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About The daily Nebraskan. ([Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-current | View Entire Issue (Nov. 24, 1986)
Monday, November 24, 1986
TI 0 n
University of Nebraska-Lincoln
Out's iM&MgMiral "ball
Alcohol policy to be relaxed
The inaugural ball for Gov.
elect Kay Orr will be held at
the Bob Devaney Sports Cen
ter. Since balls and alcohol go
hand in hand, drinks will be
served at the event. That's good.
Special events and celebrations
call for alcohol as part of the
festivities. Certainly, in this day
of moderation, alcohol should
never constitute a major part of
celebrations, but nonetheless it
continues to play a subdued,
Allowing alcohol to be served
at the inaugural ball does not
provide a compelling justifica
tion for allowing alcohol in on
campus residences. (Students
should be allowed to drink in
their rooms, but this current
exception to the rule does not
entail the "principle" that drink
ing should be allowed every
where.) - What this inaugural exception
logically entails is a loosening of
the current overly restrictive
alcohol regulations prohibiting."
consumption at special student
Tor ! example, why shouldn't
alcohol be served in the Nebraska
Union as part of the inaugural
celebration of ASUN officials?
Death of a good Mea
LB3 passage a recognition of reality
There was much weeping and
gnashing of teeth in the
Legislature Thursday over
the death of a good idea: the
notion that farmers needing loans
should be able to save their
homes in case their operation
But the 39-10 vote to pass LB3,
which in effect repeals the Farm
stead Act containing that good
idea, was simply a recognition of
reality. Although senators were
able to save face by preserving
the appearance of an option to
protect a farmer's homestead,
anyone who reads the bill knows
very well no such thing will
happen if farmers want credit.
But there simply was no choice.
A clear repeal of the Farm
stead Act would have been the
most honest way to admit the
seven-month-old law doesn't
work. Neligh Sen. John DeCamp,
who leaves office in January,
tried for a straight repeal but
was rebuffed by senators. De
Camp then submitted and won
approval of an amendment allow
ing farmers either to protect
their homestead when seeking
credit or play by the old rules.
For his efforts, DeCamp was
lambasted by Omaha Sen. Ernie
Chambers for supposedly "carry
ing the water" for banking lobby
ists. Both he and Lincoln Sen.
David Landis charged on the
legislature floor that leaders
would require farmers to waive
homestead protection as a con
Jeff I'orbelik, Editor, 472,1766
James Rogers, Editorial Page Editor
Gene Gentrup, Managing Editor
Tammy Kaup, Associate News Editor
Todd von Kampen, Editorial Page Assistant
Additionally, if some residence
hall floors or Greek houses want
to sponsor a formal and want
alcohol to take some small part
in the event, the same reasoning
as that applied in excepting
Orr's inauguration from the rule
justified exceptions in these
cases as well
If a student group wants to
have a reception for a special
guest speaker or have a "mixer"
for an annual or biannual mem-.
bership drive, where's the harm?
Where's the difference?
We're not talking about rent
ing out union rooms for drunken
brawls. Simply as a business
matter, celebrations centered on
booze should not be allowed to
use union space; they are simply
too destructive and noisy.
, But misuse should not rule
out appropriate use. Students
over the age of 21 are not com
plete babies regents' and
administrators1 opinions notwith
v standing, Some proposals for
"holding 'special events in the
union are so clearly couched in a
responsible light that no more
fear can be. held with respect to
"ibfiin than xan. be feared about
the'Orr ihagurual. (After all, did
you ever hear the one about the
two drunk Republicans )
dition of their loans. Landis noted
the lenders' advantage when he
posed the question, "If a farmer
who is deeply in debt goes to a
lender and puts conditions on
the lending, are they arguing
from an equal bargaining posi
tion?" Landis and Chambers are
absolutely right. DeCamp admit
ted they were when he said on
the floor that his amendment
"more than guts" the original
idea. But in explaining his
amendment, he offered a piece
of inescapable logic: Unless
normal economic principles
are allowed to operotejarm
ers mill not get loans.
Many peopie like to believe
bankers have millions of dollars
of their own money to lend when
they feel like it. Unfortunately,
that's not so. That money is yours
and mine we place it in a
given financialinstitution so we
can earn interest on it. Bankers
are charged with handling that
money wisely; otherwise, they
invite disasters such as that
which befell Commonwealth Sav
ings Co. depositors.
Our own desire to preserve the
money we entrust to our bankers
made it necessary to gut the
Farmstead Act. It's a wonderful
idea to try to save the homes of
farmers in debt. But it's unreal
istic to expect the rest of a given
farm will be enough collateral to
guarantee the loan, as the Farm
stead Act presupposed. You just
can't have it both ways.
Season to seinr itSaeirs
Giving to those less
The center snapped the ball, the
foot lashed into it and sent it
flying, the referee's arms flew into
the air and the thousands of voices
that had screamed themselves hoarse
all day suddenly went silent.
Once again, as it always seems to be
at this time of year, a gallant Busker
effort went all for naught at the hands
of those devils from Norman. My
thoughts went back to 10 years before,
when the Sooners were outplayed all
day but somehow stole the game any
way, 20-17. Same stadium, same score,
My companions from University
Lutheran Chapel and 1 waited until
much of the crowd had dispersed, then
walked back to the church. Once there,
we tried to put the latest long series of
frustrations in perspective. I offered,
only half-seriously, the thought that
since Nebraska was penalized all day
and the Buskers had been penalized all
year for various off-the-field sins, God
was trying to visit some iniquity on us.
Somehow, they didn't quite want to
believe that Oklahoma plays the Phil
istines and the Buskers the Israelites.
My friends went their way, but I still
had some work to do around the
church. It's job-seeking time, and I had
to run off newspaper clippings for
packets to send to prospective employ
ers. As I looked in my wallet, I saw I had
$4.50 left. I'd lost count of the number
of copies I'd made, but $1.50 seemed
enough to cover it and, anyway, I
had to be sure I had enough money for a
quick lunch at noon and $1 supper
night at church Sunday night. I couldn't
get to my savings until Monday. So I
plunked the $ 1 .50 down near the copier
and prepared to go. v .
As 1 walked out the door, I noticed
three men sitting on a park bench
nearby. By all appearances, they were
street people. But you never know, and
Senior-canine product label teaches
an old dog-owner a new trend
My dog Samantha recently became
a senior canine. I don't know
exactly what this new station in
life will mean to her. A discount on the
subway? A membership in Veticare? An
early-bird special at the local restaur
ant? It's still too early to tell.
The news came as something of a
shock to me. Until last week, I had
assumed that Sam was an old dog. A
good old dog to be sure, but an old dog.
Tne food she ate was even labeled,
"Fortified Food for Older Dogs." But
when I got to the supermarket Satur
day, there was a new social message on
the package. It read: "Tailored Nutrition
for Senior Dogs."
Older dogs were out. Senior dogs
were in. Just like that.
It isn't clear whether Sam under
stands the significance of this event in
her life as a chow hound. Does she feel
a bit more sprightly as she stands at
her bowl, ears flopping into her water?
Does she know that, willy-nilly, she is
the pet product 4 another human
trend? Nobody grows old in America
anymore, so how e;n their dogs?
The way I figuru it, Sam has spent
her whole life in a thoroughly American
pattern, and there's no escape from it.
Consider her humble origins. Born to a
Russian species, slapped with a French
patronym, she came to us bearing a
standard poodle pedigree that guaran
teed her to be purebred American. Just
like her owners.
She entered our human household at
the magical moment in American fam
ily life when parents delude them
selves into believing that "the children
are old enough to take responsibility."
Sam was six weeks old. My daughter
was five years old. I was old enough to
I bought her for the sake of the child,
and 1 bred her for the sake of the child.
For 10 unforgettable weeks in 1976, 1
lived with puppy quintuplets, some
fortunate leads to
I never have felt too comfortable walk
ing home at night in the city. They
called after me, "Sir! Sir!" but 1 kept
But only for two blocks. Something
didn't feel right. I turned around and
Returning to the bench, I asked with
what was left of my voice, "I'm sorry.
Can I help you?" Their responses wer
en't that intelligent, but one of them, a
Native American, asked, "Where you
ever in 'Nam?"
"No. I was much too young for that,"
Another asked, "Bave you got 97
cents for a veteran?" And my mind
went back to the so-called agonizing
over the $4.50 in my wallet. I asked, "Is
that all you need?" Be nodded.
"I have a dollar," I said.
"That's close enough." I stopped,
pulled off my gloves and removed a
dollar bill from the wallet. The man
thanked me and said to his compan
ions, "I knew someone would remember
a veteran!" And I went on my way.
Across the street. I saw the flip side
of the street people. Several red-clad
fans were laughing at someone who
apparently had fallen down after slip
ping. Farther down, four young men,
one with beer cup in hand, were weav
ing through backed-up traffic on O
Street and knocking on car windows as
I'm sure they didn't even notice the
I mentioned earlier about a need to
thing that made me forever wary of
fertility drugs. Now, 13 years later, the
child has gone to college and the dog
has arthritis. It's your basic national
When I thought about it at all, 1
assumed that Sam having accomp
lished the job of being a pet to a child
would be allowed to retire and age
gracefully. For a while it looked like
that. Her black hair has started to turn
gray. Her bark, which was worse than
her bite, is about equally benign these
days. She has even been to Florida a
couple of times.
Three years ago, Sam gave up her
favorite sport, catching the mail as it
went through the slot and eating it. Her
eye-mouth coordination has slowed
down. Occasionally, though, like an
old timer, she turns over the contents
of a wastebasket just to let you know
she still can.
But this is modern America and it
couldn't last. The youth cult reached
into the canine culture. Sam has been
drafted into the golden-age, elder,
The Daily Nebraskan s pub- According to policy set by the
Ushers are the regents, who regents, responsibility for the
established the UNL Publications editorial content of the news
Board to supervise the daily pro- paper lies solely in the hands of
duction of the paper. its student editors.
put things in perspective. Like so many
of you, l nurta little bit Saturday night
when our beloved Buskers, who were
decided underdogs going into the game,
played their hearts out only to lose at
the end. (Those cf you who have been
reading this column all semester may
find that hard to believe, but I've been
a Busker fan much longer than I've
been a Busker critic.)
A Busker victory would have been
something to be thankful for. For those
of us too young to remember the early
1970s, a national championship would
have been something to be thankful
for. But street people don't have time to
wish for such important blessings.
They have to attend to such unimpor
tant items as food and shelter. When
was the last time you were concerned
about such things if ever?
Even if you're not religious, Thanks
giving should be a time to remember
good fortune. Examples such as I've
mentioned should make us thankful
that we're lucky enough to be relatively
secure in the necessities of life. The
fact these men were veterans should
also remind us to be thankful for those
who protect our freedom. I'm sure each
of us can think of other things or peo
ple we're thankful for as well.
But while we're being thankful, let's
try to give those less fortunate some
thing to be thankful for. What each of
us can do varies; if you can't afford to
give money, maybe you can give time.
All the same, I'd challenge you this
season to pay back some of the bless
ings you've been given by helping
someone less well off than you. When
you consider their cases, it shows you
how lucky you really are.
And if you do something, even a lit
tle, you've done something more last
ing than celebrating a football game.
Von Kampen is a senior news-editorial
and music major and is DN editorial
senior-citizen euphemism club. The
friendly product manager for my senior
dog food called the change from oldei
to senior by a mild name: "updating."
"People," she responded to my tele
phone inquiry, "always have trouble
thinking of their pets getting older."
That, I suppose, is the problem with
life as a pet. You are subject to your
owner's neuroses the way you are sub
ject to their children. One year you are
dressed up as a reindeer and attached
to a five-year-old's wagon. A few years
later you are being fed a low-calorie
diet and forced to jog on the end of a
What will happened to a country full
of senior canines? Will they all be
forced to chase golf balls when they'd
rather roll on the green? Will they be
given collars too young for them? Will
they be fed calcium supplements and
drafted into aerobics classes when they
, want to lie in the sun?
At the moment, the greatest accom
plishment of Sam's old age is her imita
tion of a rug sprawler on a rug. She does
it wonderfuliy. But just this week, I
have been iniv-'r.ing what she would
look like with a touch of Grecian For
mula. And I wonder: Can you teach a
senior dog new tricks?
1 1986, The Boston Globe
Post Writers Group
Goodman is a Pulitzer prize-winning
columnist for the Boston Globe.
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