsoring its second student art show this semester. The exhibit, which opens today, features neo-surrealistic artwork by College senior Jeffrey Bernstein. The 18 canvases that make up this opus are the result of two months of work by Bernstein, an art history major. This exposition continues a comeback for the Art Gallery, Coordinator Jessica Cooperman said. The gallery, due to structural deficiencies in the fourth floor of College Hall, has concentrated more on student art shows which are designed to attract a smaller audience. However, this new focus on students allows art students more exposure on campus. Bernstein said that he chose the neo-surrealistic style because it was the only one that allowed him to express himself. "There's a certain sense of destiny in all these works," Bernstein said. Bernstein added his work is influenced by "automatic writing," a main component of the neo-surrealistic style in which artists paint whatever comes to his mind. The structural inadequacies of the aging College Hall have created some problems for the Art Society. Less than 10 people will be allowed in the gallery because of structural and space problems. Bernstein's art premieres today, and there will be an opening reception from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. at the gallery which is located on the fourth floor of College Hall. Visitors are welcome any time in the afternoon, Mondays through Thursdays, until the show ends November 21.