The daily Nebraskan. ([Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-current, March 07, 1988, Page 4, Image 4

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University of Nebraska-Lincoln
Mike Reilley, Editor, 472-1766
Diana Johnson, Editorial Page Editor
Jen Deselms, Managing Editor
Curt Wagner, Associate News Editor
Chris Anderson, Associate News Editor
Joan Rezac, Copy Desk Chief
Joel Carlson, Columnist
Quibbles & bits
No smoking sign may be placed over UNL
According to the current pro
posal of the University of Ne
braska-Lincoln smoking policy,
it’s possible that all campus
buildings and rooms could pro
hibit smoking.
The policies and suggestions
of the currently controversial
policy are not explicit enough,
nor are they fair in that deans and
department and chairpersons will
determine the smoking policy in
their building according to their
The right to smoke will be de
termined by individual depart
ment chairpersons. Violators
will be held under the jurisdic
tion of that department, which is
also required to enforce the
smoking regulations.
Enforcement under this par
ticular clause seems ludicrous. In
the least, it is unrealistic in that
enforcement would be difficult
to implement without smoking
patrols or some sort of tattling
Single-occupant offices, au
ditoriums, dining rooms and
“other indoor assembly areas”
would be included in the policy,
said John Goebel, vice chancel
lor for business and finance. The
policy also requires signs that say
“smoking allowed” and “no
smoking” in rooms with both
areas. It also allows the prohibi
tion of smoking in areas with no
signs. Those specifications could
include just about any area on
campus. It’s conceivable that
smokers’ rights could be elimi
nated from the entire campus.
Administrators and faculty
members developed the policy
after some UNL faculty members
and students asked about UNL’s
smoking policy. The new policy
would give UNL a set of guide
lines that are consistent with the
Nebraska Clean Indoor Air Act
passed by the Legislature in
UNL’s smoking policy does
need to be defined and readjusted
according to the times. But it also
must be clear and fair with regard
to individual smokers’ and non
smokers’ rights.
Currently the Associated Stu
dents of the University of Ne
braska has made available a sur
vey that will help weigh student
opinion on the issue. ASUN’s
position will be determined after
the surveys have been studied.
It’s vital that both smokers and
non-smokers pay attention to the
surveys to avoid complaint on
down the road.
Goebel also has sent a memo
to deans, directors, the Faculty
Senate Executive Committee
and ASUN. 1 f response is against
the policy, it may be revised,
Goebel said.
It’s a good thing. As the policy
currently stands, confusion and
vagueness reign.
Wilhite sorry letter’s satire misunderstood
Racism and sexism may be alive
and well, but satire is dead. At least
here in Nebraska, where you have to
spell it out. So now I’m responding
“like a man,” as some reader so sex
istly put it.
I’m very sorry if I offended anyone
with my letter in response to Jon
Dewsbury (Letters, Feb. 16). But I
thought that I made the satirical na
ture of the letter painfully clear with
my blatant juxtaposition of ideas and
self-contradicting statements. For
example, “I love America because
it’s the land of the free, and I won’t
tolerate ..
And why would anyone make such
horrible statements about minority
groups unless I was really trying to
make you angry? That was the whole
point. Dewsbury’s attitude sickens
me. I hate it. His intolerance should
not be tolerated.
However, since people only care
when something affects them di
rectly, I felt that I had to make my
point as offensively as I could and
attack several groups with the same
logic that Dewsbury used.
Intolerance is a societal disease
not limited to one group. It just starts
with some group thought to be more
helpless than the others.
“When they came for the homo
sexuals 1 did not speak up because I
am not a homosexual. When they
came for the Jews 1 did not complain
because I am not Jewish. When they
came for the Catholics I did not pro
test because I am not Catholic. When
they came for me there was no one left
to stop them.”
That’s the “it can’t happen here”
psychology of cowards or misled
people. Well, it can and docs happen
here. Anyone who says we’ve beaten
intolerance is a liar or a fool. I don’t
think we can afford to let people like
Dewsbury eat away at the roots of
I will not stand by and let some
misanthropes attack my brothers and
sisters without pulling up one hell of
a fight. We arc all in this together,
because if one of us can be jingled out
for persecution, then none of us are
safe. This is America, and I love it
because it’s the land of the free, and I
won’t tolerate intolerance — sexist,
racist, heterosexist or otherwise. This
is one “good man” who will not be
Scott Wilhite
Candidate s attittude explains student apathy
I am writing in response to a
comment made by one of the ASUN
executive candidates at the debate in
the East Campus Union, Thursday,
March 3. Nate Geisert, first vice ‘
presidential candidate for the AC
TION party, stated in his closing
remarks that “ASUN will never
change” because “you can’t buck the
system.” I was shocked to hear that
from someone aspiring to an execu
tive office of ASUN. It’s no wonder
that students arc apathetic about stu
dent government when those who arc
currently involved and hope to be
executives see no chance for im
provement. How can the ACTION
candidates expect me to place my
faith and my vote with them when
they themselves have no faith in
Jodi E. Johnson
> , * i » ' * > * * . > I t I ' ' • * » » I f M » t i M « t t < t l £ t * «
All’s fair in love and religion
Wars of faith waged around the world in the name of God
I had some friends once who
got into an argument about
something in the Bible.
What it was specifically I don’t
remember, but the argument quickly
turned into something as simple as
black and white.
“Yes,” said the fundamentalist.
“No,” said the atheist.
“Yes,” came the rebuttal from the
“No,” replied the atheist.
And so it continued. Nothing was
solved. Both went back to their cor
ners as certain of their beliefs or
disbeliefs as before. I’m just glad
they were friends.
Thai’s not always the case when
people argue religion. Too often they
pick up arms and force their beliefs
and the lifestyles that go with them on
And it’s all in the name of their
I’m not necessarily complaining.
Being the son of a United Methodist
minister, I grew up in various houses
sitting right next to those impressive
white, high-stecpled pinnacles of
morality. When I was liule.our house
was even connected to the church.
We had no choice but to be holy then.
It seemed that wherever we lived,
the whole community expected my
brothers and me to go to church every
week and then youth group that night,
be pious and never swear and every
thing else that goes along with being
a preacher’s kid. It didn’t help when
my friends and I would sneak out of
the balcony just as the sermon was
starting. We could just hear the thun
dering whispers coming from the
But despite my reluctance to get
excited about the whole idea of
church, I eventually learned to re
spect what it was trying to teach. It
was long and somewhat painful,
fighting off bouts of skepticism and
doubt in the process, but I finally got
to the point where I could honestly
call myself a Christian.
1 don’t know how long my beliefs
will last. I don’t go to church often
anymore, and I can’t quote many
verses from the Bible, but that still
doesn’t shake my own personal faith.
That’s not really important to me.
But there arc certain things which
arc, such as you shouldn’t kill, and
you should do unto others as you
would have them do unto you. These
and many other tenets have shaped
my beliefs and my life. These arc
things I take in earnest.
That doesn’t mean my beliefs
should be stretched to disbelief.
Televangelist Jimmy Swaggart
tearfully confessed recently to seeing
a prostitute, but this was only after
christening Jim Bakkcr a “cancer”
for his tryst with Jessica Hahn. While
Swaggart can honestly go to the Bible
to condemn Bakkcr’s behavior, the
latter just as honestly and easily re
butted by saying, “Those without sin
should throw the first stone.” These
are men who have made God their
life’s work. While I don’t question
their faith, I do question their means
and their motives. They arc taking
their religion far too seriously. They
have now entcrcda region of hate and
In Northern Ireland the Christians
are fighting among themselves. Jews
arc fighting the Arabs in the Near
East. There have been countless
other confrontations in the past, such
as the Crusades, the English Civil
War of the 17th century and the 30
Years’ War in Germany.
Religion doesn’t always lead to
acts of war, but can cause many prob
lems. The Ku Klux Klan has been
known to persecute both Catholics
and Jews. It may not be a war, but
cross burnings aren’t exactly peace
ful. This is what Karl Marx warned
against when he said religion is the
opiate of the people. Actually, Marx
borrowed that line from philosopher
Ludwig Feuerbach, but it is Marx and
hiscommunism which are constantly
blamed for the belief. It is not com
munism lam talking about at all, but
rather the alienating frame of mind
spurred by religion.
These people have all been intoxi
cated by the opiate.
They are all people fighting for
their religion and the right to worship
the way they want. But to lake up
arms for it is pure hypocrisy.
They have given too much weight
to the cgoccntricilics of their own
beliefs and have too much hale and
intolerance for those whose beliefs
are different. Whether they arc fight
ing over beliefs or land or anything
else, or just exchanging harsh words,
they arc overstepping the bounds of
It seems as if the dictum “all’s fair
in love and war,” holds true for reli
gion also. Religion should not be
taken so dead seriously. For ages,
though, it has been an unfortunate
fact of life.
Just think how many people have
died throughout the ages in the name
of their God. Just think how many
were intoxicated by the opiate. 1
would not want to die drunk.
I cannot argue with people’s per
sonal beliefs or with the dictates of
their faith. They arc loo ingrained
within their own lives, like my own.
So religion docs not have to be an
But when people start fighting,
with their religion as a justification,
then maybe Feuerbach and Marx
were right, and they have swallowed
too much of the sweet wines of their
faith and arc now drunk with it.
Fry is a graduate news-editorial student,
editor of The Sower, the Daily Nebraskan's
depth supplement and night news editor.
Homosexuals defeat the purpose;
real reason of sex: reproduction
Judi Unger opened her letter
(Daily Nebraskan, Feb. 22)
with the following quote,
which I found very interesting:
“Contempt prior to further investiga
tion is a sure sign of ignorance."
However, Unger, this matter of
homosexuality isn’t one that can re
ally be investigated. If a person in
dulges with someone of the same sex,
that person is gay. If that person in
dulges with someone of the opposite
sex, that person is straight. It’s a situ
ation that either is or isn’t.
I don’t think Jon Dewsbury (Let
ters, Feb. 16) was trying to “be God.”
As far as the prejudice aspect —
homosexuals can’t be pul on the same
level as blacks, Mexicans or foreign
ers. I haven’t got an iota of prejudice
against any nationality, but I am still
strongly opposed to homosexuality.
Hey, I’m all for the American way of
life — to be what you want to be, to
turn yourself into the person you want
to be and all the rest of those things
that go along with each American’s
rights as a pan of living in this coun
try. I agree with what Unger said
about racial prejudice, sexism and
discrimination. They all stink. As far
as the “racial discrimination" goes, it
isn’taraccof yourown unique origin,
as arc blacks, Swedes, Germans,
Mexicans and others.
Homosexuals are different, just as
people of different nationalities and
races arc. So, you ask, “why is it
whenever someone is different, we
feel the need to damn them?” We are
all different on a different level. The
real reason or purpose of sex is to
show the ultimate of sincere love and
affection for someone of the opposite
sex and for reproduction to keep a
race alive. The purpose, though, is
reproduction. Homosexuals defeat
that purpose. Also, the straights think
it’s utterly disgusting to actually “be
in love with” someone of the same
sex. I believe that those arc the two
reasons why Dewsbury wrote that
homosexuality was “disgusting and
immorat.”The natural thing to do is to
be attracted to someone of the oppo
site sex. I’m sorry, Unger, but that last
statement can’t be argued.
The one thing Unger said in her
letter that really caught my attention
was that “sexuality of any type is a
God-given instinct.” Oh boy, where
have you been? Let me guess, you
don’t go to church, right? Obviously
not. The instinct, Unger, is to find
someone of the opposite sex who, vou
hope, treats you with considcrai
eness, sincerity, trust, loyalty, tender
loving care, affection and everything
else that goes with loving, and being
in love with, someone. Again I say.
that is the natural thing that is sup
posed to happen. After two people
have met and have determined they
want each other, sexual intercourse
creates more people, and the race
survives. I’m not saying that I don’t
think the world is overpopulated, or
that I’m pro-intercourse whenever
the chance presents itself. Sex keeps a
race alive, and homosexuality defeats
it. Back to the God-given instinct,
though we were created as men and
women to each attract someone of the
opposite sex. You can’t argue that.
OK.aperson who is homosexual will,
of course, think that it’s natural to be
attracted to someone of the same sex.
That makes sense, right? Of course it
docs, because that person is homosex
I don’t despise homosexuality,
believe it or not. I am only strongly
opposed to it. If a person wants to live
as a homosexual, that’s fine. But as
with a few of my friends who have
been homosexual, it’s a world and a
lifestyle I desire to have no part of at
all, because it’s not normal.
Kirby Dchnel
computer science
Unsigned editorials represent of
ficial policy of the spring 1988 Daily
Nebraskan. Policy is set by the Daily
Nebraskan Editorial Board. Its mem
bers are Mike Reilley, editor; Diana
I h i M ' ; I t I 4 ( ( '• 4 11 i 4 I *« *f I * I * 4 \ ♦ I \ I « * ' * \ * ■ J
Johnson, editorial page editor; Joan
Rczac, copy desk editor; Jen Dc
sclms, managing editor; Curt Wag
ner , associate news editor; Christine
Anderson, associate news editor and
Joel Carlson, columnist.
I he Daily Nebraskan’s publishers
are the regents, who established the
UNL Publications Board tosupervise
the daily production of the paper.