Letters to the editor


    As a member of the UCSD men’s tennis program and long-time reader of the Guardian, I would like to express my disgust for the article, “”Pum’s Points,”” in the May 5 edition of the Guardian.

    This past weekend our team played Hawaii Pacific University in the second round of the NCAA playoffs for a chance to make UCSD history and attend the Final 16 tournament in Florida. To our dismay, we were not able to accomplish our goal and lost the match 7-1. Adding insult to this, I picked up the Guardian on May 5 and read an article by Anu Kumar scrutinizing my teammate and brother Emil Novak.

    Scrutinizing is a light word because Kumar went further than this and made it a personal attack. He wrote that Emil was “”flailing”” on the court and “”acting out a dramatic theatrical scene.”” This implies that Emil was purposely faking his extreme physical circumstances. Emil began to cramp in the middle of the second set and, because of this, was limited in his ability to move. Kumar made the implication that this was poor sportsmanship because Emil never “”walked back to his baseline after a point like one of his teammates would.””

    The article got worse as I read, as Kumar went on to say that Emil should learn from Jim Courier, one of the best American tennis players to live, making an extremely unfair comparison. He finished off the article by inaccurately saying that Emil retired and that he had lost his dignity. Emil did not retire, but the match was stopped by Jan Tribbler (his opponent) himself who knew the team match was decided. What could be more insulting than the accusation of giving up when, as nonscholarship athletes, we play and fight for our own personal pride?

    Not only is the article full of inaccuracies, but it completely twisted the events of the match against HPU. Emil is the winningest player on the UCSD tennis team and arguably the best competitor we have. In his match against Tribbler, he was put in an extremely tough situation with our team going down 4-1. Emil was being very emotional, and he knew the urgency of his win. He knew that if he lost, our team’s hopes of making school history would be lost. Tribbler served for the match at 5-4, and Emil fought back winning four points in a row and with it the second set 7-5. He pumped his fist in the air trying to find energy for his ailing body. He showed some of the most impressive concentration I have ever seen.

    The statements Kumar made twisted this around and made Emil seem to be a bad loser and less of a man. True men accept their losses, but never give up. Emil has always adhered to this. When all of us had lost, Emil kept fighting. Kumar obviously couldn’t have known what was going on in the match. If he would’ve known something about tennis, he would not have attacked Emil in this way. I don’t know Kumar’s background with tennis, but I know that if he wants to attack somebody he should make it a point to know the whole story. Emil didn’t flail or act out anything; he fought like a man, like a true sportsman. No one questioned this when Emil finished. The Guardian needs to recognize this and correct their inaccurate opinion of what happened.

    — Tomas Novak

    UCSD men’s tennis player

    Article neglected points about Iraq war


    In response to Dustin Frelich’s “”Naysayers forced to pay the price”” (May 1, 2003) I would like to offer the Guardian congratulations. Thank you for giving us an opinion so unresearched and bass-ackwards that uninvolved and apolitical people like me feel the need to write in and say our piece.

    Frelich obviously buys into all the backpedaling the government has done. I would like to remind him that the reason Bush started this war in the first place had nothing to do with liberation for Iraq. Instead, it had everything to do with disarming the country (Few, if any, weapons of mass destruction have been found). Also, I would not be the first to note that while the war is over, the fighting is not yet finished. The infrastructure of Iraq still needs to be rebuilt, and the many residents are unhappy to see the United States as a presence in the country (See “”U.S. troops, conservative religion a fiery combination in heartland town”” Associated Press, May 1, 2003). Dubya and his government have attempted to hide the case of the missing weapons behind a nice picture of Saddam Hussein’s statue toppling in Baghdad.

    I would encourage Frelich to take a look at all the news sources next time and perhaps even listen to the “”extreme fringe of the American public”” he mentioned, who are wondering where the weapons of mass destruction are and asking what will happen to Iraq now that the political fight has begun.

    — Emily Howatt

    Revelle College sophomore

    Referendum must be passed for the future


    The University of California is growing. In fact, the UCSD campus is slated to grow by almost 50 percent in the next ten years.

    The children of our parents’ generation are all growing up. We, the current students of UCSD, were fortunate enough to precede the enormous influx of students expected to apply to college here in California.

    The state of California chose to provide the growing number of college-age students with the same availability of education that we were provided when we applied to UCSD. The California Master Plan for Higher Education has mandated that the UC System provide for the top 12 percent of its high school graduates, and in order to fulfill that mandate, medium-sized UC campuses like UCSD must grow.

    As students of UCSD today, we have a responsibility to ensure that the students who come after us are able to enjoy the same quality of experience that we have had. A Price Center and Student Center, which are large enough to accommodate UCSD’s projected population, is an essential part of that experience.

    It is for this reason that UCSD students must pass this proposed referendum to expand the University Centers.

    Over two years ago, the students of UCSD voted down an administration-initiated referendum to, among other things, expand the University Centers. Immediately after the referendum’s failure, Vice Chancellor Watson presented the administration’s plans to the Registration Fee Advisory Committee. He outlined his plans to cut all student services funding by 10 percent, in order to pay for the University Centers expansion. After significant lobbying by the Registration Fee Advisory Committee and the councils of provosts and deans, Vice Chancellor Watson agreed to postpone such a plan of budget cuts, in the hopes that students would find another way to fund the expansion.

    That’s what students did.

    Last year, A.S. President Jeff Dodge initiated an A.S. Task force designed to explore ways to deal with the projected population increase at UCSD. This task force included representatives from all over UCSD, from the Associated Students, the Graduate Student Association, the six colleges, the student cooperatives and the University Centers. Through a consensus-based decision-making process, the task force decided that the best way to handle UCSD’s impending crisis was through a student referendum.

    This referendum is not only necessary for the quality of life here at UCSD, but it is also a product of student agency and initiative. Passing this referendum will ensure that student services are not impacted by budget cuts made to fund a University Centers expansion.

    There is also something to say about the broad student support for this referendum. When former chairs of the Interfraternity Council and the Student Affirmative Action Committee of UCSD sit behind the same table on Library Walk, to promote the same referendum, it usually indicates that such a referendum will positively affect a very wide range of students.

    For the good of the university and for its future students, please vote for this referendum.

    — Devin W. Phillips

    Registration Fee Advisory Committee Chair

    Doug Hanes

    Registration Fee Advisory Committee Earl Warren College Representative

    Denis Shmidt

    Registration Fee Advisory Committee Thurgood Marshall College Representative

    Colin Parent

    Registration Fee Advisory Committee John Muir College Representative

    Eric Bosze

    Registration Fee Advisory Committee GSA Representative

    Jeff Shih

    Registration Fee Advisory Committee Sixth College Representative

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