The daily Nebraskan. ([Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-current, November 29, 1995, Page 4, Image 4

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Wednesday, November 29, 1995 Page 4
Editorial Board
University of Nebraska-Lincoln
J. Christopher Hain. Editor, 472-1766
Rainbow Rowell.Managing Editor
Mark Baldridge.Opinion Page Editor
DeDra Janssen.Associate News Editor
Doug Kouma.Arts & Entertainment Editor
JeJfZeleny.Senior Reporter
Matt Woody.Senior Reporter
James Mehsling.Cartoonist
Speed up
65 too slo w for Nebraska drivers
Just can’t drive 65?
Soon you may not have to.
President Clinton is expected to sign a bill this month that
would repeal the national speed limit of 55 mph on most roads
and 65 mph on rural interstates, giving back to the states the
power to set limits.
_____ . With the change, Mon
tana — where penalties for
speeders have been notori
ously lax — will essentially
do away with speed limits
Wyoming state law re
quires that speed limits be
raised with the repeal of the
federal law, and starting next
month, the state will phase in
a 75-mph limit on its inter
state highways.
Similar plans are in the
works in other rural states,
including Colorado, Utah,
Kansas and South Dakota.
And they should be in
the works in Nebraska, too.
* A speed limit of 75 mph
BretGottschali/DN along rural stretches of Inter
state 80, which spans more
than 450 miles across the state, is not unreasonable.
Those living in the Omaha and Lincoln areas can easily forget
how vast and how rural this state really is.
There are just as many exits off 1-80 in the Omaha area alone
as there are between Lincoln and Grand Island. And in the stretch
of more than 300 miles west of Grand Island, the interstate passes
only two towns with populations greater than 10,000.
The landscape is sparse. The topography flat. The road rarely
Ask anyone who must drive this stretch of 1-80 how heavy the
foot can feel on the accelerator.
Interstate highways were built to accommodate high-speed
traffic, and lower limits were imposed only when the foreign oil
embargo of 1974 brought the national limit down to 55 mph. In a
1987 mass transit bill, Congress allowed states to raise the limit
to 65.
But with automakers in the ’90s building more fuel-efficient
vehicles with better emission controls and higher safety stan
dards, Nebraska and other rural states should follow the leads of
Montana and Wyoming.
A case can be made for maintaining the status quo between
Lincoln and Omaha, where traffic, by Nebraska standards, is of
ten heavy. And Nebraska’s two-lane highways are in some spots
as treacherous as they come, and 55 mph seems an adequate speed.
But any four-lane divided highway or Interstate should be fair
game for review.
A higher speed limit would require even greater driver respon
sibility, which the state should promote. How about adding
“Buckle up” to all those new highway signs?
Editorial policy
Staff editorials represent the official
policy of the Fall 1995 Daily Nebras
kan. Policy is set by the Daily Nebras
kan Editorial Board. Editorials do not
necessarily reflect the views of the
university, its employees, the students
or die NU Board of Regents. Editorial
columns represent the opinion of the
author. The regents publish the Daily
Nebraskan. They establish the UNL
Publications Board to supervise the
daily production of the paper. Accord
ing to policy set by the regents, respon
sibility for die editorial content of the
newspaper lies solely in die hands of its
Letter policy
The Daily Nebraskan welcomes brief letters to the
editor from all readers and interested others. Letters
will be selected for publication on the basis of clarity,
originality, timeliness and space available. The Daily
Nebraskan retains the right to edit or reject all material
submitted. Readers also are welcome to submit mate
rial as guest opinions. The editor decides whether
material should run as a guest opinion. Letters and
guest opinions sent to the newspaper become the
property of the Daily Nebraskan and cannot be re
turned. Anonymous submissions will not be pub
lished. Letters should include the author’s name, year
in school, major and group affiliation, if any. Re
quests to withhold names will not be granted. Submit
material to: Daily Nebraskan, 34 Nebraska Union,
1400 R St. Lincoln, Neb. 68588-0448.
■ t
Reefer madness
I am writing in response to the “pot
smoker’s view” by Matt Chimelewski.
I am sitting in my room not smok
ing marijuana in compliance with what
I think is a federal law.
My roomsmdlls terrible with mari
juana and incense.
How is this, you ask? I’m not smok
ing it.
Hey, you know what? My neighbor
could be, maybe that is why it smells.
The other day I was walking past a
room and heard a ticking noise, you
know, the sound a bomb makes.
I didn ’ t think any thing of it and j ust
kept on walking. c
What if it was a real bomb? x
He is making it “in the privacy of
his own home,” so leave it alone.
Hey, Matt, maybe people don’t like
the rich smell of marijuana, did you
ever think of that?
I believe that is their right if they
don’t want to put up with it.
R. Tyler McClymont (
Junior (
Business v
Fanmale !'
I am writing to congratulate Mr. t
Baldridge on another wonderful col- t
umn (“Eye opener,” Nov. 27).
I have faithfully read every piece i
of writing he has put in the DN this 1
semester. He consistently challenges t
me to think.
That is something that is lacking in f
today’s society of short attention span a
television and other forms of enter- f
tainment. t
I have also read letters from other
readers who attack Mr. Baldridge and t
his work.
These people need to open their a
minds todifferingopinions and points r
of view. f
I do not agree with all of Mr. c
Baldridge’s ideas or opinions, but I r
respect them. t
He has even swayed my ideology f
in some areas, a feat not easily accom
plished. t
In short, I hope to continue reading s
his work next
semester and I hope that others will
ome to appreciate his column for
^hat it is: food for the mind.
Matt Wieser
via e-mail
Gross error
In response to the letter from Vicki
’laassen (Nov. 17) accusing Attorney
5eneral Don Stenbergofthrowinghis
/eight around “without any regard for
umanity” concerning the placement
if a foster child, your readers should
ie aware that Claassen’s letter con
ains a gross misstatement of fact.
Claassen opens her attack by stat
ig a 3-year-old boy was removed
rom his home “per Stenberg’s order”
ecause his foster mother had AIDS.
First of all, the child was removed
rom his foster home by the Nelson
dministration after it was learned the
nstcr family had lied on their applica
The attorney general had nothing
a do with this decision.
Secondly, the attorney general’s
ppeal seeks to keep the child with his
ew foster parents, where he has been
nr six months. It would indeed be
ruel to force the child to readjust to a
ew foster home all over again, only
3 witness the death of the former
nster mother.
Apparently, Claassen does not let
lie facts get in the way of a good cheap
Steve Grasz
Deputy Attorney General
Sing a song
The recent article in the Daily Ne
braskan (“Seow unveils Singapore’s
evils,” Nov. 16) prompted me, a
Singaporean, to express a few things.
1) Francis Seow, the invited speaker
of the E.N. Thompson Forum on World
Issues, painted a picture of Singapore
not known to me.
There are traffic jams in Singapore,
believe me. There are potholes, beg
gars, the poor and homeless, graffiti,
and the streets are not necessarily “safe
to walk alone at night.”
That is why they have police offic
ers, social workers repairs on the roads
and Michael Fay.
Put another way: Although there is
the death penalty for traffickingdrugs
in Singapore, it doesn’t imply there
are no drugs — there are a dozen or
more convicted traffickers on the death
2) Singapore is still a tropical is
land paradise — when compared to
other cities in Southeast Asia, she
outshines them by a large margin.
3) Why was Seow chosen for the
forum? Did the Singapore Embassy
know an “exiled” Singaporean was
representing their country? Perhaps
the organizers owe everyone an ex
Kirti Doshi
Business the
, Nebraskan
> - ' ■
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