Independent Student Newspaper Since 1969

The Badger Herald

Independent Student Newspaper Since 1969

The Badger Herald

Independent Student Newspaper Since 1969

The Badger Herald


Letters to the Editor

I came to this campus from a fairly liberal, if you would call it that, high
school. I had friends from all walks of life.

I was fortunate enough to be enrolled in what is called “IB” classes, much
like what many people know as “AP”. The people in these classes acted as
though I expected college to be: people with different opinions who
respected each other and tried to treat everyone as equals, no matter how
different they were. I also chose to take other classes outside of IB
classes. People in these classes were slightly less tolerant, but for the
most part respected each other.

When I came here, I expected to be opened to a new and even more accepting
world of students than what I was exposed to in high school. But, after
being here two years, going on three, I was slowly proven wrong.

First it was the people I talked to who poked fun at other’s dread locks and
mismatched clothing. Then it was people always telling me how my opinions
were wrong. Now it’s gotten to the point that I can’t even read the paper
without getting mad at how unaccepting people are on campus. Swearing and calling each other names. It’s worse than kindergarten all over again.

I have heard the same arguments of race and sexual identification equality, “free” speech and the like for two whole years. People say “it’s the
squeaky wheel that gets the grease.” Yet have changes been made? What problems have been “greased”? All this talk for nothing.

Even with the events of late in New York and such. Talk of inappropriate
remembrance rallies, or inappropriate things said at these rallies. And
probably even more talk for even more years with an end result all the same:
no change. We are all adults. If we don’t like how something is done, we
know how to do it better ourselves. (And I do mean “DO something”, not say
how to do something.)


I have nothing to say to those who express their “squeaky wheel” opinions in
the newspapers or on flyers. If I had a dime for every opinion written in
the paper, I would have made enough money to “grease” successful foundations on campus, rather then those who waste all their wind on “squeaking” their opinions and doing nothing. Nor do I care to read their opinions any more. (Since they have more then proven they don’t want to hear others’ opinions).

If I am ever convinced by someone, it will be the “squeaky wheel” that DOES
the work, not just makes the noise. I hope other students may some day do
the same.

Natalie Schneider, UW Junior

Give ’til it helps!

What happened on the morning of Sept. 11, 2001, completely changed the way the United States views the world and especially the Middle East. The tragedy has brought the global community together, except for the Middle East. Dissention is still prevalent in that area. Look at the people dancing in the streets in Palestine, Sadaam Hussein proclaiming that the United States deserved this, and the Taliban continuing to shelter Osama bin Laden, the prime suspect. What I propose is that this radical shift in the world needs a radical shift in foreign policy, especially toward the Middle East.

The United States doesn’t need any more smart bombs, economic and political sanctions, weapons inspectors or ground troops. What the United States needs is to show it has a heart. What the United States needs to do is share its economic might. What the United States needs to do is to give aid to these radical countries like Iraq, Pakistan and Afghanistan. However, this is not a monetary aid. This is physical capital, such as televisions, radios, stoves, computers and other Western appliances.

The terrorists do these despicable acts because they feel alienated. They feel excluded from the world community. The one thing I learned from my civics class is that one country with a McDonald’s will never attack another country with a McDonald’s. The global community will not stand for acts between economic juggernauts. The violence stems from the fringe countries, the ones on the margin, which are located mainly in the Middle East and Africa. To introduce these countries to the world is to assimilate their culture to ours. We must homogenize our cultures. Whether this uniformity is a good thing or a bad thing is another topic. This is the purpose of the Western appliances. They not only bring the good will of the West but the culture of the West.

The aid serves two purposes. First, clearly we are in an economic cyclical downturn, namely a recession. Factory orders are down, unemployment is up, the stock market is down, and consumers are getting a little wary. The government needs to realize that the tax cut has not worked and the idea of not spending the Social Security surplus is absurd. The U.S. economy needs a classical Keynesian fiscal stimulus. What better way to do this than to buy millions of goods from American companies for this aid package?

Second, people find it hard to hate others who help them. Osama bin Laden can’t spew angry rhetoric about the United States’ greed and pride if Afghanistan receives shipment upon shipment of goods to help the people. Terrorism dwells in the prejudices like racism.

We need not exclude Afghanistan from the global community but to invite them as part of the whole human family into the new global order. The Taliban cannot survive on its own. When we have become one with them, then reform can happen. We need to turn the view of the Afghan people about the United States from one of the overbearing father into one of the cool older brother who shows you where the cookies are. Reform will come from the people. It won’t come from U.S. intervention a la Bay of Pigs. Terrorism cannot be destroyed by violence but by understanding. Let the Afghans bring Mr. bin Laden to justice.

We stand on a great precipice, looking down that ugly cliff called war with an enemy we can’t fight. Let us turn around, and show the world who America really is: the America I saw with people rushing into the World Trade Centers to save others and losing their lives for it. We cannot return hatred with hatred. As Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. said, “The old law of an ‘eye for an eye’ leaves everyone blind.” God bless America.

Nicolas Lehman-Ziebarth, UW freshman

Terrorist not “unreasonable”

There is always a “reasonable” explanation for any point of view, even for terrorists. It is well known that the United States has a government of the people. It is therefore reasonable, in one school of thought, to hold “the people” — citizens eligible to vote — responsible for the actions, even questionable ones, committed by our government. Even the excuse I have heard, that the ordinary person doesn’t even know what the government is doing, won’t work.

We don’t know because we don’t care. It’s like saying that you shouldn’t be charged for accomplice to murder when you drove the getaway car, and no officer, I didn’t notice the gun shots or the blood on my friend. From this point of view there are no civilians, because we are all responsible.

I’m not trying to imply that this justifies the attacks on the World Trade Center. Nor do I pretend to know whether it is in our best interests to go to war over this. I merely point out that it is dangerous to demonize the enemy. It blinds you to facts that could prove vital. This attack was entirely predictable, perhaps not in its details, but in its nature. Do not say that “anyone that would kill 5,000 civilians is beyond reason.” It is merely a reason we do understand.

Lillian Chessman

Leave a Comment
Donate to The Badger Herald

Your donation will support the student journalists of University of Wisconsin-Madison. Your contribution will allow us to purchase equipment and cover our annual website hosting costs.

More to Discover
Donate to The Badger Herald

Comments (0)

All The Badger Herald Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *