Opinion

Wanted for UCSD: MBAs and LLDs

I have put my time in here at UCSD. I’ve shed my blood, tears and sweat. I’ve flunked my classes and I’ve aced my classes. I’ve felt heartache, headache, backache and knee ache … the list goes on. I’ve witnessed the glory of succeeding and the agony of defeat. And, as the Dimension of Cultures pin states: “”I Survived DOC.”” Now, with only one-and-a-half quarters left in my tour of duty here, I can look with unveiled eyes to the future and wish for something more for my soon-to-be alma mater. UCSD is a prestigious university, believe it or not. Nobel Prize winners in various fields have taught here and many currently do. You see all those names plastered on the buildings in Revelle? Most of them are Nobel Prize winners in physics and biology. Academically, our campus is best known for its biology, physics, fine arts and engineering departments. Our graduate schools include a top-ranked medical school across the street from Center Hall, and a world-renowned international relations school with a fine arts graduate school in the plans. Down by La Jolla Shores is the Scripps Institution of Oceanography, one of the best marine biology schools in the nation. Then there is also the Jonas Salk Institute across the street from North Parking. Yet, comparing UCSD to other top-ranked UCs, mainly UC Berkeley and UCLA, something seems to be missing from the landscape, and no, I’m not referring to beautiful women. What UCSD needs is a business school and a law school and we need both for several reasons. The main question that comes up is “”Why doesn’t UCSD have schools in business and law?”” I wish I could answer this. The reasons would certainly make this article much more interesting. In my opinion, UCSD seems to be in a perennial, uphill fight to be a legitimate prestigious school. We always seem to be on the fringe, almost crossing that line, joining UCLA and Berkeley as top-notch UCs. But the lack of a business school and the lack of a law school are the two stones that are weighing us down. And please note that UCLA and Berkeley are not the only UC campuses that offer these two schools. UC Irvine, UC Davis and UC Riverside all offer a business school, law school or a combination of both. If second-tier universities like UC Irvine or UC Riverside have these schools, why don’t we? By offering a Masters of Business Administration degree or a Doctorate of Law degree, or preferably both, UCSD can make that final leap and join the top 10 schools in the nation. We are all aware that our campus is known for its great biology programs and the No. 3-ranked medical school in the nation. However, few know about the excellence of the fine arts here or the school of engineering. By having a business school that rivals UCLA’s Anderson School of Business and a law school that rivals Berkeley’s Boalt Hall, UCSD can be known for more than just spitting out doctors and researchers. Another reason for having a business school is how well it would complement the renowned economics department here — and I’m not saying this just because I’m an economics major. Economics and management science are popular fields here, though about one-third of the students chose one of these two majors because they couldn’t hack it in computer science or engineering. I’m sure the economics and management science majors can hardly believe it, but “”U.S. News and World Report”” ranks the economics department in the top 15 in the nation. Though economics and business administration are different, the three majors could be incorporated into one school. With the building of a business school, new — more specialized — majors could be offered. Instead of a general degree such as economics or the slightly more specified management science or business administration, degrees in accounting or operations management could be offered. The same applies to a law school. Similar to the economics department, the political science graduate program is in the national top 10 and staffed by renowned professors. Besides famous profesors, the department currently has two world-renowned graduate schools in international relations: the School of International Relations and Pacific Studies and the Institute on Global Conflict and Cooperation. While most political science majors here continue on to law schools on other campuses, it is high time the school started keeping these bright graduates. Why produce such bright students if we’re not going to keep them? And as most political science majors here wish to continue on to law school, it is only logical to have one. Obviously, these two schools cannot be built in the near future. But that does not mean plans should not be developed to start looking into the possibility of having such graduate schools. With the expansion of the university to include a sixth college and a rising student population, as well as rising prestige, it seems inevitable that UCSD should get a business school and law school. These are the only things that are keeping UCSD down. Having these schools would put UCSD on the map and guarantee that our campus would be considered seriously among the best in the nation. ...

Temptation Island Fails to Survive the TV Wars

The Germans have a word, “”Schadenfreude,”” which has been adopted into the English language. It means “”pleasure from someone else’s pain,”” and it describes the only reason I can think of that someone would want to watch the new FOX show “”Temptation Island.”” The plot of the show is this: Four couples, each of whom have been together for several years, go to Ambergris Caye, an island in Belize, for two weeks. Once there, the couples meet up with 13 single men and women. The men in relationships choose a single man to vote off in “”Survivor””-like fashion, and likewise the involved women choose a single woman to give the boot. Next, each contestant chooses a single member of the same sex and blocks their partner from formally dating this person. Of course, this heightens the attraction between the pair of blocked people. After this, the couples separate for two weeks straight, only communicating through occasional video messages delivered the next morning. The men stay in Captain Morgan’s Retreat, and the women stay on the other side of the island, across a jungle, in a hotel aptly named “”Mata Chica,”” Spanish for “”girl kills.”” While apart, the couples can do whatever they please. Prearranged dates with singles are common, visiting places like the Maruba Jungle Spa for “”intimate mud massages,”” or going to secluded beaches for picnic lunches, speed boating or scuba diving with sharks. This, at least, is what the show’s producers tell you on the Web site and in the promos. They make it sound like a nice place, like somewhere I wouldn’t mind going with my boyfriend. But when the single women start betting odds for who can “”hook it up”” with a coupled guy, and when the host smiles that much, you know there’s something wrong. The dates the couples go on are recorded on camera, and the night after each date, one person from each couple gets to choose whether he or she wants to see their partner’s dates. The catch is, if they choose to watch, their partner is forced to watch theirs. And if they choose not to watch, their partner cannot watch theirs. This “”highlight”” video of each date is chosen by the producers and is usually the raciest part. The partners use this arrangement to spy on, hide from, or get revenge upon their mates. The dates themselves seem arranged to generate risque, or “”Belize-style”” shots as the producers put it. Upon entering the Maruba Jungle Spa, one pair is told, “”This is disposable underwear. This is what you’re going to wear. This and only this.”” As the girl of the pair put it, “”It was hard to relax completely knowing that we’re basically wearing close to nothing.”” This is not my idea of a first date. I’m not sure I’d want to know the kind of person who’d want to be next to naked with someone they’d barely met before. Maybe I’m old-fashioned, but I think of first dates as dinner some place — McDonald’s, even — followed by a movie or play, the girl and guy talking most of the rest of the time about who they are, trying to figure out if the other is the kind of person they wouldn’t mind getting naked in front of. The people involved in this whole mess ooze hypocrisy. One of the couples lied on their application papers, claiming that they had no children together when they had one, placing the child’s life in turmoil. The show’s host admits this, yet claims extensive background checks were done. On the first day after dating, the girls “”feel worried about the states of their relationships with their partners.”” To help cheer themselves up, they have a “”boisterous Jacuzzi party and a romp in the ocean”” with the single guys, helping the destruction of their relationships further along. After one girl, Mandy, sees her boyfriend’s first date, she cries, upset at seeing someone else showing affection for him, despite her reason for going on the show: “”She believes she needs to see other girls wanting Billy because it will strengthen her devotion to him.”” After being so hurt, her next date — perhaps coincidentally, perhaps arranged by the producers — is at the Maruba Jungle Spa with a singer and poet who ends the date by rubbing his bare nipple with watermelon chunks and licking rum off Mandy’s stomach. Again, not my idea of a reasonable first date. Billy, who encouraged Mandy with his video communication to have a good time, cannot finish watching the highlight video of Mandy’s date and turns away in anguish. OK, I know you’re saying, “”These people chose to come to this island. It’s their own fault.”” You’re right on the first count, but I seriously doubted any of them saw the call for cast members and thought, “”Hey, that sounds like fun! I’m looking forward to humiliating myself and causing terrible pain to a person I love dearly!”” Accused of causing the demise of American morals on an Internet chat, the show’s host Mark Walberg said, “”I would much rather know if I am with the one I am supposed to be with before I get married than after.”” Asked if he would participate in something like the show, Walberg said, “”No way.”” When prompted for an explanation, he said, “”For me, personally, that is not the way I would want to find out the answers about my relationship.”” I’ll agree that the show doesn’t diminish American morality. The show wouldn’t be as popular if the public thought it was immoral. The producers are simply caught up in the “”Survivor/Big Brother/Truman Show”” ideas, mixing it with a bit of Jerry Springer and soap opera for attraction value. They’re riding the wave of “”reality television,”” creating a show where there are no real winners, no prize for staying together or breaking up. Yeah, just like reality, only there are six black people, one or two Asians and around 32 rich people out of 34 total. Walberg blows off the fact that they all have to be attractive by saying, “”After all, it is Temptation Island!”” I’ll believe it’s reality TV when they bring a few homosexuals, more ethnic groups, some old people, some children, and some average-looking people to a public place like a park, and tape what happens. That is reality. That is what we live. Only when we admit that, we can start improving interpersonal relationships and dealing with our prejudices and preconceptions in mature way. ...

Employers' Rush to Judgement Leads to Job Discrimination

Unfortunately, I now know how a person who has been falsely accused of a crime feels when the guilty judgment comes in. Though my situation is not the conventional experience in which a judge, jury and jail are involved, the feelings when that life-changing decision is imposed are almost identical in many ways. Helplessness, utter despair, anger and frustration reverberate through your mind as the guilty sentence replays like a broken record again and again, or in my case, the decision to deny me a job because I have lupus. Not unlike how a prosecutor may view a pile of prior convictions as enough evidence to substantiate an arrest on new and unrelated charges, my potential employers’ doctors looked at my medical history of hand pain and made the assumption that since I have the “”big, bad lupus,”” I couldn’t do the job. Funny, though, that no one questioned my abilities before my 10-minute physical exam in which I disclosed I had mild lupus. I had passed the required background investigation, interview and polygraph test without any problem. But with the mere mention of lupus, bam, all my abilities and qualifications went out the window, and all that flashed in my potential employers’ heads most likely was: Proceed with extreme caution — risk, risk, risk! This “”rush to judgment”” decision was made without any effort to collect the necessary evidence of my current medical condition of improved health over the past couple of months. It was almost as if once they knew I had lupus, that’s all they needed to know about me. So due to this “”rush to judgment,”” it wasn’t surprising that I was denied the job in which I had so many hopes. The only upside to this unfair experience is that it has given me a new-found empathy with those who have been falsely accused and convicted for a crime they did not commit. I agree that my situation is really nothing compared to that of people who have lost their freedom in a miscarriage of justice — for once the guilty verdict is in, the life as a person knows it is gone. Yet that rush to judgment, the discrimination on the part of my potential employers, cost me a job that would have provided money for tuition and the needed jump-start to begin my trek into the legal field. But most of all, that discrimination cost me the right to choose my own destiny. For I was instead arbitrarily deemed not capable to do the job of researching on the computer the backgrounds of alleged felons and preparing reports for the court. So I pose these questions: So what if I have a chronic illness? Does that fact automatically disqualify me from the right to make a living? Isn’t it my right to choose the course of my destiny, and by extension any job that I qualify for as long as I hold up my end of the bargain and do the job to my highest ability? Franklin Roosevelt had a physical disability, yet it did not affect the job he did for our country. He led our country through the two major crises of the 20th century, the Depression and World War II. Would we even dare to try and tell Roosevelt that he couldn’t be president because he had a disability? Maybe the better question to ask is: Did that disability deter Roosevelt from leading our country successfully through those two major crises? The answer is an unequivocal no. He is arguably the most influential president, and he did it all from a wheelchair. Disability and illness do not define a person, not if that person doesn’t let them. So why, then, do employers choose to see people in terms of a disability rather than by their qualifications and abilities? I submit that it’s less of a risk to hire someone who is supposedly healthy than someone who has a disclosed problem — it’s an easy and convenient cop-out to our American ideals. Yet I have always envisioned an America where a person is first judged by his abilities and qualities rather than any disability. I have always thought America the great champion of the underdog, to give that underdog a fair chance. Maybe I’m wrong, but that’s what I expect from my country based on our Bill of Rights. So here is my plea. All I ask is that the same standards that are used to judge disease- or disability- free people are likewise used for my evaluation. View my case for employment based on its merits, not by any personal preconceived notions or by the so-called weight of the preponderance of evidence. I have the right to determine my own destiny, so take warning: I will not let discrimination stop me. I will not go down without a fight. After all, I have the law on my side. ...

Nuclear Missile Defense Shield is an Unrealistic Goal

President George W. Bush did not waste much time in affirming that a nuclear defense shield would be one of his priorities during his administration. Nuclear defense was brought to prominance during the Reagan years under the title of the Strategic Defense Initiative, later deemed “”Star Wars.”” Many claim that the money that Reagan spent on this pipe dream forced the Soviet Union to attempt to keep up financially, an action that eventually broke Mikhail Gorbechev’s nation and led to its downfall. Giving credit to the SDI for the fall of the Soviet Union may not be justified, but the Guardian feels that attempting to finish the plans that the SDI started would be a mistake of catastrophic proportions. It is now estimated that a nuclear shield would cost American taxpayers a dollar amount numbering in the trillions. Considering the fact that every trillion dollars that the federal government spends costs the average American about $3,500, the Guardian feels that this exhorbitant sum of money could be better spent elsewhere in the budget. Moreover, we are not certain if all our money and expertise can build a missile shield that would work properly. Tests have been less than successful so far, and most of these tests were done under conditions that make the shield more likely to succeed. Success in life-like situations could be decades away or more. Another point to consider is the reaction from other countries to the building of such a weapon. All great nuclear powers now live under the shadow of M.A.D., meaning “”mutual assured destruction.”” No nuclear country is likely to attack another because of its opponent’s ability to fire back. Due to this system’s implementation, no country has used a nuclear warhead in combat since the United States did in World War II. With the building of a missile shield, the U.S. government would essentially be counting down the seconds left in the life of M.A.D., and entice other countries to bomb the United States before they lose the chance. Even if the U.S. government plans to use the shield strictly as a defense mechanism, the major nuclear opponents of the United States will no doubt see this measure as a way of defeating a second strike, and therefore a way to make a first strike possible. This instability is another important reason why it should not be built. There is no doubt that Bush has some of the finest political minds in the world working for him. It is because of this that his decision to push forward with the missile shield is curious. Whether he is simply trying to make Americans feel more secure, raise his popularity levels from their current meager levels, or he thinks this plan will actually work, the Guardian feels he should reconsider his decision before he makes things worse. ...

Careful Examination of Anti-Zionist Arguments Sheds Light on Movement

With all the controversy over Anti-Zionism Week, I felt a strong desire to abuse my status as a Guardian senior staff writer and completely tear apart the Anti-Zionism Week arguments. I wanted to prove anti-Zionism to be the anti-Semitic travesty that the Union of Jewish Students purports it to be. As an Israeli Jew, I didn’t see a difference between Zionism and Judaism, and Anti-Zionism Week seemed to be an event completely fueled by hatred — hatred of Jews, my people. I was astounded that my A.S. funds were going toward something so atrocious. As an opinion writer, I could have simply written an opinionated piece based on my own assumptions without doing any research at all, and I did. I wrote an eloquently designed article reiterating everything that you could read at the UJS booth on library walk. I even quoted Martin Luther King, Jr. But when Anti-Zionism Week was postponed, for whatever reason, I chose to do some research into the topics of Zionism and anti-Zionism. All of a sudden the controversy over Anti-Zionism Week took on a different nature … and so did this article. I am not going to trash Anti-Zionism Week as an anti-Semitic event, to the dismay of many Jewish students and the pleasure of many Muslim students. Anti-Zionism is not anti-Semitism. It is a religiously motivated political movement against a religiously motivated political movement. Though many anti-Zionist proponents may be anti-Semitic, the foundation of the movement is not. As with most controversies, the heart of this one lies in a fundamental misunderstanding. In this case it is two differing interpretations of what anti-Zionism means. According to UCSD Muslim Cultural Club President Eahab Ibrahim, “”Anti-Zionism seeks to return the people of Palestine (Palestinian or otherwise) to the dignity that they had before the Zionists had taken over.”” If you ask UCSD UJS President Wade Strauss, Anti-Zionism Week is “”equivalent to having Anti-Semitism or Anti-Jew Week.”” To find the basis of this misunderstanding, I had to define Zionism. Prior to 1948, Zionism was defined as a desire amongst Jews for a return to the Jewish homeland in Palestine. Its roots can be traced back as far the sixth century B.C., when Jews were exiled from Palestine to Babylon. More recently, in the late 1800s, Theodor Herzl brought Zionism to the limelight in response to various Russian and European “”pogroms,”” or massacres of Jews. After the establishment of Israel, Zionism changed into a movement aimed at maintaining Israel’s status as a Jewish state, as well as making it possible for Jews all over the world to be welcome in their homeland. Anti-Zionism is more difficult to define concretely. Anti-Zionist sentiments have been around since before the Jews were exiled to Babylon and have seen a resurgence in popularity since 1948. Even before Israel was established, there was a strong anti-Zionist push to prevent Jews from attaining Israel as their own independent state. Modern anti-Zionism is thought of as a political movement seeking the return of Israel to its previous owners. Anti-Zionism is not particular to any religion, but it has a predominantly Muslim following due to the fact that Israel is located on land that was mostly inhabited by Muslims before 1948. Some argue that anti-Zionism is anti-Semitism; let me dissuade those beliefs. Anti-Zionism calls for an end to Zionist activities, which may be considered racist against Arabs and the return of refugee Palestinians to their homeland, not the removal of Jews from their homeland. In the United States, we often pride ourselves on our separation of church and state. Israel may be the Jewish homeland, but that is not an excuse to give Arabs and non-Jews second-rate citizenship. Israeli Arabs are boycotting the upcoming Israeli election in order to make the statement that their vote means nothing. Having a Jewish homeland means a place to go where I can feel safe and at home among Jews, not a place where I want my non-Jewish friends to feel ostracized. I am not anti-Zionist. Zionists were essential in founding and building Israel, and I applaud that. But in more recent history, Zionism has played a role in creating a major schism in the Jewish population of Israel, and has been a stone around the neck for the peace process. When Yigal Amir killed Israeli Prime Minister Yitzak Rabin in 1995, many people could not believe it was a Jew that killed him. Not only is Amir a religious Jew who cited Jewish law as his reason for killing Rabin, he has been associated with many right-wing activities, activities that could be considered Zionist. Amir is an extremist, and I cannot say his views are expressed by all Zionists, but I will go so far as to say that many right-wing Israelis share similar, less militant views about the peace process. The faction between Zionists in Israel and those more willing to give land for peace grows continually. This upcoming election only exacerbates the problem. With the recent Palestinian uprising, many Israelis are losing faith in the possibility of a real peace treaty. This lack of faith has made Ariel Sharon, a right-wing Israeli, this election’s front-runner. Ironically, many consider Sharon the cause of this recent uprising. I would consider Sharon a Zionist. Zionists in Israel are generally those who are against land-for-peace treaties, especially when parts of Jerusalem are involved. Extreme Zionists are against any land-for-peace treaty, and in some cases against the whole peace process. Despite the rhetoric Sharon has spouted during the election, I firmly believe that once elected, he will revert to his historically right-wing views on the peace process. I fear that with Sharon as prime minister, years of effort toward peace will culminate in a war. I would never say Zionism is bad. Without it there wouldn’t be a Jewish homeland. But I don’t believe that any Arab should have been removed from his homeland to make room for a Jewish homeland. The decision to split Palestine into Israel and Palestine has been the cause of many deaths, and in this situation, I believe no one is right. Jews have lived in Israel for centuries, since before the time of Christ. But so have Muslims and other Arabs, and there is nothing that makes the Jewish claim to Israel more persuasive than the Palestinian claim. Muslims and Jews alike cite religious documents as proof of their claim to the Holy Land. I cannot accept those proofs; I live in the present. I would prefer it if Israel’s current status were examined. Anti-Zionism Week is intended to raise students’ awareness of the Palestinian/Muslim struggle for a homeland, much as Zionists must have done to help bring about the 1948 Israeli Declaration of Independence. There is nothing wrong with raising awareness, as long as it is not blatantly motivated by hate and does not perpetuate lies in order to sound sanctimonious. Take me, for example: Had this week not occurred, I would have never even considered the Muslim/Palestinian argument. I would have assumed it was completely anti-Semitic and brushed it aside. Instead I have learned a great deal about the Palestinians’ fight to regain their homeland in Palestine, because I looked beyond the rhetoric and found out the facts. I conclude by saying I am still pro-Israel but also pro-peace, and pro-land-for-peace. This isn’t just about an exchange of land for a halt in terrorism. Giving land back would be an acknowledgment of the former Palestinian homeland. If Jews deserve a homeland, so do the Palestinians, whose families have been there for centuries. Before I resign from this topic, I have one final message to the Muslim Cultural Club: The biggest problem with Anti-Zionism Week is its title. Why not “”Pro-Palestine Week,”” or something more positive, instead of an attack on a fundamental Jewish principle? ...

Loss of Counselor Frustrates Students

Megan Cunningham is the counselor for the Visual Arts department here at UCSD. She deals with more than 650 students, helping them chose the right classes and make tough decisions about their majors. She basically helps each student in deciding his or her future. Her job is definitely not easy. Not only must she deal with the frustrations and confusion of over 650 artists, she has to do it all by herself. If anyone were to visit Megan’s office, they would find a long line of students outside her door. She is available for just 3 hours on Mondays, Wednesdays and Thursdays, and 6 hours on Tuesdays and Fridays. That might not seem too bad, but if you think about it, you’d change your mind. For example, say she was able to crank out a session every 10 minutes. That would mean that she would be able to see 18 students on Monday, Wednesday and Thursday, and twice that on Tuesday and Friday. That’s 126 students a week. That’s with no breaks and no leeway, which is pretty impossible because some students need more help. No one can work like a robot (although Megan comes pretty close at times). Besides, there are over 650 students! (I do realize that in reality not all 650 show up at once, but it sure does feel that way when you’re waiting all afternoon for an appointment.) Cindy Fang, a second year ICAM major, said that she once waited 30 minutes in line, went to class, came back, and waited until the end of the day, and still was not able to see Megan. There are many stories of frustration and angst from the ICAM and VA students concerning the lack of accessibility. Megan is well aware of the problem herself and has talked to her employers but to no avail. Now she has left and art students will have to go to someone who does not possess the 16 years of experience that Megan does, for guidance. This ticks me off. I am a third year, tuition-paying student majoring in Media, and I expect the university to keep my best interests in mind. I believe that, just as I am responsible for going to class and doing the work, the university has a responsibility to provide me with adequate and competent counselors to advise me on the best way in which to go about graduating. I do not believe that by refusing to hire someone to help Megan and letting her leave was beneficial to the students in the least. It does not make me feel secure knowing that for the remainder of this year and the next, I will be going to someone who is new to Megan’s job (since she was the only one doing it before) and is learning as he or she goes. After all, who’s going to train him or her with Megan gone? Maybe I’m overreacting, which is doubtful, but it just doesn’t make sense to me why the Art Department would refuse to hire someone whom Megan can train to help her. You would think that they’d be tired of the throngs of students that congregate in the cramped courtyard in front of the Visual Arts office, but apparently not. Although they might not mind the long lines, the students certainly do, and a new-be at the desk won’t help to shorten them anytime soon. Think about that. Here we are paying all this tuition, (and overpriced material fees if you’ve ever taken any VIS or ICAM classes), and they refuse to hire another advisor to alleviate not only Megan’s suffering, but the students’ as well. Does this sound stupid to anyone else? ...

Anti-Zionism is Not About Hate

Editor: Have you noticed the flyers describing our student funding going toward the support of hatred and anti-Semetism? Or perhaps you have seen the Union of Jewish Students and the “”Tolerance”” table condemning the Muslim Student Association and the Muslim Culture Club for its upcoming event, anti-Zionism week. As a member of these organizations, and as a Muslim, I must express my disappointment at being misrepresented. I am hurt that we can be labeled advocates of hatred before our event has even taken place, before our voices have been heard. So now I speak, and I hope our message brings more understanding to what our cause truly is. Zionism is a political ideology founded in 1890 by an atheist, Theodore Herzl. According to the “”American Heritage Dictionary,”” Zionism is “”an organized movement of world Jewry that arose in Europe in the late 19th century with the aim of reconstituting a Jewish state in Palestine. Modern Zionism is concerned with the development and support of the state of Israel.”” This political movement led to the displacement of the Palestinians from their land of 1,300 years and thus has prevented them from being in their Holy Land. Today, over 60 percent of the Palestinian people are refugees. Their homes were and are being bulldozed as new homes are being established in their place for Jewish settlers. Israel’s military occupation is illegitimate and oppressive. For 52 years, the Palestinians have faced tanks, machine guns, aerial bombings of mosques, bazaars and villages, house demolition, confiscation of businesses, raiding of schools, physical abuse, rape, kidnappings, torture … the list goes on. Unarmed men, women and children are killed every day by Israeli soldiers. Our program is meant to bring awareness to the Zionist state of Israel and the atrocities and dehumanization the Palestinians have suffered. Zionism is a political agenda created about 110 years ago. Judaism is a religion going back thousands of years. And a Semite is a racial and geographical identity. Arabs are also considered Semites. Thus anti-Zionism is not “”anti-“” any religion or “”anti-“” any race. Anti-Zionism is “”anti-“” the political ideology and practices of the state of Israel. It is anti-oppression, anti-racism, anti-hate and anti-discrimination. Many Jews and Semites are anti-Zionists. Therefore the claim that anti-Zionism is anti-Semitic has no merit. We would like everyone to know that our program was never intended to attack the religion nor the race of anybody. Rather, our program is meant to illustrate the effects of Zionism on a people whose situation has been ignored. “”A long habit of not thinking a thing wrong gives it a superficial appearance of being right,”” wrote Thomas Paine in “”Common Sense.”” This is the type of wrong we would like to educate you about. We welcome you to our event, going on the week from Monday, Jan. 29 to Friday, Feb. 2. I leave you with some food for thought. As Mahatma Ghandi wrote: “”Palestine belongs to the Arabs in the same sense that England belongs to the English, or France to the French. It is wrong and inhuman to impose the Jews on the Arabs. What is going on in Palestine today cannot be justified by any moral code of conduct.”” — Muslema PurmulMSA Treasurer ...

Christian CD Offers Great Laughs

My best friend called me up because he had received a CD burner and a DSL line for Christmas, which is a bad combination to begin with, and he wanted to know if I had any albums to recommend for his newborn music-stealing frenzy. I immediately answered, “”Kids’ Rockin’ Rappin’ Gospel!”” I received the CD for my birthday and did not think much of it at the time. I’m not really one for joke presents, especially when there isn’t a real present after the joke present, which was exactly the scenario in this case. My friend had just started working at a record store, so I expect he snagged it before anybody else could get to it. Either that or it was sitting in a box collecting dust and he invoked his 30 percent employee discount to get it down to 70 cents. The cover is pretty enticing. At the top, it says “”Kids’ Rockin’ Rappin’ Gospel!”” with a dove. To the right it says, “”Twenty Bible Songs!”” because everyone wants a lot of Bible songs (a dozen really wouldn’t be enough). My favorite is at the bottom: “”Today’s Sound for Today’s Kids!”” If “”Rockin’ Rappin’ Gospel”” is “”Today’s Sound for Today’s Kids””, I’m no longer embarrassed by anything I listened to when I was 10. I always thought “”Today’s Sound for Today’s Kids”” was just edited pop songs, like Christina Aguilera’s “”Genie in a Bottle”” without the sexual innuendos. I remember I was at Disneyland and they were playing that Chumbawamba song, except they had changed all the lyrics so that it wasn’t a drinking song any more — it was really just about pizza and soft drinks. It was pretty disturbing, but now I realize I didn’t know what disturbing really was until I saw the cover of “”Kids’ Rockin’ Rapping Gospel.”” In the middle, it has a drawing of a white girl, a black guy with his cap turned around with a pink boom box and the obligatory Asian kid, all rappin’. Or rather, rockin’ and rappin’. I always thought Cibo Matto was funny, because hey — Japanese rap — but Christian rap? More specifically, Christian kids’ rap? My friend and I put the CD in his CD player and laughed uncontrollably for about 10 minutes. Ever since that day, I’ve kept it in my car and whenever someone new gets in, I say, “”Want to listen to some Rockin’ Rappin’ Gospel?”” and play my favorite tracks. The second track, “”O, How I Love Jesus””, is a pretty solid song and a good introduction to the CD. Most people react by saying, “”Umm. Hee hee. That’s pretty funny. We’re not really going to listen to this are we?”” This is the point at which I switch to track five, “”God Is So Good””, turn the bass up, the windows down and the child safety lock on. “”God Is So Good”” is an innovative song because it only has four lines: “”God is so good / He’s so good to me / He answers prayers, he answers prayers / He cares for me, He cares for me / I love him so, I love him so.”” As the chorus chants “”God is so good, he’s so good to me,”” the kids take turns “”rappin'”” the other three lines. This gets old pretty damn fast, which leads me to the 12th track, “”Jesus Loves the Little Children””. My favorite part of the song is “”Red and yellow, black and white. They are precious in His sight. Jesus loves the little children of the world.”” It’s mostly my favorite part of the song because that’s the only part in the song. What I think the Wonder Kids are trying to say here is that Jesus loves the little children of the world, even the Native American Asian mulatto ones, but not the homosexual ones, because they are paganistic heathens that deserve to burn in everlasting hell. One thing I discovered with the CD is that after the 20th track, the songs start over in split-track, with the vocals on the left stereo speaker and the music on the right speaker. So you can turn down the vocals and sing along, or, as the liner notes say, “”This means the soloist you heard on songs 1 through 20 can be turned off so that you can be the soloist! It’s great fun and the lyrics are right here! Now you can take your CD player to school, church, or anywhere and be a star with split-track! Great fun … great singing … great idea!”” According to Webster’s guide to grammar and writing, “”An exclamation point is used rarely, if at all, and in newspaper writing the exclamation point is virtually nonexistent.”” Well, I’ll be! I had no idea! This truly is the most entertaining CD I’ve ever owned in my life, and I highly recommend it to anyone with $4.27 lying around. It’s available at http://www.cdnow.com under “”Wonder Kids: Rockin’ Rappin’ Gospel.”” I’d like to end on a positive note: Jesus loves you. ...

Filling up to the Brim

UCSD always looks empty to me. I don’t know why. It’s fairly easy to appear empty when you have the second largest UC campus with one of the smaller student populations. Although it’s easy to be afraid of change, especially such a big change as school expansion, I view this change positively. Not only would more students bring increased diversity, but the university would have to make a number of administrative changes in order to deal with the influx of students. Some of these changes would include bigger academic departments, more professors, different classes offered and current classes offered more times a year. Tim Kang Guardian Let’s be realistic: This campus could serve a lot more than 20,000 students. The only time the campus appears fully populated is during the day on Library Walk. Geisel Library fills up once a quarter, during finals week. On the weekends, campus is a ghost town. A lot of UCSD resources not only remain unused but also unnoticed. I’m a second-year student here and still unaware of hundreds of things going on the campus where I live. A lot of people complain about student apathy here at UCSD. I think the lack of school spirit could be explained by the separation into five different colleges and the absence of campus unity. With more students added and subsequently more colleges, school spirit will increase. I found out firsthand that the lack of school spirit is more of a school tradition, in which older students inform younger students of the trend of apathy, and younger students play the nonchalant role to fit in. With more freshmen coming in every year, school spirit and campus unity are bound to increase. Less and less freshmen will be aware that they are supposed to loathe UCSD and all its spirit nights. There is a lot of complaining on campus regarding the ability to get certain classes and the small rotation of professors in some departments. With student population growth, the university will be forced to hire more faculty and increase the size of departments as well as the amount of classes being offered. The university should be able to afford to offer more obscure classes for every department. The faculty hired here will also stay at the current level of academic superiority. There is no need to fear the decline of academic standards. In expanding UCSD, the administration will have the examples of UCLA and UC Berkeley to look to in keeping academic standards high while having bigger student populations. Both Berkeley and UCLA have more students than UCSD (each by about 10,000) and are both comparably higher in the “”U.S. News and World Report”” annual college ranking. For those of you who are sports fans, the student population boom will make it inevitable for UCSD to have a Division I athletic department, which will ultimately lead to a football team. A school cannot be a Division I school without a football team. So how, might you ask, will this happen? The administration will be unable to ignore the clamoring of even more student sports fans for a football team. Additionally, UC schools have a history of moving to Division I with the passage of time, as well as with student population booms. UC Riverside and UCSB are examples of campuses that have recently moved up to Division I. It is inevitable that UC Davis will move up to Division I with its success in Division II sports, along with its increasing student base. It is easy to imagine UCSD hitting the 30,000 student mark, and it is nearly impossible to imagine a school with that many people without a Division I athletic program. This will surely bring athletic scholarships to our nerdy UCSD, and subsequent success and notoriety in sports. This is all beside the point. How stupid would the regents be if they passed up the chance to expand UCSD? Here we are, already the third best academically ranked UC campus, in a mere 40 years of existence, located in one of the premier vacation spots in the states, and feeding off a booming Californian population of young scholars eager for a reasonably priced, great education. And to boot, we have tons of acres of land within UCSD lying unscathed, and calling out for thousands of students to keep it company. UCSD is essentially the ultimate capitalist opportunity for the regents. Using public money to expand a public good, and extract greater profit from it. If the UCSD population reaches a certain point, maybe it will be possible for the regents to bring down tuition because of the larger profit they are bringing in. We live in a democracy that survives on capitalism. We go to a public university. We at UCSD cannot say we didn’t see this coming. It is only the American way to exhaust our resources to provide the most enjoyment and wealth for all hard-working citizens. By allowing more students into the university, the regents will increase their profits and satisfy the needs of a growing California middle class. UCSD itself will achieve all of the things outlined in this article. These include more school spirit, Division I sports, bigger departments with a higher rotation of professors and classes offered, as well as the benefits that come with a more well known school name. Maybe UCSD will stop being the secret of San Diego. Maybe I will be able to reply “”UCSD”” instead of “”UC San Diego”” when people ask me where I go to school. ...

More 'S' Parking Needed for UCSD's Fed Up Students

There are not enough student parking spots at UCSD. This ceased to be news a long time ago. However, we at the Guardian have realized one thing with the opening of the two new on-campus parking structures this year: Absolutely nothing is being done to alleviate the aforementioned crisis. It’s the same old song and dance with the new structures: scores of empty green and red spaces; few or no yellow spaces. Students are being taken advantage of. We recently went to the new Gilman and Torrey Pines structures during their peak occupancy hours for all three types of spots — according to Director of Parking and Transportation Greg Snee, this is Tuesday and Thursday between 11 am and 1 pm. — to get an idea of how many of each type of space are vacant. Our count for the Gilman structure: 38 vacant “”A”” spots; one vacant “”B”” spot; zero vacant “”S”” spots and there were three cars waiting for S spots. Our count for the Torrey Pines structure: 112 vacant “”A”” spots; 240 vacant “”B”” spots; 13 vacant “”S”” spots. True, the structures are relatively new, and it may be that not all graduate students, staff and faculty know they are open. However, they must be parking somewhere. On the other hand, the same can be said about undergraduates — we must be parking somewhere. For us, “”somewhere”” means far off in the boondocks; people actually have to come pick us up in buses and take us back to campus. Why are there no red or green spots in the East or Regents lots? Red and green permits are more expensive than yellow permits, but why can’t students buy red and green permits? UCSD Parking and Transportation and the administration are either ignoring the lack of student parking, or they are acting ineffectively. We at the Guardian propose a simple and cheap solution: Get a few pails of yellow paint and go to town on some of those red and green spots. At least then, all of us will be in the same boat. At least then, it will be fair. At least then, the people to whom the university listens might actually cause something to happen. ...